RARA-AVIS: LA's Ambassador Hotel-- R.I.P.

From: Marc Seals ( mseals@tampabay.rr.com)
Date: 22 Jan 2006

There was an interesting article called "Farewell, my L.A." in today's LA Times about the old Ambassador Hotel being torn down:

http://tinyurl.com/dfb4w or http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/sunday/commentary/la-oe-strick22jan22,0,5513457.story?coll=la-sunday-commentary

Writer Wesley Strick ( a screenwriter whose credits include 1991's CAPE FEAR) writes (in part):

Someone once observed that three of Chandler's best-known titles - "Farewell, My Lovely," "The Big Sleep" and "The Long Goodbye" - were different ways of saying "death." It's a commonplace that the dark currents of noir flowed from the insecurities of GIs returning home after years overseas: young men who weren't sure that their girlfriends and wives were waiting for them - or, if they were waiting, had they been faithful? Put the two together and you get the genre's twin themes: betrayal and extinction.

Now that the Ambassador is plowed under, I pause to reflect: Is it a surprise that the hotel got the wrecking ball rather than a loving restoration? Not when you consider its fate in a noir context. The hapless romantic Moose Malloy spends all of "Farewell, My Lovely" searching for his lost love. When he finds her at last, is he rewarded with a kiss? No, Moose gets five bullets in the stomach, fired point-blank.

In noir-land, the good die young and the bad sleep well. Through noir's tinted lens, Southern California is Eden Spoiled - per Chandler, the "tarantula on a slice of angel food."

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

RARA-AVIS home page: http://www.miskatonic.org/rara-avis/
  Yahoo! Groups Links

<*> To visit your group on the web, go to:

<*> To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:

<*> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to:

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 22 Jan 2006 EST