Monday, March 31, 2003

Iraqi propoganda continues...

Even some of our own journalists are raising questions about the war.

Journalist Peter Arnett, covering the war from Baghdad, told state-run Iraqi TV in an interview aired Sunday that the American-led coalition's first war plan had failed because of Iraq's resistance and said strategists are "trying to write another war plan."

It seems that Rumsfeld may have miscalculated a bit. This from Seymour Hersh of the New Yorker.

On at least six occasions, the planner told me, when Rumsfeld and his deputies were presented with operational plans—the Iraqi assault was designated Plan 1003—he insisted that the number of ground troops be sharply reduced. Rumsfeld’s faith in precision bombing and his insistence on streamlined military operations has had profound consequences for the ability of the armed forces to fight effectively overseas.

The Iraqi piece is ridiculous.
Arnett is being as fair as he can but I'm not sure the Coalition Forces have failed in any way.
The last piece on Rumsfeld is undoubtedly true but the war isn't even two weeks old so do we need to worry yet?
I don't think so.


Is Your Television Watching You?

Could the federal government find out what you're watching on TV? Even if you're not the subject of a criminal investigation?
If you're a satellite TV or TiVo owner, the answer is yes, according to legal experts and industry officials.
Under the USA Patriot Act, passed a month after the 9/11 terrorist attack, the feds can force a noncable TV operator to disclose every show you have watched. The government just has to say that the request is related to a terrorism investigation, said Jay Stanley, a technology expert for the American Civil Liberties Union.

Ill Logic...

This here makes me want to scream.
Anyone care to join me?

They may be the ones facing danger on the battlefield, but US soldiers in Iraq are being asked to pray for President George W Bush. Thousands of marines have been given a pamphlet called "A Christian's Duty," a mini prayer book which includes a tear-out section to be mailed to the White House pledging the soldier who sends it in has been praying for Bush.

Friday, March 28, 2003

A friend told me that the original name for this war was Operation Iraqi Liberation (O.I.L.) but that it had to be changed for obvious reasons.
Okay, I can't confirm that this is true but it's no secret that we like oil and Iraq had plenty of it.

And so...Halliburton conspiracies anyone?
California Democrat Henry Waxman is inquiring about the recent government contract to Halliburton who will extinguish oil well fires in Iraq. The company was formerly headed by Vice President Dick Cheney.

"I am writing to inquire why the administration entered into a contract potentially worth tens of millions of dollars or more with a subsidiary of Halliburton without any competition or even notice to Congress," Waxman wrote to Lt. Gen. Robert Flowers of the Army Corps of Engineers.
"Why did the administration fail to provide an opportunity for other companies to bid on this contract?" Waxman asked for a reply from the Army by April 4.

Despite all of this, it is good to see humanitarian aid reaching Iraq. These people have been derpived their rights to the basic necessities for way too long.

Web Escape...
Remember the site where some guy had a petition to return the Statue of Liberty to France? Well it turns out to have been a clever (or annoying) marketing hoax. The guy is auctioning the site on Ebay. Current bid is $62.25

There are only 26 letters but...over at Bembo's Zoo watch the imaginative way letters turn into animals.

The DVD of the week is Sex and Lucía a fine Spanish film by Julio Medem. At once convoluted and erotic the film deals with the fusion and confusion of memory and fiction, love and sex, life and death. (It's unrated by the way.)

The album of the moment is "Blazing Arrow" by Blackalicious
Pitchfork Media writes:
"This is one of those classic albums that crams in so much sound and so much life that listening to it is like going to a block party, all-day concert and a family reunion all at the same time."

All Music Guide writes:
"(Four and half stars) Blazing Arrow, is simply fantastic….All the pieces add up to not just one of the best rap albums of 2002, but one of the richest, most captivating albums to emerge from hip-hop's artsy new underground."

Thursday, March 27, 2003

Here's a good piece on the Geneva Convention. A Convention that - lets be honest - both Iraq and the U.S. have recently violated.

“America, as the world's most far-flung military power, has a strong interest in how captured soldiers are treated. This means insisting that other governments honor the Geneva Convention's requirements, and scrupulously following them itself. That applies not only to the handling of Iraqi captives in this war, but also to Washington's highly irregular treatment of battlefield captives from Afghanistan held in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.”


This is a joke, right?

The House passed a Resolution and the resolution, which passed 346-49, says Americans should use the day of prayer "to seek guidance from God to achieve a greater understanding of our own failings and to learn how we can do better in our everyday activities, and to gain resolve in meeting the challenges that confront our nation.

Under the resolution, President Bush would issue a proclamation designating a specific day as a day of "humility, prayer and fasting."

I have no problem with prayer but what's up with Congress making it a law that we 'use a day of prayer'? Didn't you guys help the world get into this mess in the first place? And besides just at what point has Bush shown humility?

Net fun...
This right here may have something to do with makes Bush tick.
When someone refers to a Pyrrhic victory they are usually referring to the winning side. In the case of Operation Iraqi Freedom it has been said that part of the motivation for the Coalition forces' actions is to free the Iraqi people from the tyranny of their terrible dictator. So in theory this war should be - with our help - a victory for Iraq.
But presently it doesn't feel that way, does it?
Here's the terrible tally as it stands:

20 US Soldier Casualties and 14 captured or missing.

Iraqi Soldier casualties are unknown although in one battle alone an estimated 500 died.

And an estimated 350 Iraqi Civilian casualties have been reported.

Music and Politics...
Here’s a new REM song titled ‘Final Straw’ about the Iraq conflict.

This is the strongest voice I could think of to send out there.
We had to send something out there now.
We are praying and hoping for the lives of all people involved,
the troops, the Iraqi civilians, refugees, pow's, families of troops, the innocents--
that they are safe and okay. Safe home, all.
– Michael Stipe

And here’s one titled ‘March of Death’ by Zack de la Rocha with DJ Shadow.

[The Iraqis] want democracy but find themselves cornered by a dictator on one side, naked US aggression on another, and the oil beneath their country…. Lies, sanctions and cruise missiles have never created a free and just society – Zack de la Rocha

Our current administrations foreign policy strikes me as being reckless, inhumane, and hopelessly out of step with the so-called ‘values’ it claims to defend. – DJ Shadow

Wednesday, March 26, 2003


This blog the was forwarded to me and, I have to say, it has about the best updates that I can find on the war.

This 70 year old man has seen 14,000 films and counting!

"Sometimes I go to five different venues in one day. It's all about timing and eating in between," because Reid doesn't believe in getting the munchies at the movies. "No food or drinking should be allowed, not even the rustle of a candy wrapper," he says. Don't even mention cell phones. "What a distraction," he says. "I want to give a movie my undivided attention," which is why he prefers to go alone these days.

Tuesday, March 25, 2003

Terry Jones of Monty Python fame uses his wit in writing an open letter to Tony Blair:

Dear Tony,
I'm terribly worried that you may be losing your grip on reality.
For example, a few days ago you went on television and announced that after the US has bombed Baghdad "We shall help Iraq move towards democracy."
Now I don't want to be a wet blanket, Tony, but was it a leprechaun who suggested this idea to you?

Since the Second World War, the US has bombed China, Korea, Guatemala, Indonesia, Cuba, Guatemala (again), Peru, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Guatemala (third time lucky), Grenada, Lebanon, Libya, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Iran, Panama, Iraq, Kuwait, Somalia, Bosnia, Afghanistan and Yugoslavia - in that order - and in not a single case did the bombing produce a democratic government as a direct result.

Why do you think it will be any different in Iraq? Or did your fairy godmother promise you this along with a golden coach?


Dick Cheney’s daughter a Human Shield? I'm not sure I buy this.
Germany and parts of Europe have decided to play the same impractacle comsumer boycott game we did with the French. That is to deny themselves the pleasures of consumer goods to make a point.

Even Adbusters is getting involved. I thought the left was above this. These products don't in and of themselves endorse the war. It's understandable if you boycott McDonalds because they as a corporation have a disregard for employees or for the environment (or for cows) but to associated McDonalds with the war being waged by the Bush Administration and the Military is off base.

Polish movie posters are so much more expressive and wild than the standard movie posters made in Hollywood. The Gene Siskel Film Center in Chicago is having a good exhibition of Polish Posters.
Some of the posters seem to have little to do with the movie itself. Check out Chinatown and The Graduate.

Monday, March 24, 2003

Politics and Film...
It's interesting to see that in a time of war when it should be pretty clear that our enemy is Iraq the Right Wing can always find an enemy at home who takes the first amendment literally. By now everyone knows about Michael Moore's Oscar acceptance speech where he said:
"We like nonfiction and we live in fictitious times. We live in the time where we have fictitious election results that elects a fictitious president. We live in a time where we have a man sending us to war for fictitious reasons. Whether it's the fictition of duct tape or fictition of orange alerts we are against this war, Mr. Bush. Shame on you, Mr. Bush, shame on you."

Now, one can argue whether or not he was being rude in front of a bunch of millionaire movie stars. But, hey, it's America and I've always liked someone who stirs up the pot a bit.

To be fair to the other side here's a few (edited but not grammatically changed) comments from the web in oppostion to Mr Moore:
These from Front Page
"The oscar to Lard Ass Moore, is an example of how fraudulent the oscar awards are."

"I'd like to see Mike make a "documentary" about the terrorists that murder Israelis. You see, I think he's really an anti-semite. After all, he made fun of Moses AND Ben-Hur!!!!!!!!"

"Michael Moore's Oscar win is like a diet of rice-cakes and cotton candy... it's tasteless... it's all fluff and no substance.. but ain't that Hollywood for you... ?"

These from Cox and Forkum:
"I hate this lying bastard. He is a disgrace to my country. I hope that the teamsters did help him into his trunk and that he joins Jimmy Hoffa."

"Bowling for Columbine" is as much of a documentary as "Triumph of the Will", with the exception that all of the events show in "Triumph of the Will" occured when and where Reifenstahal(sp?) showed them, whereas Moore invested in some, shall we say "Creative editing...If you think that a man like Mixcheal Moore has any credibility then you're as blind as a headless chicken."

"Once again watching Michael Moore last night reminded me that abortion does have an up side."


Many winners had things to say about the current situation. Here are some excerpts:
Nicole Kidman
"I do have to say, it was "Why do you come to the Academy Awards when the world is in such turmoil?" Because art is important. And because you believe in what you do. And you want to honor that. And it is a tradition that needs to be upheld. At the same time you say there is a lot of problems in the world and since 9/11 there's been a lot of pain, in terms of families losing people, and now with the war, families losing people."

Adrian Brody
"...It fills me with great joy, but I am also filled with a lot of sadness tonight because I am accepting an award at such a strange time. And you know my experiences of making this film made me very aware of the sadness and the dehumanization of people at times of war. And the repercussions of war. And whatever you believe in, if it's God or Allah, may he watch over you and let's pray for a peaceful and swift resolution. Thank you. And I have a friend from Queens who's a soldier in Kuwait right now, Tommy Zarabinski, and I hope you and your boys make it back real soon. God bless you guys. I love you. Thank you very much."

Chris Cooper
"And in light of all the troubles in this world, I wish us all peace. Thank you."

If you want the other speeches click here.

Friday, March 21, 2003

Politics and war...
Here, according to Forbers, are the best War blogs
Where is Raed?
Daily Kos
Back To Iraq

The only one that is actually in Iraq and reads like a daily diary is Where is Raed? He writes:
"No one inside Iraq is for war (note I said war not a change of regime), no human being in his right mind will ask you to give him the beating of his life, unless you are a member of fight club that is, and if you do hear Iraqi (in Iraq, not expat) saying “come on bomb us” it is the exasperation and 10 years of sanctions and hardship talking. There is no person inside Iraq (and this is a bold, blinking and underlined inside) who will be jumping up and down asking for the bombs to drop. We are not suicidal you know, not all of us in any case."

Shock and awe is not pretty. I was hoping for a quick surrender...

I was skeptical about the continuing anti-war protests. But over on Atrios they state it right.
"The reason people protest in the first place is because they feel it's their only avenue of political expression. Their elected representatives aren't providing a voice, the media isn't providing a voice, so the only possible way to register objections to the current war is public protest."

Thursday, March 20, 2003

War - or Operation Iraqi Freedom - has begun. If you want to follow what happens and you want a truly fair and balanced perspective check here.

Web Escape...
Just what is a Thaumatrope a Phenakistiscope or a Zoopraxiscope? Check it out at this optical toys site.

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Okay, so war is upon us. Will it be a 72 hour wonder? I doubt it. The question now is how many soldiers will we lose and how many Iraqi civilians will be killed? Worse still is if biological weapons are used. And I'm not just talking about the ones Saddam may have. What about the depleted uranium ammunition we will use?

"[When war starts] tonnes of depleted uranium (DU) weapons are likely to be used by British and American tanks and by ground attack aircraft. Some believe people are still suffering ill health from ammunition used in the Gulf War 12 years ago, and other conflicts."

Let's hope this doesn't happen...

Web Escape...
Let's look to the web for an escape. This site with a man in a box is creative and fun.

Ill Logic...
Clearchannel the megaconglomerate that eats your radio has decided the Dixie Chicks are too radical for the airwaves.
"Out of respect for our troops, our city and our listeners, [we] have taken the Dixie Chicks off our playlists."

Or this this a satire? Or does this guy really want to return the Statue of Liberty to the French?

Friday, March 14, 2003

There is a third way to deal with Iraq writes Jim Wallis and John Bryson Chane:

"The 'serious consequences' threatened by the Security Council need not mean war. They should mean further and more decisive actions against Hussein and his regime, rather than a devastating attack on the people of Iraq.
1) Remove Hussein and the Baath Party from power
2) The Security Council should establish an international tribunal to indict Hussein and his top officials for war crimes and crimes against humanity
3) Pursue coercive disarmament. Removing Hussein must be coupled with greatly intensified inspections
4) Foster a democratic Iraq.
5) Organize a massive humanitarian effort for the people of Iraq now"

Have I mentioned this war really is about oil?

"In the geopolitical vision driving current U.S. policy toward Iraq, the key to national security is global hegemony -- dominance over any and all potential rivals. To that end, the United States must not only be able to project its military forces anywhere, at any time. It must also control key resources, chief among them oil -- and especially Gulf oil. To the hawks who now set the tone at the White House and the Pentagon, the region is crucial not simply for its share of the U.S. oil supply but because it would allow the United States to maintain a lock on the world's energy lifeline and potentially deny access to its global competitors."

Here's something remarkable regarding Iraq for you history buffs.

"Washington's policy traces an even longer, more shrouded and fateful history. Forty years ago, the Central Intelligence Agency, under President John F. Kennedy, conducted its own regime change in Baghdad, carried out in collaboration with Saddam Hussein."

Mr Cranky’s review of Willard is not necessarily a ringing endorsement; is it?

"At one point during my viewing of "Willard," I considered whipping out my cell phone, calling Roto-Rooter and paying them to come to the theater and force those sharp, spinning blades of death into the end of my penis as though it were a clogged pipe, thereby masking the sick feeling I was having watching this disaster of a horror film and actually reducing my pain."

The album of the moment is "Give Up" by Postal Service. It's a straightforward record that recalls the music of Yo La Tengo, The Pet Shop Boys and Death Cab for Cutie. It will have you singing to yourself in the shower. Splendid writes:

"Call it dream-pop, call it electronic -- but whichever way you slice it, Give Up is an amazingly versatile recording, suitable for the highest highs and the lowest lows. It'll pick you up when you are down, or conversely, allow you to wallow in self-induced solitude, if that suits your mood."

Thursday, March 13, 2003

Ill Logic
Place your bid today for this war mongering bumbersticker.
Note that this item has already ended but if you look at the other items the guy is selling you can buy it now.

Politics...and Music...
Clint Black has written a pro-war song. Like the Mellencamp song it isn't too good but, hey, we can all sing along to the chorus on this one!

It might be a smart bomb
They find stupid people too…

I rock, I rack’em up and I roll
I’m back and I’m a high tech GI Joe
I got infrared, GPs and good old fashioned lead
No price too high for freedom
Be careful where you tread

Download some anti-war posters in your spare time.

Just make sure you don't post them on the wall of your office if you work at places like Jones Media Networks where dissent can get you fired.

Michael Ventura writes about the first movie-movie - Edwin S Porter's The Great Train Robbery, which premiered 100 years ago.

It was wildly popular ... audiences cheered and stomped and often demanded that the projectionist run the film again, right away ... many ducked under their seats when the train seemed to be coming straight at them ... and there were even instances of men in the audience drawing their pistols and shooting back at the screen.

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Every stinking thing about this forthcoming war is related to oil. From those who support us to those who oppose us it's all about that black gold. Makes you want to take up bicycling.

Maybe it's a coincidence, but American and British oil companies would be long-term beneficiaries of a successful military offensive led by the United States and Britain to remove Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.
Industry officials say Hussein's ouster would help level the playing field for U.S. and British firms that have been shut out of Iraq as Baghdad has negotiated with rivals from other countries -- notably France, Russia and China, three leading opponents of war.


Hey, Bush does something right! NO more bothersome calls. Well..sort of. Charities, surveys and calls on behalf of politicians would be exempt.

Tuesday, March 11, 2003

Politics...and Music...
Mellencamp formerly John Couger, formerly John Couger Mellencamp, formerly John Mellencamp has a new folk song criticizing Bush. It's not that good of a song - truthfully - but he doesn't hide his disdain for the man.

So a new man in the White House
With a familiar name
Said he had some fresh ideas
But it's worse now since he came
From Texas to Washington

And he wants to fight with many
And he says it's not for oil
He sent out the National Guard
To police the world
From Baghdad to Washington

The documentary Rivers and Tides about artist Andy Goldsworthy has become the little-independent-movie-that-could.

Watch it if it comes to your neighborhood. If you are unfamiliar with Goldsworthy look here.

Monday, March 10, 2003

Au Revoir...
Stan Brakhage, the greatest avant-garde filmmaker of the 20th Century, has died.
He made over 300 of the most distinct experimental films in cinema. Many of his films are abstract expressionist psychodramas that sing to their own colorful syncopated lyrical rhythm. Through editing, camera movement, superimposition and physically altering the film (such as painting on it and scratching it) he has tried to approximate various forms of vision – such as peripheral and hypnagogic (closed eye) vision, memory, such as optical feedback, as well as the nature of thinking and feeling, which tie into our nervous system. He was a true visionary and he will be missed by all.

I had the pleasure of meeting him a couple of times and being in his presence about a half dozen times at various film festivals. The great thing about him was the enthusiasm he had for the film medium. Even if you didn't understand his films he had a very persuasive way of making you appreciate them as not only works of art but essential works of life.

Here's the best web site on Brakhage.

Here's a piece I wrote on him for the upcoming Criterion Collection DVD.

Up High...
Internet cafe on Everest! Have a frapaccino and e-mail your friends before you summit Mt Everest.

13 questions the press should have asked George W. Bush.

Friday, March 07, 2003

Bush doesn’t like to be grilled by the press as he was (sort of) last night so he doesn’t have many press conferences. If you’ve witnessed him in front of reporters - where he usually looks like a deer caught in the headlights - you know why. After two years and 45 days in office Bush has had 8 press conferences. By comparison:
Bill Clinton had held 30 solo news conferences
George Bush (Sr) had held 58
Ronald Reagan had held 16
Jimmy Carter had held 45
Gerald Ford had held 37
Richard M. Nixon had held 16
Lyndon B. Johnson had held 52.

Bush too isn’t as savvy with the press as Clinton or Reagan were and he can’t take criticism. In yesterday’s press conference he snubbed Helen Thomas the doyenne of the Washington Press Corp who has covered every President since JFK. Why? It probably had something to do with the fact that in an interview she called Bush, "[The] worst president ever,"
Personally, one of the character traits I look for in a President is the ability to embrace your critics and attempt to woo them. Bush plays the childish game of avoiding people he doesn't like all together.

Gaspar Noe’s film Irreversible opened in LA today to fairly negative reviews. Naturally a film with a seven minute real time rape scene won’t be liked by anybody but the film is getting some good reviews - even in the mainstream press. It is as daring as they come and worth a look if you can stomach brutal films. Here's a good short interview with Noe that may pique interest.

Thursday, March 06, 2003

Here’s a headline I like: ‘Muslim Democracy Foils Bush's Imperial Plans’

Then again Turkey isn’t the best country in terms of human rights - especially with regards to the Kurds. In fact, this article by Christopher Hitchens darn near makes the case for invading Turkey rather than Iraq.

Germany's Anti-Americanism really has reached new heights or should I say new lows?

Tuesday, March 04, 2003

The DVD of the week is The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum from The Criterion Collection. This fine film by Volker Schlondorff and Margarethe von Trotta is about a woman who chooses to end her little bout of celebacy one night at a party and unwittingly ends up with an anarchist! He escapes her apartment and suddenly - when the police break down her door - she is thrown into a whirlwind of accusations. From there we see the ensuing political and media blitz that overcomes her. The film, made in 1975, is pretty astute on how government and the overbearing media abuse their powers to villainies regular people.
The most asinine item of the week (or maybe the month) is the proposed boycott on French wine. In a recent online poll that I took it seems well over 50% of Americans feel the French are ungrateful for the work we did for them over 50 years ago in World War II. In another poll 63% support Pennsylvania lawmaker Steve Barrar in his boycott efforts.
Has it occurred to these people that France is a soverign nation that is doing nothing more than proposing what more than half of the world wants, which is a diplomatic solution to war? It seems that because we saved their ass in World War II they are supposed to be our lapdog forever.
If these Conservatives were logical about this – and who expects them to be – they would stop buying California wine too. After all 21 counties in California have passed a City and County Council Resolutions Opposing Preemptive War in Iraq. Nationwide 124 counties have passed such a resolution. When will Americans start boycotting America?
How’s this for an anti-French PR campaign? Free wine!
Even some in Hollywood are getting involved in this boycott. They must be upset because they can’t make movies as good as the French.
This column by Al Martinez get's it right. He considers changing the name of French kissing as well boycotting another anti-war nation; Russia by denying ourselves borscht and boiled potatoes.

In the overblown-media-story-file look to the story in Maine about teachers making children of soldiers cry. Every right-wing talk show personality has chomped on this one yet it seems that the story just doesn’t have legs.

When will the U.S. begin to produce world class long distance runners again? We got trounced in the recent LA Marathon by the kings of the long distance running: the Kenyans. They took 10 of the top 15 places.

Monday, March 03, 2003

Perhaps women have the power to prevent war. Today in all 50 states and 59 countries the play Lysistrata will be read and / or performed as a sort of anti-war protest.
"Aristophanes' antiwar comedy "Lysistrata," is about a group of women who use the sex-for-peace strategy with great success. Lysistrata encourages women from opposing sides of a civil war to withhold sex from their husbands until the men, conquered by unrequited lust, agree to ratify a peace treaty. The purpose of the Lysistrata Project is not education, but expression, and above all, "to make it clear that President Bush does not speak for all Americans."

Album of the moment
The first amazing CD I've heard this year is The Delgados album 'Hate'. It's a beautiful album with soaring melodies that get lodged in your head for days.
Dusted Magazine writes: “Loud, large and unrelenting, Hate is stunning, orchestral pop. The Delgados have proven yet again that they are one of the best – if chronically underappreciated – bands in rock.”
In a much more purple prose manner Playlouder writes: “These are arctic lullabies, halfway between comfort and despair. Crawl inside the cashmere cocoon of the string section, be soothed by Emma Pollock's icy chime, be rocked gently to sleep by the swooning guitars and lush melodies. Then wake from your ghostly dreams to find an icicle through your heart. There is no way back. The snow has covered your footprints.”

Saturday, March 01, 2003

Los Angeles Magazine has a special Hollywood issue this month and their critic Steve Erickson has come up with a list of the 25 greatest movies about Los Angeles. Here they are:
1) Chinatown (1974) LA Private Detective, water and incest
2) Sunset Boulevard (1950) Cynical screenwriter, silent star
3) Blade Runner (1982) Replicants in a rainy futuristic LA
4) Kiss Me Deadly (1955) Nuclear noir
5) Singin’ in the Rain (1952) Happy days in the rain
6) Double Indemnity (1944) blond woman, insurance man, noir
7) Lost Highway (1996) Lost memory and indentity
8) Detour (1945) Lovers commit crime in the streets
9) Heat (1995) Cop, robber, heist
10) The Big Sleep (1946) Marlow and the complex crime
11) Barton Fink (1991) Screenwriter goes to hell
12) Boogie Nights (1997) Porn in LA
13) In a Lonely Place (1950) Fatalistic love in transcendent LA
14) Boyz N the Hood (1991) Tough life in South Central
15) Jackie Brown (1997) Retro blaxploitation in LA
16) The Long Goodbye (1973) Marlow in the carefree 70's
17) LA Confidential (1997) Neo-Noir channels Chandler
18) The Bad and the Beautiful (1952) The business of making movies
19) The Doors (1991) Rock n Roll late 60’s nostalgia
20) The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (1976) Searching for identity and crooks
21) Dogtown and Z-Boys (2002) Renegade 70’s surf culture in Santa Monica
22) Devil in a Blue Dress (1995) Politics, crime, interracial affairs circa WWII
23) Bowfinger (1999) Making movies when you have no talent
24) Echo Park (1986) Waiting for dreams to deliver
25) Beyond the Valley of the Dolls (1970) Decadent trashy LA living

This is a good list (except for The Doors) but there are a few I’d add
Down and Our in Beverly Hills (1987) Comedy about the haves and have nots
Killer of Sheep (1977) Before Boyz N the Hood there was this slice of LA life
LA Story (1991) Life of an actor in LA
Mystery Street (1950) Crime solving Latino in the streets of LA
Mulholland Drive (2000) Surreal LA
The Player (1992) Hollywood power gone wrong
The State of Things (1982) A foreign filmmaker in LA