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Old Posted Jan 5, 2010, 2:35 PM
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GaylordWilshire GaylordWilshire is offline
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Location: NYC
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Inventing L.A.

Flaubert (not to get too high-falutin' here) is supposed to have said something to the effect that "Behind every fortune is a crime." Having somehow missed its original broadcast, I just watched PBS's "Inventing L.A.: The Chandlers and Their Times" online--very, very, interesting and well-done, if you haven't seen it. Commentary by many major California historians--Starr, Deverell, McDougal, Mike Davis etc-- and an incredible assemblage of footage including alot of historical street scenes as well as Chandler home movies, interviews with family members (including both of Otis's wives), and interesting voiceovers of Buff and Otis, all very well-edited. If you like what you see on this blog, you will love this documentary. Tells the family story extremely well--Otis comes off better than in some accounts, with emphasis on his hard work to remake the paper and use it to raise the city's standing in the world (as his predecessors had used it to build L.A.'s standing nationally), while the undistinguished, reactionary branches of the family look just as isolated and cluelessly entitled as legend has had it. (Certainly Chandler cousin Tad Williamson comes off here as angry, nasty, brittle and arrogant, apparently having no understanding of how he comes across.) But mainly it's the visuals-- well worth the nearly two hours. Free for the watching here:

PS This article is a good follow-up:

Last edited by GaylordWilshire; Jan 5, 2010 at 11:51 PM.
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