Hollywood was once the dream capital of the world. Movies peddled glamour and fantasy. This was La-La Land where outrageous plots and larger than life characters allowed audiences to construct alternate realities — entertainment.
But La-La Land has relocated.
On Wednesday, President Obama delivered the commencement address at the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Conn. The mission of the Coast Guard is to protect America’s coasts. But according to this Commander-in-Chief the real threat to America comes not from enemies attacking the homeland, but from so-called global freezing/global warming/climate change — whatever they’re calling the weather this week.
America has long had a love affair with the automobile. Cars are the ultimate expression of form, function, fashion — and speed.
But most of all the car represents freedom.
Try and remember when you were a teenager yearning for your driver’s license so you could hop into daddy’s car and go, go, go. It didn’t matter where, you just wanted to burn rubber and escape into the far horizon.
The exhilarating and touching American Graffiti (’73) is the ultimate expression of American car culture. Every scene takes place in a car, or beside a car.
Los Angeles was the first America city built to accommodate the automobile. And the movie stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age, most born dirt-poor, expressed delight in their sudden prosperity and fame by purchasing and posing with their dream machines.