Published

The Dialectic of the Stars
(Los Angeles Draft)

To prepare my residency at FLAX, I decided to watch as many movies set in Los Angeles as I could. For two months, I watched more than one hundred movies, passing from one district to another, drifting from one atmosphere to another.

With this mental journey, I have experienced what Jean Baudrillard wrote in Simulacra and Simulation (1981), “it is the map that precedes the territory—precession of simulacra—it is the map that engenders the territory.” It’s true that Los Angeles seems super familiar when you arrive for the first time. But in Baudrillard’s perspective, images are not anymore representations which articulate some deep meaning about the reality. They are more the expression of a destructive process of every reference.

Here I have played with the images (2 per movie), reassembling them in a kind of narrative which could allow myself to begin to draw some patterns or figures about my project The Dialectic of the Stars. As an art historian, I have worked a lot on Situationist International and Guy Debord. And even if Los Angeles can easily persuade to take distance from the Parisian melancholy of the rebels artists, this draft is the starting point of an unlikely encounter between the situationists’ sensibility and the west coast.

Fabien Danesi, FLAX Curator-in-residence


 

The Decline of Western Civilization. Dir. Penelope Spheeris. 1981.

He Walked By Night. Dir. Alfred L. Werker. 1948.

Strange Days. Dir. Kathryn Bigelow. 1995.

Body Double. Dir. Brian de Palma. 1984.

Miracle Mile. Dir. Steve de Jarnatt. 1988.

Mulholland Drive. Dir. David Lynch. 2001.

Collateral. Dir. Michael Mann. 2004.

Double Indemnity. Dir. Billy Wilder. 1944.

The Fast and The Furious. Dir. Rob Cohen. 2001.

LA Story. Dir. Mick Jackson. 1991.

My Brothers Wedding. Dir. Charles Burnett. 1983.

Less Than Zero. Dir. Marek Kanievska. 1987.

The Terminator. Dir. James Cameron. 1984.

Terminator Judgement Day. Dir. James Cameron. 1991.

Terminator 3 Rise of The Machines. Dir. Jonathan Mostow. 2003.

Drive. Dir. Nicolas Winding Refn. 2011.

Gone in 60 Seconds. Dir. H.B. Halicki. 1974.

Assault on the Precinct 13. Dir. John Carpenter. 1976.

Double Indemnity. Dir. Billy Wilder. 1944.

Brother. Dir. Takeshi Kitano. 2000.

Drive. Dir. Nicolas Winding Refn. 2011.

The Big Sleep. Dir. Howard Hawks. 1946.

The Gambler. Dir. Rupert Wyatt. 2014.

The Driver. Dir. Walter Hill. 1978.

The Big Lebowski. Dir. Joel and Ethan Coen. 1998.

The Crimson Kimono. Dir. Samuel Fuller. 1959.

Beverly Hills Cop. Dir. Martin Brest. 1984.

Less Than Zero. Dir. Marek Kanievska. 1987.

The Lethal Weapon. Dir. Richard Donner. 1987.

Dope. Dir. Rick Famuyiwa. 2015.

Training Day. Dir. Antoine Fuqua. 2001.

Maps To The Stars. Dir. David Cronenberg. 2014.

The Hidden. Dir. Jack Sholder. 1987.

Valley Girl. Dir. Martha Coolidge. 1983.

Los Bastardos. Dir. Amat Escalante. 2008.

Shampoo. Dir. Hal Hashby. 1975.

Hardcore. Dir. Paul Schrader. 1979.

Magnolia. Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson. 1999.

Escape From The Planet of the Apes. Dir. Don Taylor. 1971.

The Little Shop of Horrors. Dir. Roger Corman. 1960.

Speed. Dir. Jan de Bont. 1994.

They Live. Dir. John Carpenter. 1988.

Clueless. Dir. Amy Heckerling. 1995.

The Bling Ring. Dir. Sofia Coppola. 2013.

Southland Tales. Dir. Richard Kelly. 2006.

Safe. Dir. Todd Haynes. 1995.

Training Day. Dir. Antoine Fuqua. 2001.

Falling Down. Dir. Joel Schumacher. 1993.

Heat. Dir. Michael Mann. 1995.

Strange Days. Dir. Kathryn Bigelow. 1995.

Minnie and Moskowitz. Dir. John Cassavetes. 1971.

The Graduate. Dir. Mike Nichols. 1967.

Beverly Hills Cop. Dir. Martin Brest. 1984.

Valley of the Dolls. Dir. Mark Robson. 1967.

Brother. Dir. Takeshi Kitano. 2000.

Colors. Dir. Dennis Hopper. 1988.

Her. Dir. Spike Jonze. 2013.

The Neon Demon. Dir. Nicolas Winding Refn. 2016.

Face Off. Dir. John Woo. 1997.

Stars 80. Dir. Bob Fosse. 1983.

Somewhere. Dir. Sofia Coppola. 2010.

Point Blank. Dir. John Boorman. 1967.

The Exiles. Dir. Kent Mackenzie. 1961.

White Heat. Dir. Raoul Walsh. 1949.

The Big Sleep. Dir. Howard Hawks. 1946.

The War of the Worlds. Dir. Byron Haskin. 1953.

The Gambler. Dir. Rupert Wyatt. 2014.

Blade Runner. Dir. Ridley Scott. 1982.

My Brother’s Wedding. Dir. Charles Burnett. 1983.

The Purge Anarchy. Dir. James DeMonaco. 2014.

He Walked By Night. Dir. Alfred L. Werker. 1948.

Them! Dir. Gordon Douglas. 1954.

Sunset Boulevard. Dir. Billy Wilder. 1950.

Pretty Woman. Dir. Garry Marshall. 1990.

L.A. Without a Map. Dir. Mika Kaurismäki. 1998.

Barfly. Dir. Barbet Shroeder. 1987.

The Exiles. Dir. Kent Mackenzie. 1961.

Barton Fink. Dir. Joel and Ethan Coen. 1991.

Clueless 3. Dir. Amy Heckerling. 1995.

Mulholland Drive. Dir. David Lynch. 2001.

Pulp Fiction. Dir. Quentin Tarantino. 1994.

Her. Dir. Spike Jonze. 2013.

Repo Man. Dir. Alex Cox. 1984.

The Purge Anarchy. Dir. James DeMonaco. 2014.

Repo Man. Dir. Alex Cox. 1984.

Tangerine. Dir. Sean Baker. 2015.

Rebel Without a Cause. Dir. Nicholas Ray. 1955.

The Terminator. Dir. James Cameron. 1984.

Escape from the Planet of the Apes. Dir. Don Taylor. 1971.

Falling Down. Dir. Joel Schumacher. 1993.

Inherent Vice. Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson. 2014.

The Long Goodbye. Dir. Robert Altman. 1973.

Collateral. Dir. Michael Mann. 2004.

Maps to the Stars. Dir. David Cronenberg. 2014.

Escape from L.A. Dir. John Carpenter. 1996.

Zombieland. Dir. Ruben Fleischer. 2009.

They Live. Dir. John Carpenter. 1988.

To Live and Die in L.A. Dir. William Friedkin. 1985.

Live and Die in L.A.. Dir. William Friedkin. 1985.

The Neon Demon. Dir. Nicolas Winding Refn. 2016.

A Woman Under The Influence. Dir. John Cassavetes. 1974.

The Little Shop of Horrors. Dir. Roger Corman. 1960.

Safe. Dir. Todd Haynes. 1995.

Gone in 60 seconds. Dir. H.B. Halicki. 1974.

The Driver. Dir. Walter Hill. 1978.

Targets. Dir. Peter Bogdanovich. 1968.

Last Action Hero. Dir. John McTiernan. 1993.

Lost Highway. Dir. David Lynch. 1997.

Terminator 3 Rise of The Machines. Dir. Jonathan Mostow. 2003.

Knocked Up. Dir. Judd Apatow. 2007.

A Woman Under The Influence. Dir. John Cassavetes. 1974.

Hustler White. Dir. Rick Castro and Bruce La Bruce. 1996.

Sunset Boulevard. Dir. Billy Wilder. 1950.

The Player. Dir. Robert Altman. 1992.

Volcano. Dir. Mick Jackson. 1997.

Dogtown and Z-Boys. Dir. Stacy Peralta. 2001.

Face Off. Dir. John Woo. 1997.

Earthquake. Dir. Mark Robson. 1974.

Point Blank. Dir. John Boorman. 1967.

Chinatown. Dir. Roman Polanski. 1974.

Inherent Vice. Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson. 2014.

Miracle Mile. Dir. Steve De Jarnatt. 1988.

Night of the Comet. Dir. Thom Eberhardt. 1984.

Los Bastardos. Dir. Amat Escalante. 2008.

Earthquake. Dir. Mark Robson. 1974.

Magnolia. Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson. 1999.

Greenberg. Dir. Noah Baumbach. 2010.

Night of the Comet. Dir. Thom Eberhardt. 1984.

The Decline of Western Civilization. Dir. Penelope Spheeris. 1981.

Escape from L.A.. Dir. John Carpenter. 1996.

Targets. Dir. Peter Bogdanovich. 1968.

LA Burning The Riots 25 Years Later. Dir. One9 and Erik Parker. 2017.

Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls. Dir. Russ Meyer. 1970.

Dolemite. Dir. D’Urville Martin. 1975.

Sweet Sweetbacks Baadasssss Song. Dir. Melvin Van Peebles. 1970.

Killer of Sheep. Dir. Charles Burnett. 1978.

Wattstax. Dir. Mel Stuart. 1973.

Menace II Society. Dir. Albert and Allen Hugues. 1993.

Jackie Brown. Dir. Quentin Tarantino. 1997.

Dolemite. Dir. D’Urville Martin. 1975.

Boyz in the Hood. Dir. John Singleton. 1991.

Dope. Dir. Rick Famuyiwa. 2015.

Boyz in the Hood. Dir. John Singleton. 1991.

Two-Minute Warning. Dir. Larry Peerce. 1976.

Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls. Dir. Russ Meyer. 1970.

Menace II Society. Dir. Albert and Allen Hugues. 1993.

Terminator Judgement Day. Dir. James Cameron. 1991.

Tequila Sunrise. Dir. Robert Towne. 1988.

Hustler White. Dir. Rick Castro and Bruce La Bruce. 1996.

Cafe Society. Dir. Woody Allen. 2016.

Barfly. Dir. Barbet Schroeder. 1987.

Southland Tales. Dir. Richard Kelly. 2006.

Prince of Darkness. Dir. John Carpenter. 1987.

Point Break. Dir. Kathryn Bigelow. 1991.

Hail Caesar. Dir. Ethan and Joel Coen. 2016.

The Fast and The Furious. Dir. Rob Cohen. 2001.

LA Burning The Riots 25 Years Later. Dir. One9 and Erik Parker. 2017.

Sweet Sweetbacks Baadasssss Song. Dir. Melvin Van Peebles. 1970.

Assault on the Precinct 13. Dir. John Carpenter. 1976.

Colors. Dir. Dennis Hopper. 1988.

Die Hard. Dir. John McTiernan. 1988.

The Graduate. Dir. Mike Nichols. 1967.

Pretty Woman. Dir. Garry Marshall. 1990.

Blade Runner. Dir. Ridley Scott. 1982.

Chinatown. Dir. Roman Polanski. 1974.

The Crimson Kimono. Dir. Samuel Fuller. 1959.

White Heat. Dir. Raoul Walsh. 1949.

Tequila Sunrise. Dir. Robert Towne. 1988.

The Hidden. Dir. Jack Sholder. 1987.

Killer Of Sheep. Dir. Charles Burnett. 1978.

Cafe Society. Dir. Woody Allen. 2016.

The Player. Dir. Robert Altman. 1992.

Valley of the Dolls. Dir. Mark Robson. 1967.

Greenberg. Dir. Noah Baumbach. 2010.

The Big Lebowski. Dir. Joel and Ethan Coen. 1998.

The Death Kiss. Dir. Edwin L. Marin. 1932.

The Running Man. Dir. Paul Michael Glaser. 1987.

Jackie Brown. Dir. Quentin Tarantino. 1997.

Die Hard. Dir. John McTiernan. 1988.

Wassup Rockers. Dir. Larry Clark. 2005.

Heat. Dir. Michael Mann. 1995.

Valley Girl. Dir. Martha Coolidge. 1983.

Pulp Fiction. Dir. Quentin Tarantino. 1994.

Zombieland. Dir. Ruben Fleischer. 2009.

The Lethal Weapon. Dir. Richard Donner. 1987.

Rebel Without a Cause. Dir. Nicholas Ray. 1955.

Body Double. Dir. Brian de Palma. 1984.

The Bling Ring. Dir. Sofia Coppola. 2013.

Shampoo. Dir. Hal Hashby. 1975.

Last Action Hero. Dir. John McTiernan. 1993.

Two-Minute Warning. Dir. Larry Peerce. 1976.

The China Syndrome. Dir. James Bridges. 1979.

The War of the Worlds. Dir. Byron Haskin. 1953.

Wattstax. Dir. Mel Stuart. 1973.

The China Syndrome. Dir. James Bridges. 1979.

The Death Kiss. Dir. Edwin L. Marin. 1932.

The Running Man. Dir. Paul Michael Glaser. 1987.

L.A. Without a Map. Dir. Mika Kaurismäki. 1998.

Point Break. Dir. Kathryn Bigelow. 1991.

Hail Caesar. Dir. Ethan and Joel Coen. 2016.

Dogtown and Z-Boys. Dir. Stacy Peralta. 2001.

Wassup Rockers. Dir. Larry Clark. 2005.

The Long Goodbye. Dir. Robert Altman. 1973.

Prince of Darkness. Dir. John Carpenter. 1987.

Lost Highway. Dir. David Lynch. 1997.

Volcano. Dir. Mick Jackson. 1997.

Short Cuts. Dir. Robert Altman. 1993.

Somewhere. Dir. Sofia Coppola. 2010.

Short Cuts. Dir. Robert Altman. 1993.

LA Story. Dir. Mick Jackson. 1991.

Barton Fink. Dir. Ethan and Joel Coen. 1991.

Tangerine. Dir. Sean Baker. 2015.

Minnie and Moskowitz. Dir. John Cassavetes. 1971.

Star 80. Dir. Bob Fosse. 1983.

Hardcore. Dir. Paul Schrader. 1979.

Knocked Up. Dir. Judd Apatow. 2007.

Them! Dir. Gordon Douglas. 1954.

Speed. Dir. Jan de Bont. 1994.