Why L.A. Used as Setting for Most Disaster Movies.

HENOS WOLDE Instructor: STARR GOODE English 1 Essay 3 10/29/2012 Why L. A. used as setting for most disaster movies. Through decades of disaster films, Los Angeles has been targeted by aliens, toppled by temblors, sunken by tsunamis, leveled by lava, and a rogue tornado once took out the Hollywood sign. Even though in real life los angels is not such a disastrous it nonetheless faces constant destruction in movies, on television, and in books; in the collective imagination, the city burns and burns.
Los angels is used as a setting for most disastrous movies because the city is home to Hollywood and the movie business, so the artists who write about, direct and execute mass destruction in Los Angeles are often intimately familiar with the territory and find it convenient to destroy los angels in their films. Los Angeles is a popular disaster movie locale because it is home of the entertainment capital of the world Hollywood, its famous landmarks, and its geography. Los Angeles is home to the entertainment capital of the world Hollywood, which explains why L. A. is often used as a setting for most disaster movies.
To destroy a big city in movies takes a lot of time and work. It would make it even harder to travel far away to shoot these movies. To make the destruction look realistic, Hollywood movie makers have to work extra hard and film non stop making sure they get every little detail right. It would make it very challenging to film these movies far away from the studio. For these reason Hollywood apparently wants to destroy all of Los Angeles. For example, the city is going down in flames in DEMOLITION MAN, turned into an island in ESCAPE FROM L. A. , and obliterated in THE BIG ONE: THE GREAT LOS ANGELES EARTHQUAKE.

Perhaps Hollywood has no particular malice toward Los Angeles but simply destroys it cinematically because “it’s there,” at hand, nearby, easy to drive to and blow up, burn down, and shake apart while the cameras roll. With these disaster movies Hollywood has perfected the cinema of conspicuous destruction, certainly a defining aspect of American movie technology. Los Angeles is also a city filled with internationally recognized landmarks. The Hollywood sign, the Capitol Records building, City Hall and the skyscrapers of down town makes the movies convenient for cinematic shorthand.
Almost everybody recognizes these landmarks and when they see it being destroyed in movies, it allows the scale of the disaster to strike the audience greatly. By far, L. A. ‘s biggest cinematic target is the famous nine-letter landmark perched in the Hollywood hills. When people see the Hollywood sign being destroyed by natural disaster or alien attack, the idea behind it is to exaggerates the power of the destruction and to shock viewers with a realistic image of these familiar monument’s falling apart. Apart from its landmarks, L. A. s a popular disaster-movie locale because of its geography. Sitting in a seismic zone on the western edge of the continent, it is surrounded by beaches, mountains and deserts. In real life, the city is subject to floods, fires, earthquakes and big waves, so seeing freeways collapse or Santa Monica swallowed up by the sea isn’t such a stretch. Hollywood takes great advantage of these landmarks to destroy Los Angeles. Some People also love watching Los Angeles get destroyed because they believe It’s nice to mess up the great weather and see it being destroyed by natural disasters.
But regardless of the on screen devastation, Fire, earthquakes, floods, volcanos, and a few alien invasions have destroyed the City of Los Angeles. Even though 1000’s of disastrous movies have been made in the City, these movies have made the City a Famous landmark. Ultimately, heaving destruction on Los Angeles also shows Hollywood’s sense of humor and optimism. It’s an odd kind of Western optimism where Los Angeles always seems to start over again, like a phoenix rising from its own destruction.
Los angeles also makes it easier for Hollywood actors to destroy it because of its geography and world wide recognized landmarks. L. A. is good at playing itself in film. It’s a familiar face and it is always expected to get blown up and somehow miraculously reappear in the next summer blockbuster. Interestingly, there are always a few survivors in these films, along with a message of hope. Even thought Los Angeles is used as a setting of disaster in most of its movies, there’s always hope for change and resurrection as well.

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