Downtown Los Angeles.  Broadway’s grand old Palace Theatre is  about to be to be declared an historical site much to the chagrin of a Donald like real estate developer who wants to tear it town and erect a giant office building and mall in its place.  The Titles Over are a documentary news feature that shows clips from the theatre’s past starting with its heyday in the Nineteen Twenties.  An announcer intones “The Palace started playing B picture double features and was on its way to oblivion.”  Recreated or stock footage follows.  “There was one period of respite during the sixties when self-proclaimed artistic genius  Roscoe Reese, sometimes called the original Hippie, talked the major studio, who backed his twenty million dollar epic “The Cowboy and the Virgin”, into opening it there.  “The Cowboy and the Virgin” was hands down the worse film ever made bankrupting the studio and destroying the careers of everybody associated with it even the caterer. The premier audience tarred, feathered, and ran Reese out of town.

The Palace’s life as a rock venue lasted less than one performance when it hosted the debut of the group ‘O Man Khayyám’.  Rolling Stone magazine said, “Rock?  They should have been stoned.”  There was a brief but Zombie like resurgence when it was rented by an obscure filmmaker, Anal (Goat) Davis, who claimed to be the father of modern pornography.  Anal tried for years to get credit for inventing double insertions and directing the first All American  down on the farm porno before being committed to a real happy farm. Both  Ron Jeremy and Jamie Gillis refer to him as “the man that gave bestiality a bad name. There was one shining moment in 1989 when the theatre was about to be saved by a committee of Hollywood luminaries who donated millions to its restoration.  But the Palace was cursed.  A patron died on opening night and a four year old girl, Lori Hill, disappeared, never to be seen again, when she slipped out of her father’s grasp in the lobby. Has the curse been broken?  Will this film festival rescue the Palace from the wrecker’s ball?”  Film makers from the past converge on the theatre in a tongue in cheek, Bridge of Saint Luis Re, resolution.

© 2009

 


 

 
     
    
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