I was pleased to see so many moviegoers under the age of eighteen at the Sunset Boulevard screening. A ten-year old sitting next to me laughed every time Gloria Swanson showed her face. His mother explained to him all the things he couldn't know throughout the film ("she's a famous gossip columnst, that guy was head of Paramount, etc."). When one of the actors mentioned "the West Side", the boy asked, "What's that?"
Mother: The West Side, that's where we live. Do you know where Hollywood is?
Boy: The North?
Mother: No, Hollywood is the East Side.
Yeah, well, I guess Hollywood is on the East Side if you live in Santa Monica. I've always thought of it as central. But if Hollywood is on the East Side, what's downtown, or East L.A.? Or Whittier?
Also pleased that the plot of Sunset Boulevard is set in motion in a manner true to Angeleno life: Joe Gillis doesn't want to lose access to his car. Thom Andersen must have made this point in Los Angeles Plays Itself, no? I can't remember. I only remember Jack Nicholson's Jake Gittes in Chinatown (hmmm...Jake Gittes...Joe Gillis) described as "castrated" because he has no wheels.