I was enthralled by Deborah Vankin’s article [“Our Real History,” Oct. 5] about a once-censored mural commissioned by Los Angeles and designed by artist Barbara Carrasco for the city’s bicentennial in 1981. I wondered what was depicted that upset people so much that they withdrew support for a mural that had taken eight months of a person’s blood, sweat, tears and heart? My husband and I went to see it with family members. At first look, the mural took our breath away. I took a friend to see it a week and a half later and we had the incredible fortune of meeting the artist, who just happened to be hanging out for the day. It seemed to us that her enthusiasm for the mural had not faded.
I sincerely hope it will find a permanent home in Los Angeles. Some friends went to Union Station near the end of the exhibit, but the mural was covered in black cloth to make room for some other event. Come on, L.A., do not allow this mural to be wrapped up and put away in a warehouse yet again! Reclaim it!
Cynthia Cervantes McGuire
Few takers for these ‘turkeys’
Regarding “Box Office: Trick After the Treat” [Oct. 30]: ComScore senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian laments, “None of the films released this month really ignited much excitement.” The fact is, they were all bad movies. You knew from the previews of “Suburbicon” that it was a turkey; one of those pictures with stars who think, “Well, we’re stars, so we can do anything and people will go see our film,” and not, “a studio will let us do it, so we’ll be offered something better the next time, because we’re stars.” As for the holdovers, look at the high drop-off numbers. Again, bad films.
Robert C. Thompson
Marina Del Rey
A second chance for ‘Suburbicon’
Regardless of whether we ultimately agree with Justin Chang’s critique of a movie, his take is usually interesting and illuminating, which makes his review of “Suburbicon” [“Not Exactly a Subtle Approach,” Oct. 27] an anomaly. He entirely misses the point of this brave and provocative film. He takes to task the movie’s lack of attention to the details of the interior life of the picture’s lone black family, the Mayers. A look at that interior life would be a distraction from the point “Suburbicon” is trying to make: To the white-flight denizens of Suburbicon, what matters is not who the Mayers are but that they are. While the unassuming monster Damon plays is a pillar of the community, the community is torturing the Mayers simply for being there.
Chang should find the time to take another look at “Suburbicon” and critique the film it’s trying to be, not the film he wishes it were.
Gary Karasik and Karen Cunningham
Fond memories of Fats Domino
Regarding “Fats Put the Joy in Rock ’n’ Roll” Oct. 26: I loved Fats Domino’s records when I was in college during the late 1950s. I bought his 45s, and even the B-sides were good. I still play some of his songs at my age of 79.
Filling void with late-night TV
Regarding “Late-Night TV Voices Seek More Than Laughs” [Oct. 22]: The hosts of late-night show have indeed stepped up to the plate in these trying times. Their insightful commentary serves to supplement traditional news reports on national politics that more and more strain credulity. Their humor helps us forget for the moment that the unreal farce of reality-show governance may wind up an unimaginable national tragedy.
Times TV critic Lorraine Ali couldn’t be more right: “Who better to explain the absurdity of modern politics than an absurdist like Colbert?”
Nancy A. Stone
I was offended by Ali’s dismissal of Bill Maher as not being “substantial” and her reference to his “ideological flip-floppery” in search of ratings.
Maher has always been clear about his political beliefs. His willingness to engage members of the opposition in intelligent and meaningful conversation is one of the main reasons that I and many others watch his show religiously (pun intended).
The Getty has always been open
Regarding “Climbing Down From the Hilltop” [Oct. 22]: I’m glad to see the Getty Center getting kudos from Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne for its support of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA. As a Getty volunteer docent, speaking strictly for myself, I take exception to the phrase “climbing down from the hilltop.”
The Getty has for years reached out to the greater community through its school program.
The Getty provides more guided tours for students than any other art museum in America. Children arrive every school day, take the tram up the hill — a highlight for most kids — and most are taken on a tour of the galleries. . For many of these students, this field trip is their first exposure to an art museum — and their first panoramic view of Los Angeles, mountains to ocean.
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