Thursday, March 23, 2006
L.A.ocation - Venice
Touch of Evil
Considered one of the best American B-Movies of all time, Orson Welles’ Touch of Evil took advantage of Venice’s Winward Avenue of the late 1950’s. Like other Los Angeles 1920’s developments, the Avenue was falling into a downward spiral, overcome by drugs, crime, and a less affluent population. Orson Welles tapped into Winward’s decay and embellished upon it. Portraying a fictitious Mexican border town, the Avenue’s Spanish column archways stretch into a dark void of swirling trash and lonely shadows. Everything that is light or dark is covered in a sheen of dense dirt.
Still a little rough around the edges, today’s Winward is home to restaurants, bars, and shops. It is bustling with daytime beach goers and nighttime revelers. Sadly, many of the original buildings that carried the trademark archways are gone, gouged out unceremoniously. But upon entering Winward Avenue off of Pacific Avenue, the original buildings will be impossible to miss.