Saturday, November 23, 2013

They Live (1988)



One of the last great films from John Carpenter, They Live has quite the following.   Although I had been to a couple locations, my latest trips I decided to concentrate on getting to as many spots as possible.  Although not completely comprehensive right now, I hope to update new locations as I get to them.  (For other Carpenter locations, visit the pages for Halloween, Prince of Darkness, and Body Bags.)

UPDATE: For those that requested, I made a map of the locations I have visited!  Go to:
https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?authuser=0&authuser=0&hl=en&hl=en&mid=z4UMnF_sS7Yk.ksQjipFGn2ZE


First up, an establishing shot of downtown Los Angeles....

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This rather steep street didn't look so steep when I tried to photograph it...

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The area where Nada first encounters the preacher....







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Couple shots in front of the Los Angeles Athletic Club....


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The area where the homeless set up camp and the adjacent church has changed dramatically since filming.  It has been completely re-landscaped and is now mostly a  park.  The building seen in the background can give you some perspective...







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Our first introduction to the infamous alley in the movie...


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Nada emerges onto this sidewalk....


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The area on the sidewalk where he first notices something strange about the glasses...




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The "OBEY" sign building....

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The "MARRY AND REPRODUCE" sign building...

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The "NO INDEPENDENT THOUGHT" sign on the shop...

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And the "CONSUME" sign on the same shop....
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Although mostly a matte painting, this view is used for one shot.   I didn't get a good one of this, will have to go back!
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This sidewalk is where the newstand was located...






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Nada comes out of this alley and sees an alien woman admiring herself in the window...

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The alley where Nada fights with two cops...









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This is the front of the bank where Nada gives his famous bubblegum line...





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And the back of the bank, several blocks away of course....





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The exit from the parking garage...




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The drive to Holly's house...




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Holly's neighbors' house...



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Holly's house...






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The alley used in the infamous fight scene....








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Establishing shot of the hotel....

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The new hideout building near the end of the film is no longer there, but you can still recognize some of the warehouses at the corner....




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Actress Meg Foster!






A panel discussion with They Live cast in 2012....





Me in my They Live mask!






13 comments:

  1. Awesome post,as always! Is the location used for the hideout near the end in the same area where the Thriller video was filmed? I thought it looked similar.

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    1. That's about three miles away, the hideout is near the corner of 6th & Imperial Streets. The Thriller was filmed on Union Pacific Avenue, just east of Downtown.

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    2. Do you have post with google maps location, I would live to take my son on a They Live tour, what about the train at the beginning?

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    3. I do not, but if I have time I will work on that. Most are in the same nine block area of downtown. I believe the train at the beginning is by one of the several bridges on the east side of downtown, but couldn't get over there to verify and check them out yet.

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  2. I'm using your map to track down these locations today. Thank you!!

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  3. amazing list. to add to it:

    the construction site he gets a job at is them building the Broadway Spring Center at 333 S Spring. You can see the Popular Center at 4th and Spring in the background.

    And the hotel (lobby at least) they check into after the alley fight is the Baltimore Hotel at 5th and Los Angeles. You can see King Eddy (although all painted brown) out the window of the lobby

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    1. The interior shots are at the Baltimore as well on the second floor. I lived their for 12 years and I can swear to the seedy interior of the rooms their.

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  4. I always wanted to known where the scenes when they were in that underground base were filmed.

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    1. It may have been underneath the Biltmore hotel in downtown LA....Funny, the two hotels were the Biltmore and the Baltimore- one swanky, the other scuzzy! One of the ballrooms there was used for the party where the alien leader is giving his congratulatory speech as Nada and Frank run back into Buck Flower's character.

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  5. It's funny watching that movie and seeing all the places I have walked, worked at and driven by for years, as I live in L.A. and I worked on a film that was done in a couple of the same general areas. Cool.

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  6. Absolutely awesome work. Really enjoyed reading this. Thanks.

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  7. Robert ! Appreciate all you recon ... I have seen They Live 160x and am making my second trip to LA to visit the sites... this info made it tons easier... great job! Much appreciation my man!
    Daniel

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  8. Hey Robert totally appreciate your work..160x seeing They Live I have had to visit some sites from this amazing movie... your research helped quite a bit :)
    Thank you
    Daniel

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