L.A. Nickel

1983, 8:33 min, color, sound

L.A. Nickel envisions the urban landscape of Los Angeles as nightmare and dream. Recording from a window to suggest a vantage point of surveillance, Miller positions the viewer as a voyeur when she documents the interaction of people and policemen on the Skid Row street below. A harsh, "scratch" aural collage heightens the sense of confrontation and aggression. A lush, dramatic orchestration accompanies the second sequence, an evocative night drive through the streets of Los Angeles. This passage is blocked by the presence of a police car, which Miller transforms into an abstracted dance of lights. The thwarting of mobility by authority becomes a metaphor of social confinement.

Camera: Marcel Shain, Ante Bozanich, Michael Intriere, Gordon Metcalfe, Gary Wong, Nick Ursin. Music: The Doo-Doo-ettes (Tom Recchion, Fredrik Nilson). Sound: Rick Fine.