Video: A Pop Culture Pilgrimage to Griffith Observatory
We Angelenos are proud of the Griffith Observatory. It's where we go to geek out when we're treated to an astronomical phenom in the skies, and it's also where may of us trot our out of town visitors (ideally on a clear day) to show off a little.
It's always nice to see the Observatory get some props, and in this "Pop Pilgrims" segment, the A.V. Club's head writer, Nathan Rabin, speaks to film critic James Rocchi on site about the Griffith Observatory's contribution to movie history. A central focus, of course, is "Rebel Without a Cause," which prompts the question: "Is there a 50 year moratorium on spoiler alerts?" (Psst, if you haven't seen "Rebel," this video includes a spoiler. Alert! Alert!)
The reality of the Griffith Observatory was somehow even more spectacular than its reputation suggests. It is one of the most beautiful places in Southern California. The observatory is an elegant architectural marvel built by the New Deal-era Works Progress Administration in the ’30s, on land donated by Welsh-American philanthropist Griffith J. Griffith. (The observatory is technically named after both his first and last name.) But the wonder of the place is equally attributable to its gorgeous, tranquil setting high up in the hills, and the view it affords of Los Angeles, the wilderness, and the world-famous Hollywood sign.
Oh, yeah. We likey. Thanks, A.V. Club!