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November 6, 2005 | AKIVA GOTTLIEB, Akiva Gottlieb lives in New York City and writes about film for the Village Voice.
"Have you ever been arrested?" I ask, as he loads camera equipment into his black Mercury Marauder. It's a fair question before today's film shoot, since trespassing on private property is a James Benning pastime. "I haven't," he answers. "But I've been held at gunpoint for 20 minutes by a guard at the state prison in Central Valley, while filming 'El Valley Centro.' I trespassed and didn't have permission.
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MAGAZINE
November 6, 2005 | AKIVA GOTTLIEB, Akiva Gottlieb lives in New York City and writes about film for the Village Voice.
"Have you ever been arrested?" I ask, as he loads camera equipment into his black Mercury Marauder. It's a fair question before today's film shoot, since trespassing on private property is a James Benning pastime. "I haven't," he answers. "But I've been held at gunpoint for 20 minutes by a guard at the state prison in Central Valley, while filming 'El Valley Centro.' I trespassed and didn't have permission.
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MAGAZINE
November 27, 2005
Plato banned poets from his ideal city, but only because the poets he knew glorified vice. I don't think Plato would have banned filmmaker James Benning ("Just Look," by Akiva Gottlieb, Nov. 6), since Benning seems to make movies as part of a search for something beautiful and virtuous. But by not going digital, Benning has in effect banned himself from everyone who does not attend film festivals. What would Plato have said? Kenneth Michael White Upland
NEWS
June 16, 1994
I know it was not James Benning's intent to be amusing in his article (June 2) on banning sidewalk skateboarding in Manhattan Beach, but I had to laugh at his statement that Hermosa Beach already has a similar law, because it's a joke. The signs are posted on Pier Avenue prohibiting skateboards, bicycles and roller skates on the sidewalks, but in the eight years I have been walking on Pier Avenue, not once have I seen any attempt made to enforce that law. Skateboarders, bicyclists and roller skaters use the sidewalks with impunity.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 27, 1992 | KEVIN THOMAS
James Benning's new 87-minute American odyssey, "North on Evers," which launches Filmforum's winter season tonight at 8 p.m. at LACE, forces an immediate choice: to focus on the rich flow of images that Benning shot during a motorcycle journey around the country or to place primary attention on his diary-like writing that travels across the bottom of the screen.
NEWS
September 22, 1994
James Benning's article in the South Bay edition, "Pitch Touts the Joy of Treated Sewage Water," is unfairly critical of recycled water. This is one "new" water supply that actually has the potential to fill a good part of the huge water deficit predicted for the future of Southern California. Yet Mr. Benning chooses pejorative and derogatory expressions to spice up his piece at the expense of a perfectly good source of water. Over several decades and hundreds of uses of this water, not one user has suffered financial loss or any health complaints.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 1, 1998
10 am: Museums Rare Sumerian artifacts from the 4,500-year-old royal cemetery at Ur will go on view as "Treasures From the Royal Tombs of Ur" opens at the Bowers Museum of Cultural Art. Older than the riches of King Tut, the Ur artifacts, discovered in the late 1920s by famed British archeologist C. Leonard Woolley, include jewelry, cups of gold and silver and objects of art and culture that convey the ancient Sumerian culture (2600-2500 BC) at its zenith.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 8, 2001
How's this for the title of a film festival: Wild Walls. Pique your interest? If you're at all intrigued by the intersection of architecture and cinema, make a point to visit an unusual 10-day film festival being staged by the USC School of Fine Arts and the MAK Center for Art and Architecture. Called "Wild Walls: Berlin/Los Angeles Film Festival of Architecture and Urbanism," the festival will begin at 7 p.m.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 28, 1995 | JACK CHEEVERS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A Los Angeles police car racing to the aid of other officers struck a pickup truck in San Pedro Monday night, killing two children and an adult and injuring at least four other people, authorities said. Two officers in the police car were speeding through the intersection of 13th Street and Pacific Avenue on their way to help other officers trying to break up a domestic fight at Cabrillo Beach when they rammed the pickup, said Capt. Betty Kelepecz of the Los Angeles Police Department.
NEWS
January 5, 1995
My compliments to James Benning for his insightful coverage over the past several months of contract negotiations at El Camino College. As he captured in his summary article of our settlement, the salary agreement is far from an equitable one. Although 3.25% may seem quite generous at first glance, 1.25% of that amount was made possible by a pay cut for those faculty who teach summer school. Even after factoring the 3.25% into the salary schedule, the fact of the matter is that the more one teaches summer classes the less one makes relative to past teaching pay practice, to the point where after three years of teaching summer school classes a faculty member actually loses money on the deal.
NEWS
January 20, 2005 | Kevin Thomas, Times Staff Writer
A revealing pairing of experimental works by structuralist filmmaker James Benning launches the spring Film and Video Series at Disney Hall's REDCAT. In 1977 Benning shot "One Way Boogie Woogie," a one-hour film composed of 60 minute-long shots of industrial urban landscapes in his native Milwaukee. For "27 Years Later," he returned to the same locales with the same people in them to record the changes. They'll be shown Monday, with Benning in attendance.
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