They ought to call it 'Hotel'

Bobby sceneBobby is getting mixed reviews as a piece of drama, but this Los Angeles history buff liked it. Where the story line lagged, the sound track (even Demi Moore crooning "Louie Louie") and especially the Ambassador Hotel locale carried me along. The hotel really is the star of the first half of the film, with Anthony Hopkins (as the retired doorman) accurately filling in the history of the place. It was hard to tell the difference between stage shots and those filmed at the actual hotel in the weeks before it was razed, and the plain concrete passageway where RFK was shot looked like the real thing. I hope Estevez threw some money toward Juan Romero, the busboy who knelt next to Kennedy on the pantry floor and wrapped his rosary around his hero's hand. There's much to quibble with, but the film got a good hand from the Santa Monica audience.

Flash tour of the Ambassador at the film's website.

Hollywood EscapesSpeaking of movie locations: Hollywood Escapes by Harry Medved and Bruce Akiyama has become my preferred guide to location spots around California. It's comprehensive but fun to flip through. On Sunday, the authors are signing at Book Soup at 2 pm then leading a free walking tour of sites along the Sunset Strip. Included are locations for The Doors, Almost Famous, The Player, Riot on Sunset Strip and a last peek at the Tower Records store, where Fun with Dick and Jane had a scene.

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