City of Gold Screen 9 articles

City of Gold


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  • Too much time is spent with grateful restaraunteurs saying how Gold’s coverage took them from locals-only affairs struggling to survive to constantly-packed sensations, too little on highlighting the food itself.

  • For fans of the genial, garrulous Gold, of Los Angeles culture or of films about food, “City of Gold” will easily merit four stars and its 90-minute length. For those less enamored of those subjects, its claim on any stars will be qualified by some serious questions about its cinematic worth.

  • As a subject, Gold is fine, and speaks (and writes, as we often hear him read excerpts of his own reviews out loud) eloquently and unpretentiously about the pleasures of eating and the delight of finding hidden gems in even the most unlikely places (suburban strip malls seem to be his favored stomping ground for discovery). As a film, City of Gold is unfocused and lacks cohesive structure.

  • A greater opportunity might have been missed to dig deeper into why this critic found it so necessary to explore the fringes of his art form. His father's love for classical music and literature are mentioned as influences, but the origins of curiosity are still left somewhat ambiguous. There is a strange reveal late in the film that Gold, who once covered hip hop, sat in with Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg while they were recording The Chronic in the early 1990s. So many stories left untold.

  • Food criticism is not advocacy, one might suppose, but what a nice surprise the film City of Gold was. Here is a gentle, unassuming film, five years in the making... One comes away with a sense of a place with such a breadth of cultural diversity that the city’s reputation for vapidity is quickly buried.

  • One endearing aspect of City of Gold is its insight onto the act of writing itself, this passion that turns obsession into a way of life while opening up a can of severe disfunctionalities (“procrastination” is the word used in the film, but, as everything that has been used to describe the phenomenon, it’s woefully inappropriate).

  • [The film's] emphasis on exploration misses the point. It isn’t Gold’s omnivorous sensibility that makes him a valuable critic; nor is it his taste, which by most accounts is unimpeachable. Gold is important because Gold is a great writer. No further argument necessary. It’s hardly surprising, then, that the most compelling thing in City of Gold is its subject’s own words, read aloud by Gold and others in voice-over.

  • For some, City of Gold might just seem like an interesting and intimate distraction, but for others, it will appear as a powerful love letter to the art of discovery.

  • The film convincingly argues that Gold is as close as anyone to finding meaning in all of this cultural upheaval. At the heart of this thesis is the radical claim that food holds the key to understanding the new and unprecedented socioeconomic shifts currently redefining both L.A.'s image and its way of life.

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