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Asian Migration and Global Cities

Anne Cong-Huyen, Jonathan Young Banfill, Katherine Herrera, Samantha Ching, Natalie Yip, Thania Lucero, Randy Mai, Candice Lau, Authors
L.A. Film, page 1 of 5
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Chinatown - 1974

Chinatown, a 1974 neo-noir film, was directed by Roman Polanski and starred Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, and John Huston. The location of Chinatown is vital to the California Water Wars. It is the center for which allocation of water and resources are distributed, governmental corruption happens, and characters like femme fatale congregate. The film follows a detective, Jake Gittes, who meets a woman pretending to be the wife of the Chief Engineer of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. The woman is hires Gittes to follow Mulwray, who is suspected to be having an affair. After pursuing Hollis, he finds out that he has been set up. When he persuades Hollis’ real wife, Evelyn Mulwray, he finds out too late; Hollis dies to gunshots.

The mystery of the story unfolds as Gittes finds the real culprit, Evelyn’s father, Cross. The ending of the movie leaves movie-goers with a sense of injustice.

Today, Chinatown is located in Central Los Angeles and within the vicinity of areas including Downtown, Lincoln Heights, and Echo Park. In the 1800s, it was called “Calle de los negros” and was located on what is now called Olvera Street (a street between Main Street and Alameda Street). With the removal of Calle de los negros in the beginning of 1900, Chinatown was displaced to what is now Union Station (bordered by East Cesar E. Chavez Avenue, Alameda Street and Arcadia Street). In the 1920s, Chinatown was moved to the area that was once Little Italy. Today, it is bounded by East Cesar E Chavez Avenue, Sunset Boulevard, Main Street, Alameda Street, Cottage Home Street and the 110 Pasadena Freeway. Dodgers Stadium and Elysian Park are on the outskirts of Chinatown.
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