Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Great Train Movies + Art and the LA Metro System = Kids Off The Couch LA

When LA kids hear the word "subway," they are more likely to think of a sandwich than an affordable and accessible means of transportation. Over the summer, we took a trip on LA's Metro system, riding from downtown's Union Station to the end of the Red Line in North Hollywood, stopping along the way to explore each station's public art works. Union Station's art work has a water theme, the Hollywood/Vine station is an homage to the film industry, and the Universal City station (our fave) has gorgeous tiles that chronicle California's gained independence from Mexico. What began as an art tour turned into a history tour and inspired us to screen some of our favorite train movies, many of which (coincidentally) also provided lessons from the past. We journeyed back to the Civil War in The General, the Mad Men world of Hitchcock's 1950's with North by Northwest, and soaked in the vistas of the American West in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Whether used for a thrilling chase, as the starting location for romance, or as a moving bank targeted for robbery, trains have always been one of cinema's best story-telling vehicles.(Click here to learn how you can tour the Red Line or the Purple Line and for more on our favorite train films).