Julius Schulman, who died in 2009 aged 98, was an architectural photographer, held in enormous esteem in America.
There is no British equivalent, unless you look back to Betjeman and Pevsner in their championing of particular architectural styles.
This film provides an overview of his life and career, featuring an unobtrusive narration from Dustin Hoffman, and various interviewees, family, friends, and experts, including Gehry, looking like a retired prizefighter, and Frances Anderton of the Design and Architecture podcast.
The film could prove frustrating if you just want to look at his photos, they zip by. But for others it provides a fine overview of the best of Los Angeles architecture. A subject covered by numerous books, and even a blog by the musician Moby.
As is evident, these buildings never looked better than when Schulman photographed them, Los Angeles is an unsentimental smoggy sprawl of a place with no city planning, and no protection for even the finest Modernist works by architects such as Neutra or Lautner. This, therefore is not about the real Los Angeles but about the Modernist dream of a glass walled house with a pool looking out across the lit up grid of a futuristic urban sprawl, Pierre Koenig and the case study houses. It was a dream, but a beautiful one that tugs at us still.
And Schulman seems to be an absolutely lovely person, highly recommended, one of the very best documentaries for design and architecture buffs, it is a pleasure to watch and rewatch.