Photo essay continued    
Phelps discovers chloral hydrate, a knockout drug used to bring young girls into the prop house “studio.” Jessica Hamilton was one of their victims – and June Ballard was complicit. Finally, Phelps locates a film canister with the location of producer Bishop’s most recent production, Jungle Drums, likely a low-budget exploitation film. However, the film evidence that should be in the canister is gone. With the other evidence they’ve collected, Phelps and Bekowsky decide to go to the Jungle Drums location on the canister to confront Bishop and to try to get the film.
In the prop house parking lot, Phelps and Bekowsky meet two other cops, cops from a competing desk who warn them not to get into their business. Phelps says that he’ll go wherever the evidence leads. The two cops arrive at the Intolerance set, where Bishop is filming Jungle Drums. Intolerance’s (dir. D.W. Griffith, 1916) set survived in Los Angeles until 1919 as an eyesore that the local residents wanted removed. The Vista Theater now sits on its location at Sunset and Hollywood Boulevard. Phelps spots Bishop and speaks to him but Bishop runs and Phelps gives chase, climbing ladders to reach the top of the set, overlooking Los Angeles.
Bishop reaches the end of his run and tells Phelps he’ll come with him – but gangsters are coming after him and he needs Phelps’ protection to escape. The gangsters arrive and immediately a firefight breaks out. Phelps provides cover fire as Bishop runs ahead of him. Phelps clears the way below, too. It’s a multilevel battle, platform to platform.
Bishop and Phelps reach the ground, and with Bekoswky’s help, and still must blast their way out of the set. The final obstacle is the gangsters blocking the police cars. Phelps dispatches them and they are safe. Just too late, the cavalry arrives, in the form of Phelps’ supervisor and a number of uniformed cops.
As a result of Phelps closing so many Traffic cases in such a short time, the higher-ups have decided to promote him to Homicide. He’ll be Roy Earle’s partner. In a level-based game, advancement Is necessary, and in a story-based game ... ... the story must continue – that of Phelps, the police department and Dr. Harlan Fontaine (see article). A job well done, the officers separate. Another standard cop-film trope of the disparate officers going their own ways after coming together to bring the antagonist to heel. Later, Earle and his cronies take Phelps out for a nightcap. They go to an African American jazz club.

Inside the jazz club, the African American host is verbally and physically abused by Earle for doing his job. Phelps leaps to the man’s defense, which elicits a similar “know-your-place” attitude from Earle.

The end of the case (and in this instance, the level) brings scores and official recognition of promotion. In this sense, LA Noire is like every other role-playing game even as it is more cinematic.



Go to page 3: essay

To topPrint versionJC 54Jump Cut home

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 License.