Play It Straight

If you work at Commodore Pictures-a grind house movie studio in Los Angeles-you’re either on your way up or on your way out. Anyone can work here: drunks, addicts, the residentially challenged, the mentally disturbed, the dispossessed, criminals and ex-cons, imbeciles, malcontents, outcasts from all walks of life-all are welcome. This is where James Flynn begins.

He works at the bottom rung of Commodore Pictures. Having an epiphany during the Rodney King Riots, Flynn fixates on meeting Gordon Luker, the reclusive movie producer and founder of Commodore Pictures. By all accounts, Luker has gone insane, but Flynn believes he holds the key to success. Flynn’s quest for Luker takes him through a surreal landscape of fires, floods, an earthquake, the “trial of the century,” the discovery of a strange new invention called the World Wide Web, several relationships, and numerous encounters with the super-famous, the formerly famous, and fringe elements of society.

As Flynn closes in on Luker, however, he begins to understand what really called him to the West Coast in the first place.