Monday, February 01, 2016

On The DL

Oops, I missed the recent 70th birthday of David Lynch.  He's one of my favorite filmmakers, but the amazing thing is his stuff was made at all.  Movie's aren't cheap, after all.  Compared to a Michael Bay or James Cameron, he's not that successful, but considering that he's essentially an abstract painter whose canvas is the silver screen, he's has a long and varied career.

He hasn't directed a major feature in a decade, but he's still around, doing short work, TV and whatever else interests him.  While he's well known for creating the Twin Peaks TV series, let's look at his films.

He's directed--and mostly written--ten features.  I'd say two of them are masterpieces (Eraserhead, Mullholland Drive), and most of the rest are good to great. Even the rare misfires, such as Dune, are interesting to watch.

I remember when I saw his first feature, Eraserhead, which (against all odds) became a successful midnight movie and launched him into the big time.  Friends asked me to describe it, and I said it's funny but not a comedy, it's spooky but not a horror film, it's set in a different sort of world but isn't science fiction or fantasy, and it's about a guy and a girl who have a kid but is definitely not a romance.  I suggest you see it yourself

His movies have plots, of course, but he's always been interested in what's going on underneath the rational world.  This is one reason why many don't go for his films, or even think they're silly. His characters don't act as if they're in conventional drama.  He's a master of the ineffable, capturing a glimpse of a world that isn't quite normal but isn't entirely a dream, either.

Let's watch a few selections from his work, though there's really nothing like watching a full feature, enveloped by the big screen.


Anonymous Denver Guy said...

Lynch is one of my favorites. Mulholland Dr. would be number one, with Lost Highway second. The only one of his films I haven't seen is "The Straight Story," which I hear was his dip into the conventional.

I also like Dune. I admit the last third is hard to watch because it is awkward and leaves the original plot in the dust. But the atmosphere for the film is pitch perfect to the novel. It leaves me wishing Lynch had directed "Ender's Game."

Now I'm in anticipation of the relaunch of Twin Peaks. I hear that Lynch has removed himself from direct contact with the production (not sure it is over artistic differences or he is just to old to want to put in the effort for a weekly drama). But I bet there are lots of Lynchian proteges out there willing to continue his work.

8:28 AM, February 01, 2016  
Blogger LAGuy said...

It's unclear how much Lynch will be involved with the new Twin Peaks. The original was great, though Lynch's specialty is setting a mood and style, not necessarily long-term storytelling.

Lost Highway is my third-favorite film of his. Dune has trouble from the start, with all the exposition and the narration throughout, but it looks great. Have you ever seen Jodorowsky's Dune? You should check it out.

10:14 AM, February 01, 2016  
Anonymous Denver Guy said...

Is thatthe one that was on Sci Fi Channel? I haven't seen it, but will get to it someday.

1:41 PM, February 01, 2016  
Blogger LAGuy said...

It's a documentary about another visionary director who tried very hard to get Dune made in the 1970s and failed.

2:39 PM, February 01, 2016  
Anonymous Denver Guy said...

Thanks - I'll look for it!

10:02 AM, February 03, 2016  

Post a Comment

<< Home

web page hit counter