David Lynch

Allister Mactaggart – The Film Paintings of David Lynch Challenging Film Theory (2010)

One of the most distinguished filmmakers working today, David Lynch is a director whose vision of cinema is firmly rooted in fine art. He was motivated to make his first film as a student because he wanted a painting that ‘would really be able to move’. Most existing studies of Lynch, however, fail to engage fully with the complexities of his films’ relationship to other art forms. “The Film Paintings of David Lynch” fills this void, arguing that Lynch’s cinematic output needs to be considered within a broad range of cultural references. Aimed at both Lynch fans and film studies specialists, Allister Mactaggart addresses Lynch’s films from the perspective of the relationship between commercial film, avant-garde art, and cultural theory. Individual Lynch works – “The Elephant Man”, “Blue Velvet”, “Twin Peaks”, “Lost Highway”, “The Straight Story”, “Mulholland Drive”, and “Inland Empire” – are discussed in relation to other films and directors, illustrating that the solitary, or seemingly isolated, experience of film is itself socially, culturally, and politically important. “The Film Paintings of David Lynch” offers a unique perspective on an influential director, weaving together a range of theoretical approaches to Lynch’s films to make exciting new connections among film theory, art history, psychoanalysis, and cinema. Read More »

David Lynch – Eraserhead (1977)

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Is it a nightmare or an actual view of a post-apocalyptic world? Set in an industrial town in which giant machines are constantly working, spewing smoke, and making noise that is inescapable, Henry Spencer lives in a building that, like all the others, appears to be abandoned. The lights flicker on and off, he has bowls of water in his dresser drawers, and for his only diversion he watches and listens to the Lady in the Radiator sing about finding happiness in heaven. Henry has a girlfriend, Mary X, who has frequent spastic fits. Mary gives birth to Henry’s child, a frightening looking mutant, which leads to the injection of all sorts of sexual imagery into the depressive and chaotic mix. Read More »

David Lynch – Twin Peaks (2017)

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Picks up 25 years after the inhabitants of a quaint northwestern town are stunned when their homecoming queen is murdered. Read More »

Jon Nguyen & Rick Barnes & Olivia Neergaard-Holm – David Lynch: The Art Life (2016)

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David Lynch takes us on an intimate journey through the formative years of his life. From his idyllic upbringing in small town America to the dark streets of Philadelphia, we follow Lynch as he traces the events that have helped to shape one of cinema’s most enigmatic directors. David Lynch the Art Life infuses Lynch’s own art, music and early films, shining a light into the dark corners of his unique world, giving audiences a better understanding of the man and the artist. As Lynch states “I think every time you do something, like a painting or whatever, you go with ideas and sometimes the past can conjure those ideas and color them, even if they’re new ideas, the past colors them.” Read More »

David Lynch – Dune [Extended Edition] (1984)

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SEVERAL of the characters in ”Dune” are psychic, which puts them in the unique position of being able to understand what goes on in the movie. The plot of ”Dune” is perilously overloaded, as is virtually everything else about it. As the first king-sized, Italian-produced science-fiction epic, ”Dune” is an ornate affair, awash in the kind of marble, mosaics, wood paneling, leather tufting and gilt trim more suitable to moguls’ offices than to far-flung planets in the year 10191. Not all of the overkill is narrative or decorative. Even the villain, a flying, pustule-covered creature, has more facial sores than he absolutely needs. Read More »

David Lynch – Inland Empire (2006)

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There are, in the movies, few places creepier to spend time than in David Lynch’s head. It is a head where the wild things grow, twisting and spreading like vines, like fingers, and taking us in their captive embrace. Over the last three decades these wild things have laid siege to us even as they have mutated: the deformed baby of “Eraserhead” evolving into the anguished distortions of “The Elephant Man,” the Reagan-era surrealism of “Blue Velvet,” the serial home invasion in “Twin Peaks” and the meta-cinematic masterpiece “Mulholland Drive,” a dispatch from that smog-choked boulevard of broken dreams called Hollywood. Read More »

David Lynch – The Elephant Man (1980)

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John Hurt stars as John Merrick, the hideously deformed 19th century Londoner known as “The Elephant Man”. Treated as a sideshow freak, Merrick is assumed to be retarded as well as misshapen because of his inability to speak coherently. In fact, he is highly intelligent and sensitive, a fact made public when one Dr. Frederick Treves (Anthony Hopkins) rescues Merrick from a carnival and brings him to a hospital for analysis. Alas, even after being recognized as a man of advanced intellect, Merrick is still treated like a freak; no matter his station in life, he will forever be a prisoner of his own malformed body. Unable to secure rights for the famous stage play The Elephant Man, producer Mel Brooks based his film on the memoirs of Frederick Treves and a much later account of Merrick’s life by Ashley Montagu. The film is lensed in black and white by British master cinematographer Freddie Francis. Though nominated for a dozen Academy Awards, the film was ultimately shut out in every category. Read More »