Movie Reviews (such as they are)

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Lost Highway

As a longtime David Lynch fan, I have decided to rewatch both Lost Highway and Mulholland Dr. in advance of seeing Inland Empire next month. I've previously seen the former twice (once at the cinema and once on DVD); this was my third viewing.

I find Lynch movies to be terrifying. Most of the most Lynchian ones among them -- i.e., not The Straight Story, The Elephant Man, and Dune -- are, to me, more horrific than most horror movies. Indeed, I think of Lynch as the creator and one true exponent of what I term the "urban horror movie", a genre that takes the most grotesque elements of our everyday lives and tosses them all into the pot, making us hope we never have to venture out into the world again.

Third time around, I found LH to be less scary than the previous times, but this is almost certainly because I was already aware of the gist of the movie, and also because I was watching with a view to seeing things I hadn't noticed before.

On the surface, LH is a murder mystery. There are touches of noir and Hitchcock in there, too: the doppelganger; the platinum blonde; the wrong man. But beyond that, don't ask me to say what's going on. And there's a lot of humour, as always in Lynchland: who among us can forget the "I hate tailgaters" scene with Mr Eddie (expertly played by the great Robert Loggia)? Less funny, of course, is the glass-table scene.

The acting -- going back to a comment-box conversation I recently had with Red and Candy -- was something I paid particular attention to this time. And I found it more convincing than I have before. It's so awful and so stilted, and the dialogue so ... banal ..., that it is absolutely the way people are in real life.

I loved Lost Highway. But then I never understood why the critics hated it anyway. And now I'm itching to see Mulholland Dr. again too.

Acting: 15
Story: 16
Direction: 18
Enjoyment: 17
Involvement: 18
Total: 84

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