Sunday, June 11, 2017

Mulholland Drive

Movie Name: Mulholland Drive
Year of Release: 2001
Director: David Lynch
Stars: Naomi Watts, Laura Harring, Justin Theroux, Robert Forster, Patrick Fischler, Angelo Badalamenti, Dan Hedaya, Mark Pellegrino, Monty Montgomery, Chad Everett, Rita Taggart, James Karen, Michelle Hicks, Wayne Grace, Michael Des Barres, Melissa George
Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Drama
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 9
Watch it on Amazon

David Lynch followed the celebrated "The Straight Story" with what was originally intended as a new pilot for a TV show. When the pilot didn't get picked up, the project found itself in limbo, until Canal + gave the money to finish what needed to be wrapped in terms of story, and "Mulholland Dr." was born. The film premiered at the Cannes film Festival of 2001, where it won the award for best director, and it went on to win many more accolades that year. The film focuses on three characters: the first one we are introduced to is Rita, a beautiful woman, who due to an accident, is amnesiac and finds herself randomly in the streets of Hollywood. The second is a young actress coming to town, by the name of Betty. The bright eyed Betty is staying at her aunt's, and she's going for an audition and an attempt at becoming an actress. The third central character is Adam Kesher, a young director, going through some tribulations in his personal life, and whose latest feature comes under the attention of some characters wanting to control some of the participants in that same film. Betty and Rita are brought together, and jointly start trying to understand who Rita is, which sends them a progressively darker road.
David Lynch is one the most unique directors currently working. He has been one since his debut with "Eraserhead" (1977), and has carved out a career on his own terms, with themes that are very much his own, but usually a merger of surrealism, filled with cinematic references, American art (Norman Rockwell infused aesthetic), a stylized and sometimes highly violent perspective of society. The merger of these themes, distilled through his very unique sensibility, mixed with a zany sense of humor, have made most of his films simultaneously delicious and full of elements to interpret and try to discern. None of this is more obvious than in "Mulholland Dr. " that is quite possibly one of his most enigmatic and also most interesting films. The film that starts as an investigation in the milieu of the Hollywood arena, which becomes something else, much darker in tone, making the viewer question what had been watched and seen before. It's a film that takes you on a journey with these characters, one that builds an atmosphere that becomes progressively more ominous and yet also romantic (and at times quite funny). It's a fascinating film, anchored in one of the best performances captured by Lynch on film, that of Naomi Watts, who manages to show true versatility and range within seconds of a singular scene. A great film from a unique voice in film.