Review by Nick
= Highest Rating
Lynch's Mulholland Dr. is definitely
a trip down the rabbit hole. There are about six to seven 'interconnected'
stories that don't actually connect in any cogent, rational
way. This isn't like Robert Altman's Short
Cuts, in which characters cross paths with one another.
In this film the stories are all linked by feelings of angst,
denial and impending doom. If you're looking for logic, go somewhere
Canadian Betty Elms (Naomi Watts, Eastern
Promises) lands in L.A. hoping to break into show business.
Arriving at her aunt's supposedly vacant apartment, she finds
a naked woman in the shower. The stranger (smoldering Laura
Elena Harring) calls herself Rita. She has amnesia. She knows
there was an accident but can't remember where or when. Looking
into Rita's purse, Betty finds only a wad of cash and a blue
key. Betty takes it upon herself to help Rita discover her old
identity and find out what happened.
That is about as conventional
as the movie gets. To go any further would spoil the fun. This
film isn't interested in following a straight, logical narrative
but in getting lost in the mysterious and seductive world of
Los Angeles. Where else could a cowboy (Monty Montgomery) and
a dwarf (Carnivŕle's Michael J. Anderson) hold sway over
a major director's (Justin Theroux) film production? Where else
could an executive (Angelo Badalamenti) frighten a bunch of
major Hollywood players with his taste in espresso? Where else
could a grown man named Dan (Patrick Fisher) be shocked into
cardiac arrest by the face of a homeless person he saw in his
dreams? And — this being a Lynch movie — where else could a
perky blonde and amnesiac brunette suddenly and inexplicably
find themselves in bed together?
moviegoers dismiss Lynch (Wild
at Heart, DYNAMIC:01)
as esoteric and nonsensical, a pretentious hack throwing unrelated
imagery up on the screen and calling it "art." The truth of
the matter is, while he may be esoteric, he is not pretentious
and he is not a hack. He is an American original who tells stories
no one else can tell, in ways no else has even thought of.
If you don't believe
me, just take a ride down Mulholland Drive.
In an age where more and more storage space on DVDs is dedicated
to bonus features, Universal's 2002 release of Mulholland
Dr. is wonderfully economical. The anamorphic 1.85 transfer
boasts top-drawer picture/sound quality (5.1 and DTS audio options);
subtitles are available in English, Spanish, and French. But the
only bonus features are the theatrical trailer (a preview of the
nuttiness to come) and, as a printed case insert, a list of ten
clues provided by the director for "solving" the film. ("Note
appearances of the red lampshades"; "An accident is a terrible
event... Notice its location", and so forth.) That's it. There
are no featurettes or commentaries, nor is the disc even encoded
with standard chapter-stops —
you heard that right, the entire film is one solid chapter.
Some folks will obviously find this pretty frustrating, especially
if they're inclined to watch the movie over multiple sittings
(something NOT recommended with Lynch's oeuvre, it must
be said), but I came to appreciate the ambiguity of it all. It
only adds to the mystery the film itself possesses, in abundance.
Often bonus features are added as extras just
to lure customers. Other times, these supplements actually tell
you too much. They destroy the mystery of how the film was created.
Not here. You're not told a thing. Nothing. Silencio.