Director: David Lynch
Writers: David Lynch, Barry Gifford
Stars: Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette and John Roselius
The case of too many "?"
When Fred Madison finds a video tape on his doorstep that shows the interior of his house, he's convinced that someone has broken in and calls the police. Things get really complicated when he finds another videotape showing him killing his wife, and the police arrest him because his wife really was murdered! Then he disappears from the prison and we start watching the life of a young man who works in a garage
Let me tell you a little about me and David Lynch movies. After I saw “Blue Velvet” I couldn't get rid of certain images from it, like Isabella Rosselini singing, lit by this amazing blue light on stage for years. When I was watching Twin Peaks, I couldn't wait to see what happens next and few times I nearly got a heart attack. When I saw “Wild at Heart” it was so good I actually enjoyed the movie that contains both Nicolas Cage and Willem Dafoe in it. And after I saw “Mulholland Dr.” I most likely read every single thread on imdb about it. That's how much those movies moved me – I had to find answers, I couldn't stop thinking about them. You know what I did after I saw “Lost Highway”? I made myself a cup of tea and started reading Newsweek on the balcony.
Because I don't care. So far every movie I saw made by Lynch was made with this amazing passion, with this love for making movies. This one as much as still being wonderfully written and inspired is just dull. It features all of Lynch's best moves – one story suddenly changing into another, blue light, red curtains, individual outstanding scenes (like the moment Pete sees Alice for the first time, love scene, transformation scene), but it just didn't feel “alive” to me. I see characters yell, cry, smile but I can't feel emotions in it. I couldn't get interested with this movie, I kept waiting for something to happen and blow my mind away and it never happened.
But there are some great things in “Lost Highway” - very dark and curious use of music (except for Rammstein which doesn't go with Lynch surrealistic world at all), nice choice with casting of Bill Pullman and Patricia Arquette, couple of goofy detective and their awesome and hilarious exchanges (“Fucker gets more pussy than a toilet seat.”) and already mentioned, outstanding scenes and insanely disturbing and creepy moments. There are huge minuses, though - Balthazar Getty who plays Pete is awful and the story doesn't make much sense. I'm sure if you devote enough time you can get to the bottom of this, but it's not because I actually see the signs of any sense in “Lost Highway”. I believe in Lynch – if “Mulholland Dr.”, “Twin Peaks” and other of his films made sense, this one must be as meticulously constructed too, especially that Lynch said something about it he doesn't say often - “there is one correct answer”. I looked a little and there are theories – doppelgangers, the Devil, the loop – as interesting as they sound, they don't make sense and can be easily abolished. With “Mulholland Dr,” one interpretation explained it all. Here it barely explains half of the stuff we see on screen.
The acting is all right, but nothing spectacular. Arquette mostly just wanders on screen, but has some good moments, particularly the one where she strips for mister Eddy. Pullman is very good, but the best performance is Robert Blake's Mystery Man – one of the creepiest characters in Lynch's movies. However nobody apart from Blake stands out – everything is very forgettable.
I can forgive Lynch making a movie that is boring and too complex. But the movie is forgettable and that is something inexcusable. It had all the right elements but it failed. As much as I admire story that carefully crafted I think Lynch overestimated his viewer. With “Mulholland Dr,” we care enough about the characters to dig deep. But here? Why should I care about crazy jealous man and cheap whore? I didn't. The characters here don't have life in them – they are Lynch's puppets in his theater of grand confusion. And this time I simply don't wanna play.