Monday, November 1, 2010

35 YEARS OF DAVID LYNCH

Works of art are easy to overlook at first glance. Some art is so far ahead of its time that only the passage of years will help it be appreciated. Many films must wait for changes to cultural tastes and style before their audience's sensibilities are attuned to receive them. Many masterpieces of art and literature are greeted at first with underwhelming or even hostile reviews and bad word of mouth before one day gaining the recognition they deserve. Most films directed by David Lynch fall into this category.
"Your paintings look fuzzy. You're no good at art, Vincent. Rethink your career."
Everyone in Van Gogh's Life
Most people would value the ability to recognize immediately whether something is a lasting work of art or if it is worthless junk. But often masterpieces are valued less than their uninspired counterparts. Like food, our perception of art can be skewed easily by our moods or tastes at the time we first sample it. Most film viewers enter a David Lynch movie completely unprepared for what they are about to experience and tend to dismiss his films at first as too dark, too weird, or too confusing.
"What was that?"
–Fake Quote from Viewers in 1939
Films like The Wizard of Oz (1939) and It's a Wonderful Life (1946), now staples of every American family's film experience, were not received very well at the box office upon their initial release. Although neither film was necessarily an outright flop, they both underperformed and were considered disappointments by their studios. But over the decades, these films have gained a mythic sense of popularity and are among the most watched films in history. Film audiences often make mistakes in the short run, which explains the unreasonable financial success of Michael Bay's movies. But thankfully, good taste will win in the end. David Lynch's films age exceptionally well and are more enjoyable for audiences to watch today than ever before.
"It's a Christmas movie, but no Santa? And what's all this about real
 estate fraud and banking scandals? Those are things of the past..."
–Fake Overpaid Film Critic Quote in 1946
Although a community of artists work together on a film, it is not created in a vacuum. A film is shaped into existence by individuals, so any change in the lifestyle of the artists can have a profound impact on the quality of their art. Some artists are discovered and recognized early in their careers, but are later tempted by the lure of money and popularity to veer away from their own unique artistic visions.
Some Directors Veer Horribly Far Away from their
 Original Artistic Visions...
If an artist's fixation strays from the art toward the ancillary benefits gained by producing it (like fame and money), then the formerly brilliant creator turns into a glorified artisan. The artist turns into a marketer, whose primary concerns shift from the business of their craft toward the business of selling a product to the masses. Unfortunately, many great filmmakers have fallen into this trap over the years and their films invariably suffer for it.
"Hmm, what are my films missing? I know! A mentally challenged sidekick who gets more
screen time than any other character in the most anticipated movie in history! Eureka!"
–Fake George Lucas Quote While Writing Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
David Lynch stands as a filmmaker who escaped this fate even after gaining early recognition for his first two feature films: Eraserhead (1976) and The Elephant Man (1980). In spite of gaining numerous award nominations, offers to direct big budget franchise films, and later gaining tremendous mainstream popularity during the phenomenally successful run of his TV series Twin Peaks (1990-1991), David Lynch has remained true to himself and made art on his own terms.
The Cover of Time Magazine Oct. 1, 1990
We approach the 35th anniversary of David Lynch completing his first feature film Eraserhead (1977). To celebrate his achievements, we will dedicate all articles over the next five months toward the career of David Lynch, who is still actively engaged in his artistic process to this day. He is currently configuring his website to sell original music, including two new songs for which he will provide vocals (Editor's Note: Those songs were released after this article's original publication and a video clip of the Lynch song Good Day Today is provided below).
David Lynch's Good Day Today
David Lynch is also lined up to direct a live webcast for Duran Duran in March of next year (Editor's Note: The webcast was recently broadcast live via Duran Duran's VEVO page on YouTube and a short excerpt is provided in the clip below. We also mentioned the webcast again just before and after it aired).
Duran Duran Live Webcast Excerpt

David Lynch is also rumored to be working on an animated film called Snootworld, but we cannot confirm anything specific about the possible production, let alone find a release date. But however long we need to wait for another Lynch feature film, we look forward to many more in the years to come. The purpose of this series of articles is to increase awareness of Lynch's singular body of work and hopefully inspire a reevaluation and deeper analysis of his films by mainstream audiences. And ultimately, we hope to build greater anticipation for his next feature film projects.
Anthony Hopkins in an Early, Overlooked Performance in The Elephant Man (1980)
Here is a brief explanation of what expect from this series of articles: We will watch David Lynch's body of work in chronological order and publish an article each Wednesday until we have finished analyzing all his feature films and TV projects. We will also briefly summarize and analyze his short films, web projects, and commercials. By analyzing one film each week, we can observe the larger themes that run throughout his work with enough breathing room between sessions to enjoy each film on its own merits.
We Will Move at a Leisurely Pace
A list of our articles and their release dates:
Nov  03, 2010 - ERASERHEAD (1977)
Nov  10, 2010 - THE ELEPHANT MAN (1980)
Nov  17, 2010 - DUNE (1984)
Nov  24, 2010 - BLUE VELVET (1986)
Dec  01, 2010 - WILD AT HEART (1990)
Dec  08, 2010 - TWIN PEAKS - #0 LAURA PALMER: PART I (1990)
Dec  15, 2010 - TWIN PEAKS - #0 LAURA PALMER: PART II (1990)
Dec  22, 2010 - TWIN PEAKS - #1 SECRET BOYFRIEND (1990)
Dec  29, 2010 - TWIN PEAKS - #2 RED ROOM (1990)
Jan  05, 2011 - TWIN PEAKS - #8 MAIRZY DOATS: PART I (1990)
Jan  12, 2011 - TWIN PEAKS - #8 MAIRZY DOATS: PART II (1990)
Jan  20, 2011 - TWIN PEAKS - #9 MEALS ON WHEELS (1990)
Jan  26, 2011 - TWIN PEAKS - #14 HE IS BOB, EAGER FOR FUN (1990)
Feb  02, 2011 - TWIN PEAKS - #29 DWELLER ON THE THRESHOLD (1991)
Feb  09, 2011 - TWIN PEAKS: FIRE WALK WITH ME (1992)
Feb  16, 2011 - ON THE AIR (1992) HOTEL ROOM (1993)
Feb  23, 2011 - LOST HIGHWAY (1997)
Mar 02, 2011 - THE STRAIGHT STORY (1999)
Mar 09, 2011 - MULHOLLAND DR. (2001)
Mar 16, 2011 - INLAND EMPIRE (2006)
Mar 23, 2011 - SHORT FILMS, WEB PROJECTS, AND COMMERCIALS
Mar 30, 2011 - CONCLUDING REMARKS

BONUS ARTICLES
May 18, 2011 - THE DAVIDS: MASTERS OF CEREBRAL HORROR
June 15, 2011 - CLUB SILENCIO
July 02, 2011 - THE TWIN PEAKS PODCAST
July 29, 2011 - DEADLY PREMONITION (2010)
Sept 05, 2011 - 35 YEARS OF DAVID LYNCH TRAILER
Oct  06, 2011 - TWIN PEAKS: ONE AND THE SAME
Nov 17, 2011 - DUNE (1984) - NEW 2011 TRAILER
Nov 25, 2011 - 31 LYNCHIAN DAYS OF CHRISTMAS (32 Articles)
Dec 05, 2011 - THE SECRET DIARY OF LAURA PALMER
Dec 27, 2011 - LETTERBOX VS. PAN & SCAN
Jan  03, 2012 - AMERICA IN PRIMETIME: TWIN PEAKS
Feb 06, 2012 - TWIN PEAKS: PATH TO THE WHITE LODGE
Mar 16, 2012 - 44 YEARS OF STANLEY KUBRICK
Mar 27, 2012 - ZOOEY DESCHANEL'S CHILDHOOD AND TWIN PEAKS
May 30, 2012 - DUAL SPIRES (2010) PSYCH'S TWIN PEAKS HOMAGE
Jun 17, 2012 - 35 YEARS OF DAVID LYNCH (FILM TRIBUTE)
Jul 02, 2012 - TWIN PEAKS 1080P HD!
Aug 01, 2012 - DR. DAVID LYNCH'S MOVIE PRESCRIPTIONS
Aug 20, 2012 - ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Aug 22, 2012 - WATCH "SIDE BY SIDE" TODAY!
Sept 09, 2012 - THE MASTER COUNTDOWN
Sept 15, 2012 - 35TH ANNIVERSARY COUNTDOWN
Oct 02, 2012 - THE RING SYMBOL
Nov 14, 2012 - IT'S A STRANGE WORLD... WITH FRANK CRONOGUE!
Nov 16, 2012 - TWIN PEAKS: DAYS 1-8
Dec 31, 2012 - TWIN PEAKS: DAYS 9-17
Apr 24, 2014 - TWIN PEAKS: DAYS 20-26
May , 2014 - TWIN PEAKS: DAYS 27-32
Jun , 2013 - TWIN PEAKS: DAYS (-380)-(-378) AND (-7)-0
The Opening Shot of Every Twin Peaks Episode
Nearly half our articles will be devoted to the Twin Peaks TV series, the most popular and successful work of David Lynch's career. The series merits and requires deeper analysis than usual. We will be analyzing only those episodes written and/or directed by David Lynch.
David Lynch's Revolutionary TV Series Twin Peaks (1990-91)
Changed the Face of Modern Television
As we progress over the next five months, please share any information, insights, or questions you might have about anything from Lynch's body of work. Your questions and ideas will help these articles come to life. If you wish to discuss his films in greater detail, then please feel free to visit our Facebook page and talk to our community of David Lynch fans on our discussion board.
Now enter the dark, strange, and beautiful worlds of David Lynch...

35 Years of David Lynch Trailer


Previous Article
EASY A (2010)
Next Article
ERASERHEAD (1977)

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7 comments:

  1. Hey Guys! I would like to say that I LOVE the fact that you are taking an analytical approach to David Lynch's work. I have been a fan of Lynch for a very long time and I have trouble finding other people who seem to fully appreciate him. Especially Twin Peaks, one of the forgotten (in my opinion) and greatest series in american television.

    I would really like to hear your analysis of his short series "Rabbits" if you ever get the chance to. Even if not, I would encourage everyone to experience that series. Watch it in the dark for the full effect!.

    Anyways, I will be following your articles and love them o far. Keep it up!

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  2. Really glad I stumbled onto this site. I love Lynch's films. I'll definitely be checking back every week for the new update.

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  3. Really looking forward to Twin Peaks and 'On The Air'!!

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  4. I can't believe people didn't quite voted The Straight Story,it's a masterpiece, but done in a different style(nothing is dark,nothing is evil) than the one we're all used to.I suggest you all see it.
    The only film I dislike is Inland Empire,as it was written when he was filming and it is way too abstract.

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  5. I love all his stuff except Dune. Also, I don't really watch Wild at Heart very often because it feels like a parody of Lynch.

    Everything else is great!

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  6. Muhlholland Drive is my favorite film of all time. I also love Lost Highway, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, The Straight Story, Blue Velvet and most of the Twin Peaks series. I like certain scenes in Eraser Head and Wild At Heart, but neither of those films really captured my attention much. Inland Empire is somewhere in-between the films I love and the others.

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  7. "Inland Empire" is the only film I wish they would go back do retakes . . . I am sure they have reasons for the way the film looks. Breaking new ground or breaking my heart in home movies gone professional. I am sure I am not the only person who feels this way after being a fan from "Eraserhead" (1977) all the way up thru "Mulholland Drive" (2001).

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