Mulholland Dr.

I just watched the DVD Mulholland Dr. and I am absolutely clueless of the plot and it’s message etc…
Call me ignorant, but that was a stupid movie, does the director (David Lynch) think he’s a genius or something because 99% of the people who watch the movie won’t understand what the hell it’s about. Movies that abruptly end give me an empty stomach feeling.
Someone please explain the movie!!!

Join the club. You ain’t the only one who scratched their head at the end of that film.

Do a search…there are probably 50 threads about this film.

I thought the climatic sequence (the dinner) did help with that.

That sequence provides the real character “names” and their “place” in the story. The preceding thing (the beginning 90%) is a dream.

A mod should add “SPOILERS!” to the thread title. As it is, I’m gonna post some SPOILERS here, and, since they’re gonna be a major part of my post, I’m not gonna use the tags.



Now. The first half of the movie is a fantasy. The blonde girl is fantasizing about this idealistic, farm-girl view of what she wished her life really were. What comes out is a flimsy, clearly false fantasy (note that the acting in the first half of the movie is very flat and stale).

The overall message is that Hollywood is violent, vicious, and will chew you up and spit you out. The idealistic fantasies that a person has when first coming to Hollywood - characterized by the elderly couple - will ultimately come back to hit you right in the face.

The majority of the movie, however, is primarily dedicated to giving you an EMOTIONAL response to the imagery, rather than an intellectual one. If you feel that there’s nothing to get, well… you’re probably right. This movie, if you cut out all the attempts at dragging your feelings all over the map, would be about thirty minutes long. That’s David Lynch’s style, one that I happen to enjoy… he brings in a lot of interesting, though unrelated, imagery that evokes certain feelings.

For example: The Cowboy. A classic Hollywood Icon, one that’s supposed to characterize the good, strong, healthy ideals and fighting spirit of the American Culture… turned into little more than a thug (albeit a very creepy, almost supernatural thug). Why does that particular role need to be taken by a Cowboy? The emotional response. You could have just gotten a Joe Pesci-like character in there to have done the same job… instead, there’s a character that tugs right on the classical icon heartstrings.

I look at it the same way I think about paintings. Some paintings are paintings of things and they look like the things they’re meant to be. And this type of painting can be really good. But sometimes there are paintings that don’t look like they really do, or they don’t even look like anything at all. Sometimes it’s just a big mess of colour, but because of the balance, the composition and the colour that the artist has used, they can still provoke an emotional response.

It’s the same with movies. Some movies tell you a story exactly (or near enough) as it would happen, and you’re shown everything. But some other movies, like Mulholland Drive leave bits out, or they’re not even about telling you what the story is. Mulholland drive is one of them canvasses with lots of paint on it and it looks good, but it doesn’t look like anything.

Then again, if your idea of good art is pictures that look like the things they’re meant to look like, then my analogy will be meaningless to you.

I think it’s a great movie. Extremely enjoyable. The standard reference for it is this Salon article. (I don’t agree with all of it and they get a couple of quotes and facts wrong, but it explains the overall concept well.)

Just want to agree with what’s been said here. Lynch is all about aesthetic response. Notice the surroundings of any scene. Everything is very carefully constructed to envoke the emotions that he wants you to feel for that moment in the story. I don’t have time right now to get into specifics.

I will just quickly say this: while it is true that Lynch’s main concern is your emotional response, which greatly outweighs the importance of the plot, everything, and I mean everything, makes sense and has a direct meaning in terms of the story. Also, it is IMHO nearly impossible to get even a small amount of the story on first viewing. Watch it again. One of the fun things about the movie is making the many plot discoveries.

I don’t totally agree that it’s entirely neccesary to see it twice to get the whole picture of the movie. I tend to have a really good memory for these kind of things and I came out of my first viewing of it with what I felt was a good understanding of the film. I haven’t seen it again except for a couple of scenes (not even the ones you’re thinking about!) and I came out with a satisfying meaning for myself. Not that a second viewing wouldn’t help and not that I don’t want to see it again (just don’t have time). I also did pretty well, I think, with Lost Highway on one viewing.

Ironically, I’m not the kind of person that finds a lot of meaning in abstract art.

This movie isn’t for everyone, certainly. The SALON ARTICLE is definitely worth a read and potentially sheds a lot of light on this.

In addition, you can find more discussion in the several previous cafe society threads
discussing it.

Well, I stand corrected. I guess you’re just better at this than me.