Inland Empire

2006 David Lynch joint

Rating: 16/20

Plot: A complex glimpse at what might be the inward journey of a woman who may or may not be an actress and who may or may not be guilty and/or delusional. She may or may not be co-starring in a remake of a cursed Polish movie, and she might be obsessed (or she might not be) with her co-star, a cool guy who may or may not exist. Things get menacing, seemingly, and a murder or two probably take place. But I'm not real sure about that.

Difficult, sometimes frustrating, and very long, this is the typical David Lynch movie. He doesn't create narratives, at least conventionally, and instead of concrete characters developing conflicts and simple cause-and-effect relationships creating a plot, he lets the moods he creates tell the story. In fact, I'm pretty sure there is one concrete character in this, but all of the other characters (a phantom, actors, a director, a bunch of Polish people, street people, whores) might just be extensions of the protagonist's warping psyche. This is definitely a movie that you don't really watch; you sort of have to feel your way through the three hours, and for most of the time, I felt like a blind man groping my way through a maze of pudding. I would really need to watch about fifteen more times (that would be forty-five hours of movie watchin') to get a firmer grasp of what's going on and what rating this actually deserves. It could be a 10; it could be a 19. It was self-referential and the use of color, references to both light and time/watches, and music and sound effects all seemed like they could be important clues to what the heck is going on here. Those are things I could pick out a little more easily with subsequent viewings. Maybe. I doubt it.

I've got no clue what's going on with these rabbits, but they made me giggle uncontrollably every time they were on the screen.

Note: Laura Dern was fantastic in this.

Another note: Lynch has this way of making the most ordinary objects seem really menacing. Lamps, doors, an empty street, silk, a screwdriver, an elderly neighbor's face. It's a gift.

A final note: "Locomotion" was part of the soundtrack for thematic purposes (probably), but that Beck song in the middle of this seemed completely out of place.

Here's a picture of Lucyfer the dog and me the human waiting for hot, lesbian action that, disappointingly, never happened:


winter rates said...

when did yr rabbit morph into a dog.

i saw this movie last year in a snow storm.

me: let's take a bus across town to see inland empire.

wife: i'm not risking my life to see some creepy ass david lynch movie

me: it's not going to be creepy

wife: okay

whoops. her tension kinda ruined it for me. and the marijuana brownies.

i need to see it again.

Shane said...

As I recall, you rated Inland very high...9-range. I could be confusing that
with another movie. I know you didn't like Mulholland Drive.

Kawabata died. Lucyfer the dog we've had for a few months now. She's pretty