The special programme of David Lynch features, in addition to the master’s own chef-d’œuvre, two very different documentaries introducing Lynch.
„David Lynch: The Art Life” (Jon Nguyen, Rick Barnes, Olivia Neergaard-Holm, 2016) focuses on David Lynch as an artist and the screen is filled with canvases, colours, textures, and Lynch smoking like a true artist. Through family photos, home videos, paintings, and personal childhood and youth memories, much of what has seeped into Lynch’s films from his life is revealed. As Lynch himself says, the past tints everything that is created. Even new ideas have the colours of the past. That is how the stories told reflect in his later work.
The first part of the film is especially interesting, as Lynch describes his idyllic childhood and a somewhat darker youth. The stories are mysterious, there is something sinister in the air, something hidden behind the facade. An area covering two city blocks contains everything thinkable and unthinkable. Lynch’s rituals of being alone, sitting on a chair for days on end and listening to a radio with failing batteries. Long spells of not going out. Oddly funny descriptions of weird people of Philadelphia. Lynch’s stories are gripping, many of them seemingly random, but still containing tension and atmosphere. The works of art illustrating the stories are cunningly chosen, creating links and giving hints that make Lynch’s work more and more understandable. Although Lynch’s films are not discussed much, it is a step towards grasping their weird atmosphere.
Lynch fans should also seize the opportunity of seeing the documentary “Blue Velvet Revisited” (Peter Braatz, 2016), which is screened alongside “Blue Velvet”. The everyday life on the set and excerpts of interviews were shot with Super 8 camera by film student Braatz, who had asked Lynch’s permission to document the making of the film. The text is by far the most interesting part of this chaotic and sleep-inducing work – comments by David Lynch, Dennis Hopper, Isabella Rossellini, etc. The film as a whole, however, is too fragmented, the poetic and beautiful material juxtaposed with too many unnecessary frames. The music video-like cool becomes tedious and the film’s soundtrack (Tuxedomoon, Cult With No Names, John Foxx) is too uneven, sometimes collaborating with the picture, but sometimes tiring and annoying. “Blue Velvet Revisited” is a very lyrical and airy film, but does not tell much about the making of “Blue Velvet”. It contains many unique and valuable frames, and exciting sentiments by its makers, and can as such still attract, floating somewhere above the film it portrays, capturing its strange mood and flavour.
Read more about the program from HERE.