‘The Amputee’: Freaky early David Lynch video
02.07.2014
11:32 am

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Movies

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David Lynch


 
“The Amputee” is a short, one-shot film directed by David Lynch, featuring his longtime associate Catherine Coulson (aka “The Log Lady” from Twin Peaks).

The film was made for AFI in 1974 to test two different stocks of black and white videotape, so there are actually two versions, a four-minute take and a five-minute take (both can be seen on Hulu Plus). Lynch was in “downtime” at this point on making Eraserhead, which was having funding difficulties.

Coulson—who co-wrote the script with Lynch—plays about a woman writing a letter (we hear her thoughts as she composes it) while a female nurse (Lynch) gives medical attention to her stumps. After a point, the viewer tends to tune out the Coulson character’s thoughts in favor of concentrating on the nurse’s activities.

According to anecdotal Lynchian legend, when an AFI exec saw this rather peculiar short film instead of more conventional camera tests, “that Lynch” was immediately thought to be responsible.
 

 

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
David Lynch’s scary public service announcement about NYC’s rat infestation
01.27.2014
07:34 am

Topics:
Environment

Tags:
David Lynch
NYC
rats


 
I’m not really afraid of rats. But while I personally tend to abide by a pretty “live and let live” code where vermin are concerned (as long as the creature in question keeps out of my apartment), New York City has an absolutely insane density of rats. It’s not as bad as in years past, but it’s a rare subway ride when I don’t see at least one varmint happily waddling over the tracks, and I cede to that. We’re in actual underground tunnels—rats are simply the wildlife with whom we must share that subterranean space.

Above ground however, they begin to become a health hazard, and while the city tends to favor the idiotic approach of lacing every garbage-filled and/or overgrown area with poison (poison that presents its own health hazards), the best way to deal with rats is to create an inhospitable environment. Mowing empty lots and removing debris would certainly fix a lot of the problem, but all of that is futile if you’re just going to throw your delicious edible garbage in the street. And that’s where David Lynch comes in.

In what is quite possibly the coolest anti-littering public service announcement ever, Lynch gives viewers a phantasmagoria of rat horror. Frederick Elmes (the cinematographer for both Wild at Heart and Night on Earth) was director of photography on this 1991 anti-rat opus, and it’s a pretty masterful little bit of messaging—the rats are mere beasts, but littering assholes, THEY are the true monsters!
 

Written by Amber Frost | Discussion
Happy birthday, David Lynch!
01.20.2014
09:21 am

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Movies
Pop Culture

Tags:
David Lynch
Written by Tara McGinley | Discussion
David Lynch student film, ‘Six Men Getting Sick (Six Times)’ (1967)
01.06.2014
01:58 pm

Topics:
Animation
Art
Movies

Tags:
David Lynch


 
“Six Men Getting Sick (Six Times)” (otherwise known as “Six Figures Getting Sick”) is a student film that David Lynch made in 1967 when he was attending the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia. With a soundtrack of a blaring siren, “Six Men Getting Sick (Six Times)” is basically an animated painting/sculpture of six male figures with visible internal organs vomiting, a one-minute-long animation that was looped four times.

The film was shot in an unused room in a downtown hotel owned by the school. Lynch made a sort of 6 ft by 10ft canvas/sculpture that included plaster molds of his own face to give it extra dimensionality. He then painted over this as collaborator Jack Fisk shot the stop motion on Lynch’s 16mm camera. When the film was originally screened, I believe it was screened onto the canvas itself.

The film was created on a budget of $200, a sum Lynch called “completely unreasonable.”
 

 

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
‘Eraserhead Stories’: David Lynch looks back on his weirdest film
11.21.2013
10:43 am

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Movies

Tags:
David Lynch
Eraserhead


 
In Eraserhead Stories, a feature length doc on the six-year making of the cult classic, all-American surrealist David Lynch talks directly to the camera, smoking cigarettes and telling charming tales of how his unlikely film came to be. Like Eraserhead itself, the film is B&W and there’s a continuous ominous hum on the soundtrack.

Not quite a monologue, Lynch also calls Eraserhead‘s assistant director Catherine Coulson (she later played the “Log Lady” on Twin Peaks) for her take on things. There was a sort of “family” assembled around the film and without this, Eraserhead would never have been birthed into the world (see what I did there?). At one point Lynch calls the viewers’ attention to a year and a half gap between two edits. He also reveals that he himself lived in the windowless set of Henry’s room for two years while the film was being made.

Amusingly, the film’s lead actor, Jack Nance, never knew, nor did he care, what Eraserhead was all about. He’s quoted as saying “You guys get way too deep over this business. I don’t take it all that seriously. It’s only a movie.”

In 2004, Eraserhead was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry by the United States Library of Congress.
 

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
‘Hotel Room’: David Lynch’s oddball HBO mini-series, 1993
11.07.2013
12:52 pm

Topics:
Television

Tags:
David Lynch


 
“It’s kind of beautiful, though, the dark…”

In roughly speaking his Twin Peaks/Wild At Heart era, director David Lynch executive produced—and directed two episodes—of a three-part HBO mini-series, Hotel Room, that was broadcast over two days, January 8 and 9, 1993.

The quirky dramas are strangely absorbing, like most of Lynch’s work, but mercifully a bit more straightforward because he didn’t actually write the scripts. Hotel Room is the work of author Barry Gifford, (who also wrote Wild at Heart: The Story of Sailor and Lula, the novel Lynch’s film was based on, and the screenplay for Lost Highway) and Jay “Bright Lights, Big City” McInerney.

The stagebound Hotel Room takes place in the same New York City hotel room (number 603 of the Railroad Hotel) in 1969, 1992, and 1936, respectively. The guests change from story to story, but the hotel employees do not. Nor do they age.

In his book of teleplays, Barry Gifford writes in the preface:

“The only rules regarding composition were that the action take place in specific years–“Tricks,” for example, is set in 1969—and be set in a particular New York City hotel room (numbered 603), the corridor immediately outside the room, and the hotel lobby. A bellboy and maid, the only continuing characters in the series, were to be included in the plays at my option…

“Blackout” was written in two days with the admonition from Messrs. Montgomery [co-producer Monty Montgomery] and Lynch that it be “something our grandmothers could watch.” I told Monty that would not be a problem; I’ll write the play, I said, you guys gag and tie up the old ladies.”

Each episode begins with the director solemnly intoning:

For a millennium, the space for the hotel room existed undefined. Mankind captured it, gave it shape and passed through. And sometimes in passing through, they found themselves brushing up against the secret names of truth.

In a note to “Tricks,” which stars Harry Dean Stanton, Glenne Headly, and Freddie Jones as two guys and a hooker, Gifford wrote:

The pace of the play is slow but tense, the actors’ movements almost agonizingly exaggerated, their words deliberate with a kind of mock profundity. The impression should be one or two steps removed from reality.

That it is. The two other stories were McInerney’s “Getting Rid of Robert,” directed by longtime SNL producer/director James Signorelli and starring Griffin Dunne, Deborah Kara Unger and Mariska Hargitay; and “Blackout” with Crispin Glover and Alicia Witt. The soundtrack was provided by frequent Lynch collaborator Angelo Badalamenti.

Speaking of David Lynch and hotel rooms, Lynch has designed a suite at the Hotel Lutetia in Paris. I thought it would have red walls!

Below, all three Hotel Room episodes, back to back.
 

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
David Lynch’s quinoa recipe video is as Lynchian as it gets!
10.23.2013
07:55 am

Topics:
Food
Movies

Tags:
David Lynch
quinoa


 
So here’s the deal. David Lynch made this highly entertaining video of himself explaining how to prepare a quinoa recipe of which he’s particularly fond as an extra on the DVD of Lynch’s 2006 movie Inland Empire. The video made the rounds a couple of years ago, and then the lawyers got involved and it was pulled down.

Now it’s back, but, well, in a compromised fashion: it looks like crap, it’s been broken up into two separate YouTube files, and there’s at least a couple of minutes missing, it seems—but take it from me, it’s still worth a look. Tongue lodged firmly in cheek (I reckon), Lynch manages to bring both his famously gee-whiz affect and his random, surrealist sensibility to bear on his sure-to-be-delicious quinoa concoction.

When you make the transition to the second video, the thought will cross your mind that a mistake has been made, that this is not the same video—trust me: it is.

These videos have been up since February, but I’d imagine that further exposure will endanger its existence on YouTube—watch it while you can! I’m awfully glad I did.

Truly, Lynch is a born performer—can we get this guy a cooking show, for goodness’ sake?? And definitely, definitely let Lynch have final cut.

David Lynch’s Quinoa Recipe, Part 1:

 
David Lynch’s Quinoa Recipe, Part 2:

 
After the jump, the recipe itself, as transcribed by Jack Cheng….

Written by Martin Schneider | Discussion
David Lynch’s guide to film-making
07.13.2013
08:43 am

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Movies

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David Lynch


 
For David Lynch, filmmaking is all about ideas.

“You have ideas, and I always say ideas are the most important thing, and the idea tells you everything. The idea is like a seed. The tree is in the seed, but it doesn’t look like the tree. So, when you finally see the tree, you might make some changes, but when you get an idea you really do see the whole tree, but it’s in an abstract form.”

Sometimes these ideas will take strange routes to get where they feel correct, Lynch goes on to explain. But eventually, they will arrive at where they were meant to be all along—but the film-maker didn’t know that.

Interspersed with behind-the-scenes footage, David Lynch shares his wisdom for aspiring filmmakers, in this documentary Room to Dream, and explains how best to realize that original idea.
 

Written by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
David Lynch’s ode to teenage heartbreak: ‘Are You Sure?’
06.26.2013
06:33 am

Topics:
Music

Tags:
David Lynch


 
A new ditty, “Are You Sure?,” from David Lynch’s new album The Big Dream which will be released in mid-July.

Somewhere in an alternate universe, teenage hearts are breaking.
 

Written by Marc Campbell | Discussion
David Lynch: A Must-See interview on ‘Scene By Scene’ from 1999

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Photo by Chris Saunders
 
David Lynch doesn’t like giving interviews. He has to be coaxed by interviewer Mark Cousins, to give answers to his questions.

Mark Cousins: David Lynch, you don’t like doing interviews, do you?

David Lynch: No I don’t.

Mark Cousins: Why are you sitting on this sofa then?

David Lynch: To do you a great favor.

Lynch certainly does a great favor here, in this fine documentary Scene By Scene, as the cult director goes on to explain his thoughts on films and film-making:

A film is its own thing. And in an ideal world, I think film should be discovered knowing nothing, and nothing should be added to it, and nothing should be subtracted from it.

The usually taciturn Lynch then opens-out about his life; his insecurities (why he once wore three ties); his ideas on the speed of rooms; why he doesn’t follow politics (‘I don’t understand the concept of two sides’); and his response to criticism in his portrayal of women:

..the problem is that somebody sees a woman in a film, and then mistakenly assumes that that is the way the person sees all women, when in actuality it’s just that particular woman within this particular story.

The interview concludes with Cousins asking Lynch about his thoughts on mortality.

Inside, we’re ageless.  And when we talk to ourselves, it’s the same person we were talking to, the same age, when we were little, and it’s the body that’s changing around that ageless center.

Recorded prior to the release of The Straight Story, this fifty-minute documentary, made by BBC Scotland, gives great insight into David Lynch and his method of film-making.

Watch it—before it’s gone!

A full transcript of the interview with David Lynch can be found here.
 

 
Via IndieWire
 

Written by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
Young David Lynch on ‘New Wave Theatre’
03.25.2013
11:16 am

Topics:
Punk
Television

Tags:
David Lynch
Peter Ivers


 
A young David Lynch makes a brief appearance on New Wave Theatre sometime in the early 1980s.

New Wave Theatre‘s host, Peter Ivers, wrote Eraserhead‘s “In Heaven,” the number sung by the “Lady in the Radiator,” for Lynch in 1976. Ivers was found bludgeoned to death in his Los Angeles apartment in 1983 and his death remains unsolved.
 

 
“In Heaven”:
 

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
Battle of the David Lynch baked goods: ‘Blue Velvet Cupcakes’ or ‘Eraserheard’ cake pops?
03.11.2013
12:03 pm

Topics:
Food
Movies

Tags:
David Lynch

cupcakes
 
I can’t decide which non sequitur confection best captures the morbid nature of the Lynchian milieu, what say you?
 
cake pops
 
(The artist behind the cake pops also does full casts of Vincent Price’s head in chocolate!)

Written by Amber Frost | Discussion
David Lynch’s oddball musical rarity: ‘Industrial Symphony No. 1: The Dream of the Broken Hearted’
01.31.2013
10:59 am

Topics:
Art
Movies
Music

Tags:
David Lynch


 
David Lynch and Angelo Badalamenti’s Industrial Symphony No. 1: The Dream of the Broken Hearted was a nonsensical, non sequitur musical play directed by Lynch, featuring singer Julee Cruise.

It begins with a filmed sequence with Nicolas Cage and Laura Dern, who were then filming Wild at Heart with Lynch. Cage’s character dumps Dern’s who then somehow turns into Cruise who floats over typically Lynchian industrial dreamscapes. Michael J. Anderson, the mysterious dwarf in the red room from Twin Peaks saws wood and repeats Dern and Cage’s break-up conversation, mocking them.

Industrial Symphony No. 1 was staged for two performances at the Brooklyn Academy of Music as part of the “New Music America Festival” in November of 1989. I actually saw one of the performances. Although I was massively into David Lynch at the time, to be honest, I thought it was pretty—and very well-staged (everything is well-staged at BAM)—but a bit… boring. I’ve read that they only had two weeks to put it together and that seems plausible!

The video is probably something that you can dip in and out of, if you know what I mean.
 

Written by Richard Metzger | Discussion
David Lynch sells coffee

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An oldie but still freaky. David Lynch sells coffee. Which, for some reason, reminds me of Family Guy‘s Peter Griffin doing his Danny Aiello impression….
 

 
Previously on Dangerous Minds

David Lynch: ‘Ideas flow through like these beautiful little fish, and you catch them’


David Lynch’s hair compared to well-known paintings


 
With thanks to Krystin Ver Linden
 

Written by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
Anne Pigalle: Performing at David Lynch’s club Silencio

anne_pigalle_silencio_2012
 
An exclusive clip of the fabulous Anne Pigalle performing to a packed house at David Lynch’s Parisian night club Silencio, where she sang a selection of songs from her recent album, L’ Ame Erotique, and a some of her classic early work. Ms. Pigalle was performing at a special event, created by Diane Pernet, to celebrate the international Festival A Shaded View on Film Festival.
 

 
Bonus clips of Anne Pigalle, after the jump…
 

Written by Paul Gallagher | Discussion
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