Author Topic: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis  (Read 32296 times)

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Erniesam

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #150 on: May 03, 2017, 07:15:41 PM »
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I think it expands on Lost Girl & Sue's symbiotic relationship. Lost Girl is being shown Sue's experience. Lost Girl then shows part of her life experience to Sue to more fully form that connection. Perhaps they are scenes that Sue can especially relate to. It's getting Sue to realize that there is someone out there who is deeply connected to her and guiding her to some degree. I think this helps make Sue aware her aware of that guidance, and of that pull. She is constantly being pulled toward something.
We see Lost Girl watching events unfold on the tv, but we never see the Dern character do that. Moreover, when Dern looks at Lost Girl on the monitor at the end she doesn’t know her. She looks familiar, but Dern doesn’t give a sign of recognition. Now IF Sue did indeed see these scenes with Karolina, surely she should recognize her.

I have to take a look at your theory for MD. I just browsed it through rather quickly and it seems to me that you indeed view MD along similar lines as you do IE. It would have been a surprise if you didn’t of course. I’d love to talk about MD too, but this isn’t the place for it obviously. I was disappointed to see that there’s no activity on that (and this) thread for nearly 2 years! Do you have any suggestions to attract more people to these threads? When it comes to interpretations of surrealism the more ideas and feedback there is the more fruitful it becomes.
 
As for who’s having the dream… After some pondering over MD I came to the conclusion that that must be Diane and that Rita dreams within this dream of Diane. We can talk about this more, but I guess it’s better to do it in the right thread.

This weekend I wil check out the rest of your analysis of IE and see if I get it.

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #151 on: May 03, 2017, 08:44:40 PM »
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Moreover, when Dern looks at Lost Girl on the monitor at the end she doesn’t know her. She looks familiar, but Dern doesn’t give a sign of recognition.

Dern doesn't look at Lost Girl on a monitor, though...

When Sue looks directly at Lost Girl after her death, we don't know exactly what Sue is seeing (or how). Lost Girl is looking at her TV, but how does Sue see Lost Girl? We don't know. The image Sue sees could be anything or of any quality. Lost Girl's face has already been blurred in the movie, for example. Given that she's in the spirit world now, Sue might be seeing some crazy spectre of an image, or she might be seeing the idea of Lost Girl, the abstract thought of her. When you're in this spirit realm, rules go out the window. Physical continuity is no longer a valid concern.

I would say that Sue probably sees Lost Girl's face clearly at the earlier points in the movie, when she sees Lost Girl's instructions and then watches the scene(s) from Lost Girl's life. Being spiritually lost and confused at that point, I would not expect Sue to recognize Lost Girl quite yet — not in the full sense.

We see Lost Girl watching events unfold on the tv, but we never see the Dern character do that

At 1:11:30, the prostitutes ("valley girls") transport Sue to Old Poland and show her where Lost Girl's life took place. ("This is the street. Do you want to see?") And just BEFORE they do that, they (collectively) told her this:

"In the future, you will be dreaming in a kind of sleep. When you open your eyes, someone familiar will be there." [Obviously referring to Lost Girl.]

Once Sue is transported, the beautifully insane thing is that we then see that Lost Girl is watching Sue watch her memories. Inception! Once that connection is made, Lost Girl then steps in as a guide. I seriously recommend revisiting this sequence and watching it closely — all of that is pretty clearly laid out through the visual language.

Then, when Sue burns the hole in the silk, we see time spinning backwards (on the watch), and Sue finally gets to see actual scenes from Lost Girl's life. Just as Lost Girl has been watching scenes from Sue's life. (I think that's indisputable, frankly.)

After Sue "dies" (realizes that she is dead) on the walk of fame, her mood and manner become serene and zen-like. And it persists. I would be careful not to mistake that for confusion. She is not confused — she consistently appears to have some idea of where to go and what to do. Just enough to lead her to each new discovery. She is feeling that pull stronger than ever now, and it is also more clear.

When Sue finally meets Lost Girl at the end, there is no confusion here. I think it can only be described as profound recognition. We see Lost Girl wide-eyed and shocked that this is actually happening. She stands up. Their eyes lock. We see Sue visibly smiling with wonder. Sue, in fact, slowly steps forward and initiates the kiss that melds them.
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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #152 on: May 05, 2017, 06:58:28 PM »
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Currently going through the movie pretty carefully and re-examining my interpretation.

A few changes/additions so far:

- Rethinking the Phantom a bit. He is more complex and inscrutable than I gave him credit for.

- Calling Nikki "fake" is not quite right. It's better to think of it this way: Nikki is the spirit, and Sue is who she was in one life. Nikki "becomes" Sue because she is remembering (reliving) that life. Then when she finally returns to spirit form, that is indeed Nikki once again.

- "On High In Blue Tomorrows" is a cursed story that Sue is trapped in, and "47" is a cursed story that Lost Girl was trapped in. I view these as metaphors for each of their lives. (Our lives are all cursed stories!)

- There is a trespasser during rehearsal, and that is Sue. As a ghost, she exists outside of time. That is how/why this time travel paradox thing can work, when Sue later sees Nikki in that same moment.

- It could be that Nikki realizes she is not real, so she ceases to exist, and we then follow Sue. But that actually seems less likely now. When Sue sees Nikki at the rehearsal table, we have switched to Sue, but Nikki still exists. Nikki can still exist because she has not yet realized she is Sue. If Nikki had disappeared or ceased to exist, she would not be there to see. And again, Sue can travel outside the bounds of time because she is a ghost.
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Erniesam

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #153 on: May 06, 2017, 11:42:01 AM »
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Hi Jeremy,

Let’s see if we can continue this discussion now that it’s weekend.

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When Sue looks directly at Lost Girl after her death, we don't know exactly what Sue is seeing (or how). Lost Girl is looking at her TV, but how does Sue see Lost Girl? We don't know.

Yes, you’re right about that. We don’t know what Dern is seeing. I’ve checked that scene just now and it’s indeed pretty odd. The only thing we know for sure is that Lost Girl sees Dern staring straight into the camera. Although we later on see a projection on the celluloid in the theater with things that occur right at that moment, I don’t believe that Dern can see Lost Girl at that moment. It seems to me that Dern doesn’t show signs of recognition, but rather of something she feels intuitively. She looks in the direction of Lost Girl intuitively and feels something…perhaps it feels “familiar?” It’s obvious this whole sequence is surreal since we suddenly find Dern in the theater, while she was at the backlot of the studios.

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I would say that Sue probably sees Lost Girl's face clearly at the earlier points in the movie, when she sees Lost Girl's instructions and then watches the scene(s) from Lost Girl's life. Being spiritually lost and confused at that point, I would not expect Sue to recognize Lost Girl quite yet — not in the full sense.

The only time we see Dern and Lost Girl interacting is when they embrace: we NEVER see them together in one scene before this. I find it hard to believe that when Sue watched the scenes of Lost Girl that she doesn’t recognize her.

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Once Sue is transported, the beautifully insane thing is that we then see that Lost Girl is watching Sue watch her memories. Inception! Once that connection is made, Lost Girl then steps in as a guide.

But…we have ALREADY seen Lost Girl give advise to Sue. After she tells Sue about burning a hole through the silk the first thing that Sue sees is another Dern. Right after this the prostitutes show her Old Poland. So…the connection is made AFTER Lost Girl already had stepped in as a guide.
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Then, when Sue burns the hole in the silk, we see time spinning backwards (on the watch), and Sue finally gets to see actual scenes from Lost Girl's life. Just as Lost Girl has been watching scenes from Sue's life. (I think that's indisputable, frankly.)

Why do you think that we see time spinning backwards right at that moment?

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Sue, in fact, slowly steps forward and initiates the kiss that melds them.

Yes, indeed. Dern is the one that initiates that kiss. Why do you think that is?

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- Calling Nikki "fake" is not quite right. It's better to think of it this way: Nikki is the spirit, and Sue is who she was in one life. Nikki "becomes" Sue because she is remembering (reliving) that life. Then when she finally returns to spirit form, that is indeed Nikki once again.

This is such an instance where I think our views of LH and MD do come into play. I see similar patterns in all three movies where some names are concerned. Lynch uses names just as he uses colours: they do play a significant part in the storytelling. So…Nikki Grace is rather obvious of course as is Sue (aka Sue Blue). We never hear the name of the last Dern we see. She also looks very different than the Nikki we were introduced to. What do you think the image of the last Dern means? And why does she wear a blue dress?

On a side note: I’ve read the analysis of Kylefoley76. Although I admire the effort he has put into this, I’m not at all convinced by his reasoning. Many of his interpretations are pretty farfetched and his overall view (in regard to the meaning of IE) I find pretty convoluted. Your theory of reincarnations at least has consistency and no contradictions. I think it is a viable interpretation. I do think it is inevitable that there are always some minor things or little scenes we cannot put our fingers on, but that’s part of the ongoing appeal of this movie, I think.

You notice that I ask many questions. They involve things that I do not find in your analysis and think are important. I am just wondering how you incorporate these things into your overall view. Yes, we have different views and that makes a discussion like this worthwile. My view isn’t complete and maybe it never will, but I’m pretty confident about certain aspects of it. Like for instance:

-   We never see the actual “woman in trouble”
-   The Dern character never committed a “real” murder
-   The Dern character had an extra-marital affair
-   We see a suppression fantasy unfolding through time

These are observations I’m pretty convinced of. This does contradict with your view in that you see only the Nikki Grace sequence as a fantasy, while the rest as a journey to the purgatory (well to put it simple and blunt anyway). To discuss all the non-Nikki Grace scenes means we are comparing apples and oranges. For instance: I’m not worried about explaining locations and movements of characters, since I view IE as the inner workings of the mind of the Woman in Trouble. Hence I view practically everything in IE as metaphorical. Though your theory of reincarnation I find pretty sound, you do have to explain alot more when it comes to these things. You’re right about not having to explain how reincarnation or the spiritual realm works, but even than there are scenes that do not fall into that category like The Rabbits for instance.
 
Okay, tonight I will check out the next chapters in your analysis: from “Dream Origin” to “Enlightenment.” Looking forward to it.

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #154 on: May 06, 2017, 01:01:17 PM »
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I don’t believe that Dern can see Lost Girl at that moment. It seems to me that Dern doesn’t show signs of recognition, but rather of something she feels intuitively. She looks in the direction of Lost Girl intuitively and feels something…perhaps it feels “familiar?”

Sort of agree, yes. I think Sue experiences recognition there, but it doesn't last in a strong way — she is still unsure. Lost Girl has a much stronger reaction and seems to be more clear about it.

But…we have ALREADY seen Lost Girl give advise to Sue. After she tells Sue about burning a hole through the silk the first thing that Sue sees is another Dern. Right after this the prostitutes show her Old Poland. So…the connection is made AFTER Lost Girl already had stepped in as a guide.

If I understand what you're saying here, you do not have the chronology right.

Why do you think that we see time spinning backwards right at that moment?

Because we're going back in time. Yet another example of how spiritual beings can move through time. Which is also how Sue is able to arrive at the rehearsal to see Nikki before her awakening.

So…Nikki Grace is rather obvious of course as is Sue (aka Sue Blue). We never hear the name of the last Dern we see. She also looks very different than the Nikki we were introduced to. What do you think the image of the last Dern means?

As I was saying, I agree that we see Nikki again at the end. It makes perfect sense to me that "Nikki Grace" would be the name tied to her spirit, where "Sue Blue" was her name during that unpleasant life.

We never see the actual “woman in trouble”

Speaking of doubles. That tagline has a double meaning, referring to both Sue and Lost Girl, who are both clearly in trouble. Its singularity ("a woman") hints once again at them being unified.

The Dern character never committed a “real” murder

Right, probably not. Her role in this life is to be murdered.

I view practically everything in IE as metaphorical.

A lot of things are, for sure. But I think there's a clear deeper logic at work.
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Erniesam

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #155 on: May 06, 2017, 04:07:04 PM »
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Hmmm, I just stick with the chapter “Dream Origin” for this post for your analysis is pretty elaborate. I just read through it and came to the conclusion that handling three chapters at once was a bit much.
 
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In the future... you will be dreaming... in a kind of sleep... When you open your eyes.
.. someone familiar will be there. (This "someone familiar," of course, is Lost Girl.)

Yes, a very important clue it is indeed. I think you’re right in that Lost Girl is that someone familiar (though I believe that many clues and phrases Lynch uses in his movies and IE in particular can mean several things simultaneously). What’s interesting is that Lynch uses the phrase “in a kind of sleep” suggesting we are not dealing with a dream how it usually is perceived. Now…if this is not a dream than what are we to make of “When you open your eyes”? What do you think this phrase could mean?

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There is, in fact, a ton of evidence that Sue has been dead for a while, wandering the world as a confused and reflective ghost. We know incontrovertibly that she is in this classic limbo state after the Hollywood & Vine scene. The question is whether she is dead even before that. I am inclined to believe she is. Exhibit A is Sue's constant chronological confusion.

You label the state Dern is in after the death scene as “incontrovertibly” a classic limbo state. I don’t believe that’s as indisputable as you might think. Yes Dern acts like she doesn’t know the people around her and does not respond to them, but there are other possible interpretations out there. Your interpretation is valid though, I do not see a contradiction in regard to your other interpretations. As for Sue already being dead; I do not see convincing evidence of that. Yes she is constantly confused, but that can mean alot of things.

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During the blue-lit under-the-covers lovemaking scene, Sue (on the verge of self-realization) talks to Billy (who is not Devon anymore). She says this: [46]
This thing that happened. It's a story that happened yesterday, but I know it's tomorrow.

Much later in the film, Sue reiterates her chronological confusion to Mr. K: [47]
The thing is, I don't know what was before or after. I don't know what happened first, and it's kind of laid a mind fuck on me.

“It’s a story that happened yesterday, but I know it’s tomorrow” clearly reiterates the phrase Visitor 1 mentioned: “For instance like I said it was 09:45 you would think it was after midnight.” So isn’t it fair to say that the Dern character connects something inseperably that happened later to something that happened earlier? The question is of course: WHAT are these two instances? WHAT is the trigger at 09:45 that makes Dern think of something after midnight? She says she doesn’t know what happened first, which would seem to suggest that these two “instances” have become synonymous to Dern; she cannot seperate them and it seems to me that this indeed has made her confused if not to say mentally very unstable.

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You gotta understand, I was 41 years old in 1960. I'm freaked out about it, cause I lost a bunch of years.

Ah yes, More Things That Happened. An absolutely fascinating addendum to IE. They are certainly way more than just deleted scenes, although I do understand why Lynch has cut some of them: it would make things too obvious. However, I don’t understand him cutting that scene with Dern sitting in the living room with the prostitutes behind her: that’s such an amazing scene, absolutely gorgeous.
 
Like I said earlier: I’m not convinced we can trust everything we hear and see, since I view the “narrator” as highly untrustworthy (for obvious reasons). Still let’s take this dialogue to be truth. Perhaps Dern was indeed 41 in 1960, that would mean she is in her 80’s in 2005. She also says: “I lost a bunch of years.” If she died in 1960 how could she loose a bunch of years? To be honest, I don’t find your explanation for the 2005 setting at the beginning of IE convincing. How can someone imagine the future?

Erniesam

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #156 on: May 06, 2017, 04:15:30 PM »
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If I understand what you're saying here, you do not have the chronology right.

What do you mean by this? The chronology is just as I described it: I have checked it especially before I posted that.

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #157 on: May 06, 2017, 04:35:03 PM »
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Re: Chronology. I really don't understand what you're saying about Lost Girl giving her advice before a certain point and establishing a connection. We can skip that but if you want to get into that you'll have to restate it in a different way.

Re: "incontrovertible." Yeah, agreed, not the best word to use there.

Re: "when you open your eyes, someone familiar will be there." I think it's clear that Sue/Nikki emerges from the "kind of sleep" after she is stabbed, and that is when she opens her eyes and comes to the realizations I've described.

Perhaps Dern was indeed 41 in 1960, that would mean she is in her 80’s in 2005. She also says: “I lost a bunch of years.” If she died in 1960 how could she loose a bunch of years? To be honest, I don’t find your explanation for the 2005 setting at the beginning of IE convincing. How can someone imagine the future?

My theory (as stated in the analysis) is that she has been wandering the world as a ghost, and possibly within fantasies, for that time.

But also, as I've said, I think it's clear that Sue has the ability to time travel. We see her go back in time at least once, when she goes back to see herself as Nikki at the rehearsal table. I'll have more content on that coming soonish though.
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Erniesam

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #158 on: May 07, 2017, 11:28:50 AM »
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In your chapter “It Takes a Village” I came upon several remarkable observations and interpretations, but let’s go at it step by step.

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We've established that Sue, in her living and reliving, is guided by Lost Girl and the prostitutes.

I find it remarkable that you view the prostitutes as guides for Sue. I understand it when you view the reliving of this horrible life as essential to the cleansing of Sue, but they aren’t exactly friendly to her, are they? Yes, they act like they are her friend and try to lure her into prostitution. At the end, when Dern gets stabbed on the Walk of Fame the prostitutes all abandon her. I got the impression that the prostitutes work on behalf of the Phantom. Remember they talk about “that thing he does”and we see The Phantom doing his “thing” when he hypnotizes Doris. Perhaps they do “guide” Sue, but I don’t believe that they have good intentions.

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It's fairly clear that "LB" means "light bulb." In fact, this is probably the least controversial topic in INLAND EMPIRE interpretation.

To be honest, I never heard or read about LB meaning “Light bulb.” It is indeed a possibillity though I wonder what meaning you are able to attach to the crossing of the letters LB on Dern’s hand in that scene.

You state that the bulb is red, but it’s not. It’s a plain glass light bulb.

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We see no negative effects from the light bulb, but we do see plenty of positive ones. The light bulb establishes the very first clear line of communication between Sue and the prostitutes, Lost Girl, and Lost Girl's past life (a version of which Sue is living/reliving, after all). This is extraordinarily meaningful. The Phantom, in his capacity as keeper and installer of the red light bulb, makes all of that possible.

Earlier in this chapter you state that you’re not convinced that he’s a nefarious figure. That really baffles me ‘cause it seems to me pretty obvious that he IS the evil that Dern is afraid of. You say that the light bulb has positive effects like the establishment of the communication between Sue and the prostitutes, but I don’t see any positive traits in these prostitutes. To me they act like loverboys and are luring Sue over to…well, the dark side you might say. Furthermore, the lampshade is red which indicates prostitution. Do you also notice that right after this shot we see the prostitutes in the room and a small blue bright light. Lynch often uses blue to indicate reality or truth. I understand why you might view the Phantom not as nefarious for it coincides with your overall interpretation that it’s a good thing that Sue relives her life, but I don’t see the Phantom guiding Dern. We only see him looking for her and scare the living daylights out of her; hardly a friendly guide.
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We can also talk about the Phantom's role as guardian of the purgatory.

I don’t see evidence of the Phantom being a guardian of Room 47. We see him trying to prevent Dern from entering, but we never see him in the vaccinity of that room. He’s only there when Dern is there. I would argue that The Phantom is specifically attached to Dern.

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Remember what Sue says when she arrives in Mr. K's room? "I was told you can help me." He is not simply a device.

Who do you think "told" her that?

About Mr. K. The reference to Kafka is obvious, but also the likeness to Stanley Kubrick.
 
I forgot to mention it earlier, but in the chapter “The Connection” you quote the parable of Visitor #1. You wrote: “ …a ghost – a reflection – evil- was born…” That’s not what Visitor #1 says. It’s: “HE CAUSED a reflection – evil was born.” Depending on one’s interpretation, this could make a huge difference of course.

And finally just a random question: why do you think Dern walks backwards twice: when she takes a look at the exterior of Smithy’s house and when she goes into the Rabbit’s Room?

Next I will check your Part 4 and perhaps I will add some more questions I might have.

Erniesam

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #159 on: May 07, 2017, 11:38:46 AM »
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I forgot to address the point about the chronology.

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Re: Chronology. I really don't understand what you're saying about Lost Girl giving her advice before a certain point and establishing a connection. We can skip that but if you want to get into that you'll have to restate it in a different way.

I got the impression you believe that Sue and Lost Girl make a connection after this transportation to Old Poland scene from this sentence you wrote:

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Once Sue is transported, the beautifully insane thing is that we then see that Lost Girl is watching Sue watch her memories. Inception! Once that connection is made, Lost Girl then steps in as a guide.

You state that AFTER this connection is made that Lost Girl steps in as a guide. That’s why I mentioned this advise of Lost Girl that takes place before this transportation scene.

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #160 on: May 07, 2017, 12:30:45 PM »
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Re: prostitutes ("valley girls"). I understand your interpretation there. But I don't think they need to be friendly. The visitors are certainly not friendly to Sue, but they also guide her in the right direction (we assume).

I think it's obvious that the valley girls are guides for Sue. They appear inside some of her memories and literally show her Old Poland. Is that not guiding? They're also pretty friendly in that scene.

LB meaning "light bulb" was the predominant theory on the official David Lynch forum. I'm open to other interpretations. It could also mean "little boy," since that's a phrase we hear many times.

The light bulb produces a red color. It didn't seem overly important to me whether the light bulb was actually red (might have a red tint) or whether the lampshade was causing the red color. Maybe that is important, though.


I forgot to mention it earlier, but in the chapter “The Connection” you quote the parable of Visitor #1. You wrote: “ …a ghost – a reflection – evil- was born…” That’s not what Visitor #1 says. It’s: “HE CAUSED a reflection – evil was born.” Depending on one’s interpretation, this could make a huge difference of course.

Totally agreed — I actually found this error a few days ago when going through the movie and started thinking about how that would change my interpretation. That is what prompted my May 5 post. It makes me less certain about the Phantom and less sure that we can specifically pin him down. I still very much believe he reflects evil, because we see that, and I believe he's a force of nature — but I think he is more evil than I previously believed. (Anyway, I'm surprised you're the first person to spot this.)

As I continue going through the movie I'll look for exactly what the Phantom does. Just an example — when he first startles Sue with that light bulb in his mouth, he scares her enough that she picks up the screwdriver, which will be used to "kill" her. That directly leads to her awakening. In that case, it seems like he's simply setting things in motion.

I have a hard time viewing the Phantom as pure evil. It's not as if he runs at her or curses her — he simply appears with the light bulb in his mouth and just stands there.


I don’t see evidence of the Phantom being a guardian of Room 47. We see him trying to prevent Dern from entering, but we never see him in the vaccinity of that room. He’s only there when Dern is there. I would argue that The Phantom is specifically attached to Dern.

He does seem to be a guardian — Sue has to get past him to get to the room. I'm not sure he is always posted there. In fact, I would agree that he is probably specifically tied to Sue and Lost Girl (both, clearly). Other people may have their own version of the Phantom who was a figure from their own lives.
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Jeremy Blackman

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #161 on: May 07, 2017, 12:30:56 PM »
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Re: Chronology. I think we are in agreement. Here's my original quote:

[1] Once Sue is transported, the beautifully insane thing is that [2] we then see that Lost Girl is watching Sue watch her memories. Inception! Once that connection is made, [3] Lost Girl then steps in as a guide. I seriously recommend revisiting this sequence and watching it closely — all of that is pretty clearly laid out through the visual language.

 Then, when Sue burns the hole in the silk, we see time spinning backwards (on the watch), and Sue finally gets to see actual scenes from Lost Girl's life. Just as Lost Girl has been watching scenes from Sue's life.

This is the sequence I was talking about:

1:11:07 — "In the future, you will be dreaming..."

1:11:36 — [1] Sue is "transported" to Old Poland. "This is the street. Do you want to see?"

1:12:52 — [2] Lost Girl sees this. As I said: "Lost Girl is watching Sue watch her memories."

1:13:03 — [3] Lost Girl tells Sue what to do next. As I said: "Once that connection is made, Lost Girl then steps in as a guide."
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Erniesam

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #162 on: May 07, 2017, 04:48:42 PM »
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First I’d like to respond to your last post. I was mistaken in that I thought that the “transportation” scene to Old Poland occurred after Lost Girl talks about the hole in the silk, but that is the scene where the camera just pans out of the window and into the doorway on the other side of the street.  So…your theory about Lost Girl guiding Sue when the connection is made in the Old Poland scene is indeed viable.
 
In this sense I can understand your positive view of the prostitutes. Although the girls who are showing Sue the street are constantly singled out as her guides: we see them in the scene with the Woman in White and later on during the barbecue scene where Sue asks them: “Look at me and tell me if you’ve known me before.” I believe they are also the ones in that scene wherein Lost Girl asks the same question, although I’m not really sure about that.

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I think it's obvious that the valley girls are guides for Sue. They appear inside some of her memories and literally show her Old Poland. Is that not guiding? They're also pretty friendly in that scene.

You are right about a guide not needing to be friendly in order to be functional. We see indeed many characters being unfriendly towards Dern: both Visitors, the visitors from Poland, Smithy and others. I just have a hard time believing that the prostitutes have good intentions. The biggest clue to them being hostile or at least egotistical is when they run away when Sue is murdered. They lure her into prostitution and when Sue needs them most they abandon her. Yet in the beginning they DO give Sue advise about dreaming a kind of sleep etc. My contention is that there is a progression from helpful to hostile.
 
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LB meaning "light bulb" was the predominant theory on the official David Lynch forum. I'm open to other interpretations. It could also mean "little boy," since that's a phrase we hear many times.

While Light Bulb certainly an option is, I don’t see the meaning of these letters being crossed out on Sue’s hand. What meaning do you attach to this? Yes, I believe LB to stand for Little Boy. It all depends on your overall view and what makes the most sense to you; “Little Boy” fits perfectly in my own view and it references back to the parable. This “He caused a reflection” does play a role in my interpretation and maybe that’s why I noticed it. Funny that you start to be less certain about the intentions of The Phantom due to something you discovered in your theory. Isn’t it great to discover mistakes and make theories even better?
 
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I have a hard time viewing the Phantom as pure evil. It's not as if he runs at her or curses her — he simply appears with the light bulb in his mouth and just stands there
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Well, the same can be said of the bum in MD. He / she doesn’t do much and yet it’s hard to see him / her as anything but frightening. I don’t think evil has to DO something in order to be evil.

About The Phantom being a guardian of Room 47. I’ve thought about that somewhat and it could be the case. I’ve looked at it with my own view in mind and it does make sense. I have to think this through some more although I find it hard to believe we’ll get a definite answer to this. Is he the one holding Lost Girl there? I guess it is possible.

TwinPeaksFan

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #163 on: May 16, 2017, 04:00:45 AM »
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Some great speculations on this board, thanks to everyone who has contributed! I did find a lot of answer's in Lidstone's book though, best analysis so far, here is the link for those who haven't checked it out yet: https://www.amazon.com/David-Lynchs-INLAND-EMPIRE-Explained-ebook/dp/B004LGS7I6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1494925215&sr=8-1&keywords=lynch+inland+empire

Jeremy Blackman

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Re: HALFBORN: An Inland Empire Analysis
« Reply #164 on: May 16, 2017, 04:50:46 PM »
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Some great speculations on this board, thanks to everyone who has contributed! I did find a lot of answer's in Lidstone's book though, best analysis so far, here is the link for those who haven't checked it out yet: https://www.amazon.com/David-Lynchs-INLAND-EMPIRE-Explained-ebook/dp/B004LGS7I6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1494925215&sr=8-1&keywords=lynch+inland+empire

Hello again, Michael Lidstone. (Your email gave it away this time.)

You don't have to hide your identity. Just be civil and you won't be banned again.

Still, though, praising your own book under false names is not cool. 
"Hunger is the purest sin"

 

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