Author Topic: Lost Highway  (Read 23470 times)

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ono

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Lost Highway
« on: July 23, 2003, 08:48:09 PM »
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Possible spoilers.

I caught this Sunday night, so it's rather late to be trying to come up with stuff to say so long after the fact, but to my surprise, there's no thread about this, and it definitely merits some sort of discussion.

I had an appreciative smirk on my face the whole way through this movie, because I had seen Mulholland Drive, so I knew what I was in for, and like with Mulholland Drive, I was liking what I saw until about three-fifths through the movie when I knew nothing was gonna be explained.  It was just one of those hunches I ended up being right about.  Some people have said Mulholland Drive is a retelling of Lost Highway.  I can definitely see that.  And, I see Bunuel's influence on Lynch, especially from That Obscure Object of Desire.  The film itself is inspired and insipid all at once, because of the sheer gaul Lynch has.  If you surrender yourself to him, you'll find yourself having a much better time, than if you try to logically explain what happens in his films.

Quick summary for those of you who don't know: a man and his wife live in a lackluster marriage.  The man plays sax in a nightclub.  His wife reads.  One night, they get a videotape of footage of their house.  The tapes continue until they are shown footage of themselves sleeping.  It freaks them out so they call the cops.  Then, things start to spiral out of control when the man drifts into a dreamlike state and sees images of his dead wife.  He's arrested for her murder, then sentenced to death.  He's locked away, lots of thunder and lightning crashes, and the next morning, a different man is in his place.  For the next hour, the film follows his story, which parallells the first man's.  And the lover of this new, younger man (also the gangster's girl) is played by the same woman (Patricia Arquette) who plays the older man's (Bill Pullman) wife.  The younger man has lots of sex, gets involved with a gangster, and fears for his life because of his affair with the gangster's girl.  The man occasionally encounters a pale-faced, mysterious man played by Robert Blake, who you can never tell if he's a friend or foe.  The final act is inspired as well, but it's just not enough for me, and description won't help it make anymore sense either.

This summary is necessary in discussing the film, because the film still doesn't make any sense.  Lynch is so talented, yet he constantly squanders his talent making these nonsensical stories which you are either forced to accept on the terms he has given you or reject outright.  A real gag reflex ensues.  The thriller aspects are excellent, as is the music used to set the tone.  Some plot points -- if you can even call them that -- are inspired as well, and the dreamlike aura pervading the movie is perfect.  I don't want to quote Ebert here, but it fits yet again: the film seems to be full of ideas and director's notes for a better movie.  There are a whole bunch of great scenes here, but they seem incomplete, and don't quite add up.  Another swing and a miss for Lynch.  ** (5/10)

So there's my thoughts.  But since this kind of film is so subjective, some interpretations and comments would be welcome and helpful.

Sleuth

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Lost Highway
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2003, 08:50:34 PM »
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So why DON'T you just surrender yourself to the movie.  You don't want to like it or what?  You obviously realize what you have to do, yet you don't do it.  Not all movies can be watched the same way, you should know that
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ono

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Lost Highway
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2003, 08:54:39 PM »
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Because that would be allowing myself to accept gibberish as a valid film language.  Or rather, "Lynchian," or whatever you call the language in which he speaks.  I'm not alone in this, and I realize you have to be in a certain frame of mind to really like his movies.  "Liking" Lynch's movies aren't like "liking" any other movie, that's for sure.

chainsmoking insomniac

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Lost Highway
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2003, 08:55:29 PM »
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I'm glad someone started a thread on this movie.  I think (like Mulholland Dr.) Lost Highway could have been a superb film, if only Lynch decided to give the audience a real story instead of self-indulgent, atmosphere/mood driven scenes with no real narrative.  
However, the visuals and camerawork are (as usual) terrific.  And Badalamenti, Badalamenti, BADALAMENTI!!!!  Not since Brion/PTA has there been such a powerful duo! :)

I agree with Ono.  Now don't misunderstand me, Lynch films are really cool to watch, but I get frustrated when he completely abandons a really cool story in order to ensure his trademark weirdness is branded on the film.
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Cecil

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Lost Highway
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2003, 09:03:08 PM »
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lost highway is a masterpiece. if you think it doesnt have a "narrative," well... i dont know what to tell you...

chainsmoking insomniac

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Lost Highway
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2003, 09:07:55 PM »
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Okay Cecil.  Or anyone else who cares to jump in on this:

Now I'm going to ask you a question, and in no way am I trying to be confrontational.  I ask out of pure curiosity: What makes this film a masterpiece?  And since you think it's a masterpiece, would you put it on the same shelf as say, a Hitchcock classic or some other film?  I really feel that I could appreciate Lynch's films more, but the breakdown of story just bothers the hell out of me.  So, feel free to rant and scream and kick at me.   :wink:
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Jeremy Blackman

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Lost Highway
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2003, 09:22:32 PM »
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Quote from: Onomatopoeia
Because that would be allowing myself to accept gibberish as a valid film language . . .  I'm not alone in this


That's the point. You're letting yourself get stuck in the conventional.

Why do so many people fear Lynch's language, which is more pure of a language than most films can speak? Lost Highway is one of my favorite movies. Surrender yourself to absurdity, and then you'll understand.

Quote from: Ghoulardi Goon
would you put it on the same shelf as say, a Hitchcock classic or some other film?


I'd take Lynch over Hitchcock any day.
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Cecil

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Lost Highway
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2003, 09:33:54 PM »
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Quote from: Ghoulardi Goon
What makes this film a masterpiece?  And since you think it's a masterpiece, would you put it on the same shelf as say, a Hitchcock classic or some other film?  I really feel that I could appreciate Lynch's films more, but the breakdown of story just bothers the hell out of me.


maybe its the breakdown of story that i appreciate. the story is original, so is the way it was told. it kept me on the edge of my seat, it swallowed me whole. i kept wondering "what will happen next" and just when you think you can guess what might happen next, it switches gears.

i would definitely place it among the most important films ever made. in the end, hitchcock and lynch arent so different. they both want(ed) to make the viewer experience something new and fresh, staying away from cliches as far as possible.

its not about "watching" the movie, but about experiencing it. stop trying to "understand" it. only then will everything become clear

eward

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Lost Highway
« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2003, 11:29:28 PM »
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Quote from: Jeremy Bla©kman
 I'd take Lynch over Hitchcock any day.


oh no no no no.  i'd take lost highway over family plot or juno and the paycock -- but............actually, it kinda depends.........hitchcock at his best is, well, do I even have to delve into it?  at his worst he was over indulgent and pretentious (not very often tho)......lynch is kinda the same way.....hard choice, but ultimately i think I'd take hitchcock, u know why?




CUZ HE MADE VERTIGO.

eward

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Lost Highway
« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2003, 11:30:40 PM »
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Quote from: Cecil B. Demented
Quote from: Ghoulardi Goon
What makes this film a masterpiece?  And since you think it's a masterpiece, would you put it on the same shelf as say, a Hitchcock classic or some other film?  I really feel that I could appreciate Lynch's films more, but the breakdown of story just bothers the hell out of me.


maybe its the breakdown of story that i appreciate. the story is original, so is the way it was told. it kept me on the edge of my seat, it swallowed me whole. i kept wondering "what will happen next" and just when you think you can guess what might happen next, it switches gears.

i would definitely place it among the most important films ever made. in the end, hitchcock and lynch arent so different. they both want(ed) to make the viewer experience something new and fresh, staying away from cliches as far as possible.

its not about "watching" the movie, but about experiencing it. stop trying to "understand" it. only then will everything become clear


beautiful.

Pubrick

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Lost Highway
« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2003, 11:55:11 PM »
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dark as hell, i showed it to a close friend after i first saw it and he now refers to it as the weirdest yet creepily effective thing he's ever seen. i think a lot of uninformed non-squares feel that way. u could see it as the other side of mullholland drive, the nightmare side. unfortunately for sum, this requires it to be oppressively murky.. this is where ur left alone to decide to spit or swallow. unlike MD which asks only for a sophisticated taste. ur gag reflex is understandable. but if darkness came in pill form of 'reccomended yearly intake', this is one i'd gladly swallow.

GG's hitchcock comparison is as arbritrary and stupid as oranges and whatever.

Lost Highway is the perfect addition to the list of "Films to watch before u murder sumone".
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brockly

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Lost Highway
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2003, 08:44:55 PM »
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Just saw it.

I was like Homer in the episode where he is watching Twin Peaks:"Brilliant! I have no idea what's going on." Mulholland Dr all over again. Great fun.

NEON MERCURY

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« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2003, 12:08:47 AM »
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..this is my second fav. Lynch film behind Mulholland Dr....This is what ceil says  a masterpiece .that's it..I understand that Lynch films are lynch films and should be viewed as such....i like the whats real whats tru whats happening theme in some of his films .THAT is why i like lynch so much.....Lost highway......::drops remaining change in pocket  into wishing well in hopes for  a  proper lynch approved region 1 dvd release::...maybe is underrated really IMO....There so many good scens , so much bad ass music. (except for manson's "spell on you "  garbage..and his subsequent appearence w/twiggy in this film :roll: )..and the dialuoge is razor!......"the smooth as ____ from a ducks ass" still cracks me up...along w/ "gets more ____ than a toilet seat."...I could go on and on about this ..This is biased opinion b/c i am a huge lynch fan.(i t would be a dream for him and aronofsky to collaborate on something).....so hence my favortism....I find .no fault in this film IMO>....

Ghostboy

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Lost Highway
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2003, 03:06:34 AM »
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I think Mulholland Drive is better. But this was my first experience with Lynch, and I treasure it. Listen to the soundtrack regularly. Haven't seen it in years. Twice in theaters, once on letterboxed video, and then I became determined to wait until a good DVD was released.

Those of you who have the shitty DVD...does it ruin the movie? Should I keep waiting? I'd hate to have my memories spoiled by pan and scan and crushed darkness.

Cecil

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Lost Highway
« Reply #14 on: August 24, 2003, 10:44:58 AM »
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i bought the dvd not knowing it was p&s. youre better off with the vhs version

 

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