David Lynch: The Big Dream

Lost Highway

David Lynch

Lynch reteamed with Wild at Heart author Barry Gifford for this original project, which was met by a polarizing reception upon its initial release but is now regarded as one of the director's signature works. Like the director's next film, Mulholland Drive, Lost Highway is built around a bifurcated narrative, one that critic Dennis Lim has described as "a Mobius strip, ending where it begins (albeit from a jarringly different perspective)." In the first half, jazz saxophonist Fred (Bill Pullman) and his wife Renee (Patricia Arquette) receive a series of ominous and anonymous videotapes, premonitions of an evil deed to come; in the second, young mechanic Pete (Balthazar Getty) is drawn into a murderous scheme by a femme fatale named Alice (also played by Arquette), while a frightening, clown-faced mystery man (Robert Blake) provides an enigmatic link between the twinned storylines. "An audacious move away from conventional narrative and back toward the formal beauty of Eraserhead … the mastery of sound and image on display here hasn't been seen or heard since Blue Velvet" (Jonathan Rosenbaum).


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