Hmm. Just schlepped out to the Broadway to catch the last but one opportunity to see Inland Empire before it’s taken off in Nottingham.
Not entirely sure that was a good use of my time.
It’s hardly as if I’m a stranger to Lynch films – ever since a rather splendid cinema in Paris ran a Lynch retrospective during my time there. I can’t remember where it was, except it was clearly a building converted to a cinema from a church or theatre. A huge auditorium, with architectural features like mouldings, and most of the seats on the flat. I trekked out there on several occasions to watch a whole series of Lynch films, including Eraserhead, Blue Velvet and Dune.
Indeed, that was probably the first time I came across the word “retrospective”.
Years later, a video rental accident later, and an incredulous group of us sat and shouted at Lost Highway – remember the coffee table scene? Years before Mark Oaten… We even went to see Mullholland Drive – can it really be six years ago now?
So it wasn’t as if we didn’t know what to expect. And yet still it feels like I’ve been robbed of three hours of my time. The story didn’t hang together any better than expected. At least in previous projects, you got the impression that Lynch knows how the tools of cinematography work, even if he has a conscientious objection to narrative coherence. In this one, it seemed like he forgot key skills like exposure, with the film often (painfully!) too bright or too dark. Pixellation was a problem at several points. This wasn’t a beautiful piece of film work, like some other films of his have been.
Still, always nice to ogle that nice Justin Theroux. So much more to him than Kyle MacLachlan.