8/10

A neo-noir mystery classic.

With Mulholland Drive set to be released on Netflix Australia, what better way to celebrate a David Lynch classic than a review of this fine film. Starring the delightful and powerful Naomi Watts, this neo-noir mystery film is both expertly written as it is intelligently directed. Being a fan of David Lynch’s famous Twin Peaks series, Mulholland Drive is a film that like the TV show, will leave you with strange and questioning thoughts long after you finish seeing it. But damn is it ever interesting to watch.

I’ve come to really admire the way David Lynch’s mind works because any one of his works are not only very unique but they’re also incredibly eerie. The way he fuses elements of mystery with the absurdly supernatural and experimental, have made him a famous director ever since the birth of Eraserhead. And trust me, if you ever watch that film, you’ll see exactly what I mean by the sense of weirdness from the unconventional and bizarre aspects its story encompasses. But thankfully Mulholland Drive is more traditional (to an extent) and is why I think it’s also one of the most accessible films that he’s made.

Not only do you get the classic amount of strange and weirdness that comes with a David Lynch film, but also, a great story about an upcoming actress, which is played by Naomi Watts. I really loved her commitment to the script and throwing herself out there into this peculiar and often purposefully confusing world created. Not only can she act very well but she also showed a great deal of trust and flair to believe in this strangely woven story and delivered all her lines to perfection. Had she not been cast in the leading role, I doubt I would have taken anything that happened in this film seriously and instead would have been laughing at the unintended ridiculousness that could have occurred.

Thankfully instead, I’m very much engaged with the plot and am constantly trying to figure things out as they happen. At no point did I know where the story was ending and there are certain aspects of the narrative that completely came out of the blue. I was both surprised and intrigued and at times even confused, which is not a bad thing. It all added to the mystery elements of the film and is why I am a fan of David Lynch. Nothing’s black and white like say a Steven Spielberg movie, and I’m left long after wondering what the hell it all meant.

Mulholland Drive for me represents one of David Lynch’s finest pieces of work. It’s so well shot in terms of the lighting, with disturbingly eerie scenes often being done in the dark, so the attention to detail to make this work is clearly evident. I also enjoyed the uses of continuous takes that didn’t just remain stagnant from one angle but instead moved to different positions for whatever the scene catered for. These are all signs of a great director and aspects that I thoroughly recommend future filmmakers take note of when it comes to making their films.

As I said in the introduction, Mulholland Drive will be out on Netflix in Australia by the end of this month, so if you’re feeling the need for some modern neo-noir mystery; I can’t recommend this movie enough. It’s strange, bizarre but ultimately entertaining. See it.

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