Sinister Screens

Mulholland Drive (2001) ★½


A love story in the city of dreams.

Blonde Betty Elms has only just arrived in Hollywood to become a movie star when she meets an enigmatic brunette with amnesia. Meanwhile, as the two set off to solve the second woman’s identity, filmmaker Adam Kesher runs into ominous trouble while casting his latest project.


This may be like walking into church and letting everyone know that the Bible sucks, but to all the reviewers who call this a masterpiece or rate an average of 4+ stars out of 5 for this film (but who also state they don’t understand the film), I just don’t get their fandom.

Yes, I get the film—the many threads of symbolism that run through it: duality, dark underbelly of Hollywood/fame, dream vs. reality, etc. but it’s a horribly lame story to watch for 2.5 hours. It’s painful to make it through, to be honest.

In my opinion, great artistic endeavours always involve one thing: simplicity and minimalism. So many so-called classics such as this film are so overblown and convoluted with symbolism, surrealism and artsy symmetry that the most important concept is lost: a great story you can easily understand, but has a greater meaning. These types of stories can be mastered with minimalism (less is better), but most directors such as Lynch layer on so much that audiences not only do not understand what they’ve just seen, but also really don’t connect with the characters.

I believe more people are in love with this film due to Lynch having a different vision—and this is something worth applauding, but sometimes…the vision becomes the spectacle, not the story, characters or meaning.

Rating: ★½ (out of 5)

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