Eraserhead (1977)

 

Written & Directed by David Lynch

Might Include Spoilers If There Is Anything To Spoil

Ever heard the expression, “I want to punch this movie in the face”? Well that is how I feel after seeing this. Just none of it made sense and I didn’t care whether it did nor not. I gave it a fighting chance for about half of the film. It opens with some random images, that I’m not sure make sense even now, then it tracks the lead character, Henry, through an industrial district to his home. Then we find out that he has had a child (human? I don’t know), with his girlfriend (this guy has a girlfriend? Well with who it is I guess it makes sense), Mary.

He has dinner with her family and it is the craziest most nonsensical scene I have seen in a while. There are so many random, unexplained things in this movie. Like the grandmother in the kitchen, why are the chickens so small (and why do they react that way when Henry cuts them?), why is this taking place in the future, what is that stuck around Henry’s radiator? I don’t know, Lynch just seemed to throw a bunch of weird stuff together with a paper thin plot and call it a movie. The film takes ten minutes to get to the dialogue, which, at first, I thought might end up being a plus to the film. But then there was not much dialogue the rest of the film either, which is fine if complimented with interesting images that tell the story. Interesting, yes, but the storytelling technique Lynch uses here did absolutely nothing for me.

I do have to give Lynch props for being so bold and gutsy to make this film. I mean it’s his first feature film and this is what he delivers. He experiments in filmmaking and I admire that, but none of it worked for me unfortunately. In that respect, I compare it a lot to Darren Aronofsky’s Pi. They are both in black and white, they both have a group of people that herald the film as great and I struggled to make it through watching both I hated them so much. To be honest, the only reason I finished watching this film was because it was a part of this marathon. I owed it to you guys to finish it and I owed it to myself to complete the marathon as it was set-up. Now the marathon is over. I really enjoyed it, but boy am I glad the Lynch films weren’t flipped because I would have lost all faith if it started with this then Brazil.

* – WOOF

…I’d give it *1/2, but I don’t know what that half-star would be for.

Adam Kuhn

Adam Kuhn was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio, where he attended Saint Charles Preparatory School. He studied History at the University of Cincinnati, where he was a contributor of The News Record, the twice-weekly, independent student news organization. He has been writing film reviews and blogging since 2009.

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