Mulholland Drive (2001)

DailyView: Day 75, Movie 127

I knew I had to really focus on this one because David Lynch has been creating bizarre movies and shows for decades. I was a huge fan of Twin Peaks, even when I was not sure exactly what was going on. So when today’s DailyView was to be Mulholland Drive, I knew I had to pay explicit attention. Even then, I came out with the same surreal feelings I had during Twin Peaks (especially season three from Showtime).

Outlining a narrative here is a challenge as well, since there is so many parts that seem to have no purpose or that dangle without any real explanation. Reportedly, this was originally developed as a pilot for a TV series and perhaps some of those plot threads were meant to be developed more during a season.

We start with a terrible car crash on Mulholland Drive in California where a beautiful woman is injured and wanders around the neighborhood. She winds up in an apartment that was empty and is found, naked in the shower, by Betty (Naomi Watts), a wannabe actress who is staying temporarily in the apartment, owned by her Aunt Ruth. The woman realizes that she has amnesia and cannot remember anything. She calls herself Rita (Laura Harring) after Rita Hayworth whose name she sees on a movie poster.

They discover Rita’s purse is filled with packets of money and a mysterious blue key. Betty and Rita begin to try and discover Rita’s true identity.

Meanwhile, there is also a subplot involving a director Adam (Justin Theroux) and his movie. He is trying to find the perfect lead for his film but his efforts are being rebuked by the mob, which has wormed their way into the project and who wants Adam to cast Camilla Rhodes.

There are so many things that happen here that are bizarre, including a strange man hiding behind the diner called Winkie’s. There were several dreamlike situations that made you wonder exactly what was happening during the movie. There is also a time when Betty disappears and Naomi Watts begins playing the character Diane Selwyn and we see this story from a new perspective, with Rita now being the mysterious Camilla Rhodes.

There was a hilarious scene involving (former LOST star, Mark Pellegrino- who was Jacob) as a hitman who is trying to locate Rita (I think) and winds up killing three people. It was a dark humor for sure, but his bumbling made the scene really funny.

The film is filled with the imagery much like many of David Lynch’s projects are. The dancing dwarf from Twin Peaks, Michael J. Anderson, is here too as a man with a small head in a wheelchair. He was apparently behind the movies in Hollywood and called Mr. Roque.

This is a wild experience and I am not sure I know what happened, but I enjoyed what I saw. It made me think back to Twin Peaks and that is always a good thing. Naomi Watts was great , as she always seems to be. Give it your attention and get your mind active.

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