Is The Elephant Man David Lynch’s Best Film?

The Elephant Man: Is David Lynch’s 1980 drama his greatest cinematic achievement?

As of this writing, the first four episodes of David Lynch’s Twin Peaks revival have run their course and those of us who have responded enthusiastically are on the edges of our seats, hungry for more. The new Twin Peaks takes everything that made the landmark original ABC series so memorable and goes even further into the ether, with the unobstructed non-network outlet (the series is a Showtime production) allowing Lynch to go as far into the odd as he wants. Here, he has almost total freedom to respect fan expectations while radically expanding and inverting that world, lapsing into the avant garde, totally liberated and with complete creative freedom. It’s mesmerizing. It’s energizing. Because out of all the elite directors who managed to infiltrate the Hollywood machine, Lynch remains one of the few that were working artists first, visionaries who developed a language all their own during a formative time and who use that singular language to make films their way, only giving cursory consideration to the suits who keep an eye on him, hoping to keep his work at least somewhat commercial.

And while seeing this new Twin Peaks standing tall as the pure, unfiltered wellspring of the Lynchian aesthetic, citing the times when Lynch has had to collaborate and enlist a more disciplined approach to his vision, yields no real criticism. I mean, the fact that Twin Peaks ever ended up on general stream network television in 1990 at all, is a marvel. It was way out there and defied what anyone wanted or expected from a prime time program. But going even further back, right back to 1980, to Lynch’s second feature film, we see what might very well be his greatest achievement, a movie that he was brought into and yet was given enough of a long creative leash to ensure that the motion picture he was hired to make, was indeed his and yet was also greater than him. A movie that likely…

Read the full article at the Original Source..

Back to Top