Mulholland Drive

Mulholland Drive ★★★★½

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Part of My Autumn Rewatches 2.0 Challenge
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Task #3: Have another look at any film you previously rated four stars (★★★★) or higher.

Five years ago, I watched this twice and delved deeply into its symbolism. I put forward an interpretation of the film, not as a dream but as an afterlife adventure. Now, judging from how popular that review has become on Letterboxd, I'm not going to attempt to expand upon it here. Instead, I've saved this as my last of 20 rewatches for this challenge, with a mind to simply viewing the film for enjoyment, to see if it deserves a position among my 50 favorites.

This viewing gave me an opportunity to observe detail (ashtrays, coffee, furniture). It also allowed me to appreciate some of the well-presented minor characters, notably Billy Ray Cyrus as Gene the pool guy; Ann Miller as Coco, Betty's landlady and the mother of director Adam Kesher (Justin Theroux); and Rebekah Del Rio as herself at Club Silencio singing “Llorando,” a Spanish-language version of Roy Orbison’s “Crying.” Nobody casts better than David Lynch when working with Johanna Ray, I swear.

But I also noticed a few too many Hollywood stereotypes here: producers in the pockets of gangsters; studio politics, not talent, deciding who gets roles; assassins so cheaply and easily available; and the impotency of police work. In spite of that, the screenplay is still superb.

Unfortunately, however, I can't push this into the highest echelon of my ranked films. Although there are parts I could watch over and over (Watts & Harring getting it on; Club Silencio), it's just not a film I'd want to watch frequently... or even once more, for that matter. I think I've absorbed all I can get from this, clearly Lynch's best work and decidedly among the best films of the 21st century so far, but not quite 5-star stuff for me.


Ranked #1 among my David Lynch Ranked
Ranked #2 among my Best Films of 2001
Ranked #2 in my Showdown #6: Pride
Ranked #5 on my LGBT Films Ranked
Representing 2001 in My Life as Drama

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