Wednesday, June 22, 2016

David Lynch and His Leading Ladies

One of the many great things in David Lynch’s films are the performances, specifically coming froma Sheryl Lee, Naomi Watts, and Laura Dern. Not only do I think they are the best in Lynch films, but they are also some of the best female performances I’ve seen of all time. These leading ladies give more emotional depth to Lynch's films and they don’t hold back. These actresses are fearless, deserve recognition and high praise.  

Laura Palmer is very well-know in the town of Twin Peaks. She was the homecoming queen, volunteered, and was loved by many, but not by the many who knew that she was living a double life: Laura was secretly a prostitute, was a coke addict, had a second boyfriend, and had a killer after her. Knowing what she is involved with, one may not sympathize with her, but you can’t help feeling bad for her when she is completely lost, confused, and terrified *spoiler* when Bob possess her father, Leland. I personally think Fire Walk With Me could have been a waste of time, but Lee’s performance completely makes up for it, she is the reason why I enjoyed this film. I was completely in chills because of Lee's performance and what her character endures. At the end, I cried along with Laura, possibly because this was the end of Twin Peaks, but also because Lee’s performance moved me.

In the beginning of Mulholland Drive, Naomi Watts plays Betty, an innocent girl who wants to make it in Hollywood. At the end, Watts plays Diane who is a failed, depressed actress who has an unrequited love towards Camilla. Both characters are much different from one another and Watts pulls them off perfectly. When Watts switches from Betty to Diane, we see and feel every ugly emotion she feels. Even if you haven’t seen this film, you probably know of Watts’ infamous masturbation scene, which needs much respect because Watts is completely fearless in it along with the rest of the film. This film is beautiful and dark due to Watts’ terrific performance.

Out of these three performances, I was surprised of Laura Dern’s. I have not seen much of her work, but I didn’t expect such a wonderful execution by her. Assuming that I actually understand what happened in this film, most of Inland Empire is a movie within a movie, On High in Blue Tomorrow. Dern plays Nikki, a character so involved in the character (Sue) she plays, that she loses herself in the role. A lot of Lynch’s pieces in general don’t make a whole lot of sense when watching them or even after, but his films are still rather emotional for me and Dern nails her role as Nikki/Sue.

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