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"I don't get it!"..........."You GOT it!",
This review is from: Inland Empire [DVD]  (DVD)
Shot on digital video, rather than film, David Lynch's "INLAND EMPIRE" takes him out of the mainstream, if you can call "Mulholland Drive" and "Blue Velvet" mainstream, into the realm of pure Independent film making: producing films with little money and without any outside interference.
At the beginning of this film Laura Dern plays Nikki Grace, a diva-like actress frantically waiting for word from the producers of a film that she would like to do. This part of this film is very straightforward but Lynch straightforward which means that 1+1 does not always equal 2. This is where Nikki/Laura begins. By the end of the film she/they are unhappy, bored, frantic, living in a one-story, California Ranch-style house in what looks to be the Inland Empire (Riverside, Corona): the fastest growing section of Southern California. Does this have any significance as far as Lynch is concerned or is his Inland Empire one of the mind? I don't really know for sure and in Lynch's world this ambiguity makes the proceedings troubling, puzzling and fascinating all at the same time. Rational ambivalence is called for when dealing (as in viewing and describing) with Lynch's films except maybe for the almost straightforward and appropriately named, "Straight Story."
In regards to Laura Dern: as Jeanne Moreau was for Godard, as Deneuve was for Bunuel and Truffaut, as Audran was for Bunuel and Chabrol, Dern is Lynch's muse: the actress he chooses to personify his dreams and nightmares. Dern is neither a plush toy nor a sexpot-type of actress. She is tall, imposing yet warm, emotionally available, argumentative, brittle, ready and willing to give any man or woman a run for their money in life as well as in bed. Look to Lynch's recurring choice of Dern for hints as to what is going on his volatile mind and his brilliant films.
There are moments of great beauty and clarity here for Lynch is nothing if not a superior artist capable of making his striking images, film moments and whole scenes effective and thoughtful as well as funny and scary as all hell.
"I Don't Get IT"......" You Got IT!" (as quoted from" Premiere" which also states that Lynch himself has explained "INLAND EMPIRE" as making "perfect sense.") is the mantra of Lynchists (or Lynchpins) and in regards to "INLAND EMPIRE" this phrase seems wholly appropriate.