David Lynch has managed to create a film full of invigorating visuals, a stimulating soundtrack, intriguing ideas that ends up being rather pointless and boring. The film opens on the dreary lives of a couple: saxophonist Fred Madison (Bill Pullman), and the wife who may be cheating on him, Renee (Patricia Arquette). Things begin going oddly for the couple when mysterious videotapes appear at their doorstep, and a mystery figure (Robert Blake) who may be the personification of Death begins beguiling Fred with supernatural tricks. Halfway through, the film undergoes a strange transition, and then focuses on teen mechanic Pete Dayton (Balthazar Getty), who gets involved with mob boss Mr. Eddy (Robert Loggia), and his latest moll, Alice (also Patricia Arquette). Then things, in typical Lynchian fashion, really begin to get bizarre. Director David Lynch sets out to assault the senses, and manages to create some interesting eye candy here and there, along with a distinct audio landscape. Unfortunately, that’s not all there is to a film, and in the other departments, he falls flat with a resounding thud. Not one of the characters is remotely interesting (scratch that…Robert Blake’s mystery man is interesting to look at: pancake makeup and shaved eyebrows), and they are all placed into a funhouse plot. While at first you try to make sense of it all, soon you realize that there is no sense to be had, Lynch is just trying to wow the audience with one weird turn after another. Soon, the antics become tiresome, and the film actually gets boring. It’s too bad, because there are some interesting concepts scattered throughout the film, and the visuals are stunning. But without any glue to hold them together, they lay as jumbled fragments in the bottom of a cereal box: sweet, but unsatisfying. Lost Highway, while not the worst of Lynch’s work, is certainly not among his best.
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