david lynch

I Attempt Explaining David Lynch’s Lost Highway

Just about every other David Lynch movie has been mentioned, but I think I know why I’m the first to tear into my choice. It’s almost impossible to explain. Almost.

Lost Highway

david lynch

I will now attempt one of the most difficult things possible. Explaining Lost Highway.

Spoilers ahoy. You should really watch it.

David Lynch did his typical post production thing and has never said a word regarding what it’s about. It wasn’t until his book Catching the Big Fish released well after Lost Highway was that he gave this insight:

“At the time Barry Gifford and I were writing the script for Lost Highway, I was sort of obsessed with the O.J. Simpson trial. Barry and I never talked about it this way, but I think the film is somehow related to that.”

“What struck me about O.J. Simpson was that he was able to smile and laugh. He was able to go golfing with seemingly very few problems about the whole thing. I wondered how, if a person did these deeds, he could go on living. And we found this great psychology term—’psychogenic fugue’—describing an event where the mind tricks itself to escape some horror. So, in a way, ‘Lost Highway’ is about that. And the fact that nothing can stay hidden forever.”

First I think we need to think of Lost Highway not as having a beginning and an end but as a mobius strip. Infinitely looping where the end is the beginning and the beginning is the end.

It invokes strong questions of self. What determines if you are you? How can someone wake up as someone else? If he’s him then where did Fred Madison go all that time?

The Mistery Man knows. He is the supernatural element. He’s able to be in two places at once. Why does he help Dick Laurent only to betray him later? The Mistery Man represents things Fred doesn’t understand and doesn’t want to. Given all the tapes you think he might have cared that someone was in his house answering his phone. Otherwise you think he might have mentioned it to the cops. Fred and the Mistery Man are one and the same. The Mystery Man killed Fred’s wife.

Fred Madison remembers things how he wants to remember them, not how they happened.

He rots in jail the whole second half of the movie. Turning into Pete Dayton was his way of dealing with what he did. Justifying what he did to his wife. I mean, she was a bitch anyways. It’s exactly how a schizoid would deal with the situation.

Yeah there’s a lot of loose threads still. But David Lynch does things just to fuck with people sometimes and that was the point of this move. To fuck with people’s realities. Which is why it’s one of my favorite movies of all time.

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