Sunday, 6 March 2011

Film Review: BLUE VELVET (1986)

Writer/Director: David Lynch
Running time: 120 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 18

Genre: Crime/Mystery/Thriller
USA Release date: 19th September 1986

Watched on Sky+ Sunday 6th March 2011.


A bit of amateur sleuthing is always good value, but put it in the hands of someone like David Lynch and you’ll get something very different. After having had this one recommended to me by several people I decided to give it a viewing when it came up on TV recently. I have to admit, it’s pretty good… very strange in places, but still, very watchable and very compelling. But more of my thought later, here’s a brief summary first (summary haters and those that don’t wish to know anything about the plot please hide in that closet while I write the next paragraph).

Young Jeffrey Beaumont comes across a human ear in a field near his home. Being a responsible type, he takes it to a policeman he knows, Detective Williams. The detective looks into the matter and later tells Jeffrey that he cannot discuss the case but he will tell him everything after the investigation. Jeffrey is not satisfied with this and is determined to find out more. Detective William’s daughter, Sandy, tells Jeffery that she overheard her father say that a woman called Dorothy Vallens may be involved. The pair decides to try and find some evidence. Sneaking into her apartment and hiding in a closet, Jeffery discovers more than he bargained for when a violent and shady character called Frank Booth turns up. I will leave my short summary here… I think that’s enough to intrigue you for now.

A very well made film with some great moments and also some totally strange moments. I found it very compelling and also quite bizarre in places. Great performances all round, particularly from Dennis Hopper as Frank Booth; he really gets to chew all the scenery in this one! Also worthy of note is Isabella Rossellini as Dorothy Vallens, again, a stellar performance. Kyle MacLachlan was excellent as Jeffrey Beaumont, as was Laura Dern as Sandy Williams. I should also give an honourable mention to Dean Stockwell who I hardly recognised as Ben.

As I’ve already said, this is a very compelling film with lots of quite strange and bizarre touches. I liked it a lot, but found the whole tone rather muted which, I felt, took away some of the impact of it. I would definitely watch it again though because I’m sure there are many nuances I missed first time around. Over all, it’s a very compelling story told it a way that is, at times, quite bizarre, but even so, very enjoyable… Recommended.

My score: 7.6/10

1 comment:

Jack L said...

I love this film, that might sound strange considering how weird this film is but I just admire Lynch for his creativity.
Great review for a great film!