Friday, August 27, 2004

I was awoken from a dream about a woman petting a porcupine while talking on the phone by my ringing cell phone. My sister was on the other end of the line but who knows what animals were near?

I got to thinking last night about how I never watch my DVDs. I then proceeded to have a very, very nice viewing of Blue Velvet.

David Lynch movies are best taken all in one gulp. I find if I watch half of one, then wait for even a brief period, the second half loses some of its lustre. I believe this is in some degree true of all movie, but particularly true of Lynch's. The man's tapped into the secret logic at the back of our brains and everything we see and hear must naturally follow something previous to it. It has to unscroll like a dream.

And last night was able to watch Blue Velvet straight through with no interruptions and almost no intrusive sounds from my environment. You see, because I have this belief that David Lynch movies ought to be viewed in something like a vacuum sealed environment, there's some kind of Murphy's Law thing goin' where I'm almost never actually allowed to. There was one point last night where I could hear my grandmother upstairs using the bathroom, and it kind of broke up the very delicate flow of Sandy describing her dream about the robins. And later, Lucky the cat started freaking out when he noticed that my attention was absolutely focused on the screen (and away from him). But for the most part, it was pretty pure.

When I was younger, there was a lot more I didn't understand about Blue Velvet. I loved it, but I enjoyed it for some slightly different reasons. The primary difference being my understanding of Frank and Frank's relationship with Jeffrey.

Frank was impressively frightening to me in high school as a very ingenious sort of monster. Everything he did was unpredictable and had something to do with hurting people in ways and at times I wasn't expecting.

By now, of course, Frank can't help being less predictable to someone who's seen the movie several times. I respect the fact that he's frightening, even though he doesn't frighten me as much now, but I'm also now able to see him as pathetic and, in this way, I'm able to see his connexion to Jeffrey.

The scene where Frank says to Jeffrey, "You're like me!" was one I've always loved and always felt had a deeper resonance, but for a long time I never understood the specific dynamics.

But now I can see it--Jeffrey's huddled there all vulnerable and larva-like in front of Frank. And Frank sees a chomping caterpillar like himself. The same soft, greedy little baby Frank behaves like when he's raping Dorothy.

Perhaps it's a fault in the movie that I never really feel like Jeffrey could be a bad guy. But then again, I love Jeffrey's innocent voyeur detective thing so I don't think I could call it a fault.

Anyway, however you slice it, it's a great movie.

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