Pretty as a Picture: The Art of David Lynch (1997)
If you are a fan of Mr Lynch like me this is essential viewing. It was mainly filmed during the making of Lost Highway and most of the features are set around that film, but there is also some other scenes like the reunion of Eraserhead, where Lynch along with some of the cast and crew return to the Stables location where it was filmed and reminisce over the trials of the making of the film. Also featured is Lynch’s trip to Prague along with the composer on most of his films, Angelo Badalamenti, and his love of the sound and music which is so important in his films. His paintings and photography are shown, too, and his fascination with ants and animals in his art. There is a rare look at his early short films, Six Men Getting Sick, The Alphabet and The Grandmother, and his former wife Peggy’s views on them. This is a fascinating and interesting behind the scenes look at this distinctive filmmaker, artist and photographer’s work.
Toby Keeler, with his unlimited access to David Lynch- behind the scenes during his films, with friends and family and collaborators, and in his painting process- has a documentary that’s essential to get at least a glimpse into a man and his work like this. Lynch’s films are abstractions, nightmarish landscapes and what is just around the corner in the seemingly brightest sides of small-town American life, and his art is a reflection not just of his own interpretations of people and places that are usually conventional, but that this interpretation springs out so many ideas that would not be there otherwise without the specific framework he’s chosen. One of the most fascinating examples of this method of Lynch’s in being a true master of mood is with Eraserhead; he worked five years on the film, and Keeler shows us Lynch and old friends walking around where the original sets were, and with this revealing how after two years of painstakingly filming a movie (a shot a night, nevermind a scene, depending on the lighting), a rhythm developed that was unmistakable. If one of the primary goals of an artist is to transport people to another place that is unconventional, but still grounded in recognizable emotional connections, Lynch is such an artist, as revealed here fully.