David Lynch: club silencio

 David Lynch Mulholland Drive Cinema Suspense City Dreams Essay Silencio Llorona Freud

If, in the words of Chris Rodley, "cinema is the art of resonance", then David Lynch is a filmakers who is able to cause distant and long-lasting echoes; never harmless. Terrifying. Rodley's summary fits wonderfully into a series of symbols and mysteries that reminds us and makes us think about the scenes, dialogues and developments of a movie like Mulholland Drive and the classic Club Silencio scene.

Mulholland Drive's singularities lie in its story-line and visual/ aesthetic look. The story-line can be, at this point, our main focus: the appearance of Club Silencio is so powerful because it underlines the critical point in the movie's plot: the frail logic line that the viewer, that we, had deviced as our understanding of the story, up until that point - in schemes with no deep relations between them - is weakened even further and is worth next to nothing. This isn't the case of a revelation resource in a similar vein to M. Night Shyamalan, far from it. It is actually a trap, a curve ball.

When the magician proclaims that no hay banda, that todo es uma ilusion, is like a premonition that a secret is being revealed, but (astounded) it's not a secret concerning any of the characters - Diane, Camilla or Rita, but rather our secrets, my secrets. That is, a sequence outside of the plot appears in front of our eyes, whose content we'll have to fill ourselves.

Speaking this way, it seems as though I insist on a manipulation, and I do. I think: is the Club Silencio scene inducing trance or reality?

 David Lynch Mulholland Drive Cinema Suspense City Dreams Essay Silencio Llorona Freud

You can understand Lynch's methods to build the narrative in two levels; clear methods, studied with a Freudian basis, with Kafkian reminiscence. Basicly, from this scene on, we start understanding that the movie, up to this point, might have been an illusion created by someone, that the movie doesn't have any commitment with a concrete logic, but rather with a dream logic. So, everything in the staging, every object, colour, sound and word would be collages of something, representations of something that would find a match in the real world. We guess about what the woman with the blue hair means, the trombone, why Rita/ Camilla had whipered "Silence" the night before, in her sleep. What kind of higher place or scheme that place represents.

In a second plan, what happens? It only happens that we can't find those references. They are missing parts, a mystery, and it's there our subconscious attention is directed, filling the missing spaces with information we don't wish to raise. The movie reinvents itself as an artificial environment of permissiveness, of compulsory exposition of desires, where the conjuring of the small disconnected pieces will give way to a disformal mass of logic that is the dream. Therefore, the second layer of narration is done by ourselves, by our own yearnings, secrets and delirium turned, unexpectedly, real - although we know it's only a movie, that everything is nothing but an illusion. Hence so many people thinking Mulholland Drive is a horror movie, whilst others think they are going insane... The feeling is nauseating and so clear, so persistent, that it makes a permanent echo, a striking and intimate experience that you can watch below, to the horror of some and delight of everyone.


As my intention with this post was only to underline particular aspects that surround this scene and the mystery unfolds in various other directions, you can visit the official website for the movie here (there was a time when I wouldn't visit this website before going to sleep). Chris Rodley is the author and editor of the book Lynch on Lynch, released in 1997 by Faber&Faber.

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