Blue Velvet (1986)

R   |    |  Drama, Mystery, Thriller


Blue Velvet (1986) Poster

The discovery of a severed human ear found in a field leads a young man on an investigation related to a beautiful, mysterious nightclub singer and a group of psychopathic criminals who have kidnapped her child.

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7.8/10
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  • Laura Dern in Blue Velvet (1986)
  • Kyle MacLachlan in Blue Velvet (1986)
  • Isabella Rossellini in Blue Velvet (1986)
  • Kyle MacLachlan in Blue Velvet (1986)
  • Isabella Rossellini and Jeff Goodwin in Blue Velvet (1986)
  • Kyle MacLachlan and Megan Mullally in Blue Velvet (1986)

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User Reviews


21 April 2002 | AdFin
8
| Only in dreams…
With Blue Velvet, David Lynch made a film that was so pure to his original vision that it would become the archetype of his work for the next fifteen years. Here, Lynch cast his ever probing, surrealist gaze upon small town middle America, and for the first time in a US film, showed the audience the darker side to what was often depicted as nothing more than the birth place of apple pie. We are drawn into the story almost immediately, with what would seem like a simple depiction of small town life, but the use of slow-motion hints that there is something not quite right with what we are looking at. So by the time Lynch has pushed his camera through the soft green grass of a regular front lawn, only to show us the slithering insects that hide in the darkness, we know that we are about to enter a very dark world.

Blue Velvet is a world filled with not only darkness, but also ambiguity. The characters of this world are constantly hiding behind some kind of façade, be it the wardrobe doors that practicing teenage voyeur Jeffrey peers from behind as he watches Dorothy and Frank interact, or something as simple as the make-up worn by Ben. Everything suggests to us that these characters inhabit a world at night, a world away from the life they live in the day. As the film moves closer and closer to the climax Jeffrey begins to feel more of a connection with Frank, having to go to some very dark places within his psyche. However Lynch's message, that underneath the normal persona of a regular human being is a repressed pervert laying in wait, or whatever point he is making doesn't really translate well. Not least to today's audience.

Blue Velvet is very much a film of its time, that time being the mid-eighties, with aids paranoia everywhere, it's easy to see this metaphor for the dangers of sex and love within the films turgid dreamscapes. But beneath this message hides a strong detective story, a modern day neo-noir that delivers interesting twists and a controversial pay-off with it's almost fairytale climax. This is the film David Lynch got right, proceeding to make great films that where all personal, but completely different in terms of style and substance from one another. Blue Velvet is a great film, with some fine (albeit bizarre) performances, still challenging to this day, If only Lynch hadn't gone on to spend the rest of his career re-making it.

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Did You Know?

Trivia

During a 2018 interview with Alec Baldwin on Baldwin's WNYC radio program "Here's the Thing, " Kyle MacLachlan said that Blue Velvet had a pre-release test screening (then a common practice for studio films) in California's suburban San Fernando Valley. The test audience filled out comment cards after the screening, and, MacLachlan said, they were some of the worst response cards the studio had ever seen for any movie. MacLachlan remembered that everyone involved with the making of the film were despairing until the New Yorker film critic Pauline Kael reviewed the film and "explained it to people in a way, or pointed them in the right direction, or helped them to get a sense of what the world that they were seeing was about, and that started the slow movement of acceptance of the movie."


Quotes

Radio announcer: It's a sunny, woodsy day in Lumberton, so get those chainsaws out. This is the mighty W.O.O.D., the musical voice of Lumberton. At the sound of the falling tree, it's 9:30. There's a whole lotta wood waitin' out there, so let's get goin'.
Nurse Cindy: Mr. ...


Goofs

Jeffrey's hands jump between the top of his head and his ear between shots when he is kneeling before Dorothy when she first discovers him in the closet.


Alternate Versions

A German version omits the entire scene where Frank first rapes Dorothy that Jeffrey witnesses from inside her closet, and it is only implied that he raped her.


Soundtracks

Mysteries Of Love
Performed by
Julee Cruise
Music by Angelo Badalamenti
Lyrics by David Lynch

Storyline

Plot Summary


Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Genres

Drama | Mystery | Thriller

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