One of the biggest films of the year is the re-make of Dune, which opens in theaters and on HBO Max on Friday, October 22. It’s not the first time Dune has been adapted into a film. The first time was in the 1980s by director David Lynch. In honor of the big opening, over the next two weeks I’ll be looking at the directors who’ve taken a swing at Dune. This week, that’s David Lynch films. Next week, it will be Denis Villeneuve films.
Without further ado, here’s a look at five classic Lynch films! Films appear in chronological order.
The Elephant Man (1980)
About: This is one of Lynch’s first hits, a classic film in beautiful black-and-white. It features a cast led by Anthony Hopkins, Anne Bancroft and John Hurt, with Hurt giving a solid performance. Like many of Lynch’s films this one is strange and yet beautiful in its own way.
About: This adaptation of the Frank Herbert novel is arguably why we’re all here (for the columns the next two weeks). It was the debut role for Kyle MacLachlan, and part of a loaded cast. It’s a cult classic for some but I’m going to be honest, it’s a weird movie. I don’t know how faithfully it adapts the source material but as a film this didn’t really work for me. Perhaps the new swing will land a bit better.
Blue Velvet (1986)
About: MacLachlan is back with Lynch, becoming a frequent collaborator. This is a weird film but it’s somewhat memorable. Isabella Rossellini is pretty great here as is Dennis Hopper. If you’ve never seen this movie, brace yourself, it’s different. And yet it’s one that I won’t soon forget. This feels in some ways like peak Lynch.
Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (1992)
About: My first introduction to Lynch was Twin Peaks, the TV series on ABC that debuted in 1989 and ran two seasons. This was a feature film adapted from the series that features pieces of the series. The show was led by, who else, Kyle MacLachlan. Lynch revisited Twin Peaks years later for Showtime in an odd 18-episode run for those who are interested.
Mulholland Drive (2001)
About: This is another of Lynch’s most famous films, one that earned him an Academy Award nomination as Best Director. It’s a fascinating film with some stunning visuals and, like many of his projects, a strange and twisting story. It’s a showcase for the women at the heart of the narrative, Naomi Watts and Laura Harring.
Matthew Fox is a graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at Biola University, and a giant nerd. He spends his free time watching movies, TV, and obsessing about football. He is a member of the FSWA. You can find him @knighthawk7734 on Twitter and as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast.