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It’s slippery in here

Christopher Tayler: ‘Twin Peaks: The Return’, 21 September 2017

Twin Peaks: The Return 
created by Mark Frost and David Lynch.
Showtime/Sky Atlantic, 18 episodes, 21 May 2017 to 3 September 2017
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... what with one thing and another I’ve sometimes felt the same way, on behalf of Mark Frost and David Lynch, about the news environment that accompanied the broadcast of Twin Peaks: The Return. I say ‘on behalf of’ because I imagine that Lynch couldn’t care less. ‘It’s good to kind of go along with your ...

At the Movies

Michael Wood: ‘Mulholland Drive’, 19 November 2015

Mulholland Drive 
directed by David Lynch.
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... There​ are some fine shots of the title thoroughfare in David Lynch’s Mulholland Drive (2001), a new release from the Criterion Collection. It’s all bushes and darkness and bends in the road, various cars’ tail-lights appearing and disappearing. Anything could happen there, especially since there are some very posh residences among the shrubs ...

Short Cuts

Thomas Jones: Princess Di and Laura Palmer, 22 January 2004

... because I was given Twin Peaks Season One on DVD for Christmas. For those who’ve never seen David Lynch and Mark Frost’s pioneering TV series of the early 1990s, Twin Peaks is a small town in Washington, five miles south of the Canadian border, 12 miles west of the state line. Laura Palmer, the high school homecoming queen, has been ...

At Victoria Miro

Peter Campbell: William Eggleston, 25 February 2010

... unhappy. The unexplained strangeness of the ordinary or tacky that has drawn film-makers like David Lynch to Eggleston is evident, but the colour also registers at a different level. As in Van Gogh’s late paintings it has a life of its own. Purely as coloured objects, the photographs are rich, subtle, pretty even. The process used to print them in ...

Between Two Deaths

Slavoj Žižek: The Culture of Torture, 3 June 2004

... but call to mind the ‘theatre of cruelty’, Robert Mapplethorpe’s photographs, scenes from David Lynch movies. This brings us to the crux of the matter. Anyone acquainted with the US way of life will have recognised in the photographs the obscene underside of US popular culture. You can find similar photographs in the US press whenever an ...

Reality B

Christopher Tayler: Haruki Murakami’s ‘1Q84’, 15 December 2011

1Q84: Book 1 and Book 2 
by Haruki Murakami, translated by Jay Rubin.
Harvill Secker, 623 pp., £20, October 2011, 978 1 84655 407 0
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1Q84: Book 3 
by Haruki Murakami, translated by Philip Gabriel.
Harvill Secker, 364 pp., £14.99, October 2011, 978 1 84655 405 6
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... and worldly phenomena in ways that can’t easily be unscrambled. (In this respect he resembles David Lynch, with whom he sometimes seems to have a doppelgänger-like relationship; six years before Twin Peaks he published a story beginning: ‘A dwarf came into my dream and asked me to dance.’) Toru Okada’s search for his cat, for example, becomes ...

A Pair of Lobsters in a Murky Tank

Theo Tait: James Lasdun, 9 March 2006

Seven Lies 
by James Lasdun.
Cape, 199 pp., £14.99, February 2006, 0 224 07592 6
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... sense that the material is being stretched. His first, The Horned Man (2002), a campus novel as David Lynch might have conceived it, was rightly praised: it charted a professor’s descent through paranoia into outright mania in a way that was neat, sharp, witty and intelligent. But it gave the sense of being a brilliant writing-school exercise, rather ...

At the Movies

Michael Wood: ‘Upstream Colour’, 26 September 2013

Upstream Colour 
directed by Shane Carruth.
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... might no longer want to be where he thought he was going. I don’t know whether Carruth regards David Lynch as an influence, but Lynch’s name kept coming into my mind as I tried to find a temporary shorthand for the effect of Upstream Colour. The characters are quiet, self-contained, even self-absorbed; they are ...

Watching a black man in the shower

Michael Wood, 12 September 1991

Young Soul Rebels 
directed by Isaac Julien.
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Diary of a Young Soul Rebel 
by Isaac Julien and Colin MacCabe.
BFI, 218 pp., £10.95, September 1991, 0 85170 310 0
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... park lit with a curious violet effect. An interviewer in Diary of a Young Soul Rebel thinks of David Lynch and Hitchcock in relation to this scene, and certainly those names evoke the right sort of frozen ceriness. But there is excitement in the shot, too – a sense of sexual adventure. The mood is lyrical rather than frightening, and it is into this ...

Man-Eating Philosophers

Will Self: David Cronenberg, 18 June 2015

by David Cronenberg.
Fourth Estate, 288 pp., £18.99, October 2014, 978 0 00 729915 7
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... After working​ on his film adaptation of William Burroughs’s Naked Lunch (1991), David Cronenberg apotheosised both the writer and himself by claiming his screenwriting and Burroughs’s literary style had synergised. Cronenberg apparently mused that were Burroughs to die he might write his next novel. Burroughs expired in 1997, and although Cronenberg has directed many films since then – operas too – while dabbling in graphic novels and other writings, Consumed is his first full-length work of fiction ...

I even misspell intellectual

Rupert Thomson: Caroline Gordon v. Flannery O’Connor, 2 April 2020

The Letters of Flannery O’Connor and Caroline Gordon 
edited by Christine Flanagan.
Georgia, 272 pp., £31.95, October 2018, 978 0 8203 5408 8
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... impression’.O’Connor’s ideas about her writing were unambiguous. In a letter to John Lynch, a reviewer and an academic at Notre Dame, in 1955, she says: ‘I feel that if I were not a Catholic, I would have no reason to write, no reason to see, no reason ever to feel horrified.’ She described herself as a ‘hillbilly Thomist’: like ...

Zeitgeist Man

Jenny Diski: Dennis Hopper, 22 March 2012

Dennis Hopper: The Wild Ride of a Hollywood Rebel 
by Peter Winkler.
Robson, 376 pp., £18.99, November 2011, 978 1 84954 165 7
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... coming out of rehab, he got the part of Frank Booth in Blue Velvet (1986). Straightaway he called David Lynch to reassure him: ‘David, don’t even worry about casting me in this. You did the right thing because I am Frank Booth.’ Lynch turned to his lunch companions, Isabella ...

Wild and Tattered Kingdom

Owen Hatherley: Fassbinder and His Friends, 29 June 2023

Fassbinder Thousands of Mirrors 
by Ian Penman.
Fitzcarraldo, 185 pp., £12.99, April, 978 1 80427 042 4
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... strange boomers who have managed a seamless transition to the new media reality, a Bob Dylan or David Lynch, posting gnomic tweets, putting out brilliant TikToks and hosting a podcast where he plays Schlager music and discusses Sex-pol theory. As he scrolls down ‘a social media timeline of sexual fluidity, tantrums, locked-in lives, queer-pol, trans ...


Carlos Dada: At the Mexican Border, 8 October 2020

... out of Ixtepec, a Oaxacan town on the overland migrant route. It looked like a location from a David Lynch movie. The entrance was festooned with orange and black ribbons, pumpkins, plastic gnomes, scarecrows and witch effigies. By the door, a raccoon scrabbled desperately on a metre-long chain. In the reception area a wooden rocking chair and a pair ...

Allergic to Depths

Terry Eagleton: Gothic, 18 March 1999

Gothic: Four Hundred Years of Excess, Horror, Evil and Ruin 
by Richard Davenport-Hines.
Fourth Estate, 438 pp., £20, December 1998, 1 85702 498 2
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... Piranesi, Fuseli, William Shenstone, Byron, Hawthorne, Faulkner, Evelyn Waugh, Poppy Z. Brite and David Lynch. ‘Gothic’ is no doubt as variable in definition as it is in quality, but one can’t avoid the sense of a certain arbitrariness of selection. It is not so much that any obvious authors have been left out; it is rather that there are a few ...

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