Henry, an introverted factory printer, finds he has to care for his premature, odd-looking child.
If any of you have seen any of the short films on Vimeo, then you’ve essentially seen Eraserhead. It’s strange, makes very little sense, and leaves you with an odd feeling—if it’s good. It’s hard to say anything about this film because it’s impossible to see anything as completely intentional or unintentional. You can’t critique the dialogue as it may have been intentionally the way that it is. You can’t critique the storyline for the same reason. For that reason, I’ll keep this review brief.
I’ll start with the technical aspect of the film. I haven’t seen any behind the scenes footage of this movie, but if I did, I imagine it would consist of a lot of David Lynch running around. He essentially made the film by himself. He wrote, directed, and produced it, as well as doing the special effects and visual editing for it, among other things. As a result, all of the special effects look like pieces of art, which does take you out of the moment when a gruesome character looks like an, albeit terrifying, art project. Besides that, everything does work. Lynch wanted to create a terrifying movie and he did. The film is scary; the monsters are terrifying, the setting is gloomy, and the acting is unsettling.
Two noteworthy technical aspects of the film are the set and sound design. The set design is interesting primarily because of the way they designed Henry’s apartment. They designed it so that it had almost no windows and was claustrophobic. It was an apartment I wanted to leave really badly, which was the exact effect it’s supposed to have. The sound design is noteworthy because, to put it simply, it’s noteworthy. Sound design usually works best when it’s not noticeable, but in this film every sound was the exact opposite and it wouldn’t have been better done differently. Every noise is ghastly and creepy, and does a good job of creeping up one’s spine.
As far as the movie’s plot is concerned, it’s almost nonexistent. It’s meant to be that way. The film is, at its core, a slideshow of terrible things. Awful, disgusting thing after awful, disgusting thing happens in this film, with no room for plot or brevity. If you go into the movie expecting this, and ready for it, it’s going to be a good time.
There are two ways to enjoy this movie. You can either enjoy it as a piece of art to be interpreted, in which you can find different clues in order to reveal a message that will be entirely your own interpretation. Or, you can view it as a slideshow of terrible things, and enjoy seeing every new terrible thing. Either of these ways to watch the film will allow you to enjoy it.
If you want to think or you want to be scared by something you don't understand, you’ll like this film.
Eraserhead: A Slideshow of Terrible Things
Writing - 7.5/107.5/10
Storyline - 7.5/107.5/10
Acting - 9/109/10
Music - 9.5/109.5/10
Production - 8.8/108.8/10
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