A series of 5-minute line animations (drawn in the rough style and with the minimalist plots of David Lynch's The Angriest Dog in the World comic strip) featuring an angry and violent Neanderthal, and his family and neighbors.
In 1988, the Figaro magazine asked to a few famous directors a series of short movies, to celebrate the 10 years of the revue. The thematic : The French seen by - The movies have been released for the French revolution bicentenary.
Harry Dean Stanton,
one of the strangest, but most beautiful, collaborations between Lynch & Badalamenti
How to describe Industrial Symphony? Well, it almost defies description, in conventional terms, except that it's a story of broken love, and of a sort of floating angel (dream-self) singing of the inner-most feelings of love and happiness that are always out of reach. That's the basic description, I suppose, but what if I were to add that includes a dwarf sawing a log, or that the said angel gets "killed" (killed in quotes cause I don't know for sure, and I don't want to) and dumped in the trunk of an old 50s car, or that there's a big elk zombie at one point, or baby dolls that come down slowly with masks over their heads? That's just some of what makes up one of David Lynch's most under-seen efforts, where he experiments yet again by filming a live stage show- occasionally in 80's style slow-motion and dissolves like in a live music video of the period- and in using lighting effects and methods of 'storytelling' that are completely abstracted from anything you think you've seen before.
First off, there is no "4th wall" in this world of the Industrial Symphony, far from it. As in Inland Empire, to which this shares a kinship in terms of how the lighting and production design goes, there's only a reality, and then an un-reality, and then the two possibly blended into another un-reality, or something like it. So it's, for lack of a simpler description, a dream-land where the peaks and terrors of love are meant to be taken in emotionally, not intellectually. And he provides us with a very talented singer, Julee Cruise, who would also appear on a couple of episodes of Twin Peaks. She helps put into some kind of context the story of Heartbroken Man (Nicolas Cage) and Heartbroken Woman (Laura Dern) after their break-up over the phone. Lynch then throws in these extra images, of destruction, death, of as naked woman writing on a car, a dwarf going busy sawing a log (as well as repeating in full accentuations the conversation that opens this special), and the dream-self singing from the trunk of a car into a TV camera. Finally, the last song is played over a rendition of the Twin Peaks theme, and it closes like any dream should, on the precipice of pure emotional catharsis.
What this catharsis will do for some instead of others I can't say, but overall it marks as something to behold not just from Lynch who makes a great leap into theater direction and staging and using it as a crazy opera, but for Badalamenti who gets to spread his own creative ideas and melodies that stick in one's head long after it's done. My favorite was "I wan't you rockin' back into my heart", and the finale Twin Peaks theme, but the mid-segments that played, like the music over the sawing or the elk-zombie's uprising, plays like it's a cross between new-age sap and the most haunting 40's noir music around (and, perhaps, like music one would think is played over a tender sex scene in Twin Peaks). So, if you're a die-hard Lynch fan, track it down, and enter into what's described on the original pamphlet as a "triple-exposure dream." Whatever it is, it's a delirious, sumptuous testament to the heart, as corny as that sounds. Goofy at times, sure, but the humor there-in is outweighed by the grand theatrics of it all.
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