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Blue Velvet (1986)
What a wonderful film. Looks incredible on Blu Ray
I just want to say that I fell in love with this film after seeing the 25th anniversary edition blu ray. It looks beautiful. Having only seen it in the early 90s on a run-of-the-mill videotape that was probably pan and scan and full of color and toning problems, it truly is a different experience on blu ray.
The brutally honest performances, visionary aesthetic and the beautiful style make Blue Velvet an absolutely unmissable film and a wonderful addition to Blu Ray. Despite the films fame and notoriety, all these years later, the film still seems completely original, invigorating and unsurpassed.
Everyone assumes that Blue Velvet opens with the infamous ear-in-the-grass scene, but the film's opening is even more disturbing than that. A suburban fantasia of white picket fences, blood-red roses, waving fireman, happy children and a man watering his lawn gives way to the disturbing moment when the watering man collapses and the camera pans down to dirt level where a number of horrific insects are scrabbling in the dirt at the base of the lawn. The soundtrack changes from Leave It to Beaver-style music to the loud, gnawing, electric saw-like noises emitted by the creatures. Only subsequent to this scene does Jeffrey Beaumont (a wide-eyed, snoopy Kyle MacLachlan) find the ear in a field of overgrown weeds.
The ear leads Jeffrey through a sordid underworld involving kidnapping, masochism, drug- dealing, and murder. But while there's a whole lot of plot in Blue Velvet, Lynch's more elemental concern is with unearthing the truth behind the facade (i.e. showing what lurks under the lawn). Even the blue velvet dress that chanteuse Dorothy Valens (Isabella Rossellini) wears hides a secret namely, the bruises on her body which are delivered by the vile Frank Booth (Dennis Hopper, in the role that brought him back to the limelight).
When Jeffrey asks the naive Sandy (Laura Dern), the prim girl on whom he has a crush, why there is so much trouble in the world, the answer is clear without it, our lives would be far duller. Jeffrey himself admits that he loves a mystery and the curiosity that his desire entails is the same one that fuels Lynch's own vision. When Frank says to Jeffrey, "You're like me," it could be Lynch speaking to the audience. We want to know more, even if what we find out hurts or is ugly. Like the scene of an accident, we cannot look away.
Fueled by a vibrant and always-surprising dream like surrealism, Blue Velvet reminds us that the dreams and fantasies of our subconscious are dangerous and thrilling; it's surface reality that is superficial and mundane.
This is definitely a film worth watching multiple times. It gets better and better on every viewing. There are so many questions, and at the same time, so many answers, which seem to bring up more questions. Blue Velvet is a timeless film and it looks absolutely superb on Blu Ray. I will happily get lost in this film from time and time again, it's absolutely remarkable. 10/10