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Blue Velvet (1986)

The discovery of a severed human ear found in a field leads a young man on an investigation related to a beautiful, mysterious nightclub singer and a group of psychopathic criminals who have kidnapped her child.

Director:

David Lynch

Writer:

David Lynch (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
1,331 ( 78)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 18 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Isabella Rossellini ... Dorothy Vallens
Kyle MacLachlan ... Jeffrey Beaumont
Dennis Hopper ... Frank Booth
Laura Dern ... Sandy Williams
Hope Lange ... Mrs. Williams
Dean Stockwell ... Ben
George Dickerson George Dickerson ... Detective Williams
Priscilla Pointer ... Mrs. Beaumont
Frances Bay ... Aunt Barbara
Jack Harvey Jack Harvey ... Mr. Beaumont
Ken Stovitz Ken Stovitz ... Mike
Brad Dourif ... Raymond
Jack Nance ... Paul
J. Michael Hunter J. Michael Hunter ... Hunter
Dick Green Dick Green ... Don Vallens
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Storyline

College student Jeffrey Beaumont returns to his idyllic hometown of Lumberton to manage his father's hardware store while his father is hospitalized. Walking though a grassy meadow near the family home, Jeffrey finds a severed human ear. After an initial investigation, lead police Detective John Williams advises Jeffrey not to speak to anyone about the case as they investigate further. Detective Williams also tells Jeffrey that he cannot divulge any information about what the police know. Detective Williams' high school aged daughter, Sandy Williams, tells Jeffrey what she knows about the case from overhearing her father's private conversations on the matter: that it has to do with a nightclub singer named Dorothy Vallens, who lives in an older apartment building near the Beaumont home. His curiosity getting the better of him, Jeffrey, with Sandy's help, decides to find out more about the woman at the center of the case by breaking into Dorothy's apartment while he knows she's at work... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It's a strange world.


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM | Official Facebook

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 October 1986 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Terciopelo azul See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$789,409, 21 September 1986

Gross USA:

$8,551,228

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$8,617,408
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Chosen by Entertainment Weekly magazine as one of the "50 Greatest Independent Films" in a special supplement devoted to independent films that was only distributed to subscribers in October 1997. See more »

Goofs

The movie is set in Lumberton, NC. A map of Lumberton on the police station wall is actually a map of Wilmington, NC, where the movie was filmed. Wilmington is on the coast, as shown on the map, while Lumberton is about 90 miles inland. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Radio announcer: It's a sunny, woodsy day in Lumberton, so get those chainsaws out. This is the mighty W.O.O.D., the musical voice of Lumberton. At the sound of the falling tree, it's 9:30. There's a whole lotta wood waitin' out there, so let's get goin'.
Nurse Cindy: Mr. Beaumont? Your son Jeffrey's here to see you.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Originally running at nearly four hours, Blue Velvet was cut to approximately two hours (120 minutes) for distribution. The missing footage was put in storage and apparently lost for good. Some of the missing scenes are:
  • A couple of scenes at the college where Jeffrey attends which takes place during a dance where two of his friends are on the dance floor with him watching when another friend tells him he has a call from home and he learns about his father's stroke and tells his roommate he has to leave immediately.
  • The hospital scene is longer with more dialogue with Jeffrey trying to communicate with his incapacitated father in his hospital bed and talking to a doctor who explains his father's condition.
  • A scene at Jeffrey's home with the doctor giving Mrs. Beaumont an injection to calm her down over the stress of her husband's plight.
  • Jeffrey having coffee with Mrs. Williams as he's waiting to talk to Detective Williams about his find of the severed human ear. Jeffrey also meets Sandy for the first time at the house.
  • An extended scene of Jeffrey with Dorothy in her apartment after Frank Booth leaves and finding another severed human ear in the bathroom sink.
  • An argument between Jeffrey and Sandy over his continued obsession in the Dorothy Valens case.
  • A rooftop scene during Jeffrey's second visit to Dorothy where she confides in him about her messed up life and wants to throw herself off the roof of the building. But Jeffrey stops her and they kiss for the first time.
  • A dinner scene where Jeffrey has dinner with Sandy and her parents where her boyfriend Mike joins them and grows suspicious at the table of the relationship between Sandy and Jeffrey.
  • A very surreal scene at the seedy nightclub "This Is It" where Frank and his three henchmen take Jeffrey and Dorothy through the dark, dimly lit place filled with topless waitresses, one of them lights her nipples on fire. Frank then beats up a man and throws him across a pool table for not fixing his jacket pockets for he "lost his trophy." This explains how Jeffrey found the missing ear in the field behind the hospital, it apparently fell through a hole in Frank's jacket pocket.
  • A final epilogue scene at the police station where Jeffrey and Sandy give their statements to the press of the case and of Williams explaining that they found Dorothy's young son at the nightclub, Frank's henchmen are dead after the shootout at the warehouse, and the nightclub owner Ben and a few others have been apprehended at the club during the raid.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in United States of Tara: Dr. Hatteras' Miracle Elixir (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Blue Star
Performed by Isabella Rossellini
Music by Angelo Badalamenti
Lyrics by David Lynch
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A beautiful, strange ,dark film
10 June 2005 | by spacemonkey_fgSee all my reviews

Title: Blue Velvet (1986)

Director: David Lynch

Cast: Isabella Rosellini, Kyle Mac Lachlan, Dennis Hopper, Laura Dern

Review: David Lynch films are paintings come to life, this has very much to do with the fact that Lynch himself is a painter and he brings that artistic point of view to his film making. Like a good painting, his movies tell a story, which much like an abstract painting, is not always easy to figure out. But what a treat it is to try.

Blue Velvet is a story about a young man returning to his hometown to visit his father who is sick in the hospital. Upon his return he stumbles upon a frightening discovery: a human ear lying on the grass as he walks through the forest behind his parents home. He then takes it upon himself to discover where this ear came from and discovers that that ear will be the reason why he discovers that this is in fact a very strange and dangerous world in which we live in.

Lynch is synonymous with the strange and unusual and Blue Velvet is a good example of this. For those who have ventured into Lynchian territory with films like Mullholland Dr. or Lost Highway get ready for some more crazy imagery and messed up situations. But Ill be honest this time around, even though the situations and images are very very surreal and strange the story itself is pretty easy to understand. Lost Highway remains a total mystery to me to this day, Mullholland Dr. I had to watch about 6 times to figure out....but Blue Velvet though equally as strange and fascinating as those films mentioned, is actually easy to follow and understand.

I loved Kyle MacLachlans character and it was very interesting to see him go through the changes he goes through after he makes his discoveries. He isn't quite the same anymore after he sees the things he sees and does the things he does. Loved that scene in which Laura Dern tries to let him see that even though there's some crazy things in this world there's some good bound to show up sooner or later. Laura Derns character was beautiful and innocent, the one thing that could bring balance to MacLachlans character. By far the most interesting and memorable thing in this film is Dennis Hoppers character, yes my friends, I'm talking about that crazy, demented, sex-crazed freak known as Frank Booth.

Frank Booth is one of those characters that just oozes with evil. You don't feel like its this actor playing some villain, when that happens you totally stop believing that said villain is dangerous. Not so here. Hopper looks, breaths and speaks pure evil! Your kind of scared that there might actually be people like him out in the real world. His scenes and dialog is truly disturbing stuff....."Ill f##C@ anything that moooves!"

I loved the visual aspect of the film which was -as is usual in a Lynch film- extremely beautiful. We may be looking at sliced human ears and demented sex freaks...but everything is photographed within the context of beautiful haunting colors, exotic plays of shadows and lights. Great visuals. The music is incredible as well. Lynch seems to be fond of lounge singers cause very much like he did in Mullholland Drive in Club Silencio, we get another sequence much like that one, with Isabella Rosellini singing us "Blue Velvet" the title song. And there's also a sequence which is very very humorous yet strange and alluring....Dean Stockwell singing Roy Orbinsons "In Dreams". Awesome sequence, one of the most memorable sequences on this film or any other Lynch film. When that scene comes on, you'll be transported to another time and place. What time and place it is Ill leave it up to you.

All in all a great Lynch film not to be missed. A masterpiece that lets me know why Lynch is one of the greatest American directors ever to be in the business of making bizarro, beautiful cinema.

Rating: 5 out of 5 (and very very much so!)


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