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Mulholland Drive (2001)

Mulholland Dr. (original title)
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After a car wreck on the winding Mulholland Drive renders a woman amnesiac, she and a perky Hollywood-hopeful search for clues and answers across Los Angeles in a twisting venture beyond dreams and reality.

Director:

David Lynch

Writer:

David Lynch
Popularity
837 ( 31)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 47 wins & 58 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Naomi Watts ... Betty / Diane Selwyn
Jeanne Bates ... Irene
Dan Birnbaum ... Irene's Companion
Laura Harring ... Rita / Camilla Rhodes (as Laura Elena Harring)
Randall Wulff Randall Wulff ... Limo Driver (as Scott Wulff)
Robert Forster ... Detective McKnight
Brent Briscoe ... Detective Domgaard
Maya Bond Maya Bond ... Aunt Ruth
Patrick Fischler ... Dan
Michael Cooke ... Herb
Bonnie Aarons ... Bum
Michael J. Anderson ... Mr. Roque
Joseph Kearney ... Roque's Manservant
Enrique Buelna ... Back of Head Man
Richard Mead Richard Mead ... Hairy-Armed Man
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Storyline

A bright-eyed young actress travels to Hollywood, only to be ensnared in a dark conspiracy involving a woman who was nearly murdered, and now has amnesia because of a car crash. Eventually, both women are pulled into a psychotic illusion involving a dangerous blue box, a director named Adam Kesher, and the mysterious night club Silencio. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

An actress longing to be a star. A woman searching for herself. Both worlds will collide...on Muholland Drive. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, language and some strong sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

19 October 2001 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mulholland Drive See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$587,591, 14 October 2001, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$7,220,243

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$20,112,339
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Despite being credited in the opening titles, Brent Briscoe and Robert Forster only had one scene in the film, which was exactly one minute of them being on screen. See more »

Goofs

When the camera dollies back from the five vocalists in the recording booth, the two VU (volume unit) meters on the control panel are at zero level indicating that no sound is being recorded or heard on the engineer's headphones. However, this may not be a mistake, as the singers are lip-syncing with an existing recording, and the scene is only being filmed for audition purposes. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Rita: What are you doing? We don't stop here.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The only time we see the full title spelled out is at the end of the end credits; during the opening credits there is only a street sign that says "Mulholland Dr". See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD and VHS versions of the film were self-censored by Lynch for sexual content. He had an additional blurring effect added to Laura Harring's crotch in the scene where she climbs into bed with 'Naomi Watts (I)'. The blurring was requested by David Lynch himself because he disapproved of nude pictures of Harring being distributed on the Internet. See more »

Connections

References The Big Knife (1955) See more »

Soundtracks

Pretty 50's
Written by David Lynch and John Neff
Performed by David Lynch and John Neff
By Arrangement with Bobkind Music
From the album "Blue Bob"
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Mulholland Drive - Lynch's cinematic art - reality vs. fantasy
5 April 2013 | by drarthurwellsSee all my reviews

Lynch loves to realistically portray logical sequences interspersed by fantasy diversions, which entrances but confuses the viewer. Blue Velvet is his best film, and works well because of its overall logical coherency spiced up by fantastic deviations from the norm (the fantasy element of the film). This technique reminds me of Fellini's 8 1/2, where fantasy was often interspersed with a logical and coherent plot.

Mulholland Drive starts off logically but then gradually abandons logical coherence as dream-like (but realistically presented) sequences are brought into the plot. Then there is a shift in the plot, from the fantasy of the first part, to the reality of the second part where roles and identities are reversed and reality reigns.

Lynch's genius is in his artistic slight of hand where he presents a fantasy scene realistically, sucking the viewer in to expecting a meaningful depiction, then upending these expectations in shocking the viewer with the fantastic elements of the scene. I can imagine Lynch laughing in the background as he plays his joke on the viewer.

The film Holy Motors presents pure fantasy in nonsensical and unrelated sequences, and is bad art. Mulholland Drive has enough organization and structure, with more skillfully accomplished fantasy, to qualify it as good art.

Naomi Watts gives us an outstanding performance - better than the typical "Best Actress" Oscar award winner's performance in the last 20 years. Watts usually gets roles that don't allow her to display her considerable acting skills, but this role does, and she more than meets the challenge.

The plot is secondary for Lynch since cinematic art is his focus. However, the movie is totally baffling unless you have some guidelines. Basically Mulholland drive is the story of a young girl who comes to Hollywood with high hopes of becoming an actress. The film is told in two parts. My interpretation is that the first (Watts as Betty) part is psychotic delusions of the young girl as she reconstructs her past leading up to the promise of a brilliant acting career. This is presented as reality and the viewer has no idea it is false. The shift to the second (Watts as Diane) part shows some shifting of roles, and depicts the true story whereby the young girl fails to become an major actress. Her identity is valid, as Diane, in the second part showing her dismal failure, while Rita of the first delusional part becomes Camilla in the second reality part.

Naomi Watts thus plays two roles with different identities, in part one and in part two. The two parts are cued by the change in her name from the delusional Betty (part I) to the real Diane (part II). In a clever signal of this personality change, the waitress at Winkie's is named Diane when Betty and Rita go to eat there in the first fantasy part, while this same waitress becomes Betty when Watts as Diane goes to Winkie's in the real second part.

The plot shift from fantasy to reality mirrors the high hopes and aspirations as fantasy (Part I as Betty) and dismal failure as reality (Part II as Diane), that happens so often as young would-be performers seek fame in Hollywood but end up as failures.


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