Movie Review: Eraserhead [1977]

Eraserhead [1977]

Eraserhead [1977]
Director: David Lynch
Genre: Drama/Fantasy/Horror
Language: English
Country: USA

Eraserhead is unlike any film I have ever seen. This surrealistic nightmare is David Lynch’s first directorial effort, and it also happens to be the first movie I have seen by him. The movie is about …well, that is very much open for debate. It’s hard to say what the purpose of the film is, but it follows around a pasty man with a big head of electrical-shocked hair while he is “on vacation.” Set in some sort of industrial wasteland, we go along with this man, Henry Spencer (Jack Nance), as he has dinner at his girlfriend’s house, deals with a constantly crying mutant baby, and enters some sort of bizarre dreamlike state full of baffling characters such as the singing and dancing blonde with grotesque cheeks (aka the Lady In The Radiator).

Dialogue is sparse; this is very much a work that dwells on its audio and visual landscapes. It is hard not to be impressed with Lynch’s technical prowess here, even as most will be baffled by what is transpiring on screen. This is a dark, often disturbing picture, that walks the line between sci-fi and horror. It is easy to see how this low-budget film has become a cult classic.

I would be performing a great disservice if I were to attempt to slap a rating to this film. I watched this earlier today, and I am still trying to wrap my head around what the hell I saw. I can safely say that I was vastly in awe as to what was happening on screen, even as the picture weaved slowly from scene to scene. Eraserhead is a sort of twisted, experimental mind-fuck that I will never forget.

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