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Inland Empire (DQ)


Stars: Laura Dern, Jeremy Irons, Justin Theroux, Julia Ormond, Harry Dean Stanton, Laura Harring, William H Macy, Grace Zabriskie, Nastassja Kinski

Director: David Lynch

I bow to no one in my admiration for David Lynch's previous work, especially Lost Highway and Mulholland Drive, but this really is a Lynch too far. The maverick film-maker moves even further into surrealism with this three-hour movie about an actress (Dern) who gets a role in an experimental film, but soon begins to blur fiction with reality. I think.

Lynch's films usually make some sense, even though there's no answer to their puzzles. But this makes no sense at all. And even the director's talent for striking, haunting images seems to have deserted him. There aren't really any puzzles, either, although there are a few people (including Naomi Watts) in a room, dressed as rabbits.

'Sometimes,' declares Irons, as the director of Dern's film, 'one just isn't told the whole story.' He can say that again. Dern drifts through it looking anguished, probably aware that she was co-producing the thing.

David Quinlan

USA 2006. UK Distributor: Optimum Releasing. Colour by FotoKem.
180 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 0, Swearing 2.

Review date: 03 Mar 2007