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Eraserhead

  • Directed by David Lynch
  • United States, 1977, 89 mins., English

Is the twisted child of Henry Spencer (Jack Nance) a metaphor for the paternal anxiety this new father is experiencing? Or are the child, the Lady in the Radiator, the Man in the Planet, and all the other grotesque figures that Henry encounters meant to be taken at face value? David Lynch offers no road map for reading his stark, black-and-white debut feature. Celebrated as one of the original midnight movies, the film ran for several consecutive years on the late-night 1970s theater circuit in New York and San Francisco, slowly catapulting it into the upper echelon of cult favorites. Eraserhead is a genre unto itself. “Watching Eraserhead today, what emerges is the sheer, immersive clarity of David Lynch’s vision, the sense of a world unlike our own and yet inextricably bound to it: a world in which all the light has been sucked out, leaving only horror and isolation, desperation and unattainable dreams.”—Tom Huddleston, Time Out. “It needed to look a certain way, and the look comes about from what’s in front of the camera and how it’s lit. I designed it and built a lot of the things. You just work until you get it to feel correct. I knew what I wanted because of the ideas I got. And I love the world of Eraserhead. I would love to live in that world. I loved being in there during those years.”—David Lynch.

Genres: Cult

Other Films by David Lynch

The Amputee Vols. 1 & 2

Short film by David Lynch.

The Alphabet

Short film by David Lynch.

Six Men Getting Sick

Short film by David Lynch.

Industrial Symphony No. 1

A short avant-garde musical play directed by David Lynch.

Premonitions Following an Evil Deed

Experimental short film by David Lynch.