Watch: How David Lynch's Movies Unlock the Secret Power of Dance
David Lynch uses dance as narrative in his films.
There's much to parse in a David Lynch film. His eccentric style of filmmaking, often defined as "Lynchian," evokes the uncanny with unnerving sound, surrealistic nightmares, and strange narrative turns.
But there's an element in Lynch's mind-warping movies that many critics fail to mention: dance. A new video essay from Fandor shows that Lynch sees life as choreography. From the sex-crazed dancing in Wild at Heart to the romance and depravity of Blue Velvet to the eerie radiator lady's performance in Eraserhead to Audrey's infamous dance in Twin Peaks, dancing helps tell the story.
In his movies, Lynch has harnessed the power of dance—it's an inherently vulnerable and emotionally-charged action, and through it, his characters release aggression, express romantic feelings, or otherwise reveal their inner states. Dance sequences even serve as plot devices; Lynch uses them to heighten narrative mystery, or even as the butt of a cruel joke.