From Mulholland Drive to Blue Velvet, many of David Lynch’s dark and surreal films become cult classics. Unfortunately, Lost Highway has not earned that status.

Since his debut feature film Eraserhead became an overnight sensation on the midnight movie circuit, many of David Lynch’s films have been critically acclaimed instant classics. Blue velvet Y Mulholland Drive they are often featured on lists of the best movies ever made. Their underrated hits are often revered by receiving positive reviews, such as Wild at heart, or achieved cult classic status, such as Dune.

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But Lynch’s 1997 neo-noir Lost highway It received mixed reviews from critics and has not become the cult hit it deserves. Lost highway It may not be Lynch’s best film, not even close, but it is his most underrated work.

10 Has some of the most haunting images of Lynch

Robert Blake on Lost Highway

One of the hallmarks of David Lynch’s style is the disturbing imagery, such as the alien-like baby that appears prominently throughout. Eraserhead or the cut ear that opens Blue velvet.

From the voyeuristic tapes that kick off Fred Madison’s trippy dream sequences, Lost highway It has some of the most haunting images of Lynch’s career.

9 Bill Pullman becomes a compelling lead

Like many of David Lynch’s leads (Henry Spencer, Jeffrey Beaumont, Alvin Straight, etc.), Fred Madison comes across as a common man. However, he is far from an ordinary man at the end of the film, and Bill Pullman interprets this surreal journey brilliantly.

Pullman takes a convincing turn Lost highway. He has the skills to convey both the common-man qualities of the character in the first half of the film and the utter weirdness that the story explores in its second half.

8 The script has an intriguing self-reflective structure

David Lynch co-wrote the screenplay for Lost highway with Barry Gifford, whose novel Wild at heart it had previously been adapted into a delightfully strange road movie with Nicolas Cage and Laura Dern.

His script has a self-reflective structure that is fascinating. The script acts as a mirror that traverses the events of the story, confronts the characters with the consequences of future actions, and informs how those actions occur. It means that ultimately there are no definitive conclusions, but it is an incredible journey.

7 It’s the closest Lynch has ever come to doing a Straight Noir

The influence of film noir can be seen in all of Lynch’s work, from Mulholland Driveparallels with Sunset Boulevard to the ethically questionable protagonist of Blue velvet. But Lost highway it’s the closest Lynch has ever come to making a film noir. A jazz musician wrongly accused (or so it seems) of the murder of his wife is a plot straight out of an old black man.

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Granted, it has a ton of Lynch surrealism superimposed on it, it transforms into a different person on death row, but it’s more pulpy than the usual Lynch crime stories. With eye-catching visuals and Bowie on the soundtrack, it’s like pop-noir.

6 Patricia Arquette plays a unique type of Femme Fatale

Patricia Arquette on Lost Highway

Like any great nigga Lost highway has a captivating femme fatale, played by Patricia Arquette. But her character (or characters) is a femme fatale like no other.

Initially, she is introduced as Fred Madison’s wife, Renee. She was murdered and he was arrested for it. Later, when Fred turns into a mechanic named Pete in his cell, Pete is freed and falls in love with Alice, also played by Arquette. She begins an affair with him, despite the fact that she is already the mistress of the gangster Mr. Eddy. She is a fatal woman par excellence, but she is also, in a way, two people.

5 The Mystery Man is one of Lynch’s most surreal creations

Robert Blake on Lost Highway

From Killer BOB on Twin peaks to the cowboy in Mulholland DriveDavid Lynch has graced audiences with many surreal supernatural characters. One of the craziest of the group is the Mysterious Man from Lost highway.

After showing up with Fred in a couple of dreams, the Mysterious Man approaches him at a party and tells him to call his own house and talk to the guy there. He continues to appear throughout the film and is always an eccentric delight.

4 Kicked off Lynch’s LA trilogy

Pete and Alice on Lost Highway

Lost highway it was the first of three consecutive David Lynch films set in Los Angeles. Was followed by Mulholland Drive Y Inland empire, and are collectively regarded as Lynch’s unofficial Los Angeles trilogy.

Like the movie that started this trilogy, Lost highway gave audiences their first look at Lynch’s unique cinematic vision of Los Angeles before the most famous portrait seen in Mulholland Drive (which focused more on the film industry side of the city).

3 The midpoint twist avoids the usual second act problems

Fred Madison in prison on Lost Highway

Most movies suffer from trouble in the second act because the function of the second act is to find an entertaining way to deliver all the boring stuff that takes audiences from the intriguing setups of the first act to the satisfying rewards of the third act. Thanks to its puzzling twist in between, in which the protagonist randomly turns into an entirely new person, Lost highway avoid those problems.

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Just as the second act starts to creep like most second acts do, Lynch completely changes the game and opens up all sorts of new questions to keep the audience interested.

two Robert Loggia takes an unforgettable turn as the villain

Robert Loggia as Mr Eddy in Lost Highway

Robert Loggia plays the villain in Lost highway, a gangster named Mr. Eddy, as well as Dick Laurent, whose death is central to the film’s many mysteries. Eddy is a much funnier and more cartoonish villain than the disturbing Frank Booth from Blue velvet.

In scenes like Mr. Eddy’s confrontation with the pursuer, Loggia walks a fine line between the absurdity of the situation and the evil of her character.

1 The “dead end” is really cool

The final scene of Lost Highway

One of the most common criticisms of Lost highway is that his self-reflective stories lead the film to a dead end, but that’s the genius.

Seeing the nonlinear chaos of Lost highway it’s like riding a roller coaster. The film takes the audience in and out of itself.

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