I Don't Think So!
I have just staggered out of The Straight Story, David Lynch's
new film, and into daylight, not quite sure what Mac truck (sorry,
riding lawnmower) just hit me. I'm not sure where it came from or
where it's headed to. This slow-paced drama is about a seventy-three
year old man who takes a six-week journey (on the aforementioned
riding-lawnmower) to visit his ailing brother and ask forgiveness
for his ten-year old sins. You do the math.
The Straight Story certainly puts a twist on the term, "road
movie". It's the warmest, cuddliest "road movie"; you'll just want
to take it home and kiss it. One wonders if it isn't partly a response
to criticisms that Lynch's previous films are guilty of being cryptically
self-referential beyond the point of appeal to a larger audience.
(Not from this critic - No way, man!) The Straight Story
is undoubtably for mass audiences with its "G" rating.
Despite all my ranting, I would still like to rave. I have to admit
that I am guilty of enjoying this movie. Why guilty? Because this
film is, yes, "heart-warming" which I never trust. I am still a
bit suspicious of its attempts to make me love it. The Straight
Story, like an imprisioned criminal, has found Jesus, if only
in order to be up for early release; if only for one day. It was
a bit too wholesome for the man that brought us Blue Velvet
and Wild at Heart. The only explanation is that David Lynch
decided to make a movie his mother could go see.
This is it.