David Lynch is no stranger to the weird and the avant-garde, and his newest short film, available on Netflix, sees a return to the visual style reminiscent of his earliest work.
Following 2017’s renaissance of Twin Peaks and Curtains Up, Lynch unleashed this absurdist film-noir mockery just yesterday. His latest 17-minute piece is a dialogue between the director himself and an oddly augmented furry detainee with a cut-and-pasted human mouth. It’s full of low-budget special effects and clichés, with a storyline that’s, above all, confusing.
The enigmatic short film What Did Jack Do, from David Lynch, is an absurd interrogation of a tormented monkey.
A surreal and strange conversation between the two suit-clad creatures unfolds disjointedly, like it was computer-generated. With lines such as “I know why the chicken crosses the road,” and mentions of the Communist Party, the film is an odd collage of sentences strung together like characters would speak in a dream.
The monkey’s slow monotone outlines the slaughter of a chicken and a passionate love affair. There are painfully pregnant pauses and tense silences, softened only by old film reel textures and distant train horns.
The eerie pastiche explodes into unexpected, mellow song that’s so wacky and diverse that it begs the question of where on earth David Lynch gets these ideas. It’s absurd, illogical, melancholic, and surprisingly triumphant.
Give it a watch here, but have fun following the plot.