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Eraserhead

Jack Nance , Charlotte Stewart , David Lynch    DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

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From auteur David Lynch comes this nightmarish classic in which a young man living in an industrial wasteland comes to grips with parenthood. Henry Spencer (Jack Nance) inhabits a surreal world rife with grotesque characters and bizarre creatures, not the least of which is his own child, a hideously deformed, squalling aberration. A study in the macabre, this early film features the arresting imagery and dark humor characteristic of Lynch's work.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
I'm trying to figure this film out. The more you watch it the more you understand it. It keeps it's power each time you watch. Is it scary? YES. Is it funny? YES. Is it good? Well, it's not for everyone. Only for the intellectual person who loves horror that not only scares you, disturbes you, and makes you laugh, but also one that makes you think. Fans of this should check out Jacob's Ladder, and fans of Jacob's Ladder should take it a step up and see this oddball. I love it, because it is so weird. You must buy it. Technically, Eraserhead is an edifying combination of talent, effort, minimal budget and sheer determination. Shot on black & white stock, excellent use is made of light and darkness, contrasts, shadow and texture to enhance the atmosphere. Elements of early European horror are inescapably obvious, while it's in the intangible symbolism that Bunuel and the avant-garde comes to mind. In harmony with the visuals, Lynch makes exquisite use of the available sonic landscape. A procession of sounds (hums, clanks, rumbles, squeaks and cries) fill in for the lack of dialogue, suggesting an all-encompassing technological nightmare. People like Henry are cogs in a world of steam, fire and coughing pipes (contributing to his alienation). However, Eraserhead is not a film that you can watch and expect to be mindlessly entertained by. To achieve more than boredom and frustration, a little effort needs to be put into resolving the symbolism, throwing light upon what initially seems to be a darkened room. If you can't do this, at least appreciate Henry's awesome hairstyle!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
I'm trying to figure this film out. The more you watch it the more you understand it. It keeps it's power each time you watch. Is it scary? YES. Is it funny? YES. Is it good? Well, it's not for everyone. Only for the intellectual person who loves horror that not only scares you, disturbes you, and makes you laugh, but also one that makes you think. An open-ended metaphor with the tone of a nightmare, David Lynch's debut feature combines disturbing visuals with what may be an even more disturbing sound design to create an unforgettable film that's affecting on a visceral level. A Cronenberg-ian discomfort with the simple fact of physical existence courses through Eraserhead, beginning with, but not limited to, matters of sexuality and reproduction. In an early scene, Lynch turns even a family dinner into a horrific affair, emphasizing the inherent grotesqueness of the mere act of eating. The later introduction of a deformed, extremely vocal child seems not the least bit out of place in a world in which even the most mundane aspect (a radiator not the least among them) is notable for its ability to disturb. While Lynch would rarely return to the outright fantasy worlds he explores here, Eraserhead nonetheless sets up the obsessions that would follow him through his career, particularly the ability of the seemingly ordinary to unsettle upon closer observation. Fans of this should check out Jacob's Ladder, and fans of Jacob's Ladder should take it a step up and see this oddball. I love it, because it is so weird. You must buy it.
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Format:DVD
Eraserhead is tough to explain. I love it, but find it hard to watch at times. This film seems to invoke feelings of isolation, depression, and sheer wierdness within the viewer (at least me as a viewer). It is truly a nightmare (imagine, as you watch, that this was a dream you had last night and that you have just awakened from that dream). I think that David Lynch did a great job with the imagery, sounds, etc... If hell has a waiting room, the land of ERASERHEAD is it. It's where things just are the way they are and there really isn't any escape. The characters in the movie are set fixtures who will never be anything more than they are. It is a world darker than most people's reality. I hope that soon this film will make it to the DVD market because it is truly a great film, although, not for all (and I can understand that). A close match for this film in my opinion is Santa Sangre directed by Alejandro Jodorowsky.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Eraserhead-Alienation In the Modern world Dec 20 2003
Format:DVD
Eraserhead poses many questions for viewers but allows few answers. The setting reminds me of something out of a Charles Dickens novel/only darker.Perhaps one could say this is work somewhat like Dickens but with 21st century themes.
Some have viewed it as social commentary which may include: alienation of modern man in a dwindling post production economy or maybe the power man has over life and death through abortion. These are issues almost any young man/woman faces in the modern era. My favorite scene is the dance number where a young woman continues her routine despite a rather grotesque physical occurence. And of course there is the baby --that wondeful shrieking child. (I don't want to ruin this for anyone so I will say no more).
This is no date movie unless both parties are heavy into the art/philosophy/theme thing.
The use of B/W film is great-A masterpiece -- superb!!
tingfish
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "But what the hell do they know, I said?" Dec 2 2003
By Lao Che
Format:DVD
If you're reading this, then you've seen this movie or are at least curious what all the hype is all about?
The late Stanley Kubrick, the only major filmmaker Lynch has cited as a direct cinematic influence, believed that ERASERHEAD was one of the most perfect "cinematic experiences" created to date. This movie has enjoyed success on the midnight movie circuit for years, particularly in NYC where it ran almost every night for something like five years straight. I've seen it on big and little screens in three different states. Insofar as interpretations are concerned, I've long since tossed all that out the window. In terms of rational comprehension, ERASERHEAD is the fabled big fish that remains brilliantly elusive of any attempts to capture it.
This movie gets better, and more humorous, every time I watch it: in my opinion - ERASERHEAD is the cinematic experience that comes the closest to capturing "dream logic", next to the equally brilliant WAKING LIFE. If you ever get the chance, watch ERASERHEAD in a movie theater with a great sound system - you will understand why Stanley Kubrick was moved enough to make his statement. It's like experiencing someone else's dream - the ultimate act of voyeurism? As if I was granted audience to a demonstration of delicate brain surgery, and catching glimpses of the patient's face throughout the operation (particularly the opening scene).
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Most recent customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Ummmmm...what am I looking at?
While at some point in the film I did get a Twilight Zone feel, most of the time I was just wondering what the heck I was looking at. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mayor Maynot
4.0 out of 5 stars DVD details
-> ONLY applies to DVD released by 'raro video' ASIN: B004LW5W1U

Film: 7.5/10
Picture quality: 8.5/10
Aspect ratio: 1.78:1 (1.37:1 orig. Read more
Published on Sept. 22 2011 by mickey_one
5.0 out of 5 stars Just creepy
Some films try to be odd or bizarre, but Eraserhead is just strange and creepy without trying. Don't try to figure out what David Lynch is trying to say with this film, it's just... Read more
Published on April 14 2011 by Kevin Macpherson
5.0 out of 5 stars Nightmarish world...
This is perhaps David Lynch's best film. Eraserhead came out in 1978 and has been a cult favourite ever since. It is a surreal story filmed in haunting black and white. Read more
Published on Sept. 24 2010 by Edmonson
4.0 out of 5 stars A Real test of patience that will blow your mine!,
I swear to you in the beginning of this film I was going to throw this movie in the trash but as it progress I grew to like it. Read more
Published on Oct. 26 2007 by Jenny J.J.I.
5.0 out of 5 stars An Experience
Many viewers of David Lynch's Eraserhead have exhausted all avenues of erudition to decipher the complex pandoras box of Lynch's debut film. Read more
Published on Nov. 4 2003 by Brandon DiSabatino
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing...
Seeing as I am sixteen, I expect many reading this review will have little regard for it. However, I still find it imperative to write about my experience with this film. Read more
Published on Oct. 19 2003 by spoon_man
1.0 out of 5 stars pencilneck
A mess. Don't waste your time. Two of the most overrated film directors of all time are Stanley Kubrick and David Lynch--oh yeah, Hitchcock is another one. Read more
Published on June 12 2003
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