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David Lynch

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Plot Summary

In David Lynch's "dream of dark and troubling things," Henry is left alone in his apartment to care for his deformed baby and has a series of strange encounters with the beautiful girl across the hall and the woman living in his radiator.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 44
  • Fresh: 40
  • Rotten: 4
  • Average Rating: 8.2/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: It represented a monumental shift in how movies are seen and digested -- one that raised the level of aptitude and film literacy throughout the world. – Douglas Pratt, Hollywood Reporter, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: What a masterpiece of texture, a feat of artisanal attention, an ingenious assemblage of damp, dust, rock, wood, hair, flesh, metal, ooze. – Nathan Lee, Village Voice, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: Lynch, as he does with all his films, refuses to explain anything, although he does say that he has yet to read an interpretation that matches his. – V.A. Musetto, New York Post, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: Some of it is disturbing, some of it is embarrassingly flat, but all of it shows a degree of technical accomplishment far beyond anything else on the midnight-show circuit. – Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader, Jun 24, 2010

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Know what you are getting into- A fascinating surrealist nightmare

This film is not for everyone. It is disturbing, unpleasent, and doesn't follow the traditional plot structure the vast majority of movies to. This is a surreal film, with a very light story, and where anything can happen at any time. It won't make sense. However, every shot is imagery and a metaphor. How you interpret the movie is up to you. On the technical side, the set direction is inspired, the lighting perfect, and the sound magnificant. Movies like this are a rare breed, and your enjoyment would depend on what you put into your viewing.


David Lynch is brilliant when it comes to capturing the sounds, feel, look and timing you can only remember and experience in having nightmares. Not violent dreams, or dreams where you’re gonna die, but the type where you are creeped out and have no idea what to expect or think. There’s no logic, your brain and body freak out because your subconscious and unconscious have completely taken over.
In fact, a lot of nightmares I’ve had make way more sense.
This movie is not a story and not entertainment, it is an experience pure and simple.
My favorite scene in this, and there’s no spoilers here: is the nightmare sequence and the whole part where a little boy takes Henry’s head to some guy who uses a piece of the head to make actual eraser heads.

Everyone has their own interpretation, just like Lynch’s MULLHOLLAND DRIVE which i like better. Anyway, if I were to try to apply some logical sorting out of the themes and symbolism, here’s what I’d say:
I'm far from a film scholar but I think ERASERHEAD is about much more than the anxieties and regrets of fatherhood. It's more about all life. It seems to be more about the meaninglessness and lack of control in life. The unconscious trudging through it. Am I wrong? Does it matter? The moon man in ERASERHEAD seems to symbolize God asleep at the controls or not good at his job. The eraser aspect is regretting mistakes.

For what it is, I can only rate it as great because you can’t really compare it to traditional Hollywood movies or actual narratives, this is more the style of French New Wave, art house type surrealism.


Even though he went to do a few really interesting films, David Lynch has yet to surpass the absolute perfection of Eraserhead. I loved the film from the first time I rented the video over twenty years ago. It places third (behind Luis Bunuel's L'Age d'or and Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange) on my list of All-Time Favorite Films. To excessively review the film is to ruin a first time viewer's experience, but ne forewarned there is no "plot" or any stable ground to be found here. What I love about it is that it yields to so many interpretations and alters from viewer to viewer. Seven years of Lynch's life were devoted to making this film. In my opinion, it is one of most original American film ever made and has no antecedents in any other genre of film. The closest realive to Eraserhead would have to found with the Surrealists of the 20's and 30's and their explorations of the internal world of the human mind and it's importance in the human character. I have two interpretations of Eraserhead. The first and most obvious is that this is the nightmare of man who is entirely unprepared for marriage and fatherhood and distorts everything to look monstrous. The second that this is the nightmare of man who has killed his wife and child and this is his mind's way of disguising the deed by making everything and everyone into some sort of mutation. David Lynch never reveals his own interpretation, but says that "no one's got it right so far." Than there is the baby. It is an amazing special effect that Lynch refuses to reveal how he created it. I have said more than enough. I envy enough's first viewing of Eraserhead. It was a truly profound experience for me and realized that film could be so daring and exciting.

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  • $19.99
  • Genre: Drama
  • Released: 1977

Customer Ratings

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