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August 12, 2017

The Silence & Stillness Of David Lynch’s ‘Twin Peaks’

Twin Peaks” has been a cultural and cinematic phenomenon since its debut in 1990, helmed by cinematic visionary David Lynch. This awesome video essay expertly breaks down the impact of Lynch’s unique directing style and how incorporating stillness is pivotal to the structure and suspenseful nature of the show. Known for his strange and yet fascinating work in both television and film, Twin Peaks is of particular interest because of Lynch’s unique vision, using stillness with great effect leaving the audience spellbound and fully immersed in the mystery of the show.

Stillness and silence are popular filmmaking techniques and while they are used by many they are not always used effectively. Fellow iconic film director Martin Scorsese is well known for his skillful use of silence in his films “Raging Bull,” “Goodfellas” and more. What sets David Lynch’s use of silence apart is that he combines that silence with an absence of action, which creates the uniquely impactful effect that Lynch has become famous for. Dominick Nero explains how this stillness used in different ways can create a vast array of emotions, signify deep meaning or terrify an audience just by the way it’s presented. There is an almost deafening absence of music in his work, deliberate and calculating, a signature we all recognize. Lynch is an expert at conveying meaning with images rather than with words. His imagery is enchanting and powerful but its meaning can be elusive. The blink-and-you’ll-miss-it experience of “Twin Peaks” feels like everything is real and an illusion at the same time; audiences clamor for clues to unravel the sometimes baffling nature of the show that keeps them tuning in episode after episode.

For more on Lynch’s expert use of stillness in “Twin Peaks,” check out the video essay from @Fandor, below.

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