In the last 10 years, David Lynch has put out exactly two movies, "Mulholland Dr." and "Inland Empire." But for someone who hasn't made many features lately -- "Empire" was five years ago -- he sure seems to be around a lot. And while far be it from us to say what an artist should be doing with his time -- that's a little too "Dylan shouldn't have gone electric" for our taste -- we can't help but shake our head each time Lynch news pops up that doesn't have anything to do with a new movie. Seems to be happening quite often lately.
The most recent example is an announcement from the prestigious Vienna International Film Festival (or Viennale) that on Wednesday they'll be unveiling Lynch's trailer for this October's edition of the festival. Yes, they announced today that we should check back in on Wednesday to see a 72-second short that Lynch put together. Apparently, anything the man does is noteworthy enough that we need to be informed of its imminent arrival.
This is how it is these days with Lynch. No word on any new feature films, but, hey, there's a solo album on the way in November. Or he's doing a concert film for Duran Duran. Or he's opening a nightclub based on Club Silencio from "Mulholland Dr." Or he's voicing a supporting character on "The Cleveland Show." Or he's serving as the guest artistic director for last year's AFI Fest. Or he's once again talking about doing a documentary on Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of Transcendental Meditation, which has been in the works for years. Honestly, he seems to be doing just about anything other than making another feature.
We feel conflicted complaining about this. Creative people ought to be free to work at their own pace rather than being rushed by the likes of us. But, really, we just object to the excitement that greets each of his little excursions. That excitement is based on his legacy of producing terrific films, but after a while doesn't the slow tease tease tease of minor side projects start to take their toll? The reason why someone like Lynch has such a sterling reputation is because he's made major works. Unfortunately, since 2006 he's just been busy making majorly minor things. Save the excitement for when it matters.