David Lynch Talks Cinema’s Current State and the Spiritual Experience of Film

For someone who has distanced himself from the very medium that made him an icon, filmmaker David Lynch may not be giving us haunting and heartbreaking feature films anymore but he’s sure doing everything else. And like all his creative endeavors, whether he’s elating us with a gallery full of paintings or sending us swooning with another album, Lynch’s world stays intact no matter the structure, with a psychological through line that penetrates his work, always baring the mark of a true genius. And in speaking to The Independent, he had a lot to say about the state of art and cinema—which has not only changed rapidly in the last few years but dramatically since the last time he put out a full-feature with Inland Empire in 2006. "It’s a very depressing picture," Lynch admits, going on to say:

With alternative cinema – any sort of cinema that isn’t mainstream – you’re fresh out of luck in terms of getting theatre space and having people come to see it. Even if I had a big idea, the world is different now. Unfortunately, my ideas are not what you’d call commercial, and money really drives the boat these days. So I don’t know what my future is. I don’t have a clue what I’m going to be able to do in the world of cinema.
Back in the fall, there was word of a possible Twin Peaks revivial, which I vehemently detested the idea of, but when it comes to television, the format is still a perfect match for Lynch’s affinity for the episodic nature of storytelling and as he says, "I like the idea of a continuing story…television is way more interesting than cinema now. It seems like the art-house has gone to cable." Yet as a proponent for the experiential nature of cinema and being the man who taught me that film could be just that, Lynch explains: 
It’s the same with cinema: if you have a chance to enter another world, then you need a big picture in a dark room with great sound. It’s a spiritual, magic experience. If you have the same movie on a little computer screen with bad sound – and this is the way people are seeing films now – it’s such a shame. It’s a shameful, shameful thing. It’s so pathetic.
So in the meantime, let’s just get excited for The Big Dream which will be debuting in less than a month on Sacred Bones, as well as his upcoming directorial lead on Nine Inch Nail’s first single off Hesitation Marks "Came Back Haunted." And just for good measure, when it comes to Lynch’s famous coffee obsessed ways, he also told The Independent that he, "always associated smoking and drinking coffee with the art life. They go hand in hand. There’s something about drinking coffee and smoking that makes me happy and facilitates thinking. I just really love those things." We hear that one, D.

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