Movie Comment: Having finally gotten around to
The Straight Story (Juliet Clark: "If you're in a bundle of sticks, you can't move"), it's nice to find out that Paul Verhoeven isn't the only Hollywood director with the courage to flaunt his interest in fascism.
The odd thing is that so many reviewers have acted as if the movie is an anomoly in David Lynch's career. He's always maintained good fascist family values: drugs, perversion, urban life, and foreign things are evil; tidiness, lawns, and young Aryans are good. It's just that this time round he didn't try so hard to creep us out with his idea of "evil." For that relief, I'm willing to count it as the best thing he's done since the full-bloodedly Victorian Elephant Man.
But relief and Freddie Francis aren't enough to bring it to the level of his first, where the creepiness came from within. Or, for that matter, to the level of Starship Troopers. I mean, which Nazi visual trope do you think looks coolest on the big screen: bucolic nostalgia or shiny uniforms?
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