Back in 2007, in conjunction with the release of Inland Empire, I had the opportunity to interview David Lynch twice in the same year. This is the second of the two interviews, conducted over the phone and focused on the DVD release of Inland Empire, which he produced and distributed independently through his company Absurda. An edited version was published on MSN, as part of the “What’s in Your DVD Player” series. Here is a longer version of that interview. Lynch talks about movies and DVDs, what his favorite movie is and why commentary is “the worst possible thing a person can do.” – SAx
What’s the last DVD that you’ve seen?
I saw The Hustler last week, with Paul Newman, Piper Laurie, Jackie Gleason and George C. Scott. It’s a great film. It’s black and white and it really sets a place and a time and a world and I really enjoyed watching it again.
I love the photography by Eugene Shuftan, and all the great poolroom footage with the haze and the smoke.
It’s really, really a well made film. Really tight and great performances, really good writing. It’s a very interesting film.
Do you have a favorite DVD?
Sunset Boulevard. Tonight we’re going to the Billy Wilder Theater, and Billy Wilder’s Sunset Boulevard is maybe my favorite world to go into, for sure in the top ten worlds to go into.
Do you ever check out the DVD supplements?
Hardly ever. But I gotta say, on the Inland Empire DVD, they’re worth checking out.
You have of course never done a commentary track, but you do load up the Inland Empire disc with a lot of interesting extras and the “Stories” section could almost be a stand-alone commentary because you talk about so many things around the film.
I believe talking is okay separate from a thing, but a commentary track that goes along through a film, I think is maybe the worst possible thing a person could do. From then on, the film is seen in terms of the memory of that commentary and it changes things forever. Things are rounded if they’re separate. Stories surrounding a film or things surrounding it, that’s a different kind a thing and I think those things are okay.