Inland Empire – The use of a rabbit

This is one of my favourite David Lynch films. It use of awkward camera angles and footage that seems to have been filmed on low resolution cameras, leads the film to have an uncomfortable, voyeuristic atmosphere. In addition, the use of sickly colours throughout, mixed with the graininess of most of the film, also gives the piece a nostalgic air. As a young filmmaker, this is exciting as it proves that you don’t need a good camera to make a good film. The use of sets and filming locations seems minimal and quite low cost, making it seem an achievable project for most.

The one thing that fascinated me the most about this film is the use of rabbit costumes throughout. It made me start to think; what does the rabbit represent?

perverted innocence?

purity?

sex?

optimism?

Rabbits are a symbol of the surreal and obscure. My educated guess would be that is stems from the white rabbit being a symbol of false realities as seen in Alice in Wonderland or a symbol of deception at the hand of a magician. This manipulation of reality and feeling of deception is used thoroughly throughout Inland Empire, putting the audience on edge. This lack of trust in reinforced by the unpredictability of the film from scene to scene as well as the sets having an illogical layout.

This obscurity and feeling of deception is similar to the effect of collage, like Merve Özaslan’s work. It causes the viewer to become disorientated and confused, as the piece contains elements that are visually contradictory. This links to my visual poetry.

 

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