David Lynch‘s feature-length debut is a surreal trip through a father’s (Henry Spencer) industrial nightmare. The unforeseen baby is a disturbing reptilian-like mutant, left at Henry’s care, and whose sudden illness prevents him from leaving his apartment.
Cinematographers Herbert Cardwell and Frederick Elmes collaborated with Lynch in the making of Eraserhead, creating a highly textured, black and white tale of an industrial wasteland, filled with shattered glass, menacing metals, electricity, dust, thick liquids, and filth. Henry is trapped in his tiny apartment, in a cold, ugly city, even inside his own nightmares. Everything about the way it is shot amplifies this feeling of claustrophobia, despair, madness, disgust: poorly lit rooms, tight spaces, close shots. In his dreams Henry manifests his desire to erase something, most likely the muntant child. Said dreams are conceptual, highly symbolic, and become increasingly hard to distinguish from reality – providing that strong surrealistic aura that makes Eraserhead a disgusting, eerie, terrific experience.
SCREENSHOTS AFTER THE BREAK