[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/DavidLynch1.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:300:David Lynch has a chicken. Your argument is invalid.]]

->"''It makes me uncomfortable to talk about meanings and things. It's better not to know so much about what things mean. Because the meaning, it's a very personal thing, and the meaning for me is different than the meaning for somebody else.''"
-->-- '''David Lynch''' [[TrueArtIsIncomprehensible on most of his movies]].

David Keith Lynch (born 1946) is a widely acclaimed and influential director of film and television. Like Creator/AlfredHitchcock and Creator/AkiraKurosawa, he was originally trained as a painter. He made a short film called ''[[{{Squick}} Six Men Getting Sick]]'', which won a cash prize. From this point forward, he would be a professional filmmaker.

Some of the obvious influences on his films are Creator/FedericoFellini, Creator/BillyWilder, ''Film/TheWizardOfOz'', 1950s pop music (and [[TheFifties '50s]] culture in general), [[{{Film/Dracula 1931}} Tod]] [[Film/{{Freaks}} Browning]] and [[Film/UnChienAndalou Luis Bu˝uel]]. Some of his frequent collaborators include Kyle [=MacLachlan=], Creator/LauraDern, Isabella Rossellini, Angelo Badalamenti, and the late Jack Nance.

If you watch one of his works, expect some type of severe head trauma to play a role. Also, pay close attention to use of white noise and ambient sounds.

His daughter, Jennifer Chambers Lynch, is also a film director. Her best-known work (and certainly [[NoSuchThingAsBadPublicity most infamous]]) is 1993's ''Film/BoxingHelena''. And no, it doesn't involve boxing gloves.
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Mr. Lynch's filmography includes:
* Many short films, television commercials and music videos
* ''{{Film/Eraserhead}}''
* ''Film/TheElephantMan''
* ''{{Literature/Dune}}''
* ''Film/BlueVelvet''
* ''Film/WildAtHeart''
* ''Series/TwinPeaks'' (TV series; later received a theatrical prequel in ''Film/TwinPeaksFireWalkWithMe'')
* ''Film/LostHighway''
* ''Film/TheStraightStory'' -- Wait for it... '''''[[PlayingAgainstType a G-rated Disney movie -- with a coherent plot]].'''''
* ''Film/MulhollandDrive''
* ''Film/InlandEmpire''
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!!Tropes in Mr. Lynch's movies and life include:
* AlanSmithee: For the long version of ''Dune''.
* AmnesiacDissonance
* ArcWords: There is not a single David Lynch film that doesn't depend on the use of repeated cryptic phrases to set a spooky or dreamlike mood.
* BigOlEyebrows: The Mentats in ''Dune''. And, indeed, Lynch himself.
* BodyMotifs: Injuries and/or deformities to the face and/or head
* CircusOfFear: The Elephant Man tries to escape one
* CrypticConversation: All the time.
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: Lynch is certainly one of these. Creator/MelBrooks once described him as "Jimmy Stewart from Mars." He also has a Twitter account. He posted twice about finding out whether he's connected to the moon and three times about buying an ax.
** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ut6zdE8qWj0 Without cheese there wouldn't be an Inland Empire.]]
* DadaComics: His comic ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Angriest_Dog_in_the_World The Angriest Dog in the World]]'' inspired ''Webcomic/DinosaurComics''. Every strip has the same repeated panels of the dog straining against his chain.
* DerangedAnimation: Occurs in his short films and music videos. A particular example would be the web series [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DumbLand ''Dumb Land'']]
* DaylightHorror: He sometimes likes to set scary moments during daylight hours, often in normal, suburban locations. See, for example, the Winkies scene in ''Mulholland Drive''.
* [[PlayingAgainstType Directing Against Type]]: ''The Straight Story'' is a sweet, gentle movie, based on a true story, about an elderly man who travels several miles on his lawnmower to visit his estranged brother. It actually does bear a lot of the subtler trademarks of Lynch's direction, though.
* [[spoiler:DyingDream]]: ''Mulholland Drive''. Or is it?
* EmergingFromTheShadows: Often seen in his films.
* TheFifties: None of his works are actually set in the fifties, but most of them are visually and thematically very clearly influenced by the era.
* FisherKing: In ''Dune''
* GainaxEnding: Most of his films lack a comprehensible ending, including ''Twin Peaks'' but [[AvertedTrope excluding]] the aptly-named ''The Straight Story''.
* GrotesqueGallery
* LeFilmArtistique
* LicensedGame: ''Dune'' received one in the form of an AdventureGame with some strategic elements.
* LighterAndSofter: ''The Straight Story''. No explanation required.
* LouisCypher: Some of Lynch's creepiest characters, such as the Man in the Planet, the magician in "Silencio" and (possibly) the Cowboy are heavily implied to be this. ''Lost Highway'''s Mystery Man is either this or the AnthropomorphicPersonification of [[spoiler: sanity.]]
* MagicalRealism: Most of his films fall into the genre in some way or another. Some are realistic but extremely bizarre (''Blue Velvet'', ''The Straight Story'') while others go into the realm of pure fantasy (''Twin Peaks'') and beyond (''[=Eraserhead=]'', good god, ''[=Eraserhead=]''...). The rest are, well.... somewhere in between. [[MindScrew It's not like we can really be sure or anything.]]
* MetaTwist: ''Blue Velvet''
* MindScrew: Mr. Lynch is a mental Lothario.
* MythArc: Averted trope
** ''WildMassGuessing'', however, is put on another scale of existence.
* NightmareValley: Some of his commercials, and Michael J. Anderson's role in ''Mulholland Drive''.
* NonActorVehicle: Lynch loves casting singers in acting roles. This starts with Sting's performance in ''Dune'', continuing to David Bowie and Chris Isaak appearing in ''Fire Walk With Me'', and Marilyn Manson and Henry Rollins have cameos in ''Lost Highway''. Finally, Billy Ray Cyrus has a hilarious cameo in ''MulhollandDrive''.
* NothingIsScarier
* OstentatiousSecret: ''Mulholland Drive'' has a mysterious blue box, which has a matching blue key. It is shown to open once or twice, though the MindScrew makes it hard to tell what if anything is going on.
* ProductionPosse and SpiritualSuccessor: Many of his films share themes, crew, actors and [[spoiler:occasionally even characters]]. WordOfGod is that ''Lost Highway'' and ''Twin Peaks'' are in the same universe, which raises a few questions about the roles of Jack Nance and David Bowie.
* PsychicNosebleed: When Paul takes the Water of Life in ''Dune''. Quite possibly Henry's nosebleed in ''[=Eraserhead=]'', even though the trope didn't really exist when that movie was made.
* TheResolutionWillNotBeTelevised: ''Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me'', although it doesn't really resolve much.
* RuleOfScary: ''Hoo boy''.
* ScareChord: He is ''really'' good at these.
* SeeminglyWholesomeFiftiesGirl: [[AuthorAppeal A favorite character type]], most notably in the form of Laura Palmer.
* SlidingScaleOfRealisticVersusFantastic: Fucked with. Brutally.
* {{Slipstream}}
* StylisticSuck: The eight ''Dumb Land'' animated shorts, which are very crudely drawn and animated.
* SurrealHorror
* SurrealHumor: Here and there.
* TomatoInTheMirror: Part of the plot of ''Mulholland Drive'', maybe.
* VillainProtagonist: About half of his films feature one, [[AlternativeCharacterInterpretation at least to some extent.]]
* WorldOfSymbolism: His movies have a reputation for falling into this category. Though some of them do have a comprehensible story, there's simply no way to take movies like ''[=Eraserhead=]'' and ''Inland Empire'' on anything except a very symbolic, fever-dream level.
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