It’s hard to believe that in all of the strange and neurotic fiction that director David Lynch has put out into the world, he hasn’t dipped more than a toe or two into science fiction since his 1984 adaptation of Frank Herbert’s Dune, a production that was also larger than anything else he’s worked on since. So it’s with great relish that we watch this video, which imagines one of sci-fi’s greatest “what if” projects: David Lynch’s Return of the Jedi. Just saying those words makes the hairs rise up on the back of my Wookie’s neck.
Let’s not beat around the bush here. I realize that granting the label “Greatest Mash-Up Video I’ve Ever Seen” to this clip may seem rash, since I’ve probably said that already about a half-dozen others, but these are truly some of my favorite things. Watching Pacific Rim and Godzilla trailers get slapped together is neat, sure, but everything about the above video is delivered perfectly, with the disparate universes melded together into an abundantly disconcerting whole. I mean, it’s already obvious that Richard Marquand’s Return of the Jedi is a pretty weird movie when things are taken out of context, but adding Lynch’s signature weirdness draws out the eccentricities even more.
With an ominous score layering unease on top of discomfort, we’re taking into this strange galaxy via a Lost Highway, a place where Chewbacca may not be the friend we thought he was. There are lots of superimposed images throughout, leading the brain to places that George Lucas never intended. Never in my life had I drawn comparisons between Twin Peaks‘ nightmarish BOB and Darth Vader before, but there’s no turning back now.
And here I’d thought we’d already seen Lynch’s most feared character who utilized a particular mouth attachment.
I can’t picture there being a Red Room on Dagobah, but Yoda talking backwards leads me to believe it’s hidden in the marsh somewhere. And don’t get me started on the final third of the video, when Jedi‘s musical scene in Jabba’s Palace is chopped up to go with “Llorando,” the Spanish version of Roy Orbison’s “Crying,” as sung a capella by Rebekah Del Rio in Lynch’s Mulholland Drive. It’s pure surreality to hear this emotionally-driven song laid over dancing aliens, and I could have nervously barfed when Luke takes off Vader’s helmet to reveal Robert Blake’s freaky voyeur in Lost Highway.
You guys will probably forget about me, but I’ll continue to write about this video on the walls of my closet until I’m years beyond my own death. Big kudos to Samuel C. Spitale, Tyler Ham, David Collins, and the cast for reasserting my belief that this could have been the greatest film ever made.