Themes in "Blue Velvet"

3149 Words May 7th, 2002 13 Pages
Exploring the Dark Side: Contrasting Themes in "Blue Velvet"

The subconscious psyche is one of the most fascinating and almost completely inexplicable aspects of human behavior. Even more intriguing than merely the subconscious is the notion of a darker, more repressed side that many individuals refuse to acknowledge exists within them. In David Lynch's film "Blue Velvet," the director attempts to explore the psyche of a young man named Jeffrey Beaumont, most notably the clash between his darker side and "good" side for the first time in his life. Using themes that sharply contrast one another, Lynch provides insight into the character of Jeffrey and the struggle that he is faced with. Jeffrey is in a transitional period of his life,
…show more content…
Lynch chooses to use such stark contrast in an effort to establish not only the differences in one's perception, but of the psyche as well. The opening sequence is used by Lynch as a metaphor for Jeffrey's state of mind throughout the entire film, as Jeffrey realizes he has a dark side yet is trying (most of the time) to suppress it. The town of Lumberton, like Jeffrey, is an idealized version of what America and Americans should be like and yet, much like Jeffrey's mind, it is full of dark secrets and contradictions. One aspect of Jeffrey's psyche being explored is the notion of his battle between innocent love for a young girl and the animalistic lust he possesses for an older, more mature woman. The "good" or innocent side of Jeffrey is personified in the character of Sandy. Sandy is often depicted wearing light colors, with blue eyes and perfectly brushed blonde hair. When Sandy is first introduced into the film, she enters through utter darkness, stepping out of the shadows and into the light in a medium shot. Lynch follows this up with a long reverse tracking two shot in which Jeffrey and Sandy make small talk and innocently flirt with one another. Dorothy's introduction into the film, however, is quite different. The film first truly introduces the audience and Jeffrey to Dorothy with a subjective shot from her closet. After breaking into Dorothy's apartment and
Open Document