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Story Structure and Meaning of Mulholland Drive - Movie Review Example

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Mulholland Drive is a psychological Thriller, written and directed by David Lynch. It was produced with a budget of 15 million Dollars. From Lynch's initial idea as a concept for a TV series during the 1990's to Mulholland Drive's release in 2001, the production took several years.

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Story Structure and Meaning of Mulholland Drive
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Story Structure and Meaning of Mulholland Drive

Download file to see previous pages... The film tells the story of young, naïve Betty, who arrives in Hollywood to become a famous actress. Betty is tangled up in a mystery involving another woman who is suffering from amnesia after a car accident, Rita, and a film director, Adam. Towards the end of the film it becomes apparent that Betty is actually an actress called Diane who is tormented by nightmarish visions after she ordered her ex-lover Camilla to be killed. Diane's guilt and dark visions become unbearable and in the end she kills herself. Main character Betty Elms is introduced at 1.40 minutes during the pre-title sequence. The first act starts after this sequence, at 2 minutes. The 2nd main character, Rita (Camilla), is introduced at 4.20 after the title sequence. Antagonist number 1- the monster behind the dinner Winkie’s is introduced in the 16th minute. ...
The first act is therefore 38 minutes long. From now on, little hints that seem to lead to the answer of the main question are given. First, it is revealed that Rita's purse is full of money and it also contains a mysterious blue key. Then, Rita remembers the name 'Diane Selwin' in the 48th minute. This realization triggers a whole new set of obstacles for Rita and Betty. They find Diane dead in her apartment. Then it is revealed that the contract killer is looking for Rita. Adam meanwhile has multiple conflicts to deal with as well: he gets sacked from his own film, his wife cheats on him, and he is broke. A mysterious cowboy tells him to cast Camilla Rhodes in his film in order to sort out all his problems. When he does, Adam seems to be safe and doesn't need to fear the reappearance of the threatening cowboy any longer. I believe the climax to be the scene when Diane splits up with Camilla (120 minutes), as this is the turning point in Diane's life: her jealousy will drive her to commit murder. So the 2nd act would be from the 40th to the 120th minute, making it 80 minutes long (consequently, the 3rd and final act is 20 minutes long.) Therefore, Mulholland Drive's 40-80-20 structure fulfills the usual 3 act structure formula for screenplays perfectly. The general formula for screenwriters states that the first act is usually twice as long as the last act and that the 2nd act makes up the biggest part of any movie (usually two thirds). The ending is tragic-the main character Diane kills herself as she can't cope with her guilt and nightmares any longer. From the moment she made the decision to hire the killer, her tragic fate was sealed. The main subplot is Adam's struggle to make his movie. It starts when Adam’s character is introduced in the 26th ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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