Lynch’s black comedy, crime, romance film Wild at Heart is one of the more interesting subjects in his filmography. Early screenings of the 1990 movie saw audiences actually leaving the theatre, largely due to a graphic torture scene that revelled in violence and shock value. Since those showings, which led to some comprehensive editing, the film has endured some turbulent critical discussions. It’s a frequently revisited film in Fincher’s legacy, that any film enthusiast can find some fun in.
One of the most enjoyable things about Wild at Heart is viewing the performances of Nicholas Cage and Academy Award winning Laura Dern in a 2021 context. In my young mind, Cage is an enigmatic, strange actor who has been memed beyond belief, while Dern is an Academy Award winning Hollywood sweetheart. Seeing them in this close embrace as romantic interests is quite bizarre and intensely watchable. It also functions well as a road movie, taking the characters on a ride filled with rewarding twists and turns. The violence of this film also walks on a kind of tightrope, probably explaining the variety in critical reviews. It’s a perfect movie to argue and debate over, which should really be the end goal of a lot more movies. Wild at Heart is still fiery and controversial 30 years later, and a worthy film to remember in Lynch’s legacy.