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An Old Tale: The Marriage of Łódź and Los Angeles
in David Lynch's Inland Empire

Richard Martin (Birkbeck, University of London)

David Lynch's work contains some of the most distinctive spaces in modern cinema. In his latest film, Inland Empire (2006), the most symbolic product of American sprawl, Los Angeles, meets its spatial predecessor: the centripetal European industrial city, in the form of the Polish city of Lodz. Through the unexpected marriage of these two places, Lynch incorporates fascinating cultural and historical threads, as well as undermining regular conceptions of both cinema and architecture. This article seeks to explicate Inland Empire's transatlantic pairings, via diverse figures including Frank Gehry, Susan Sontag and Andrzej Wajda. What emerges is "an old tale" which offers new insights on both Inland Empire and Lynch's career as a whole.
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ISSN 1753-5794