Road to Nowhere (Blu-ray Review)21 Aug, 2011 By: Angelique Flores
Box Office $0.04 million
$26.95 DVD, $34.95 Blu-ray
Rated ‘R’ for some language and brief violence.
Stars Cliff De Young, Waylon Payne, Tygh Runyan, Shannyn Sossamon, Dominique Swain, John Diehl.
Road to Nowhere is pretty much summed up by its title. This perplexing David Lynchian drama takes you on a roller coaster ride that goes, well, nowhere. But that doesn’t make the ride with all its twists, drops and headbenders, any less enjoyable.
This is the first feature in more than 20 years for cult filmmaker Monte Hellman. His film within a film within a film is about a filmmaker named Mitchell, who makes a movie about a real young woman, Velma, and her mysterious death. He casts an equally mysterious unknown actress, Laurel (Shannyn Sossamon), as Velma. Working with blogger Nathalie (Dominique Swain), who has been tracking the real case out of her own curiosity, Mitchell mixes up Velma’s story with some conjecture.
It’s hard to tell what’s part of Mitchell’s movie and what’s not, and who’s doing what and why. And there’s not much at the end of the story that illuminates.
The film moves at a snail’s pace in many scenes, without much purpose. But the exotic Sossamon (A Knight’s Tale) is mesmerizing to watch, while Swain (Lolita) turns in an awkward performance.
Bonus features include a comprehensive behind-the-scenes featurette, which I was hoping might offer some insight into the bewildering storyline, but it did not. It was the usual interviews of cast and crew gushing all over each other.
The featurette of the Q&A from the Nashville Film Festival with Hellman and writer and producer Steve Gaydos is poorly shot and mostly consists of Gaydos speaking, rather than Hellman. Again, nothing too enlightening there, either.