If David Lynch had had his way with La La Land, all of those big Hollywood dreams would be literal dreams. The unconscious mind of Emma Stone’s character would catalyze the fabrication of a whole other realm where love and beauty and artistic success can coexist in such an ambitious place as Los Angeles, while in reality she’s just a struggling actress who’s so jealous of her lover that her feelings fester in bouts of repressively enraged masturbation, and manifest as a tiny and antagonistic elderly couple in a box. La La Land‘s saturated sunset color scheme would feel like the constant threat of imprisonment in an unreality. References to the musicals of yore would menace with their quaintness. Stone and Ryan Gosling’s characters’ young love would fracture as they sit side-by-side, crying and convulsing to John Legend’s music — until John Legend collapses and his singing continues, revealing that it’s all an illusion.
Indeed, the escapism of La La Land could, with a few stylistic tweaks, seem quite Lynchian in its almost surreal old Hollywood nostalgia. And the YouTube channel Trailer Mix now has a glimpse into just how easy it’d be to translate La La Land‘s aesthetic to a more Mulholland Drive-y story. Per the description captioning the video, “everyone knows that La La Land is the feel-good, singing and dancing movie of the year. And with Damien Chazelle nominated for Best Director in this weekend’s Academy Awards, we wondered what the film would look like with an entirely different director and tone.” Here’s the result: