Came Back Haunted (David Lynch, 2013, USA)

Came Back Haunted is David Lynch's short film for the lead single from Nine Inch Nails' 2013 album Hesitation Marks. The video opens with an epilepsy warning and quickly shifts into a flash of red and white lights. We are treated to an image of what appears to be a child in a dress wearing a gas mask, overlaid with what appears to be an insect. We then transition to a dark and cloudy sky with lightning bolts flashing through it. We return to the image of the child, overlaid with flashing red squares. Popping through the image for the first time is an image of Trent Reznor singing in close-up. This is intercut with what appears to be a sculpture of a decayed head by Lynch.

After the initial chorus, we are treated to more of Reznor singing, this time intercut with what appears to be a shark's mouth with teeth. The footage of Reznor is shaking, and he appears to be in the spotlight. The shark image is then cut up and interspersed with the decaying head and another animated dancing figure. The second chorus comes in and we see another animation. During the bridge, Lynch returns to the image of the figure in the gas mask. As the final chorus comes in, we are treated this time to what appears to be another sculpture, this time of a head in red with its mouth open. The whole effect is quite disorienting, with the rapidly shaking camera and flashing lights. The song ends with what appears to be a room and what looks like a giant mushroom cloud appearing in the room. The overall vibe of the song fits very well with David Lynch's overall aesthetic, making this one of David Lynch's more interesting short works. It brings to life Reznor's aesthetic.



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