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Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 14 Feb 2013
by kar
In my opinion there is no proof that Diane was abused.

But I think there were two important events in her life that lead to the fact, that Diane
got unnormal guilty feelings when she had sexual desires. To compense this conflict, Diane unconscious
learned to „play“ the nice und unguilty girl to fit the high morally requirements of her parents.

The first event is when she surprised her parents at the bedroom having sex. The parents were very angry, reproached her and maybe spanked her. This is what we see when Adam caught his wife having sex with the poolcleaner.

The second event:
She was seduced by her Dad´s best friend. He awakens her sexual desire and pressured her not to tell it to her dad, because then he will end up in jail and she will loose the love of her parents.
This we learn in the audition scene with Woody.

Go and watch both scenes. Try to imagine how a young girl comes home to early from school, hears a sound from the bedroom and opens up the door...

Then imagine an adolescent beeing seduced by her dad´s best friend (a good looking older man). Every single word fits. By the way, this is a very important scene. I try to explain it in my other post next tuesday.

Try to feel what Diane is feeling.

What do you think about this?

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 15 Feb 2013
by Siku
betty & beatrice.jpg
betty & beatrice.jpg (17.32 KiB) Viewed 5552 times


beatrice.jpg
beatrice.jpg (14.15 KiB) Viewed 5552 times

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 16 Feb 2013
by kmkmiller
briefly (as i've tried to argue in the past) for the movie it's not that big of a deal either way. if it was a TV series, as it was intended, then I'm sure Diane's childhood would have been a lot more relevant.

just to ask the question though:

If Lynch actually put in a flashback (like he did in Wild at Heart with Lula) showing Diane getting raped by an uncle or something, how would that change the rest of the movie?? I'm just not sure that it would have. In this particular case, it would have been a huge distraction from what's really important about the movie. Aside from radically altering the entire mood of the movie.

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 17 Feb 2013
by Siku
It's important also which elements DON'T show themselves - how the dreamer presents or represses these memories.

Flash back would suggest a privileged viewer perspective, so it would change the film, as that's a different way of telling the story.

But the fact or at least possibilty of Diane's abuse casts a different light on Diane's percepection of other events.

Perhaps if we turn over another rock we'll find that the abuse is imagined, or a false memory, or a pretense.

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 17 Feb 2013
by derekfnord
I still don't think that understanding the significance of the Beatrice Cenci painting is essential to understanding the film (because there's no way Lynch could rely on the moviegoer recognizing the painting and knowing its back story). But at the same time, the fact that it's included and (more significantly) featured so prominently in Aunt Ruth's apartment, means that it *is* meaningful on some level. Exactly what the meaning is might be debatable (does it refer to Diane because it's in her dream, or to Aunt Ruth because it's in her apartment (assuming there really is or was an Aunt Ruth), etc.), but the fact that it was positioned so prominently -- both in the apartment and in the framing of the film shots that include it -- means it isn't just random set dressing...

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 17 Feb 2013
by kmkmiller
yes. the camera pans up and over to the painting more than a couple times. Lynch is clearly drawing the viewer's attention to it.

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 18 Feb 2013
by Siku
But the topic is abuse, and the painting is just one of many things pointing to that. I'm not saying there's no ambiguity, but the viewer not recognizing the picture isn't a deal breaker.

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 19 Feb 2013
by blu
The little clues and insinuations about Diane's life before Hollywood (of which I tend to agree some form of abuse was a part) are all part of the rabbit hole.

As derek says, do you need to pick all these things up on the first watch to "get" or enjoy MD? No.

Does that mean that they don't matter? Absolutely not.

The very fact that we're still picking up on some Easter Eggs (for want of a better expression) ten years later shows that there are things going on in the film that we still haven't got anywhere near getting a handle on.

It's what keeps us coming back.

MD can be enjoyed on multiple levels. There are different levels of "understanding". There's understanding the overall framework of the film. There's understanding why Diane dreams the characters the way she does. There's understanding why David chose to put a certain painting in Aunt Ruth's apartment. There's understanding why, say, Diane's emotional reaction to the breakdown in her relationship with Camilla is so profound.

The echoes of abuse do (for me) help to explain certain things like that, but what one person finds utterly paramount to their exploration of MD, another may cast aside as inconsequential. We all have our personal view, and intuit things differently, even if some of us have a certain level of agreement on particular elements.

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 03 Mar 2013
by skytop
I think the abuse theory is credible. Mainly because girl/women being abused by older men in positions of power is a consistent theme throughout Lynch's work (in my opinion). But as blu pointed out there are many ways to interpret MD and I don't think this point necessarily vital to understanding the movie.

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 18 Oct 2013
by Erniesam
In my opinion, the sexual abuse is inherernt to the movie, in fact it is the ESSENCE of the depression of Diane. Without going into the details where one can find clear references to it, I will only lay out the bare essentials to this aproach.

When Diane finally snaps, it isn't the image of a dead Camilla that haunts her, but that of the old couple from the dream, in my opinion her grandparents. Why? Because the origin of her depression IS the sexual abuse by her parents. The fact that she sees her grandparents in stead is because she has repressed their image so deep and has replaced is with that of her perhaps loving grandparents.

What are the clues? During the audition scene Betty says: "My dad is upstairs. I can call him." First of all: why would she call him if he's upstairs? Just like in the rest of the movie, the telephone is a metaphor for a connection with reality. So, her granddad is upstairs, meaning: is in heaven. Why does she call him dad? My gues is that Diane has replaced her parents with her grandparents in her mind, because that was bearable and functioned as a tool of repression of the sexual abuse. We never see or hear a reference to her parents (exept for the situation in Adam's house, which is a repressed metaphorical replay of the abuse).

When you see the grandparents as a replacement for Diane's parents you'll not only have explained the last image of them, but also the first. At the jitterbug-contest Diane has a hard time to place her grandparents there. My guess is, because when the contest took place, her grandparents were already dead. But...I'm of the opinion that the jitterbug-contest did NOT take place, only in Diane's mind. She made it up to give her a boost of self esteem. Although I'm not clear about this aspect of the movie, this is where I tend to place it. But...this segment is off topic on this thread, so maybe I'll start another one. This segment is realy special in my opinion.

So, the sexual abuse to me is the HEART of the movie and of Diane's trauma.

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 18 Oct 2013
by derekfnord
Erniesam wrote:During the audition scene Betty says: "My dad is upstairs. I can call him." First of all: why would she call him if he's upstairs? Just like in the rest of the movie, the telephone is a metaphor for a connection with reality.


I agree with you about there being abuse in Diane's past (or possibly even her present or recent past), but I just wanted to comment on this tidbit. I always took this to mean simply calling out to him... not calling on the telephone. :)

Re: Diane wasn´t abused

PostPosted: 19 Oct 2013
by Erniesam
Derekfnord,

You're right. It certainly can simply mean "calling her dad" in stead of phoning him. That never occured to me, until now. Still, I'd like to think it means both: calling literally in the scene itself and metaphorically to "call" her grant dad, who was already dead during the abuse.