7.4/10
80,617
565 user 149 critic

Eraserhead (1977)

Not Rated | | Horror | 3 February 1978 (USA)
Henry Spencer tries to survive his industrial environment, his angry girlfriend, and the unbearable screams of his newly born mutant child.

Director:

Writer:

Reviews
Popularity
2,548 ( 474)

Watch Now

From $3.99 (HD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Blue Velvet (1986)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The discovery of a severed human ear found in a field leads a young man on an investigation related to a beautiful, mysterious nightclub singer and a group of psychopathic criminals who have kidnapped her child.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Isabella Rossellini, Kyle MacLachlan, Dennis Hopper
Lost Highway (1997)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

After a bizarre encounter at a party, a jazz saxophonist is framed for the murder of his wife and sent to prison, where he inexplicably morphs into a young mechanic and begins leading a new life.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette, John Roselius
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

After a car wreck on the winding Mulholland Drive renders a woman amnesiac, she and a perky Hollywood-hopeful search for clues and answers across Los Angeles in a twisting venture beyond dreams and reality.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Naomi Watts, Laura Harring, Justin Theroux
Wild at Heart (1990)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Young lovers Sailor and Lula run from the variety of weirdos that Lula's mom has hired to kill Sailor.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Nicolas Cage, Laura Dern, Willem Dafoe
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A Victorian surgeon rescues a heavily disfigured man who is mistreated while scraping a living as a side-show freak. Behind his monstrous facade, there is revealed a person of intelligence and sensitivity.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, John Hurt, Anne Bancroft
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A young FBI agent disappears while investigating a murder miles from Twin Peaks that may be related to the future murder of Laura Palmer; the last week of the life of Laura Palmer is chronicled.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Sheryl Lee, Ray Wise, Mädchen Amick
Inland Empire (2006)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

As an actress starts to adopt the persona of her character in a film, her world starts to become nightmarish and surreal.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Laura Dern, Jeremy Irons, Justin Theroux
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

An old man makes a long journey by lawnmower to mend his relationship with an ill brother.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Richard Farnsworth, Sissy Spacek, Jane Galloway Heitz
Twin Peaks (1990–1991)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  

An idiosyncratic FBI agent investigates the murder of a young woman in the even more idiosyncratic town of Twin Peaks.

Stars: Kyle MacLachlan, Michael Ontkean, Mädchen Amick
Mulholland Dr. (TV Movie 1999)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

After a car wreck, an amnesiac woman sets out to learn what happened to her with the help of a wannabee actress.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Justin Theroux, Naomi Watts, Laura Harring
Dune (1984)
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A Duke's son leads desert warriors against the galactic emperor and his father's evil nemesis when they assassinate his father and free their desert world from the emperor's rule.

Director: David Lynch
Stars: Kyle MacLachlan, Virginia Madsen, Francesca Annis
Antichrist (2009)
Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A grieving couple retreat to their cabin in the woods, hoping to repair their broken hearts and troubled marriage. But nature takes its course and things go from bad to worse.

Director: Lars von Trier
Stars: Willem Dafoe, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Storm Acheche Sahlstrøm
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Henry Spencer (as John Nance)
...
Allen Joseph ...
...
...
Beautiful Girl Across the Hall (as Judith Anna Roberts)
...
V. Phipps-Wilson ...
Landlady (long version)
...
Jean Lange ...
Grandmother
Thomas Coulson ...
The Boy
John Monez ...
Bum
...
Paul
T. Max Graham ...
The Boss (as Neil Moran)
...
...
Little Girl
Edit

Storyline

A film that defies conventional logic and storytelling, fueled by its dark nightmarish atmosphere and compellingly disturbing visuals. Henry Spencer is a hapless factory worker on his vacation when he finds out he's the father of a hideously deformed baby. Now living with his unhappy, malcontent girlfriend, the child cries day and night, driving Henry and his girlfriend to near insanity. Written by Jacob Samuelson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Where your nightmares end... See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 February 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Eraserhead 2000  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$20,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$7,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(re-release)| (original release)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Though only released at first as a "midnight movie," a number of Hollywood A-list directors saw the film and were impressed by it. John Waters, whose Pink Flamingos (1972) and Female Trouble (1974) played the same venue, often mentioned Eraserhead as a favorite film, urging viewers to see it. Stanley Kubrick reportedly said the same; this was one of the films he made the cast and crew of The Shining (1980) watch to get in the right frame of mind for. Mel Brooks saw it and offered Lynch the chance to direct The Elephant Man (1980); Lynch accepted. George Lucas asked Lynch to direct Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983); Lynch turned it down. See more »

Goofs

Towards the end of the film, there is a picture of what appears to be the Hiroshima explosion hanging over Henry's nightstand. In the next shot, the picture is gone See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Beautiful Girl Across the Hall: Are you Henry?
Henry Spencer: Yes?
Beautiful Girl Across the Hall: A girl named "Mary" called on the payphone in the hallway about an hour ago. She said that she's at her parents and that you're invited to dinner.
Henry Spencer: Oh, yeah?
[after a long pause]
Henry Spencer: Well... thank you very much.
[Henry enters his apartment, while the girl slowly closes the door to hers]
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no opening credits, just a long, tilted close-up of the face of Jack Nance. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Remote Control (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Pete's Boogie
(Previously Unreleased)
Mixed By David Lynch, Dean Hurley
Written By David Lynch, Peter Ivers
© Iver's Song
Label: Sacred Bones
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Not really a movie in the classic sense...
23 August 2004 | by See all my reviews

I've watched Eraserhead countless times. In theaters. Off of the infamous Japanese-subtitled VCR copy. Off of the recent Lynch re-release. From around the late 70s onward. Yes, that long.

I have friends who won't let me recommend movies to them any more.

Anyway, the capsule summary, "Can't be summarized," is pretty close.

First, it is not a movie. It is not a film.

It is a piece of art.

All of the comments I read that attempt to describe it as a movie fail for precisely that reason. If you read the ones that can handle it, they handle it as an art review.

So don't even think of it as a movie. Don't recommend it as a movie. It doesn't work.

I'll also admit that I sat in a haze for decades, absorbed in the imagery. In awe of the impressions. And finally, an image crystallized, an image of what this was a portrait of. (And, of course, I expect this image may change with repeated viewings...) And as I watch it, with this in mind, a continuity appears.

We are living in hell, we just don't realize it.


267 of 398 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 565 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page