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David Lynch questions a monkey in short film now streaming on Netflix

David Lynch appears in a scene from his

David Lynch appears in a scene from his short film "What Did Jack Do?" Credit: Netflix

A rarely seen, black-and-white short by avant-garde filmmaker David Lynch premiered on Netflix Monday, his 74th birthday.

Made in 2016 and having played at France's Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain in 2017 and at the 2018 Festival of Disruption in Brooklyn, the 17-minute "What Did Jack Do?" stars Lynch as a hardened, cigarette-smoking detective at a train station café, interviewing a live-action, anthropomorphic monkey about a murder. The defiant capuchin, named Jack Cruz and credited as "himself," speaks with a voice that may be Lynch's own.

With film noir dialogue and atmosphere, the two play verbal cat-and-mouse as the back story unfolds. "Twin Peaks" auteur Lynch wrote, directed, edited and did sound design, among other contributions — including co-writing the love song Cruz warbles in a strange interlude. Lynch has not commented publicly on the film's surprise release.

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