Netflix’s best new release is another slice of surreal heaven from David Lynch. The black and white short film, “What Did Jack Do?” clocks in at only 17 minutes, which is actually the perfect amount of time. David Lynch plays a detective who interrogates Jack Cruz, a capuchin monkey, who is a suspect in a murder investigation. In a surprise bit of casting, David Lynch also plays the monkey, using the loud, forceful voice of his character, Cole, from Twin Peaks, with a slight Southern accent. The monkey, an amalgam of Lynch and a monkey, is actually the better actor, with soulful eyes that show regret, duplicitousness and yes, even love.
The dialogue sometimes sounds like Lynch just had a party and everyone wrote random old film quotes and cliché sayings on pieces of paper, then threw them on the floor for Lynch to collect and type up. At other times the dialogue is almost profound. This 2016 film noir is the closest Lynch has gotten to the stripped-down genius of “Eraserhead.” There is even a lovely musical performance reminiscent of the Radiator Lady’s Song.