THE FOLLOWING REVIEWS WILL OF COURSE CONTAIN SPOILERS FOR THE TWIN PEAKS SERIES (EXCLUDING SEASON THREE) RELEASED PRIOR TO FIRE WALK WITH ME . AND SO AS NOT TO GET CONFUSING, I WILL CALL THE FILM SIMPLY " FIRE WALK WITH ME " AND FOR THE SERIES AS " TWIN PEAKS ".
Until a few days ago, I hadn't watched any of the films that David Lynch had made. Maybe only one, namely the short film released on Netflix three years ago, What Did Jack Do? . Apart from that, I haven't had the chance to visit his filmography. Until finally I was curious about one of his works that is often said to be an achievement that changed the television drama, Twin Peaks , a series that lasted two seasons and aired from 1990 to 1991.
After the second season of Twin Peaks , the final episode contained a cliffhanger that was never followed up due to the cancellation of the series made by David Lynch and Mark Frost. A year after the second season ends, where we find out that Special Agent Dale Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan) is trapped in Black Lodge and who is in the real world is the evil version of the doppelganger , David Lynch makes Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me which is not a sequel to the series but a prequel, telling the last seven days of Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee) before she was killed starting the first season of Twin Peaks .
That way, the main character of this film is no longer our favorite FBI agent, but the focus of the film refers to the schoolgirl and homecoming queen Laura, who had never previously been shown in person during her lifetime in the Twin Peaks series . But what's interesting is, it's not Laura who was told about the beginning of the Fire Walk with Me . The new film enters Laura's story when it has been running for 30 minutes.
Fire Walk with Me is completely different from the series, if I can say. Not with the story, but with how the film works. Twin Peaks , although during its two seasons also experienced moments of surrealism, it is still a series with a straightforward and clear narrative. In contrast to this film which, with the hands of David Lynch, becomes a film full of magical moments that I don't know whether it has any particular meaning or is just there to complicate the film.
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Let's get to the story. Like I said, this film is divided into two stories. A year before Laura's death case, we follow two agents investigating the death of young prostitutes, Teresa Banks (Pamela Gidley), in the town of Deer Meadow which is adjacent to the town of Twin Peaks. The two agents are Special Agents Chester Desmond (Chris Isaak) and Sam Stanley (Kiefer Sutherland). But while researching a ring related to Teresa, Chester just disappeared without a trace. The disappearance of Chester finally makes Gordon Cole (David Lynch), supervisor of the FBI agents, ordering Dale to investigate Chester's disappearance.
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Where is Chester? That's the question Dale and I ask, as we both jump right into the year after, into Laura's story. There are some clues as to where Chester disappeared, but they are never really explained. It just depends on how we catch it. Likewise with Laura's story, although we know what her final fate was, but we are never explained what caused the killer to haunt Laura for days.
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I really liked the first story of this film, when the investigation started because I loved it when Dale Cooper and Sheriff Harry Truman (Michael Ontkean, and not appearing on Fire Walk with Me ) investigated and looked for the next clue in Twin Peaks . Chester Desmond and Sam Stanley also have the potential to be a really interesting and entertaining duo, with Sam's behavior that is very rigid and formal and is well portrayed by Kiefer Sutherland. It's a shame that their story is only 30 minutes long and without a clear cover.
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Not only that, David Bowie also appears in their story, although he does not meet the two characters but meets Dale, Gordon and Albert Rosenfield (Miguel Ferrer) at the FBI office. Bowie plays Special Agent Phillip Jeffries, who's been missing for two years. He suddenly appeared, then told him about his experience during his disappearance while hysterical and screaming, then he… disappeared again. He only appeared for two minutes. I really regret that because the character has such a huge potential to make Fire Walk with Me even more hypnotic. He's David Bowie, of course I'm sorry he only showed up for two minutes.
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When the story began to enter Laura, one year later after Chester's disappearance, it was with a heavy heart that I didn't like her. Indeed, we know Laura's life before she died, although it's still not very clear (how she got addicted to drugs, or how she continues to be haunted by BOB). BOB, played by Frank Silva - who previously worked as a decorator on Twin Peaks but was immediately chosen by David Lynch as the character BOB because of an accident in the first episode - is still a really scary character.
BOB's personality, which often appears immediately, adds a mystical aura to a film that is full of scenes that run like dreams. Not only are BOB characters appearing more frequently in the series, this film also increases the intensity by presenting nudity and increasing rant. And unfortunately the intensity of this film is still very often not going perfectly, because many moments use that intensity to show a collection of fantasy scenes.
Maybe I'm the only one who can't capture the aesthetics of this film, because I know that the actors in this film are really good, especially Sheryl Lee who plays Laura, someone who is experiencing very strong mental pressure. With her world filled with sex, drugs and BOB that continue to haunt her, Laura attacks psychology in a row, and also affects the psychology of the audience with full of disturbing scenes. It is appropriate to call this film a psychological horror , because that is what happened. In this film we are amazed, confused and afraid.
But again, the many scenes that are mixed up actually make Laura's story, which is already very challenging, can't run smoothly, leaving a messy impression. Or maybe I just wasn't used to watching movies like this, and had to start watching David Lynch's other films. Surrealism films are not in my area. But I really, really like Twin Peaks , especially when the story is focused on the murder case and Dale Cooper is ready to investigate. So I still have mixed feelings about Fire Walk with Me . Maybe I'll come back to see it in the future.
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