Posts Tagged ‘Twin Peaks’

Twin Peaks Movie PosterThe David Lynch and Mark Frost revival brings back the show without the restrictions of network television as a single 18-hour movie split into chunks and (I’m currently 4 episodes in) all end with a different band performance. Yes, composer Angelo Badalamenti has returned and the nostalgic Twin Peaks theme is intact with a slightly different credit sequence, the mill replaced with the Red Room’s curtains.

Doppelganger Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan), must return to the Black Lodge in order for the real FBI agent Dale Cooper to be freed from his 25 year slumber. But things are completed with a third Cooper (also MacLachlan) throw into the mix. While all of this is going on, other events are transpiring in New York guarded building where a mysterious large glass box has sprung to life and killed its watcher. In South Dakota, a severed head and a headless body have been found and all the various narrative threads have yet to come together in any fully coherent matter.

Off the top of my head the majority of the cast return, those actors who have since passed on even show up as manipulated archive footage, notably Major Garland Briggs (Don S. Davis) floating head, David Bowie’s Philip Jeffries’ character is mentioned. Who knows who else will turn up. Some have passed on since filming the latest series and are acknowledged in the credits including the posthumous appearance of Catherine Coulson’s The Log Lady and Miguel Ferrer, who played Albert Rosenfeld. Those who don’t return have simply fallen out with Lynch and their reasons are well documented in the press.

Lynch has created something just as fascinating as the various directed predecessor and what is most striking is that quirky tone of the old series is recreated without merely forcefully copying it (as the recent X-files tried too hard to do). Lynch is on form here and it’s just as weird as ever. The mix of crime thriller with elements of surrealism, odd humour, soap opera outlandish off beat acting and supernatural horror is as effective as ever. If you’re left flummoxed – that’s the fun, because you’re probably meant to be.

Twin Peaks helped shape much of the modern television landscape and this latest addition is great looking with surprises, thrills and chills – season 3 is an artsy must see.

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600full-twin-peaks--fire-walk-with-me-posterChronicling the last days of a teenage girl that leads to her murder, which is linked to a previous F.B.I case.

Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me like it’s TV series has found its place in entertainment history, no doubt with season 3 of Twin Peaks on the way it’ll find more fans along the way. Firstly it’s probably essential that both seasons of Twin Peaks are viewed prior to David Lynch’s spin off as it will make little sense without its predecessor. As a standalone film it simply doesn’t work unless viewed as a piece of art house as it acts as a prologue and epilogue to the TV show.

Lynch’s Fire Walk with Me is a dark, seedy and edgy prequel with the expected atmosphere, satire and surrealism. The theme music returns along with many of the cast of the original show. Like it’s ground breaking cult TV parent it’s unorthodox, somewhat non linear storytelling with a masked child, a red suited dwarf and its bizarre operatic style and humour. It’s sexually graphic, slow paced, off beat and unpleasant.

Twin Peaks series regulars Lara Flynn Boyle, Sherilyn Fenn and Richard Beymer do not return. There are an array of bit parts from the likes of Lynch himself to David Bowie and Kiefer Sutherland. Donna has been recast by Moira Kelly which is a shame but only from a continuity perspective. Special Agent Dale Cooper Kyle MacLachlan, Ray Wise, Chris Isaak appear to name just a few but the focus is on Sheryl Lee as Laura Palmer throughout. Like the show it’s difficult to judge the performances given the subject matter’s own style.

It charts Laura’s drug abuse, loneliness, shame, guilt, confusion and the devastation of incest. And also deals with the perverse torment of the father. The themes are heavy and are a lot to stomach. This is not fun viewing and caution is advised.

Some critic’s and fans have grumbled it adds nothing new, but I disagree slightly, okay so you know who killed Palmer but it gives you a further insight into her mindset and Agent Cooper’s fate having been trapped in the Red Room and replaced by Bob, there’s hope of escape in the clues that lay in Laura’s foresight laced diary.

Fire Walk with Me does suffer from a TV feel possibly by design for linkage to the show, it’s unlikely due to lack of production values. It’s far from the polished Mullholland Drive (which originally was intended as a spin off film).

Like the series, Fire Walk with Me is one of those fictional worlds that you either buy into it or you don’t. Intended for completist fans only.

twin-peaks-posterAn F.B.I Agent is tasked with solving a young girls murder that appears to be linked to his previous case.

There’s not much to add. Over the last 25 years or more, Twin Peaks has shoehorned a place in cult TV history, there are countless reviews, blogs and websites out there that give in-depth analysis and no doubt with season 3 on the way it’ll find more fans along the way.

Herk Harvey’s Carnival of Souls, Alan Parker’s Angel Heart, Ray Bradbury’s anthology shows, The Fugitive, Outer Limits, The Twilight Light Zone, to name a few all touched on the themes contained in Mark Frost and David Lynch’s Twin Peaks. In 1990 for TV it was ahead of its time, its atmosphere mixed with mystery and symbolism hadn’t been merged in quite the same way. The horror and ‘who is the killer?’ plot was stretched over two seasons, even popping in an abundance of subplots including a who shot J.R-like story – it was also followed by Fire Walk with Me a prequel, part sequel film.

In retrospect it was ground breaking cult TV. It’s unorthodox, somewhat non linear storytelling with a supernatural element is now mainstream, common place and has been tuned and honed since. That said, it’s quirky, operatic, coffee, log and stool humour, maniacal creepy moments, red suited dwarf, a giant and retro 50s style has not been equaled since.

It’s slow paced and off beat. Nevertheless, to its credit it’s impact undoubtedly still resonates right through into the likes of Bates Motel and Hannibal. It’s difficult to judge performances given its nature and script style, but it’s a show that contained some of the prettiest and most wonderfully odd looking characters to grace the tubes of television. Coffee drinking FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper was Kyle MacLachlan’s defining role, dual role Sheryl Lee played homecoming queen Laura Palmer and Madeleine Ferguson who featured briefly throughout. The excellent supporting casting included the likes of Ray Wise, Sherilyn Fenn,Lara Flynn Boyle and Mädchen Amick to name just a few.

Some critic’s and fans have since grumbled it ended on an unforgiving cliffhanger. Personally I never thought that, and liked the bleak ending, you know who killed Laura Palmer and that Agent Cooper is trapped in the Red Room having been replaced by Bob. Yes it does leave loose ends, what happens to this character? What happened to that character? And so on, but none pressing to the main story thread. If you like, Fire Walk with Me gives Cooper’s character hope of escape in the clues that lay in Laura’s foresight laced diary.

Twin Peaks is not as polished as the likes of Mullholland Drive (what originally was intended as another spin off film) and neither should it be coming 11 years later. If there is a crime it’s that it didn’t conclude sooner, rather meandering through a drawn out second season which alienated new viewers and those who wanted focus on the killer plot, not the subplots of minor characters.

The thing is with Lynch’s work, and Twin Peaks with its rural population is no exception – you either buy into it or you don’t.

Recommended slice of TV history for its intended type of viewer only.