Here’s a movie that I would have never seen if it weren’t for Netflix instant streaming. No, this wasn’t recommended viewing (directly at least). I finally got around to watching the cult early 90s TV drama Twin Peaks, which ends rather abruptly after it was pulled by ABC due to a sharp decline in ratings in season 2. I can understand the decision as it took me 3 months to get through 30 episodes, mind you I’ve watched the combined 100+ hours of The Wire and Breaking Bad in about as much time (I’ve seen Breaking Bad twice in its entirety by the way). Anyway, here’s what got us to this point.
The show starts with the discovery of a young woman’s body wrapped in plastic washed up on the side of a river. Identified as Laura Palmer, the town of Twin Peaks, WA is aghast when it learns that a murder could happen in this small logging town. The investigation drew the interest of the FBI so agent Dale Cooper is sent in to check it out. The show mainly follows Cooper’s investigation of the town and its strange population. The shaken community is revealed to be pretty into cocaine and adultery, which were Laura Palmer’s main afflictions that oddly didn’t have a whole lot to do with her murder. They find out Laura’s killer was her own father possessed by a demon spirit named BOB halfway through season 2. This reveal turned viewers away and the rest of the season turned to the story of a new killer targeting Cooper, other younggirlsyadayada…
The season 2 finale is a huge cliffhanger where Cooper appears possessed by BOB and leaving the series unresolved. So David Lynch decides to instead release a series of movies with the first being Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me serving to set up the story of the series. It starts with the investigation of the murder of another young woman Teresa Banks a year before the events in Twin Peaks. Cooper although not originally involved in this, figures that this won’t be the last time he strikes. Then the rest of the movie follows Laura Palmer in the week leading up to her death. She goes to school, does coke, hooks up with her secret lover, does coke, delivers meals on wheels, coke, hangs out with her boyfriend while he gets some more coke, has visions of being raped by her father, coke, prostitutes, coke, and finally killed.
Laura Palmer appeared to be this mysterious, tortured soul living a fast life. But when you see it on screen, the mystique of Laura Palmer seems lost. Though Sheryl Lee’s performance is wonderful, there’s just something odd about seeing Laura Palmer alive. Since she’s the focus of the film, we spend a lot less time with the other zany characters of Twin Peaks and many prominent characters like the Hornes and the law enforcement of the town don’t even appear at all. This film doesn’t really give the series a conclusion, but Cooper being possessed by BOB would not have been a promising situation for the town.