Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Fire Walk With Me

In the immortal words of David Lynch himself, "What the hell??".

Eraserhead I could get. I had even a small foothold when talking about that film, but Fire Walk With Me is absolutely what people think of the term "a David Lynch movie" is. Set as a prequel to the show Twin Peaks but made 2 years after the show at that point wrapped up, this more or less focuses on the final living days of Laura Palmer who from what I can discern the first season of the series delves into her murder investigation. And it almost seems that's what the beginning of the film is setting up, two FBI agents investigate a different case that has tentative links to Laura's future demise but unfortunately because of behind the scenes woes the film got reshuffled and is very different from the original script, so you're rolling with a brief investigation and then the movie shifts gears without a clutch right into the life and experiences of Laura Palmer. I didn't mind that a great deal because I knew this was essentially laying the groundwork for the series to build upon so the different actors for the same parts, the ultimate revelation of Laura's death, and the things that other fans would call inconsistencies I had no issue with because this is my first experience of the world of Twin Peaks. But yeah from the oh so very brief research I did into this apparently people were not too keen on this film when it came out but since has gotten a reappraisal. It's a fascinating experience watching this, because it really drops the pretense of a murder mystery and starts getting weeeeird and experimental, and is so not the movie you have just playing in the background while you file your taxes or cook breakfast. But I'll admit even when you're paying attention it still leaves you befuddled and wondering if someone slipped something in your beverage of choice. But I never ever claim weird and bizarre even to the point of confusion as "bad", even with shit like Killing Of A Sacred Deer that was mindwarping to the state of shellshock but not once did I categorize it as bad. I have seen some inept ignorant incompetent motherfuckers in my life who equate weird and different with bad and I got news for you champ, that's short for champion, this is a batshit movie where I'm swirling in a hurricane of unexplained moments and yet I still have interest and enjoyment with it. There is not one uncommitted individual in front of or behind the camera, everybody did such fantastic work. You couldn't say in a thousand generations this movie's star is not Sheryl Lee, I'm telling you right now man without witness or reward, without a shred of exaggeration or lie, this lady gives one of the most interesting, engrossing, and fantastic performances I have ever seen. I don't think there is an emotion she didn't potray as Laura, I mean a truly special actress. I don't know if I can fully sum up her character and probably never will but I can recommend this movie full force because of her acting alone. I have to say despite the super brief appearances in the long run of FBI investigators Chet, Sam, and Dale I really was digging their scenes and while I'm far from a super fan of crime shows/police procedural kind of stuff I easily got into the groove of their characters so well done on that. Ray Wise as Mr. Palmer did mighty good work even if the character just creeped me the hell out. Is that a stereotype these days of a suburban, straight laced, middle class dad who just seems that he stuffs bodies in a crawl space before having breakfast with the family? Just me? It might be. And like I said all the other aspects of production are great! The sets and the overall design are really damn nice, the cinematography is striking, the sound design has an edge to it, and because the film is so off the wall and experimental that means they really get to play. They get to play with what the camera can do, what kind of shot or effect do we want, what do we want the sound and ambiance to be, it's such a freeing experience when you can do that which is why certain shots and images are gonna stick with you and the strangeness of it all is what makes it stick all the more. I still got emotionally invested, I was shocked at times, puzzling over details, and even fighting back tears at a certain point. It's certainly never boring! I know it ain't for everybody so I can't recommend it to everybody, but if you feel brave enough one day to step into one of the strangest worlds you've ever known I say go for it. Not really too sure what to rate it, but I'd be talking out my ass Ace Ventura style if I said it didn't make me want to watch the show. I don't know when I'm ever gonna talk about Twin Peaks again, later rather than sooner, but I'm walking away from this in a positive mood. I give it 3 stars, 8/10! And we got one more before the day of the birth arrives for me.

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