Google+ Cinema Viewfinder: Twin Peaks Is Dead, Long Live Laura Palmer

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Twin Peaks Is Dead, Long Live Laura Palmer

by Joel Bocko

This is the first in a four-part series between Joel Bocko and Tony Dayoub. Joel has the first post.

"When you told your secret name, I burst in flames, and burned..."
-"Floating", written by David Lynch, 1989


Let's talk about the final day of Laura Palmer's life. Not the night with its cocaine binges, woodland orgies, and bloody murders, but the morning before, as depicted in Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me. Remember that soggy bowl of cereal, abandoned by the trembling teenager while her father tries to cheer her up? Or Laura's jittery mother steeling herself with a cigarette, her blank, exhausted inner state almost as ugly and jagged as her daughter's raw wound? And who can forget the ferocious hatred in Laura's eyes, years in the making, as she growls at her astonished father in her bedroom: "Stay...away from me..."? By the time we are submerged in Laura's woozy afternoon at high school, her disorientation overpowers us. Swooningly subjective dips and pans, time-lapsed clocks intercut with blurry crowds, high-angled perspectives pinning Laura to a ground that is sliding away beneath her feet–if these are not the most adventurous techniques David Lynch has ever employed, they are among his most compassionate. We've burrowed deeply into Laura's consciousness, losing ourselves on a death trip that few were willing to take.


1 comment:

Joel Bocko said...

Obviously we'll plunge into this more in the ongoing conversation, but as I'm working on a lot of Lynch pieces for the following month, I'm realizing Fire Walk With Me might actually be my favorite Lynch film, period (though perhaps I've also seen Mulholland Dr too many times). So fresh and provocative. I even dig the Deer Meadow stuff!

Thanks again for inviting me to the discussion, Tony.