Northwest Passage: A Twin Peaks Fanedit

Q2 has done it. He completed Northwest Passage, his highly anticipated feature film edit of the Twin Peaks television series. By focusing merely on the Laura Palmer story and leaving other subplots on the cutting room floor, he was able to reduce the 2-season runtime from 980 minutes to 300. All killer, no filler!

That’s five hours of Twin Peaks from a different, less Lynchian but nevertheless interesting perspective. On the other hand, it also means next-to-door-zero Evelyn Marsh and Little Nicky! For those who haven’t seen Twin Peaks yet (unlikely if you’re reading this blog, but still) we recommend watching the show in its entirety first before watching this cut. If you have seen the show a few times already, Q2’s creative transitions and his ability to delay the revealing of the killer will surely surprise you.

I felt it needed to focus just on Laura’s murder and all other stories need to be reduced or eliminated. By doing this many characters are either never introduced or have limited screen time. This may anger some fans, but in creating a “feature film” (or extended feature film, I suppose) sacrifices had to be made. But that’s why we still have the original source material to go back; to revisit a town like Twin Peaks uncensored, as originally intended by the creators.

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Simply, if there was a sub-plot that wasn’t needed for the Laura Palmer story it was axed. I’m sure for the purist this is blasphemy, but I urge those people to use their imagination and pretend “Twin Peaks” the series never existed. Virtually all scenes with Catherine Martell, Audrey Horne, Shelly Johnson, and Josie Packard have been removed. The scene where the killer is revealed has been tweaked extending the mystery until the end. Some footage from the final “Twin Peaks” episode has been incorporated.

Northwest Passage, Twin Peaks as a film

To download the Northwest Passage fanedit (a few gigabytes of data, mind you), you have to download the URL container of your choice from fanedit.info. Look for the red colored DVD cover and choose your preferred format from the links underneath (AVCHD DVD9, SL DVD5 NTSC or MP4).

Extract the URL container from the just downloaded zip file and open it with JDownloader. Now hit the Play button to start downloading the files from MegaUpload. If you don’t have a premium account, this could easily take half a day to complete.

UPDATE: The entire edit made it to YouTube in two parts.

UPDATE #2: You can download the video file in different formats (including 720p MP4) here.

UPDATE #3: Check the comments for the latest download instructions and/or links.

» Visit the fanedit’s release page.

» Watch the teaser again.

Pieter Dom

Written by Pieter Dom

Founder and curator of Welcome to Twin Peaks since 2011. Bobsessed since March 1991.

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  1. I was just talking about this with someone the other day. It’s very well-done. When I first heard about it, I was concerned how the 4×3 full-framing would convert to the 16×9 widescreen that they were outputting this as. They did a great job with it and it’s only noticeable in a few places.

  2. I must admit, I was at first sceptical of this fan edit. I did not believe that anyone could sift through all of the disparate elements of the TV series and bring enough of the relevant parts together to form a sensible whole. But the edit is surprising in its conciseness and simplicity. It really does adhere to the main plot line while retaining many of the “Lynch-isms” that made the original series so unique. For one thing the entire edit radiates with that warm golden-hued glow and slightly “upped” contrast, which made the series so identifiable to the viewer when it graced our TV screens all those years ago.

    My only criticisms are that the contrast on the edit seems to go a bit too high at times, making the characters seem less like radiant beings and more like strange aliens. I can only conclude that there was a slight bug or incorrect setting in the editing software. There are also a few consistency problems that could leave a viewer perplexed if unfamiliar with the original series, e.g. a hair style appears to change rapidly between scenes and a bump on the head goes completely unexplained! I also feel that the conlusion is a bit too rapid while the final giant/dwarf dream sequences could have been cut back considerably. But these problems are trivial and minor.

    I am sure a lot of Lynch purists will argue that the edit is more like a typical Sherlock Holmes style of detective yarn whose plot conforms to deductive reasoning and logic, rather than a convoluted, multi-layered, and unforgivingly complex Lynchian drama.

    Lynch wanted to create a relatively affluent close-knit town on the fringes of wilderness that had secrets upon secrets lurking beneath the superficial beauty and austerity. The use of a timber town was very apt, as the viewer never knew what strange character or plot line was going to literally crawl out of the woodwork next! He intended that only one line of multi-layered secrets would lead to the discovery of Laura Palmer’s killer, yet that line of secrets would be interwoven with other secrets from small town life, many of which were red herrings and dead ends. The resulting confusion would create in the viewer and town’s folk alike a sense of tension, uneasiness, insecurity and uncertainty. Afterall, this was a community that preferred to appear safe, warm and secure on the surface while basking in the quaintness of its pet quirks. Lynch wanted to make sure that the secrets were very difficult to uncover and even more difficult to extricate from the shadows. The secrets are not always revealed in sequence either, but become intermixed, entangled and therefore confusing.

    Yet the edit tends to reveal the secrets one after the other until only one logical conclusion can be reached. Some audiences may prefer this approach of simple deductive crime solving without the seemingly weird and endless “soap operas” played out by minor characters in multiple sub-plots. Lynch enthusiasts however will prefer the constant intrigue, dead ends and red herrings of the original series, which did not give up its secrets easily, nor in sequence, and nor with the intention that audience expectations should be entirely filled or satisfied. Lynch wanted to leave his audiences questioning and feeling a bit uneasy.

    So from this point of view the edit fails to remain true to the Lynch ideal, but in terms of it being a strict edit that harkens back to the stock standard detective genre, this edit will fit their expectations quite comfortably. It retains just enough Lynchisms to remain true to the “feel” of the original.

  3. this is horrible. Absolutely butchers Lynch and Frost, that quote on the cover makes me want to slap them silly.

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