I first watched 'Fire Walk With Me' perhaps twenty years ago on a late night TV screening before I'd ever seen a frame of Twin Peaks. I thought it was quite brilliant, with scenes, sounds and images forever burned into my brain. It wasn't until last year, after the complete Twin Peaks blu-ray came out, that I watched the show this movie was a prequel to. With the show coming back I thought it was time to view the "missing pieces" and Q2's fanedit.
Q2 has integrated the deleted material fantastically well visually and audibly. I don't think it makes the film better, as it interrupts the primary "fall of Laura Palmer" narrative but it sure is wonderful to see it all together in order. It feels closer to the Twin Peaks tone but I'd still like to see somebody fully edit the material into a few traditional style episodes. Lose the Chris Isaac prologue, add TP opening titles, tone down some of the more insane stuff, eliminate non-TV show related threads etc (Hint Q2!).
Technically this is superb. All the extra scenes are added seamlessly and really do make it a better movie. Why is my enjoyment score only a 6? Well, I watched this a few days after I saw the original movie, which I enjoyed, but this time I didn't enjoy it nearly as much, despite it being better with the added material. The movie is just so overwhelmingly bleak and nasty, and the happyish ending does not help that much. But kudos on the excellent edit.
The edit is good but some things would be improved if you simply followed the script or the script-to-screen analysis, in my opinion. Like you would've figured out where to put Laura and Bobby at the locker and Bobby and the fake drugs (hint: it's not after the heartbreaking school montage, which you also could've figured out by the outfit she's wearing). The ending feels awkward. It makes sense to end with the angel scene because time in the lodge is non-linear but having the shot of Laura's corpse after the "some months later" scenes does not work because time in the real world is, of course, linear -- even as an artistic choice it came off as a bit sloppy. Coop's last scene in The Black Lodge in The Missing Pieces is actually supposed to be the last scene before Laura's Angel. If you look at the crossfade between Laura's corpse in the theatrical cut and Coop's face in The Missing Pieces, they both lead into the same shot.
The crossfade between Buenos Aires and the shot of the security cameras felt unnecessary, as with the fading in and out of the trucker scene (which could have just cut to on the last beat of Norwegian music).
The Norma/Ed truck scene felt strange where you put it. It might've worked better right before The Roadhouse scene, I don't know. I just think the Partyland sequences shouldn't be disturbed.
Also, the fan scene is in there twice. The shortened version in the theatrical version (right before Cooper tells Albert the killer will strike again) should have just been cut. It's too obviously the same scene, as noted by Laura's top.
The several different subtitle fonts could've been corrected if you'd just used the MK2 bluray as your source for the Partyland and Black Lodge scenes, as that release doesn't have any subtitles. That way, you could just add them using the Missing Pieces font which appears to be a variation of Century Gothic. I'm sure you could have later color-corrected the scenes to match the recent blu-ray but I guess that's what happens when you pump out a fan edit in a week.
The "Special Thanks" credit, while nice, was extremely distracting and took me right out of the final moment. It's such a beautiful scene and that last shot of Laura is the only time we really see her happy in the film except now -- I can't see anything.
Nice job on everything else though! Bloody good regardless of the short amount of time you did it in! Perhaps a V2 down the line...