Aaron Michael’s review published on Letterboxd:
A heartbreaking and devastating story of the effects of trauma and abuse. I was surprised at how well the film is able to stand on its own from the TV series while also informing the series in a new and intriguing way. It's fascinating to me how Lynch uses the audience's familiarity with crime procedurals and teen melodramas as a way of grounding the story before he takes risks in pushing the boundaries of storytelling.
Perhaps the worst way to watch a Lynch movie is to attempt to piece it together into a coherent metaphor; his works, especially the less formative pieces, are much more effective as raw emotional landscapes. I love Lynch, but there's something larger here about how a name, career, or persona inform how we understand a piece of art. Would I have enjoyed this if I hadn't known it was Lynch? What about Wild at Heart or Inland Empire? This isn't necessarily a critique, but it's worth pointing out how our relationship with a film is impacted by how it is framed in our minds. I went into this with an incredibly open mind, so open that even parts of it that I think I would have typically found grating worked. I would be lying if that openness wasn't in large part based on my knowledge of how Lynch operates.
Anyway, this was truly devastating. I'm so glad my first time seeing this was in a theater.