Released 11/21/08 Rated: PG-13
Let me just start off saying that I have read the books. For where I was in my life, they were good. Simple, but a good enough story.
Unfortunately, for the rest of Kristen Stewart’s career, unless she manages to pull out something amazing down the road, she will be forever seen as Bella Swan. Not even as the clumsy teenager she’s supposed to be, but as… I don’t even know how to describe it, but you know what I’m talking about. The furious blinking, the stammering, and, to quote RiffTrax: “would you please get all the way through a sentence without a giant pause?!” It’s awkward even for the awkward.
From the first trailer I could just tell that this movie was in trouble. The dialogue, the look of the film, and the acting! UGH the acting! This film could have been better in so many ways, and I’m not even talking compared to the book at this point. It’s like a train wreck; you just can’t look away.
In short, the only way I would see this movie is through RiffTrax. If you’ve never heard of RiffTrax, please take a moment and view a sampling of their work. YouTube link, uploaded by 100indescidions. Honestly, it’s worth it.
Released 11/20/09 Rated: PG-13
The trailer for THIS movie looked a hundred times better than the first one. I don’t know if there was a bigger budget or if it was simply a change in directors or that we were moving into the “warmer” spectrum of mystical beings, but it physically looked like a better quality movie.
I believe that it was mostly due the fact that these movies were bringing the books to life, but also partly because I had out grown my “need” for Twilight, but I found it all to be a little silly. Not the plot, I still like the story, but the obsession we deemed as love between Edward and Bella. I’m not saying break ups are easy to get over, but the screaming for dear life in the middle of the night is a bit much. I mean, they’ve known each other –what?– a year? And this is a traumatic experience to the point where she’s going crazy?
Anyway, there is so much more to take in this time around. It’s not just a teen love story anymore; there is a whole world being introduced. The acting got a whole lot better too. No vampires = better movie (???) Anyone? 🙂
Released 6/30/10 Rated: PG-13
And now we’re just back to the teen love triangle. I don’t really have much to say about this movie. This installment didn’t thrill me. The book goes into a lot of daily-life detail that eventually ties in to the overall plot, all of which gets lost when converting to a feature film. To me it seems as though they threw it together and said here you go!
I wasn’t convinced at Jacob’s attempt at a forceful kiss. Or Bella’s reaction to it. It’s possible that’s because the camera was on Bella’s face the whole time, but I’m not going to completely blame it on the camera.
I do think it’s funny that we start to see what I call Bella’s claw hand that bugged me in Breaking Dawn. Her hand looks like this weird claw when she’s kissing someone and tries to hold the back of his head. That’s all I saw during the love scenes of Breaking Dawn, and all I wanted to do was laugh.
——–Breaking Dawn Part 1
Released 11/18/11 Rated: PG-13
The best scene for me from this movie was Bella’s pre-wedding dream. It was beautiful and whimsical and at the same time dark and heavy. The only thing wrong with this scene was Edward. It’s like he doesn’t know how to smile. Oh! Did you find Stephenie Meyer in the film? She’s in the most obvious place, if that helps. 🙂
The makeup and special effects for Bella this round were good. Maybe a little too good. She was pretty much a corpse for half the movie. It was a little disturbing.
The only real complaint I had was the ending. From the birth scene and on. Now, I do realize that they had to scale stuff back to keep the movie from being rated R, but I did not feel like there was enough blood. That’s just my opinion. Then after that, when the venom is coursing through her veins, she legitimately appeared to be dead. I get what they were going for here, but she was supposed to be struggling to keep her mouth shut to keep herself from screaming because she wanted to be strong for Edward. And her blasted mouth was open the whole time! I did like how they showed her inner struggle. I think that and the dream I mentioned earlier are my two favorite scenes.
So, during the honeymoon montage there’s a scene of Edward and Bella playing chess on the beach. She wins and then they start kissing. Turns out this was just a dream. So she wakes up and is all emotional and tells Edward that it was just a really good dream. My sister and I were like “She really wants to win at chess,” cuz Edward won all the real-time matches in the montage.
All in all everyone’s joking that this movie is the most effective form of birth control out there. They’re probably right. My boyfriend and I were talking about Twilight, and he said that every girl basically wants to be Bella. And I went “Really?” and preceded to spoil the fourth book. He responded “THAT’S WHAT HAPPENS?!” I just got the biggest kick out of that.
——–Breaking Dawn Part 2
To Be Released 11/16/12 Rated: PG-13
I didn’t really get this half of the book, but the movie seemed to make sense. I was worried because this book installment was boring and rather anticlimactic, so I didn’t really feel the whole “epic” marketing campaign they had going for it. I liked the way they touched up the ending; very nicely done. Ultimately it’s the same ending, but having read the books, it was a good twist.
I will have to agree with RiffTrax on one thing though. “Jack-Jack from The Incredibles looked less digital than this thing.” The digital baby could not have been more painfully obvious. Older movies have ten times better CGI– how is it we still have movies that produce incredibly bad CGI? Luckily it’s not there for very long.
All I can say is thank goodness these movies got so much better from when they started. I don’t think I would have been able to take it otherwise. I still believe it would have been possible to combine the last two movies and just have one. Having cut all of Jacob’s parts out of the book it would have actually flowed well. They could have done it; instead they prolonged it, squeezing every dollar they could out the franchise.