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The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 Movie Watch reviews

By Steveroger Subscribe to RSS | November 28th 2011 | Views:
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We can talk about plot structure and narrative convention and whatnot in "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 movie," but let's cut to what fans of the franchise really want to know: Taylor Lautner takes his shirt off in the first five seconds of the movie.That's got to be some kind of record. And for the junior-high crowd, the ticket line forms over to the left.

Forget that the film is too long and not very exciting, that the dialogue is still as deadly as a vampire bite (sorry -- the lame writing must be contagious) and that some of it is SPOKEN BY WOLVES. Well, werewolves, but still. What makes these movies popular are the stars -- Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Lautner - portraying a sort of supernatural high-school fantasy romance, with fangs and claws. All are in evidence here.

"Breaking Dawn," like the rest of the series, is based on a Stephenie Meyer novel. But like the last "Harry Potter" installment, the "Twilight" literary swan song has been split into two films. With "Potter," it was probably justified in the end. With "Twilight," one movie would have been more than enough. Even director Bill Condon, who has made films like "Gods and Monsters," can't do much with it.

As the film begins, it's the day before the wedding for Bella Swan (Stewart) and Edward Cullen (Pattinson). Everything seems nice enough, though it's a little odd since the family of the groom is a bunch of vampires and all. And Bella is nervous, as one might expect an 18-year-old bride to be; a nightmare prevents her from getting the beauty sleep wedding planner Alice (Ashley Greene) insists upon.

But the big day goes off nicely. The wedding is beautiful, the setting - the Cullen's property -- gorgeous. Jacob (Lautner) shows up as a friendly gesture, to bid Bella farewell on her last night as a human, before Edward turns her into a vampire.

But wait -- that's not the kind of honeymoon Bella has planned. Instead, she wants the normal human kind, which Jacob warns will kill her. (Some assumed knowledge about vampire sex is evidently useful here; I'm in the dark.) But soon enough Edward and Bella are on a beach in Brazil, where headboards are shattered, that sort of thing. Edward is afraid he'll hurt Bella, but she'll have none of that hesitation.

And then, evidently against all odds, Bella gets pregnant. The baby - half-vampire, half-human - grows quickly inside her, draining her of nutrients; she begins wasting away. A debate about whether to have the baby never really rises above the "It's a fetus!" "It's a baby!" level, but Bella's stance is clear: She will have the baby, even if it kills her (and it seems certain it will).

For some reason a half-vampire, half-human baby threatens the werewolves (of which Jacob is one, on the off chance you're not on board with the story). So they have a heated argument while in wolf form about what to do, which ranks as the most ridiculous thing in the movie - at least until the fight scene later on.

This takes a long time to unfold. Mostly we watch Bella sit around feeling terrible. Edward comes up with a novel remedy, but it has drawbacks. Can Bella survive the birth? And isn't survival a relative term in this context?

After showing a little spark in "Eclipse," the previous film in the series, Stewart is back in mope mode. Pattinson again stands around looking pale and soulful, while Lautner gets to act more, which is maybe not such a good thing.

It all builds to a final scene that is actually somewhat powerful, particularly considering what's come before. But overall the film is goofy, slight, without a truly deep thought in its pretty little head. And for a movie with vampires and werewolves, the only scary thing is in the title - "Part 1," which means "Part 2" is on its way. Shudder.

Steveroger - About Author:
We can talk about plot structure and narrative convention and whatnot in "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 movie," but let's cut to what fans of the franchise really want to know: Taylor Lautner takes his shirt off in the first five seconds of the movie.

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