122 min., 2008
Written by Melissa Rosenberg
Directed by Catherine Hardwicke
My rating: ★★
Doesn’t live up to the positive or negative hype.
* * *
The movie begins with a voiceover by a girl named Bella (Kristen Stewart). She is leaving Phoenix because her mom is going on the road with her new husband, so Bella is going to be living with her dad, Charlie (), in a town called Forks for a little while. She gets there and we learn a little bit more about the way Charlie parents and that she used to play with a kid named Jacob (Taylor Lautner). She heads to school in her “new” truck and that’s when she starts meeting a bunch of teens. After a little time she learns about a group of kids that go to the school whose last name is Cullen. Among them is a guy that she is very interested in named Edward (Robert Pattinson), but according to everyone the Cullens stick together and she shouldn’t even try. After a few strange encounters with him, including him saving her life from an out of control van, and after hearing an interesting story from Jacob she finally realizes what Edward is. She confronts him and he admits to being a vampire, but she doesn’t have a problem with that. After a little more explaining, like him and his family only eat animals and not humans, Edward shows her what happens when he goes into the light (yep he does in fact sparkle). Now that Bella knows his secret will everything be okay or are there other vampires out there that might find her presence intrusive?
This is what really killed the movie for me. Now overall the acting isn’t that bad, but Kristen Stewart was just rotten. In almost every scene she wasn’t able to convey even the simplest emotions and instead just continually gave us the blank stare/droopy face. Most of the time her terrible acting dragged everyone else down with her and that’s sad because some of the rest of the cast really weren’t bad. The biggest surprise to me was actually Robert Pattinson. I was expecting him to be the worst of the worst, but in reality he was actually pretty good. He was really great at using his face to express emotions even when the dialogue was just plain cheesy. Now there are a few spots where he over does it a bit, but nothing that is really beyond overlooking.
The best thing about this movie is the effects and overall look of the film. The effects work very well and they fit into the movie with very little problem. The biggest flaw that I saw was when the Cullens first made their appearance. They were supposed to look pale, but instead it looked like they were painted and then Edward enters the room and he looked the worst of them all. He looked like a fucking mime. As the movie went along they seemed to back off of the shitty make up until they actually got the pale look down, but it did take a bit long for that to happen. Now the film is just very pretty looking. The whole movie is just very crisp to the eye, even though they tend to use a filter a little too much.
I’ve been hearing a lot about this movie, both positive and negative, for some time now and when I realized that I was going to be reviewing it I was really nervous. I was expecting one of the worst acted movies, the worst dialogue and a really stupid story. I was actually surprised while watching, because it really isn’t that bad of a movie overall. Pretty good effects and decent acting (except for Kristen) were a surprise to me and I almost didn’t know how to take it. Now is there any horror in the movie? Yes there is, but not very much. Yes there are vampires and there are a few scenes that are shot with the intent to be scary, but overall it is (big surprise) a teen drama. I couldn’t really say that I hated it and I understand why there is such an audience for Twilight (beautiful people, dark brooding antihero, two different backgrounds loving each other, etc.), but it really wasn’t my thing. Too much adult dialogue coming from teens (that just drives me nuts as I want kids to be kids) and the new take on vampires wasn’t anything really engaging, just very “romanticized”. Pretty good movie in the long run, just not my flavor.Have You Read...?