Here it is, the moment thousands of preteen girls, Team Edward and Team Jacob alike have been waiting for. The conclusion to one of the most successful vampire book/movie franchises of all time: The “Twilight” saga. Where we learn the fate of everybody’s favorite interspecies love triangle. Edward Cullen the vampire, Jacob the Native American werewolf and Bella Swan, the human girl stuck in the middle.
Well…not quite. You see the producers of the saga saw the immense success the “Harry Potter” franchise had with splitting the last book into two movies, so they figured they could cash in on their fans as well. So instead we have “Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 1.”
Except the seventh “Harry Potter” book actually had enough story to fit two movies. Now, I haven’t read any of the ‘Twilight” books (by Stephanie Meyer) but judging by this movie the final book doesn’t have enough material.
So now we have two problems on our hands. “Breaking Dawn Part 1” is half a movie. You could fast-forward through the first part and you wouldn’t miss anything. It does pick up in the second half but it’s a long journey.
In addition, all the other problems from the other movies still remain. Mainly that the whole thing is nothing but a soap opera. The actors take the material way too seriously. At times it’s like watching a B movie with high production values.
The film begins with Bella getting ready for her marriage to Edward. There’s lots of smiling and staring and people telling her how proud they are of her and that they love her. Then after about ten minutes she’s walking down the aisle with her doofy mustached father Charlie. There’s some gasping and awwing. Then there’s the wedding reception scene that feels longer than the wedding reception scene in “The Deer Hunter”(and that was a long scene), where there is more staring, smiling and people telling Bella how much they love her and are proud of her.
Before I go any further let’s check in on our stars. Kristen Stewart is still dull, pathetic and weak as Bella and setting a horrible example for women everywhere. Which is really too bad because Stewart is not a terrible actress. She’s proven herself worthy in other movies, like “The Runaways” or “Adventureland” but the role of Bella gives her nothing to do. Robert Pattinson as Edward is still droopy eyed, and has that look of constipation in his face (aka the smoldering charm women love) but luckily he’s not as stiff and sad as he’s been previously. And finally Taylor Lautner as Jacob is still overly dramatic about everything, keeping the same intense look on his face. Thankfully, he doesn’t take off his shirt too many times, although I suppose that’s a loss for all the women in the audience.
Anyhow, back to the gripping plot. Edward and Bella go on their honeymoon at a small island near South America where they do such exciting activities as: playing chess, swimming in a water hole, staring at each other across the beach, more chess, and more staring. They do have sex for the first time, which is important because vampirism in the world of “Twilight” is one big metaphor for chastity.
Then…Hallelujah! The inciting incident finally makes its way into the movie. Bella gets pregnant and since vampire babies and human mothers don’t mix, the baby is slowly killing Bella from the inside. Making her skinnier, paler and even more useless then she was before. This of course leads to a feud between the vampires and werewolves, who want to kill Bella and her baby for everyone’s safety and we get to see some fantastically choreographed fight scenes and chase scenes. The few enjoyable moments of the movie.
The big question remains: How on earth are the producers going to make another movie? Because this one doesn’t leave much in the way of a thrilling conclusion to look forward to. “Breaking Dawn Part 1” isn’t the worst of the series (“New Moon” still holds that title) but that’s not saying much. The director Bill Condon does what he can but like Stewart the script doesn’t give him very much to work with.