*MAJOR PLOT SPOILERS BELOW THAT MAY MELT YOUR BRAIN BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT A JOKE*
Let me not mince words. This movie is not fun. It is the absence of fun. Anti-fun, if you will. Brace yourself dear reader, for Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part. 1…
I will preface this review/rant with the fact that I actually give the Twilight series more respect than many of my peers. I’ve seen the previous three films and can enjoy them for what they are: campy escapist super-powered romantic silliness. Not too far of a stretch from your common nerd’s interests. But this particular film… it’s just… well…*sigh*… I guess the only way to really explain it is to briefly summarize the major plot points of the film for you:
I think Teen Wolf Jacob (Taylor Lautner) was shirtless before the Summit Entertainment logo was even done showing on the screen. Bella (Kristen Stewart) & Edward (Robert Pattinson) get married. They have human-on-vampire sex (?!). They magically conceive a child after their first time (bummer, dude). Vamp-baby grows fast and wants out. Bella will die from the birth (is that applause I hear?). Werewolves no likey vamp-baby and want it dead. Edward has to do a vampire c-section with his motherfucking teeth (!?!?!?!?!?!??!) to save Bella while Jacob watches and whines.
Jacob falls in love with said vamp-baby when he sees her for the first time… we’re talking love love here people… as in one day they’ll have little vamp-wolf babies… I’m sorry, I’ll wait for you to bleach your eyeballs after reading that before I continue… you back? alright… lastly, Bella is now finally a vampire after having a comically huge hypodermic needle filled with Edward’s vampire venom (hee!) jammed into her heart after the “birth.” I assure you none of what I have written is hyperbole. It all happens. This is an actual movie that exists.
If you haven’t been driven mad simply by reading the above, I have to give credit to director Bill Condon (Dreamgirls, Gods & Monsters) for having the huge balls to not shy away from the absolute lunacy of the source material. He tries quite hard to translate the book as faithfully as possible while also trying desperately not to have people leaving the theater to wander into traffic because of it.
The film basically splits into two halves. The first half is an impossibly boring hour of the vomit-inducing sappy awful romance that the teen girls ate up in the first three films. And that’s all you get. There is nothing else there to break the monotony, resulting in the slowest, most boring hour of the entire film franchise. If you haven’t read the books, you have no idea what you’re in for after this though.
The second half of the movie features loads of uncomfortable and disgusting imagery as Bella tediously dies on screen for close to 50 minutes. Not as fun as it sounds. It’s actually pretty disturbing watching her emaciate into nothing but bones and a baby bump. Kudos to Condon and his effects team there for really selling the horrific pregnancy. It was enough to make my girlfriend have a semi-seizure next to me during one of the graphic scenes, and not in the “squeeeing” fangirl way, but more of the “oh my god is this uncomfortable” way.
But aside from that, there’s very little throwdown monster battles or cool uses of super-powers at all in the film. You know, the things I actually liked about this series?? You know what it does have? A cutesy hipster soundtrack playing over it all. Neat!
After improving with each film, the acting also took a large step backward in Breaking Dawn. I know I know, calling the acting improved in the Twilight films is like spraying perfume on a steaming pile, but it’s something right? In this film we’re back to weird and/or blank stares from Pattinson alongside Stewart’s constant open-mouth face in nearly every scene.
Lautner is actually given more range to act within this film which turns out to just make him look like a big pouty wuss, which is disappointing because his character is the only one that doesn’t seem to be batshit insane in this series. He’d been the voice of reason over and over throughout all the films. That is, until author Stephenie Meyer dreamed up “imprinting” (werewolves magically falling in love without a choice) and had Jacob imprint on a freakin’ infant.
An infant!? No seriously. A newborn freakin’ infant?? He’s just going to protect her until she’s older but then it’s ooon! My god man, is that not the creepiest thing you’ve ever heard of? Is my nose bleeding?? Why is the room spinning??… malksdfmfmasdf……. alkdjfakmdldsd…..
…sorry blacked out for a minute there. It’s all just too much.
Its possible that with Part 2 looming like a preggers skeleton the series might still end on an okay note. Part 1 had the unholy task of portraying the unfilmable storyline solutions that Meyers came up with to get out of the corners she wrote herself into. With those out of the way, Part 2 has the luxury of telling the more fun section of the story for those who have read the books and know how it ends. But what really becomes obvious after viewing this mess is that splitting the finale into two parts was a really bad creative decision, at least for the movie fans, because the studio will still undoubtedly make boat loads of cash from the unsuspecting teens that surely will be in therapy for years after seeing this.
The only real reason to check out this film is the carnival-freak sideshow that is the last hour of the movie, but I don’t recommend it because as I said at the opening of this review, there is no fun here. Only disturbing absurdity. This is strictly for the most hardcore fans only. Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 1 is a film that doesn’t work in any way: as a so-bad-it’s-good film, a stand alone film or especially as an entertaining lead-in to the finale of a wildly popular series.
FINAL SCORE: 4/10