Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1

All good films, books, television shows, and all forms of entertainment have a beginning, middle and end.  And a series of books or movies have entire pieces that can fit into each of those categories as well.  No one can deny the popularity of the Twilight series of books.  It tells a story that many tween girls, teen girls, and women can find a connection to and embrace.  And so after 3 films based on their respective books, we come down to the last and final novel of the Twilight series.  And I know you’re all wondering how is part one of the final novel on screen…

There’s a term that’s often used when a movie studio releases a DVD/Blu-ray and then a couple months later releases another one with more features/footage on it and it’s called “double dipping.”  And I think we now have the equivalent being done by Summit when it comes to the final novel.  They decided to split the novel into two separate films rather than one.  Why you ask?  Well it’s simple.  Blood red is the new green in Summit’s eyes and the opportunity to milk a couple extra dollars out of your pocket before the closure of the films was too tempting.  Instead of bloodlust you might call it “greenlust. “

Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1

But that aside it’s still a full length feature film and deserves a proper review and analysis.  The film is directed by Bill Condon and once again stars Robert Pattinson as Edward and Kristen Stewart as Bella.  This movie starts off with the wedding between the two of them.  Bella has some disturbing visions, but the two of them are in love and Rosalie (Nikki Reed) has created an elaborate and over-the-top wedding for them to celebrate their marriage.

Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1

After they get married the set off on their honeymoon on a private island not too far from Rio.  There, their love is consummated and redefines the term “rough sex.”  Bella has chosen to remain human while they enjoy their honeymoon and after that first passionate night, Edward doesn’t feel comfortable continuing their intimate relationship, but as you can assume that does change.

Suddenly, and at an alarmingly fast pace Bella realizes that she’s pregnant and carrying Edwards’s child.  The rest of the film deals with Jacob’s (Taylor Lautner) dealing with this fact as well as his werewolf pack.  Will Bella survive and is this a “demon child?”

Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1

Twilight fans are probably going to be unhappy with this review as most true fans of the series would love whatever they put out in film form and completely overlook the merits of the film itself.  My biggest complaint with this film is that it’s all fluff and there’s so little substance to the film.  Everything is drawn out and lengthened to make this story into a full length feature film.  It doesn’t need to be.  The entire movie could have been rolled up into a 30-40 minute addition to the final film we are all awaiting. 

I will say that if I was purposely going to split the last book into two parts, the place where they finish this film is spot on.  But the way they get to that moment is too long and uneventful.

Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1

Team Jacob fans will be thrilled to learn that a mere seconds into the film he rips his shirt off and all you young ladies will see him shirtless.  Thankfully though in this film he keeps his shirt on for most of the film.

The acting has improved as we’ve progressed in the series.  Stewart, Pattinson, Lautner, and the rest of the cast do a good job of saying their lines with as much conviction as they can.  But the problem is the dialogue is so poorly written there are numerous parts where you’re going to be rolling your eyes or laughing.

I want you all to know that while I am criticizing this film, I rather enjoyed the second and third film in the series.  I had hopes for this film that it would be as suspenseful as the last two and truly wrap me up in the plot, but with all of the fluff it never did entirely.

Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1

This isn’t a bad film but lacks certain film criteria to make it good.  The so called “villain” in this film is the wolf pack and to be honest they never truly pose a real threat so there isn’t a payoff.  The Volturi don’t make a true appearance until after some of the credits, so that villain was wasted as well.

No matter what I say in this review those of you who are fans of the books and/or films are going to rush out and see this film this weekend.  Ironically enough I’m going to encourage you to do so regardless of the grade I give the film.  And the reason for that is this film sets up the final film and I, like most of you am excited to see that final film and the series conclude on screen.  Just try and judge the film you see this weekend in a non-emotional way. 

FINAL GRADE:  C +

Reel Film News Movie Review by Bill Ayres

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