My fiancée picked up Twilight the book in July and quickly went through the whole series. I’d heard a lot about the story before hand and I’d read a good quarter of the book.
I knew what to expect when I walked into the theatre and I wasn’t disappointed, but I wasn’t amazed either. The movie has many strengths that make it worth watching.
I was expecting cat calls and screeching the whole movie but the audience I saw it with was very respectful.
*Warning Mild Spoilers*
Girl meets boy. Boy is beautiful. Girl smells good. Angst, twinkle, baseball, angst, fight, hospital, angst, prom, credits. It’s a dramatic angst ridden teen love story with supernatural aspects. Buffy meets X-men meets The Breakfast Club. That’s Twilight in a nutshell.
The screenplay is pretty faithful to the book. The few differences were needed to make the story more coherent on the screen. For example the “bad” vampires were introduced faster then in the book and small scenes had changed that would make the movie to narrated.
The movie follows the books so my issues with the story are in reference to both. They’re very cheesy and angsty. The movie turns the knob to 11 on angst and tries to cope with a cheesy world by having a decent story.
I do have a small issue with calling these things “Vampires”, it could be argued that the only thing they have in common with traditional movie vampires is drinking blood. I prefer to think of them as demon’s, fallen angels of sorts. That’s just me.
The great redeeming quality of the movie is, it doesn’t take itself too seriously. Most of the cheese and angst is done with humour.
its faster paced then the book but there was a good twenty minutes in there were I hoped they’d speed things up. Other then that is was easy to watch and I wasn’t looking to the exits too often.
There were times where the actors were perfect and other where they were terrible. The two main actors were good. The girl playing Bella wasn’t a very strong actress but she had a great narrator’s voice. The guy who played Edward was great for the character. It must have been a challenge looking like you were trying to charm peoples minds, although a lot of squinting he did it well. The rest of the Vampires are ok, hopefully they’ll get more screen time in the next movies.
The supporting characters were great. I have a great deal of respect for the actor who played Bella’s father. His ability to show emotion through a tough exterior was impressive.
The movie is beautiful. Mostly all washed out colours with bright green.
The special effects were good, showing super-speed convincingly isn’t easy.
The cinematography ranged from brilliant to annoying. There was a lot of close ups, mostly peoples face which adds drama but there were a few times I wondered if the cameraman was obsessed with the actress who played Jessica’s breasts. I could three close ups.
There was a lot odd angle shots making the whole world seem more alien. The most annoying thing in the movie was the forest “reveal” scene. It was acted with the actors not looking at each other in soap opera style. The camera alternates between circular spinning and odd cuts. The odd cuts started out as artistic but quickly distracted me from the story. They’d cut from the actors to a random tree and then back only to repeat the same style several times. Then when they finally get over the angst and lie down to talk the camera decides to circle like a shark. I wanted to sing the Jaws theme.
The sparse action scenes are clean and avoid annoying jump-cuts. I was worried they’d go the Bourne route with it and was pleasantly surprised.
The strongest point of the movie is its music. Beautiful, visceral, and deep, it’s heavy with base guitar and flows through the movie wonderfully. I’m considering getting the soundtrack for background music during some d&d games.
Everyone has compared the series to Harry Potter. If you want to compare the movies then Twilight wins hands down and starts much higher in quality then the first few Potter movies.
With this in mind, if this movie makes enough to merit finishing the series I have no doubt that the quality of acting and production will continue to improve.
If you are already a diehard Twilight fan or you enjoyed the books, you’ll love the movie. If you have no clue about the books then you will probably like it a little and be mildly confused. Take a fan of the books with you to explain the odd mental power bits and remember to take it as it is teen angst.
Don’t go see it if you’re looking for a good vampire horror.
I give Twilight 7 on 10.