on 16 March 2013
Unlike previous entries in the Twilight Saga (including Breaking Dawn: Part 1) Part 2 is action packed, exciting and allows for Kristen Stewart to do something other than swoon over her puppy-eyed lover Robert Pattinson. She turns Bella from a angst-ridden Mary-Sue into a kick ass heroine and actually does a great job carrying the movie. She also looks beautiful as a "newborn" vampire.
The supporting cast were fantastic, injecting a bit of much needed humor amongst scenes of bubbling romance and bloodshed. Apart from a couple of scenes of hokey CGI (the baby Renesmee and a hilarious hunting scene involving Bella at the beginning) the special effects are superb. The pace is slow in the first hour but the last 30 minutes are thrilling and the battle scene at the end is well choreographed and pretty shocking and surprising if you are unfamiliar with the books.
I enjoyed seeing the characters develop, especially Taylor Lautner who does a great job in his final portrayal of Jacob Black (my favorite character throughout the film and book series). But it is Stewart who steals the show. She has grown into a respectable actress and she has turned a wooden and unlikable character (in the novel) into someone you root for in the film. The actress who portrays the young Renesmee is also ridiculously cute.
The soundtrack is amazing! "I Love You For a Thousand Years" by Christina Perri and "Heart of Stone" by Iko are 2 of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard. The former had me tearing up. It really is a stunning song. Also "Bellas Lullaby" from the previous films makes a return and it has been remastered and mixed. I really enjoyed the musical score in this.
One thing that did disappoint me is that Dakota Fanning is massively underused. She plays perhaps the greatest villain in the whole series, and yet Jane does not get a single line of dialogue in this film. She clocks in around 30 seconds screen time when she should in fact play a prominent role in the fight scenes. I never found Aro (the leader of the Volturi) to be menacing and Michael Sheen makes him comical with his stupid facial expressions and one liners. This is something that bothered me about this film.
On a final note I also love how they played homage to all the cast members throughout the whole series before the closing credits (even those who did not feature in the final movie) that was a nice touch.
I expect most people will either love or loathe this but for me, as someone who is on the fence with the books, I have to admit I think this more than does justice to Smeyers' Breaking Dawn. In fact it is even better than the novel which I found tended to drag and didn't make much sense. Bill Condon, who directed this and Part 1 also added a lot more action into the final battle scene than is featured in the book.
See this if you've seen all the others. see it if you're a Twilight fan and see it if you like a bit of action and romance. If you don't like the Twilight Saga then you should probably stay clear.
on 18 May 2013
The ultimate chick flick series has come to an end. The moody Bella, smells good to both vampires and werewolves. She gets to live forever with the man she loves, hunt puma in a slit dress, and have a special child that she only has to raise for seven years. The child is both Edward's and Jacob's (My cat has litters that way.) and maybe the producer's kid too. Bella has her ultimate chick moment when she arm wrestles a guy and wins, then uses her special power and becomes a real head turner.
The highlight for me was when the Cullens sat Kristen Stewart down and gave her acting lessons. Yes I was howling at that point, yelling "facial expressions!" at the screen. What we found out is that Italian vampires are the bad guys. Eastern European vampires still have bad accents and Irish vampires eat British tourist. I didn't recognize Dakota Fanning (Jane) in this until after the credit roll. I need to get out more.
Similar to the Harry Potter series, people who don't read the books sense there are plot points missing or glossed over. I know I did. I had to have my niece once again rescue me with the details. Let me say again, this is a chick flick with a fight scene thrown in at the end for the guys. Not as emotional or "gushy" as first and fourth films. Better than the second film, but then what wasn't.
Parental Guide: No f-bombs or nudity. One vampire sex scene.
on 2 March 2013
Excellent finale to the Twilight Saga, have seen this in the cinema, and am counting the days until delivery, so I can have the complete set. The love story of a human and a vampire tugs at the heart strings of a wide range of followers, I know girls of 14 who love it, and many like me at 61 also love it. This is the ultimate fantasy, good vampires who don't drink human blood, young impressionable girl who falls in love with the hero of the film, a second admirer, who just turns out to be a werewolf, and a small town where the chief of police is totally unaware of the goings on in the woods and local areas. When Bella gives birth to Edwards child and has to be turned to safe her 'life' the story continues with dramatic scenes where the whole vampire family, friends and befriended werewolves (an unlikely alliance in any other story) making this one of the best films I have seen in a long time. If you have read Part II of Breaking Dawn, the film does deviate towards the end, but although I always think the best thing to do is watch the film first then read the book, in this instance I do believe the film has a much better ending than that of the book. Cant wait to have my copy delivered on March 11th, then I can have a complete Twilight day, and am so looking forward to it. This is a MUST buy, especially if, like me, you already have the first 4 DVDs
I just saw the part 2 of "Breaking Dawn" and I was very impressed. I loved this skillful and very faithful adaptation of the final chapters of "Twilight" saga. WARNING: this review contains limited SPOILERS and also some slightly dirty jokes...
As probably everybody already knows, this film begins with Bella Cullen (former Bella Swan) making her first steps as a newly created vampire, very soon after the extremely difficult birth of her daughter Renesmee. Things that happened at the end of the previous part are discreetly reminded to us by the extraordinary opening scene, in which we can enjoy the beauty of state of Washington, listen to the perfectly adapted music and finally watch how the nature changes when winter comes - and all of this is somehow connected to Bella's transformation. I was very impressed by those first scenes - it is rare to see the opening credits put to such a good use.
Bella's first days as newborn vampire are a delight to watch. Unlike many Kristen Stewart haters I think she is a pretty talented actress. However until now Bella's character was less active than others and therefore Kristen Stewart did the right thing adopting a discreet, introverted approach to this role in previous parts. But as a vampire Bella is paradoxically more "alive" than ever before and in this film Kristen Stewart acts in a much more assertive way - and she does a great job! Also, with the help of some make up and computer improvement of images, she is suddenly more beautiful than ever. Clearly the un-death becomes her... She also can finally let her husband make love to her without fearing that she will end as Bella-jelly on the rocks... (sorry I couldn't resist). And, as a newborn, she is also the strongest vampire in the coven, for a time at least - something that Emmett will learn in great detail...)))
The joy of other members of Cullen clan who see Edward finally happy with his recently deceased young bride and his newborn half-undead daughter (yes, I know this sounds complicated, but really, this is how the story goes) is a very pleasant thing to see. There is of course one enormous elephant in the room - the weird attachment Jacob (your friendly neighborhood werewolf) developed towards Renesmee, to great annoyance of Edward (no father appreciates a potential son-in-law who can lick him) and an even greater fury of Bella, as no mother wants her precious daughter to be an underdog...))) Jacob's "puppy love" was considered as very shocking by many reviewers of books - but here it is shown as something perfectly safe and quite respectable...
But soon appears a threat to Edward and Bella's happiness and in fact to the very existence of the whole Cullen coven. As we already know since the part 2, between the vampire royalty, the Volturi and the Cullens there is bad blood (pun very much intentional). In this episode the escalating tension will finally reach the breaking point...
The description of the developing crisis, the mobilization of hostile armies, the confrontation and finally the rather unexpected but clever resolution of the whole problem were well described in the book and are even better shown on the screen. Volturi-Cullens conflict is a great moment of cinema!
Those who read the second part of the last book in the series certainly remember that there are NO action scenes in it - and those who saw the trailers had to notice that there is one HUGE battle scene, with the Volturi Guard fighting Cullens, Denalis and their other vampire and werewolf allies. The film however remains a VERY faithful adaptation of the novel... Confused already? Well, I can not reveal details, but believe me, there IS an easy explanation. Also, adding this extremely well shown furious battle helped this film - in fact it helped it very much...
The way this huge battle is described reminded me very much of Iliade and the fights between heroes of Trojan War. I will not describe here anything from the battle in "Breaking Dawn, part 2" but it is somehow similar to the description of events by Homer. In Iliad, we can read that Sarpedon, a valiant Trojan ally, was killed in fight by Patroclus. Later, Hector avenged Sarpedon by killing Patroclus, but then was himself slain by this latter's best friend, Achilles. After that Paris, Hector's brother, killed Achilles with a poisoned arrow, before being himself shot and killed by Philoctetes. In the great battle scene in this film, fights between successive heroes and champions follow a somehow similar logic. I loved this long scene greatly.
There are many other delights in this film, especially when vampires invited by the Cullens arrive. American and European nomads are very little shown, with the exception of Alistair - on another hand the Egyptians and the Irish coven appear a little bit more, and the powers of Benjamin are particularly impressive in the film...
Amazonian amazons are absolute eye-candy - especially Zafrina is an impressively hot creature. In the film only two amazons, Zafrina and Senna, are present (the third one, Kachiri, is not even mentioned). The girls from the Denali coven are even hotter, especially Kate and Tanya. All those who liked "Dexter" will be delighted to see Christian Camargo playing Eleazar, the only male of the Denali coven. Garrett, the nomad who will later join the Denali coven, provides tons of humor as a vampire who never fully recovered from the Independence War (he still passionately hates everything British).
And then there are of course Vladimir and Stefan from the Romanian (or rather Transylvanian) coven. Those two are a show in the show! In principle they seem to be very serious and even deadly dangerous - but their faces and their speech are simply irresistible! Every time they appear, the whole theater would puff and giggle... Oh, it may come as a surprise to you, but if you really want to FULLY appreciate those two vampires, read "The cat in the hat" before going to cinema - no, this is not a joke and I am not crazy - believe me, there is a connection...)))
All those characters provide great fun, especially in the scene preceding the great confrontation, when something like twenty vampires and one werewolf sit around a campfire at night and tell scary stories!!
There are however some characters missing in action. When the Volturi appeared I was very surprised that unlike in the book the wives, Sulpicia and Athenodora, were absent. Even worse, Felix, the hulking chief enforcer/executioner of Volturi does NOT appear in this film - and this is a great pity! Also, Wendell Pierce, who plays the somehow mysterious Mr Jenks, should have more screen time - at the very least a couple of minutes...
I would greatly advise to watch the final credits to the end as they are a farewell for all the series. Many girls in the cinema were very moved by those last moments - and that included my wife...
I positively loved this film - it is a very, very good conclusion to the extraordinary adventure that was watching "Twilight" series. After surviving James, Victoria, Riley, the army of newborns, the conflict with the werewolves and even the confrontation with the Volturi, at the end of this film the two recently married lovers could finally begin what is the REAL GLORIOUS adventure, both for the mortals and the undead - spending life together and raise the children...
"And now forever?" asked Edward. "And now forever" whispered Bella. The Fate didn't say anything this time - she was having a busy working lunch with the director of the next "Hunger Games" film...
on 23 June 2013
Ahhhh, twilight heaven indeed and now it is at an end :( I now have all the books and all the dvds and all the cd soundtracks, no I am not a sad middle aged housewife, I just know what I like! :D I have thoroughly enjoyed the twilight mania such as it was and I love the escapism of these books and films, fair enough the films don't really live up to the books but then they rarely do, so long as you don't have the books freshly read in your mind you can enjoy the story in the film - I think - I learned my lesson when I re-read Eclipse before going to see the film at the cinema and came out really peeved at the changes made, now I just enjoy the films for what they are and I have to say the last one was not a disappointment, that battle scene was great and watching in the cinema was great fun - hearing the sighs and gasps and then the final release of breath as the battle ended and all was revealed - great fun........