With the final showdown of the Twilight Saga in cinemas from tomorrow, I decided it was about time I ‘manned-up’ and watched the rest of the saga. Watched over one 10-ish hour sitting, I slogged through the the preceding films and found that, to my lack of surprise, this vampiric, saccharine love triangle franchise is not my cup of tea. I’m more Twinings than Twilight, if you’re wondering.
Anyway, no time for sour grapes – the deed is done, and here are my thoughts. I tried to be as succinct as possible. Not only because the movies’ are old news, nor for the humble reader’s benefit, but for the fact that – and I can’t state this strongly enough – the Twilight Saga is so frustratingly bad that any deep contemplation on the pros and cons of each movie would be soul destroying.
#307: Twilight (2008)
The small, independent spirit of the first film makes it a passable. With a then-unique downbeat tone and a bleu colour palette, it doesn’t stop the film running out of steam after an hour (like all the Twilight movies, it’s length is excessive).
#308: The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009)
The only Twilight movie to be shot on film, rather than digital, the warm tones and gritty style just feels cliched. Excessive and slow, the return of a chunkier Taylor Lautner marks the end of this meat-headed tale of teenage romance, whilst supporting actress Anna Kendrick is the most likeable person on screen, as the school it girl. R-Patz is still sullen as Cullen, but KStew really steps up her game. What game? The “I’m a moody cow and I like causing unnecessary social issues” game.
#309: The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (2009)
Cinema moves on another year, yet Twilight persists to show up, fangs out, and spoil the party. The most annoying element of Eclipse is how insignificant it’s story is within the entire narrative arc. Add a few lines here and there, cut some other stuff out, and the saga could have quite easily fitted into a nice, shorter four film series.
The love triangle is at it’s most steamiest here, and the script is the most knuckle-draggingly impish of the entire series. That being said, filmmaker David Slade is trying to turn the pathetic and saccharine love story into something more mature; making up for a bad script by presenting some small-scale, but well needed action brawn.
#310: The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011)
After the stifled storyline of Eclipse, Breaking Dawn – Part 1 actually gets back to creating narrative depth and character exposition. With the finishing line in sight, new director Bill Condon shows us Bella’s transformation from teenager to young, angry woman. Marrying her Eddy, the pair venture off an a private-island honey moon tour, have sex (finally!) and come back to the Cullens’ family home in Forks with a bun in the oven. It all culminates in an unashamedly blatant pro-life vs. pro-choice debate, which left my blood curdling.
Given more soap-opera style time to stand around and do nothing, Part 1 relies so heavily fact that the proceeding film will be the ‘crazy’ final showdown, that it doesn’t bother getting us excited with any action sequences of it’s own.
Even if the acting here is some of the best we’ve seen so far (Stewart is allowed to smile), there’s still so many problems with this snoozefest.