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Twilight (movie)

A 2008 film based on the Stephenie Meyer book of the same name, directed by Catherine Hardwicke

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  • Mar 16, 2011
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Before I start this review, I want to make this quite clear. I am not a twi-hard nor will I ever be. I only watched this to have a running commentary of the movie and we shall do the same for New Moon and Eclipse. Twilight certainly is an interesting cultural phenomenon, and this movie marks its transition to the big screen. I, however, am a teenage girl and these films were marketed towards my age group and that makes me feel sort of compelled to watch it to analyze it. Anyway, I'm getting anecdotal, so lets move on to the actual movie.

Twilight is not a heinous film by any means, but it is still very poorly done and incredibly boring. I have read Twilight and New Moon, and they were good fanfiction at best but horrible at worst. Those who loved the books or are twi-hards will absolutely adore this movie as it seems fairly faithful to the book (from what I remember, I haven't touched them in years). The direction is horrible, the dialogue and characterization were laughable, the performances are pretty bad, and the film is incredibly slow and poorly lit.

For those of you without a rudimentary knowledge of Twilight, it is about Bella (AKA girl so bland that one can insert themselves and lose absolutely nothing) and her high school life in the rainiest, bluest place in the world, Forks. She then meets the mysterious Cullens, who's very last name suggests misery and mysteriousness. Bella sits next to the loner Edward (AKA He-Man/Jesus Christ) and they soon spiral into a relationship when he reveals (in that infamous woods scene) that.....he's a vampire (cue the da da daaaaaaa). There are also some bad vampires killing random people and want Bella just 'cause she's so damn tasty and Edward has to stop them.

The plot is your run-of-the-mill average teen movie and is written horribly. You can't really blame the writers though, they had no good source material to work with. During our running commentary, me and my friend shared many a look of "my god how undelightfully bland" or "could it be any more cliched". The dialogue was also incredibly pretentious and had absolutely no feeling or emotional investment in the characters or the conflict. The characterization is incredibly poor as well and they all bored me senseless. My friend in fact said that if we had viewed the movie by ourselves I would have an aneurism and she would just fall asleep.

In my opinion, the movie would have been much better had it been centred on the dad. It could have been about this cop in a small town solving a string of mysterious murders and dealing with the fact that his daughter is hiding something from him. But hey, the books are not police dramas, they're just softer-than-soft core porn for teens. It could have even worked had there been more chemistry between the two leads, which there is none in this. Anyway, that is pretty much all that can be said for the terrible writing and story, so I shall move on to the performances.

The film features pretty wooden acting, especially from the embodiment of all misery herself, miss Kristin Stewart. In a way, she was the perfect choice to play Bella Swan because they are both so bland and miserable that they seem to go together perfectly. The Cullens and the rest of the human and vampire characters are incredibly wooden as well and I hear that it gets worse in New Moon. The only performances that prevented me from giving the film a 0 were Robert Pattinson and Billy Burke.

Before you get all crazy and start bashing me for liking Robert Pattinson's performance, I will let you know that it is still very wooden, but I could detect signs of him trying to do something with his terribly written role. That can hardly be said for anyone else in this movie, except for Bella's dad, whom the other 10% is for. I think Robert Pattinson was by far the best actor in the movie and at least he was trying. Maybe I have more faith in him than I should, but I think he's a decent actor and I want to see how he's going to do in the upcoming Water For Elephants. All in all, those two somewhat less wooden performances added 10% each to something I would have given a 0 to.

One last thing before I wrap this up. The special effects are horrible and Robert Pattinson "running" looked like a high schooler had gone crazy with the smudge option on photoshop. Plus, those of you with a rudimentary knowledge of the Twilight universe know that the vampires sparkle in the sunlight as opposed to...well...burning alive in the sun and that fact is incredibly stupid but I digress. For the sparkling effects, it just looked like they smeared glitter glue all over Robert Pattinson and drew on a six pack (seeing as stodgy brit and rippling muscles don't exactly go together). The film is also very poorly lit, switching from blue to bronze to grey, and it makes everyone look paler than they already are and dying of consumption or spanish flu. The cinematography reaches the level of "uh-oh, the cameraman's drunk again" and I have to say this. Watching your girlfriend sleep isn't exactly the quality in the perfect man, its a bit more serial-killer than stud.

All in all, Twilight isn't exactly a heinous film, and it could have worked. However, it was very poorly executed and it didn't work. It had two redeeming qualities, but the rest of the movie is absolute crap. If you are a fan of the books, then this will probably be your godsend. If you aren't, don't bother unless you want to analyze it like me and my friend. You can expect reviews on New Moon and Eclipse before the end of the month. I hear it gets worse...just wish me luck.

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More Twilight (movie) reviews
review by . April 27, 2009
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review by . July 19, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
did they even read the book??
i will say this: had i never read the book, i may have liked this movie. but to bad for summit entertainment, i did read the book and so did a WHOLE lot of other people. it was (or at least seemed to be) really low budget. aside from pattington, who had some notable acting experience, the rest of the acting was really bad. some of the minor supporting actors shined brighter than Bella's character as far as acting goes. and the vampire makeup effects were awful. it looked like baby powder mixed …
review by . June 27, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
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review by . May 05, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
More than any other movie released last Fall, I so wanted to hate Twilight & actually made a special point to avoid it at all costs. You might even ask what changed my mind or why I'd bothered going at all. Hell, why write a review for the film? Surprisingly, this was actually somewhat better than I thought & somehow I felt compelled to write up a small one for you guys. Hmm. Empty spot in my schedule, right? Ha!      As anyone will tell you, Twilight has been the …
review by . March 23, 2009
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review by . July 08, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
did they even read the book??
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Quick Tip by . October 01, 2010
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review by . May 12, 2010
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About this movie


Twilight is a 2008 American romantic vampire film based on Stephenie Meyer's popular novel of the same name. Directed by Catherine Hardwicke, the film stars Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson. It is the first film in The Twilight Saga film series. This film focuses on the development of the relationship between Bella Swan (a teenage girl) and Edward Cullen (a vampire), and the subsequent efforts of Cullen and his family to keep Swan safe from a coven of evil vampires.

The project was in development for approximately three years at Paramount Pictures, during which time a screen adaptation that differed significantly from the novel was written. Summit Entertainment acquired the rights to the novel after three years of the project's stagnant development. Melissa Rosenberg wrote a new adaptation of the novel shortly before the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike and sought to be faithful to the novel's storyline. Principal photography took 44 days, and completed on May 2, 2008; the film was primarily shot in Oregon.

Twilight was theatrically released on November 21, 2008, grossing over US$392 million worldwide. It was released on DVD March 21, 2009, and became the most purchased DVD of the year. The soundtrack was released on November 4, 2008. Following the film's success, New Moon and Eclipse, the next two novels in the series, were produced as films the following year.
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Genre: Drama, Fantasy, Romance
Release Date: November 2008
MPAA Rating: PG-13
DVD Release Date: Summit Entertainment (October 27, 2009)
Runtime: 122 minutes
Studio: Summit Entertainment
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