23. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 2 (PG-13) - Runtime: 115 minutes
Starring: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner
Director: Bill Condon
Writer: Melissa Rosenberg
At long last I finally get to see how this all plays out. While I still think the first Twilight movie is the best (and probably the story should have just stopped there!), Eclipse was a fun movie, but the other two (New Moon and BD Part 1) could have been boiled down into twenty minute prologues before their subsequent sequels. It's a fairly satisfying ending to the franchise and I hope I never have to hear the name Renesmee again.
I'm not going to summarize the story - most people are familiar with it anyway and I don't feel like rehashing the fairly dull details. Suffice to say, the head vampires find out about the human/vampire hybrid child and want to kill it because it's like a metaphor for abortion, or something like that. So the whole movie is the build up to the end showdown between the Cullen family versus the Volturi. I honestly cannot remember too much about the rest of the movie except for the ending, which I will get to in a minute.
The first thing that bothered me about this movie was the CGI baby/toddler/child. Yes, instead of finding real, cheap babies and children to fill the screen with as Renesmee (seriously, the most effed up name on the planet! Gawd!), the filmmakers decide to throw away money (although it wasn't really well spent!) on a CGI baby. And it's disgustingly unreal and awkward in so many ways. I understand they wanted to show us how fast this kid will grow up (she goes from being a baby to like ten in less than a year), but it was handled so badly that I threw up a little in my mouth every time the kid was on screen. Seriously - they CGI'd a toddler's face to match the real (Mackenzie Foy) actor's face! Every time the kid was on screen it was completely distracting and I think I could have suspended disbelief just a tad more if the kid was real, just played by different actors at different ages. Although Maggie doesn't necessarily disagree with me, I don't think this absurdness bothered her as much as it bothered me!
And now onto the aforementioned big showdown. I really was looking forward to that wrestling-style spin and kick combo that Edward and Bella did in the trailer and this showdown did not disappoint! There was so much violence (but not that much blood! This is a PG-13 affair and think of the children!) that I was completely shocked at how much heads were decapitated and jaws were ripped apart without any real blood spilling or guts hanging out. I will spoil the whole ending here, so beware. The battle starts with Carlisle's head being ripped out! I was like, "Oh hell yes!" and shit started flying everywhere and the earth literally opened up to swallow wolves and vampires alike and so, so many people died. It was epic and awesome! The whole time Maggie's jaw was on the floor and at one point she was flipping off the screen and yelling obscenities at the movie. I asked her why she was so upset and she told me this didn't happen in the books AT ALL! I started laughing and couldn't help but revel in all the delicious carnage. It was really fun to see all those people die - it made the story seem more powerful - all of these martyrs dying for their cause.
BUT WAIT! Snap back to reality and it was all just a vision of the future from Alice! Nobody died! She shows this to the head Volturi dude and they all conclude it's not worth fighting over. So instead of the previous shitstorm becoming a reality, they all go their separate ways and Edward and Bella live happily ever after with their poorly named and creepy looking daughter. Who also happens to fall in love with Jacob in a way that just sends chills up my spine in a bad way. The whole ending is pretty awful.
Maggie was upset in a much different way. The movie totally punk'd her - she thought the whole overly dramatic battle was real and that the movie completely deviated from the book. Psyche! I don't think I've ever seen such a blatant and obvious scheme to lure in a male audience. They promise us with an epic battle and they deliver, but it's all not real! I felt a little bit shafted, albeit from a different perspective than Maggie.
So while I maintain the Twilight Saga is a decent to mediocre story, I think the universe Stephanie Meyer created is much, much more interesting than Edward's, Bella's and Jacob's silly little romantic story. Aside from the sparkly vampires, I'm way more intrigued by the history of the vampires, including the Volturi and how they came to power. That's a story I'd like to hear and I think it would be way more bloody and dramatic than a cheesy love triangle. Would I see these movies again? Probably not, but I was more invested into how the story would end and the movie does a fairly decent job of keeping my attention.
Rating: Rent It!