Tuesday, November 29, 2011


We all knew it was going to happen. I said as much. And so it comes as no surprise that I went to see the Breaking Dawn movie.

Overall I thought they did a pretty decent job of translating the book to the film. All of the major events and character drama is included. The cinematography was great, included those panorama shots the film is so keen on, and thankfully the wolves were a little more normal size.

There were, however, several instances where some conversation or point seemed like a random aside because the foreshadowing is to an event we haven't yet seen. Take the mention of Laurent's death at the wedding for example. If we had only seen this first installment of the film and not read the book then it seems irrelevant. As writers, however, we know nothing a writer creates is by accident. It's all building to a larger purpose but the difficulty with breaking a book into two movies is that not every seed that's planted in the beginning is resolved by the middle.

That said, I found the climax to be excellent. They created that moment of self doubt. Despite having read the book there's still a part of me that connects to Edward in his moment of shocked grief, to Jacob as he sobs in the front lawn, and begs for Bella to come back. And the moment she does, it's blood red eyes we see and then *credits.* It definitely concluded at a cliff hanger of a moment and left me wanting more because this, of course, changes everything--everything we know about the dynamic of the characters, about Bella, and about her relationship with Edward.

The chemistry between Edward and Bella was still palpable throughout the film but, at least on screen, I'm finding Jacob's involvement even more bothersome. I couldn't help but think, "The girl's married. Give up already!" and yet there he was, still pining away.

The movie also failed, in my opinion, to adequately explain imprinting. Sure Jacob has a flash forward moment when he sees baby Renesmee (thank God they admit this is a terrible name) but, really, what's to say Renesmee won't always think of him as creepy uncle Jacob who used to dig my mom and is 18 years older than me? He's the only one imprinting here. I do find it peculiar no one ever questions the other partner's willingness to join the relationship. Hopefully this will be explored or clarified in the next installment.

The action was good but, of course, there's so much action that we can never get to until the next installment when the storyline really comes to fruition and Bella's life as a vampire takes hold. Thankfully that next installment won't include Bella pregnant with a demon baby. Holy hell, breaking bones! I actually shrieked in the theater. Sure Bella was contorting and exceptionally gross and malnourished but I did NOT expect that.

What I did expect was for the film to be consistent with all of the others particularly in conveying Bella's unique mix of insecurity and strength. That's seen no where more than in this movie. I look forward to seeing how these dueling characteristics play out in the next film, because as one movie patron hollered as we left, "See you all next November," and I'm sure he's right. He will.

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