Those were the first words that came out of my mouth after I sat through The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn: Part Two: If Harry Potter Can Split The Last Book Into Two Movies, So Can We, Bitches! Why would someone like me, who is not interested in the series at all and not exactly in the key demographic of people who this movie is made for, go to see this Sparkling Vampire Turd? The circumstances were these:
- One of my best friends, Zubair, was being forced to go to the movie by his girlfriend, and another of my best friends, Jenn. I tagged along as a show of support for him, because I didn’t think it was right that I would make him suffer through that alone and because I’m the sort of friend that should have statues erected in his honor.
- Every time one of these movies came out, I was dating a girl who was interested in seeing them, so I would join them for the midnight showing without complaint, which is what they did for every stupid comic book movie that came out during the duration of our relationship. If I’d seen five of the six movies, I might as well see how this stupid thing ended, right?
- I had nothing better to do. Seriously, not a damn thing.
As I’m sure you are aware by now, I wasn’t exactly what you’d call a “fan” of the movie. However, before you tell me how I’m “obtuse” ((Seriously, someone once said I was “obtuse” for thinking that the first Twilight book was a repetitive bunch of nonsense that could have been a serviceable novel if cut in half, since a lot of the book is essentially Bella talking about how “hot” and “mysterious” Edward is. When the first Twilight movie came out, they basically did everything I said that would make it a better story. So who’s the obtuse one now, random internet troll?!)), or “don’t get it”, or “should die in a fire”, I should point out that my displeasure was not based on the story or the characters. I should also point out that I do not judge the Twilight movies to other movies, as that would be like judging a pre-school tee-ball team to a Major League Baseball team – Twilight gets a participation ribbon and a juice box just for showing up, as far as I’m concerned, so I will forgive a lot in the way of story and characterization mistakes. ((Well, mostly, anyway.))
So what about this pile of werewolf droppings annoyed the crap out of me? I’ll tell you! Spoilers ahead, if you care about such things.
The Special Effects Were Sub-Par For Even A SyFy Original Movie
Let’s all be clear as to why this movie exists: Summit Entertainment, the studio behind The Twilight Saga, wanted to make a crapton of money. And who can blame them? I mean, studio executives need to release films that will make money in order to stay in ample supply of hookers and cocaine, and I’m certainly not going to begrudge them that.
However, given that any Twilight movie is assured to rake in a pantload of dough, it would have been super-nifty-keen if they had budgeted more than $7.82 for the effects required to make the whole “Everybody is a vampire/werewolf/person with ridiculous abs” thing seem real, you know? I mean, in the first fifteen minutes of the movie, when Bella is on her first post-vampire-transformation hunt and she’s running after a deer, it literally looks like Kristen Stewart was told to run in place – they couldn’t even spring for a treadmill for her to jog on to give the appearance of forward motion? – and then they ran a fast-paced panning of a forest behind her. It looked worse than the super-speed effects on the 1990’s The Flash TV show that ran for one whole season on CBS, and they spent a majority of their budget on the costume.
And if that was the only issue, it probably wouldn’t have given me much pause, but then you had Renesmee Cullen, the terribly named offspring of Bella and Edward, who had some weird dead-eyed baby face CGI’d on to whatever child or doll playing the part, which was pretty freakin’ unsettling. Maybe there was some specific reactions the baby needed to give to stay true to the books – I wouldn’t know, I didn’t get that far in them – but there had to be better ways to do it than to make it look like the offspring of a human and a vampire is a zombie. ((To be fair, that would almost make sense, and a zombie was the one major creature that this series was missing, so that would have been pretty awesome.))
My point is that when Mega Shark Versus Giant Octopus has a better effects budget than you, maybe you need to reconsider some of your choices.
Poor Lee Pace
He was awesome as The Piemaker in Pushing Daisies, which was a phenomenal show that you should go watch on Netflix right now. ((Don’t worry, this rant will still be here when you get back.)) Since that show was cancelled, however, he has had parts in Marmaduke and this… The poor guy’s career can’t seem to get a break, and that makes me sad.
Stupid Disingenuous Fight Scene Is Stupid And Disingenuous
When everyone I know who read the books saw The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn: Part One: Bunches O’ Boning, they commented that they had no idea how they were going to stretch was left of the last book, which wasn’t much, into another whole movie. Turns out the way they did it was to throw in a giant twist fight-scene between a whole bunch of kinda-okay vampires fighting with the Cullens against a bunch of vampires who make up the vampire shadow government, The Volturi. It’s a fairly well done display of violence with a number of scenes that come as a shock to the audience, including the deaths of several of Edward’s family, most notably the beheading of Cullen patriarch and Dumbledore analog Carlisle at the hands of Volturi leader and Voldemort-wannabe Aro. The gasps and yelps of horror from the preteens around us became a cacophony of applause and laughter as it is revealed that the entire fight was a vision seen by Aro as what would happen if he did engage The Cullen Corps in battle, and since the vision ended with his own head getting ripped off by Bella, he basically tells everyone to go home and that there was nothing to see here.
A lot of the reviews I’ve read since seeing the movie called this a “brilliant” twist, and that it was a great departure in the series as they finally opened up and stopped taking themselves so damn seriously. And if that’s how you feel, great, I’m glad you enjoyed it.
But, from my admittedly cynical point of view, the whole scene was nothing more than a trick to justify splitting a book with barely enough story to fit one movie into two in the minds of the audience. Consider this: Without the fight scene splitting it up, what happened was that two groups of monsters got together, had a five-minute chat, determined everything was cool, and everyone had a group hug and went home. You could shoot that scene in a Starbucks without losing even the slightest bit of the tension. Hell, they could have just talked on Skype for the same effect! However, because you threw in a fight scene where characters you cared about died incredibly graphic deaths and villains got what was coming to them, you suddenly feel like everyone had to overcome a great deal of adversity to get back to the status quo, which adds to the illusion of something happening, which makes you think you watched a movie that was fully formed, when in reality all of this could have been done in 20 minutes. It’s a cheap trick to justify the creation of the second movie, and I would have found it more palatable if they had just skipped the fight and wrapped things up; it would have been a much more obvious shameless cash-grab, but at least it would have been more honest.
Seriously, that is a freakin’ stupid name.
I have no ending to this rant, so you may now proceed to send me tweets about how I don’t understand how awesome Twilight is. Feel free to hashtag it #DoucheCanoe, that’ll at least make it funny for me to read.