1. Awesome/exciting twist on the book ending
2. Funnier than other Twilight movies
3. Ties up nicely for fans
1. Creepy CGI baby
2. Awkward dialogue
3. Flat acting
Twilight finds life in 'Breaking Dawn - Part 2'
Let’s be honest, the “Twilight” movies aren’t works of art. No one will get Oscar nominations for their portrayals of angsty teen vampires or werewolves, but that’s not the point of these movies. These are for the fans.
Maybe someday a group of filmmakers will revisit the series and tap into a new audience with a dark “Batman Begins” makeover, but until then the focus has been the adoring franchise fanatics.
That being said, “Breaking Dawn – Part 2” is easily the best in the series.
For the first time since we were introduced to Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) four years ago she’s a confident young woman. Despite only making one face for 95% of the movie (I’ll come back to the other 5% later) she’s pretty entertaining to watch. It helps that she no longer suffers from crushing self-doubt and the need to constantly whine about not being a vampire, because, well, she is one.
The movie picks up right where “Breaking Dawn – Part 1” left off with Bella opening her new blood-red vampire eyes. She’s got super senses and incredible strength. The biggest improvement, however, is that she no longer resembles the terrifyingly malnourished woman that slowly degenerated in the previous movie.
“Breaking Dawn – Part 2” is more fun than all of it's predecessors.
Instead of watching Bella worry about her wedding, honeymoon and childbirth we get to see her run around and enjoy herself and new life with Edward (Robert Pattinson).
The “Bella is stronger than all of the men” joke does gets a little old, but it’s one of the only times Emmett (Kellan Lutz) gets to talk so we’ll let it slide. One of the more interesting parts of the movie is when Bella is on the verge of Hulking out on Jacob (Taylor Lautner).
While she was dying in “Part 1” he “imprinted” on her newborn daughter, Renesmee. For Twilight novices, “imprinting” is an uncontrollable reaction a wolf has when it sees its soul mate. The world of that person suddenly shifts to focus on the desired individual and they become the wolf’s sole concern. This is supposedly not a sexual bond when the imprintee is a child, but I’m not even going to go there.
For some reason Bella has a problem with Jacob, the man just spent four movies pining over, falling madly in love with her infant.
She gets mad, really mad. And there you have it, Kristen Stewart makes a different face. Empowered Bella is so much more fun than depressed, angsty Bella.
This isn’t the main conflict of the book. Turns out half-human, half-vampire babies are a rare thing in the Twilight universe so when the the Volturi, aka the Italian vampire mafia, hear the newlyweds have a child they assume it is a human turned vampire. That’s a no no.
Edward’s sister Alice (Ashley Green) uses her powers of precognition to warn the group the Voluturi plan to punish them so they set out rounding up friendly vampires across the globe.
Most of them turn out to be fairly flat and stereotypical but Lee Pace wins as Garrett, a feisty vampire from New Orleans, who is both entertaining and sentimental.
The heightened vampire effects are pretty cool, and I’ll get behind the morphing wolf scene but I cannot forgive the creepy CGI vampire baby.
Renesmee begins the movie as a newborn and quickly ages over the course of a few months into what appears to be a 10-year-old girl.
The actress who plays Renesmee only makes her debut near the end of the movie but the filmmakers use a digital copy of her face on all of the other actresses aged 4, 5 and 7. It’s not done very well but it’s still masterful compared to the complete CGI monster that supposed to pass for the girl as a baby. It’s distracting how creepy it looks and I found myself feeling relieved when it was finally gone.
The best thing about this movie is the deviation from the book.
In a brilliant move to spice up the story the filmmakers take a gamble. While it’s not exactly unfaithful to the source material you can expect a few diehard fans to scream in the theater. I won’t say more at the risk of spoiling it, but it pays off with a much more exciting ending.
You should know what you’re getting into by this point in the Twilight series so your expectations should be managed. The bar is set pretty low but this one clears it easily.
If you're a fan of the story you should see this movie as soon as possible. Stay off Facebook until you do. It doesn't have a huge twist, but it's more fun if you don't see it coming.