The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1 (2011)
By: J.R. McNamara on December 2, 2011  | 
Director: Bill Condon
Starring:: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, Ashley Greene, Peter Facinelli
Screnplay: Melissa Rosenberg
Country: USA
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Here is a bit of a back story to why I spent time at the cinema watching this film. At the moment, my wife is spending a lot of time overseas for work, and we really don't get to see each other for more than about 3 days a month. Whenever we are reunited, being the excellent husband that I am, I always make sure that we do things that she wants to do: go to restaurants she wants to go to, or try positions she has read about in Cosmopolitan. Unfortunately, this weekend, her 'things to do' list contained one awful proposition: going to the cinema to see the latest Twilight film, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1.

Upon entering the cinema, I became aware of one thing: I was the only man there - everybody else was either 14 year old girls, or frustrated 40 something year old women, and every advertisement before the film was for perfume, Taylor Swift concerts or feminine hygiene products, which was lucky as I am sure at about the 50 minute mark of this film everyone's menstrual cycle was firmly in sync. Well, obviously my man-gina was not affected!!!

This film is based on the 4th book in the Twilight series, Breaking Dawn, by Stephanie Meyer, and continues the story of the relationship/love triangle between vampire Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), werewolf Jacob (Taylor Lautner) and perpetually constipated, pseudo-emo school girl Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart). This entry into the series was directed by Bill Condon and written by Melissa Rosenberg, who did the previous Twilight films as well as several episodes of Dexter and Birds of Prey.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 picks up a few months after the end of the last one, and Bella has accepted Edwards offer of marriage. Of course, Jacob is jealous and disappears for a few months. The wedding is a joyous, and overlong celebration, with a few familial problems (setting up a plotline for part 2) and Jacob returns to wish them well. Or as well as he can, being the third wheel on a two wheel relationship anyway.

The interesting thing about Bella and Edward is that they still have not 'gone the tonk' as Edward, being a vampire, may lose control and attack Bella, and Bella has a few apprehensions about becoming a vampire and the loss of her humanity.

Whilst on their honeymoon though, necrophiliac Bella receives Edward's dead sperm and becomes pregnant, which causes even more problems. No one knows if the creature living inside her will be born human or vampire… or something different. Whatever it may be though, it seems to be feeding off Bella, and killing her.

Jacobs family, a pack of badly CGI realized werewolves get wind of Bella's pregnancy and decide they need to destroy whatever demon is growing inside her, and it will take all the Cullen family, Jacob and a few of his friends to defend Bella and her progeny. But will the progeny be something horrible, or something beautiful? Only 117 minutes of boredom will tell.

Seeing as how this film is much more about the relationship aspects of Edwards and Bella's life, and Bella's decision to become a vampire, there is really nothing for the horror fan here. Condon's direction is solid, and some of the photography is amazing, especially the shots in Rio De Janero, which is where the Honeymoon takes place.

The script is occasionally funny, but unfortunately also occasionally clunky. The acting is of a fairly high level but I have to say that Pattinson's and Stewart's persistently depressed characterizations of their characters quickly become tedious. The aforementioned CGI werewolves are better than the previous films, but still not much better than an episode of post new millennium Doctor Who, and the scene where the wolves talk to each other is like really shitty muppets, and plain out ridiculous.

That's not to say all the effects were bad though, as Bella's health gets worse, her body becomes thinner and sicklier, and at one point is almost anorexic. Obviously Stewart did not lose all the weight, Raging Bull style, so the effect is impressive.

This film had the absolute worst soundtrack of any of the Twilight films so far. Every single song seemed to be sung by frustrated bi-curious girls and guys with acoustic guitars complaining about how shit their lives are. Let's just hope that one day the person responsible for this soundtrack is sucked into a Supermassive Black Hole!

In short, this film is dreary and boring. I have been informed that the 'Part 2' will be the 'action' part of the two part story, and thank goodness, as this was slow, lovey dovey shit! Unless you have already seen the other Twilights, don't even bother as it will make no sense, and if you have seen the others and need to see it to catch up with what's going on, think real hard about whether you want to watch a film that has a wedding that was more laborious to be present at than a real wedding… and I mean a bilingual Greek one!!!
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