Movie Review of 'Twilight Breaking Dawn Pt 1:' So That's How They Made it into 2 Parts!

My wife wanted to watch The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, part 1, so we rented it from our Video on Demand system, and hence, this movie review.

The movie jumps right into the action, with Jacob (Taylor Lautner) charging out the door of his shack, stripping off his shirt, fulfilling his contractual obligation for shirtless mode.  If you had not seen the prior movies, the general movie fan trying to catch this movie as their first Twilight experience will start out about as bewildered as anything. 

The movie-goer is expected to know everything that took place in the previous films and Breaking Dawn charges right into the story... sort of.  That is if you don't mind long, drawn out emotive scenes of a woman who doesn't know what she wants until she sees her soon-to-be-hubby.  Or if you don't mind that half the movie is populated with preparing for a wedding, the wedding, then the trip to the honeymoon, and checking in to a hotel/cabin on a secluded island where the local servants seem to know that Edward (Robert Pattinson) is a vampire.

Summit really seemed to milk this final book of the series and took what should have been a 15-minute set of intro scenes and drew them out for half the movie.  (Sorry, that was a non-fan's pragmatic observation.)

With that being said, fans will eat this up though with no background info supplied, this movie isn't being fair to the casual movie-goer.  The Twilight fan will love how things progress and probably, where it ends, which is in an abrupt, cliff-hanging scene.

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From a movie review perspective, I have to say that this project was rather drab in the acting.  The cast, having gotten about as lucky as anyone could get in landing these roles, don't seem to have to stretch their acting wings as far as I can tell.  I've never seen Kristen Stewart do anything but sullen and down-trodden in this franchise, despite the fact I am looking forward to the day I see some form of happy out her.  If anyone knows of a flick where she plays a happy human, please, let me know because I'd love to see what else she can do.

With that said, I do have to give kudos to some of Stewart's more expressive scenes and how she delivered Bella's condition throughout Breaking Dawn.  She shows the subtle power of one transformation, from being sick about getting married, to seeing Edward at the end of the aisle and becoming, satisfied.  And playing the pregnant human who is suffering from her condition, well, she had that down pat.  But I can never seem to find happy in there.

Edward as always, is the "sullen Cullen." Actually, the Cullens all seem rather sedate.  And though I used to think Edward Cullen was Pattinson's vision of the character, when I watched Pattinson in Water for Elephants, I had a hard time not seeing Edward because Pattinson brought the same, dour, quiet guy to that character.  (Trust me, I was looking for more!)

The shape-shifters generated the most emotion and make this film more enjoyable.  Despite the money raked in by Summit, they still aren't dropping more bucks on things like the CGI.  It isn't bad.  In fact it's good enough where franchise fans will see it, understand it's OK, but are willing to accept it because it's their beloved Twilight franchise.

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Fans... I get it.  If you love the books, I can see loving the movie translation to screen.  But with a neutral eye, I can't get too over-thrilled about this.  I see actors lucky to have royalties coming in for years to come. 

If you HAVE to see Twilight: Breaking Dawn, rental is the way to go.  I'm glad I missed it in theaters, from the "money spent" point of view, and I'm not sure this is something worth the bucks for the Blu-ray/DVD release.  But I know fans will have no problem gobbling that new product up.  I don't blame them.  I have that first Tim Burton/Michael Keaton Batman movie.  Not because I loved it, but because it's all I had available to me for my own beloved franchise.

But in this instance, where a studio's greedy mode forces them to make a single book into two movies, well, shows what they think of the movie-going clientele. It seems shamefully greedy.  But hey, fans snapped up 3 million units of the DVD/Blu-ray when it came out last week, so everyone is happy.  Fans, studios, actors...  the whole lot.

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  1. I am glad Breaking Dawn part 1 was finally released. I loved it, the books were amazing. I remember when I couldn't stop reading the Twilight books, it didn't matter where I was, whether I was at my job at DISH or at school, I was reading. The movie was everything I expected and more. Now that I have been using Blockbuster @Home I can stream Breaking Dawn and thousands of more movies right to my TV. I love how I never have any late fees and no extra cost for Blu-ray movies. I can’t wait till part two.


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