Twilight has steadily become a phenom that no decent person can guess a Mormon inked it. With a dash of Catherine Hardwicke (Lords Of Dogtown fame), the stage is set for a blockbuster flick even moms can appreciate. If you’ve been living under a rock the size of Forks Washington and don’t know what I’m talking about, I suggest you read it first before moving forward. But if you don’t have time, you can always read a shortcut.
I wanted to see the movie ahead of everybody else because I felt the need to know long before it gets blemished by lopsided opinions caused by the Edward Cullen Mania. We know that fans have gone gaga over the books because for some twisted reason it reminds us how it felt to be foolish and free again. And for most readers, it allows them to foster their ideology that life is a fairy tale. And as any normal human with a living beating throbbing heart, the need to live vicariously through other people’s lives have been a prevalent drive. So throw in a tortured soul with a James Dean-ish good looks (plus a James Franco swager) and an unlikely girl – that girl being you in your imaginations – attention is obtained. Seeing it in the big screen stokes the fire further.
So what about the movie? Well, there was a collective scream inside the theatre when the title went up and the decibel reached fever pitch when the audience saw a glimpse of the protagonist. Every now and then, a girl or two would let out a squeal declaring her affection. It would have been laughable if it weren’t so annoying (my seatmate kept muttering “Oh Edward” it was creepy). But I tried my best to focus on what I was watching and not give the legions of Edward Club a finger (he is not real! and be quiet, I’m watching here).
I took a mental note of the few things that I noticed and I hope it’s not just me – I have this nasty feeling no one is really watching the movie, they’re just watching Edward, I mean Robert Pattinson.
>. Charlie is suddenly interesting. Billy Burke, the actor who played Charlie Swan, did a good job in being the good father that Charlie is. In the adaptation, he is more involved and conversant. There was more emotion in his character and although he had few lines, it was delivered well, matched with expressions that seemed to finish his sentence. And oh, I like that they added the pepper spray in there.
>. Fork’s Kids. Correct me if I’m wrong, didn’t Angela Webber end up with Ben Cheney and not that Asian guy Eric Yorkie? And the surfing, that was very Hardwicke. In the book, they seem to be a bunch of boring kids easily satisfied by long walks on the beach. Also, they seem more human … meaning more rowdy just like any high school kid.
>. Bella’s clumsiness. She wasn’t clumsy enough. She’ll trip a bit and slip once but it does not deduce that this girl is a magnet for accidents. She’s just a magnet for voyeur vampires with disco ball tendencies when the sun is out.
>.Jasper and his I’m constipated look, oh wait Edward does that too. Jackson Rathbone (the actor) is in need of another facial expression, anything but that look. I can’t help but laugh looking at him. He either looks like he needs to go to the bathroom or he needs to hurl. I understand that he is the new “vegetarian” in the family and he is channelling every possible strength not to kill, but can he not find another look a little less comical? He doesn’t look like he has a tortured soul, he looks like he just drank a dram of bad milk.
>. Edward and his “don’t push it, I can kill you” turmoil. Girl wants boy and boy wants girl. He creeps into her room to try something cool and she gives in. When things get hot and heavy, the poor boy cuts the act and keeps himself in check. Bummer! But that was one hell of a no tongue kiss; deeply sincere with a funny flying and hitting the wall ending.
>. Do vampires fly? They seem to be. The stunt elicited nothing but half-baked action that proved to be a menace instead of a draw. It suggests too much that it eventually appeared hokey. For a moment, I was waiting for a broom to appear under them.
>. It took Laureant a baseball game to realize he’s hanging out with the bad guys. Duh.
Twilight is challenged by the fact that it’s impossible to encapsulate a 500-paged book to two hours. So I allowed the very many missed events slip. Yet it summarized all the awkward lines that the book suffered. It also gave Edward the right amount of “I’m brooding” and “I’m happy” look. It didn’t linger in his melancholic wretchedness that Meyer thought to be sexy. Instead, it was cut to size to allow the little exposition of the story to travel smoother. Hardwicke also provided a better transition for the three nomad vampires (instead of just appearing suddenly towards the end). In the book, Bella loses consciousness and later finds out what happened in the ballet room. In the movie, it was realized by allowing the audience to watch two vampires slug it around.
The cinematography was also decent. It was able to afford the weather called for each scene. The green and cold surroundings transposed well in the shots that it numbs the desolate feeling of the fall season.
There are loose ends in Twilight but I tried to sink my teeth into it, yet I can only say I’m entertained. The book is much better, it almost always is.