Friday, June 26, 2009

First Book/Film Review - Twilight

There are probably a thousand of these out there, but here I go.

Written by Stephenie Meyer
Screenplay by Melissa Rosenberg

First off, I'm not obsessed with the Twilight Saga. Unless, you consider reading all the books more than three times obsessed. I am in strong like of it. Like any literary work it has flaws. Not that I'm much good when it comes to grammar, research, or anything, but that's the truth. Secondly, I will try to be as unbiased as possible. Which in most cases isn't much of a possibility. Lastly, if you haven't read Twilight, or seen the film, I will try not to ruin anything for you. Okay?

It wasn't until, maybe Sophomore year in high school, that I actually took an interest in reading for leisure. Now, it wasn't until my Senior year that I was introduced to Twilight by an acquaintance. This chance encounter, changed my life. Twilight is the book, that really got me reading. Before I had never paid much never mind to what I read as long as it didn't bore me to death. Then I get Stephenie Meyer's book, and I'm like, "This is so good". That may be an understatement for some, but for someone like me who spent most of their life just doodling, it's a big deal.

Now what makes Twilight so Good, you ask?
Well, if it was up to me to sell her books, they probably wouldn't be so successful. So, you can disregard or refute anything I say that doesn't suit the work's magnitude (No, I am not being sarcastic). If anything can gain the hearts of millions, then it must be magnificent. Only time will tell how great though.

Bella Swan (who from this point on will mostly be referred to simply as B.S.), moves back to Forks, Washington to live with her father Charlie, after her mother remarries. Given the high divorce rate in this country, I can see how some would relate to this circumstance. Then to add to that, she isn't that exceptional in any way, that is, if you don't consider clumsiness a exceptional trait (I don't see her being that clumsy, but apparently she is). Some people may think that she is extraordinary, because of their admiration of the character, but saying B.S. is extraordinary (Unless you are her undying love) is basically b.s. I'll let you make your own judgements about that. Meyer even says that B.S. is ordinary, though.

After the move she has to tolerate her new home. It's cloudy almost all of the time. She just came from Phoenix, AZ so that's a big adjustment. On top of that she has to start at a new high school, where she is throw in the spotlight, because the entire student body is the equivalent of her old class. At lunch, a group of students off on their own catches her attention. She learns from Jessica Stanley about the Cullen family. They are by far the most beautiful people she's ever seen. From that point on she is drawn in. The first time she is able to get near the youngest Cullen, Edward, she is shocked, and upset. He doesn't appear too friendly. To add to that he tries to switch his classes in an attempt to avoid her. This makes no sense to B.S. After this she wants to confront him, but never gets the chance. Some time passes, and she comes to expect that he won't be there, which is almost as intolerable as his behavior (Which I might add she's gotten over. Must be his face.). Then suddenly, one day he is there.

Edward tries to make an effort to be nice, which before Bella, wasn't a problem. She's charmed but frustrated with him. Her infatuation isn't helped with his cryptic ways. He saves her from being squashed by a van. This is when her curiosity and infatuation, or love, intensifies. They argue about the incident at first, but eventually agree to disagree. He allows her to take a guess at how he could achieve such a feat, to humor himself, but she can't figure it out. Since he obviously isn't going to tell her what's going on, she tries to find the answers another way. That's where Jacob Black, son of Billy, Charlie's good friend, comes in. One of the Quileutes makes a remark, "The Cullens don't come here" , while on trip to La Push beach with friends. This leads to B.S. tricking the answer out of her childhood playmate (probably only in film. I think his sisters in book.) He tells her the legend about the Werewolves (Quileutes) and the Cold Ones A.K.A. Vampires (Cullens). After doing further research this theory seems to make sense. B.S. is saved, once again, by Edward, and finally gives him an answer, the correct one, as to how he stopped the van.

From that point on they are nearly inseparable, until a few non-vegetarian vampires come to town.

A few holes and rough spots, but I think (hope) you get the gist.


I am not a big fan of literature that I've already read being made into film. A lot of times, it doesn't seem to have the same heart and character that the work originally did. I miss out on what captured me in the first place. When you create these pictures in your head, then see them not created on film, it can be very disappointing.

It took me three tries, before I liked the film. I have read the book over three times. Now, what does that say about the movie. There are some things that were, basically, ridiculous. It didn't seem real. Okay, this is a work of fiction, based on a dream, but still, it just seemed silly at times. If it wasn't for my love of the characters I wouldn't want to see it again. Which I am so going to do.

They jumped into some things too quickly. The film was like two hours and something, but I feel it lost a lot of what made the book what it is. I couldn't get the same connections from the actors that I felt for the characters. Some how that was lost. Even the actors didn't seem connected at times. Edward, is supposed to be charming, even though, in my opinion he could be very controlling, and a little manipulative. Robert Pattinson's best part, was probably when he first introduced himself to Bella. He had me, but only for a little while. After that he just seemed, like a jerk, or some other bad things. Then the way Bella pursued him, was very frustrated. Kristen Stewart. It seemed like she was the main person not really connecting with anyone. Very disappointing. Maybe this was intentional, because Bella was already an outcast, freak, or whatever you wish to call her. At the same time, she didn't inspire me to root for her.

There are some events that occurred in the film that were silly. They wait until they get into the woods, so she can tell him, "I know what you are." I had to laugh. This was probably to illustrate the extent to which she trusts him and how scary, and serious this is, but really. Now, if Robert and Kristen weren't laughing their A's off while the camera were circling overhead, I don't know what to say. I suppose you can't be an actor unless you have discipline. But that obviously wasn't a concern.

I liked the liberties they took with a later scene. The ballet room scene was really nice. However, the action could have been more graphic. Given the fact they choose to show Kristen in her undies, making out with Edward in her bed. (I don't remember this from the book. Bella is supposedly an innocent. As a matter of fact, I don't remember them getting near hot and heavy until Eclipse. Ha.) Since a stunt man had a concussion, or something, for three days I can't say anything else negative about the fighting sequence. Great job dude.

This is probably a poor review. I hate spoilers, and would hate to spoil anyone else's experience of Twilight. There are some things in the book and film that I am sure I didn't help illustrate the best. So, my suggestion would be to read the book, and rent the film, or borrow it from your library.

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