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Gavin Grades The Movies



The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn part 2

Well, we finally did it.  For those of us that loathed the Twilight movies and thought they stood to tear down everything good that the Harry Potter  series accomplished by making teen fiction a respectable and noble film franchise, it was no easy task making it through the last five films.  It's hard to believe that the first Twilight movie came out only four years ago since it felt like Twilight has ruled the landscape inexplicably for at least a decade.  But with Breaking Dawn part 2 being released, the reign of terror has come to an end; it's too bad because they finally nailed it and got it right!

I'm sure it's easy to tell that I'm not a fan of the series and never read any of the books.  I have seen every single film at least once because my wife, like most women, is a fan.  Luckily I have a wife that was in love with the books but acknowleged the fact that the movies were melodramatic dribble that was poorly acted and a masacre of what was in the novels.  Summit Entertainment, the studio who became a juggernaught because of this franchise, didn't have a lot of capital nor clout when the first film was released so they got a down-and-out writer and director and cast it with no names that were pretty to look at but had limited range.  Much to their chagrin, the film exploded and they were stuck with three principles that suck as actors and haven't gotten much better over the last four years.  Between Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner, Pattinson wins Most Improved though.

What Breaking Dawn part 2 did that was so different than the others was that it benched those three for a huge chunk of the film.  This final installment introduces a legion of new characters that are infinitly more interesting and portrayed by better actors and than the stars of the film.  The reason for the new characters is that they help Bella and Edward defend their child against the evil monarch of vampires, lead by the amazingly talented and show-stealing, Michael Sheen (Frost/Nixon, Tron: Legacy).  Combined, everyone accept our starring trio, occupy 90% of the plot, scenes, lines, action and attention for the entire run of the film.

Director Bill Condon (Dreamgirls, Kinsey), who only took over for the Breaking Dawn films, kicks the quality up a notch as well.  The first Breaking Dawn was boring and tedious but that wasn't Condon's fault; it was the studio's for breaking the last book in half.  His direction was still aggressive, edgy and dark and where he goes with those three elements in Breaking Dawn part 2 is even better.  It sucks that, for the sake of continuity, he still has to play by the absolutely stupid rules laid out by creator Stephenie Meyers and original director, Catherine Hardwicke, such as the complete lack of fangs, sparkling in the sunlight, no stakes through the heart, the moronic and cheap look to them running, among many other things.  If Twilight was an original script and Condon was on board from the beginning, just think of what this might have looked like!

The thing that I enjoyed the most about this film was the final act.  An epic battle is displayed and really tests the limits of a PG-13 rating.  (The worry that it would get an R-rating for the violence was a very real concern while filming and frankly I think it should still have one.)  I'm not going to give any major SPOILERS but I will say this; the ending of the film is dramatically different than the ending of the book.  Again, I haven't read any of them but this is what the theater was buzzing with from all the Twi-hards as everyone was exiting.  Again, without going into details, I will say that I respect this incredibly!  I'm amazed at the boulder-sized balls required to take the final chapters of a book that has such a ravenous fanbase and do a lot more than tweak it.  Even bigger haters of the series than me have to be impressed with that.

This is still far from saying that it's is a perfect film.  We finally get a glimpse of the spawn of Edward and Bella and for the first half of the film she's presented as a CGI baby that doesn't look real for a second and causes unintentional laughter in the same way that the wolves talking to each other over brain waves did in one of the others.  The script is still full of dialogue that would make you roll your eyes in a Lifetime movie and Stewart is still as awful as always as well.  But she's sidelined to such an extent that you barely notice she's in it.

But go figure that they finally get it right just as the Twilight Saga comes to an end.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not hoping for more.  I've had my fill of Twilight and I'm thrilled that it's over.  I'm shocked however that I enjoyed this last one as much as I did considering that I didn't enjoy any of the ones before.  (Twilight: F  New Moon: D  Eclipse: C-  Breaking Dawn part 1: B-)  I think what makes me sad is that I would have enjoyed seeing them from the beginning with better casting, more money and Condon in full creative control.  Perhaps that would have been something I could've sunk my fangs into since I'm sure his movie would have REAL vampires who had them!
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn part 2  (Rated PG-13)
Gavin Grade: A-


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People : BellaBill CondonCatherine HardwickeEdwardGavin GradeKristen StewartMichael SheenRobert PattinsonStephenie MeyersTaylor Lautner


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11/15/2012 9:26PM
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn part 2
Please Enter Your Comments Below
11/15/2012 10:41PM
Thanks for the review!
So, first off, I have to say that I love listening to you, Katie and Jason in the mornings. Secondly, this review is totally entertaining to me, just because as I was reading it, I could hear you saying this review on air. Third, I am totally psyched to see the movie and it is always a good thing to get opinions from others. Lastly, I do agree that with the later installments of the Twilight movies that they have become increasingly better. So hopefully, since you gave this movie an A-, that it lives up to all the hype. Thank you again!
11/20/2012 9:19PM
thanks!
Dang I haven't seen it yet but u make it sound like I need to cuz I'm a total twihard. Thanks for letting me know I'm not wasting my money
11/24/2012 11:44AM
Thanks
I loved the movie
12/31/2012 8:38PM
Luv u guys
I love to listen to u guys u people r very interesting Kate u r awesome best radio station
03/10/2013 12:21AM
Not exactly being the biggest twilight fan..
Well even though ive never been the biggest twilight fan, I have every movie on blu ray and I just watched Breaking Dawn part 2 last night. I think they did a good job for the amount of stuff they were alowed to do. It made me sad to think that it has all come to a close, the twilight saga came out in a point in my life where I was really young, 5 years later im a new person, and just to think how fast the time goes by, it made me get a little teary in the last scene in the meadow, when bella shows him the flashback. Its just like wow its really all over. I also have always thought twilight movies have the absolute best music in them. So just saying goodbye to a chapter in my life that this had been a part of was hard. Goodbye twilight
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