Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 1 | Screenplay by Melissa Rosenberg | Directed by Bill Condon

The first part of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn was finally released two days ago. Although all the anticipation for this new film has awakened Twilight fans everywhere, I was less enthused. I was completely unhappy with the decision to split the book into two films; I believed that we'd get an adequate film adaptation otherwise. Well, Breaking Dawn, Part 1 ended up being much better than I expected. I actually really enjoyed it!

As we all know from watching Eclipse or simply watching Breaking Dawn, Part 1's trailer, Bella (Kirsten Stewart) is finally going to marry Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), her long-term vampire boyfriend. Of course, this would result in a honeymoon... Which ends with a pregnancy scare. But what exactly is the species of the abnormal fetus that is weakening Bella?

Now, it is to the point where Edward is in need of Jacob's (Taylor Lautner) help to defend who they both love.

During the first quarter of the film there was plenty of eye-rolling from me. Other than the bits of humor we get from nearly everyone, everything was just so corny and the acting just seemed too gushy for me to digest. This gave me a bad first impression of the movie, especially since it seemed to be just as bad as my extremely low expectations that prevented me from being excited to see Breaking Dawn, Part 1. For those who will probably end up experiencing the same first-hand disappointment, my advice is to hold tight. The last half of the film makes it all worthwhile. Even the acting somehow magically gets better.

On normal circumstances, I always stress that Twilight films are strictly for those who read the books since the films are nice but do not give the same effect; therefore, those who see the movies without reading the books first may not truly understand the allure. Breaking Dawn, Part 1 is an exception to that rule. The last half of this film is so awesome and intense that anyone who hasn't read the book should get the full effect. Even cross-over appeal is present with the film's new found intensity, but I'm not going to say much so I don't spoil it for those who haven't seen it yet or have missed previous films.

We get in on some major drama within the wolf pack this time, and it intertwines with Bella's pregnancy predicament. In the process, Jacob becomes a stronger character that not even Taylor Lautner could ruin (I say this because in the past I have been unimpressed by his acting). However, the portion of the book that was narrated by Jacob isn't included in the movie. I don't really think it was needed since I read the book, but I'm not so sure if those who haven't will see the change that I saw in Jacob. In that portion of the book, I gained a lot of new respect for him, but I'm not so sure if others will see that change.

Despite the film is ended with what could be considered a cliff-hanger, it's a very satisfying one, embedding anticipation for the next film into my brain (though my favorite parts of the book were all at the end of this movie) but letting everyone know what happens.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 1 is the best of the film series, surpassing my expectations by a longshot as well as doing the book justice in the process! Thanks to the second half's great save, I loved it!

4/5 Stars

1 comment:

  1. re: book review request by award-winning author

    Dear Critiquing Critica:

    I'm an award-winning author with a new YA book out this fall. Ugly To Start With is a series of thirteen interrelated stories about childhood being published by West Virginia University Press.

    Can I interest you in reviewing it?

    If you write me back at, I can email you a PDF of my book. If you require a bound copy, please ask, and I will forward your reply to my publisher. Or you can write directly to Abby Freeland at:

    My publisher, I should add, can also offer your readers a free excerpt of my book through a link from your blog to my publisher's website:

    Here’s what Jacob Appel, celebrated author of
    Dyads and The Vermin Episode, says about my new collection: "In Ugly to Start With, set in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia, Cummings tackles the challenges of boyhood adventure and family conflict in a taut, crystalline style that captures the triumphs and tribulations of small-town life. He has a gift for transcending the particular experiences to his characters to capture the universal truths of human affection and suffering--emotional truths that the members of his audience will recognize from their own experiences of childhood and adolescence.”

    My short stories have appeared in more than seventy-five literary journals, including North American Review, The Kenyon Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, and The Chattahoochee Review. Twice I have been nominated for The Pushcart Prize. My short story "The Scratchboard Project" received an honorable mention in The Best American Short Stories 2007.

    I am also the author of the nationally acclaimed coming-of-age novel The Night I Freed John Brown (Philomel Books, Penguin Group, 2009), winner of The Paterson Prize for Books for Young Readers (Grades 7-12) and one of ten books recommended by USA TODAY.

    For more information about me, please visit:

    Thank you very much, and I look forward to hearing back from you.


    John Michael Cummings