Review: “Breaking Dawn Part 2″ is better than the rest

November 16th, 2012 at 12:01 am by under Entertainment

 

Goodbye Jacob. So long Edward. Good luck Bella.

Sometimes its hard to say goodbye, its hard to wrap-up a story, luckily Director Bill Condon found a way to do both in “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2″… its actually the best movie in the franchise with more action and significantly less angst.

Warning to parents: “Breaking Dawn Part 2″ is rated PG-13 for sequences of violence including disturbing images, some sensuality and partial nudity.  But mostly for the fantasy violence that can be disturbing and gruesome.

“Breaking Dawn Part 2″ poster courtesy Summit Entertainment

(My spoiler-free review)

And all along.. I believed… I would find you…
Time has brought… your heart to me…
I …have loved you for a thousand… years” – now Christina Perri’s song “A Thousand Years” – the one that gets stuck in your head and won’t let go – finally makes sense in the context of the story.

Maybe its the big action sequence at the end of the movie or the early scenes with Bella learning her new found Vampire powers that makes it seem like Stephanie Meyer’s version of Xavier’s school for the gifted.  There are many things I liked more about this chapter of the “Twilight” saga.

“Breaking Dawn Part 2″ continues the style of lots of standing around and talking about what is going to happen, has happened, or will happen.  Gone are all the angst – thank you – and a lot of “longing” … close ups and tracking shots around our main characters who are just staring off camera.   We get moments of humor from different characters… but this time around, the audience is laughing more at the intended jokes than at the movie itself.

There are still several issues that keep this movie from entering any discussion of “best movies of 2012″… let’s start with the biggest elephant in the room: the CGI effects for baby Renesmee in the early scenes are ridiculous and distracting!!  Its clear that a baby would not make faces like that … its clear that its CGI… it destroys the moment of “cuteness” and family bonding and replaces it with the “what the heck” feeling I had the first time I saw the talking baby commercials during the Super Bowl.

Let’s be honest… I am not the target audience and I didn’t read the books… but we still get a lot of adolescent dialogue and some of the acting is still a little stiff (Kellan Lutz as Emmett Cullen) or over-the-top (Michael Sheen as crazy/maniacal Aro).  I feel like they and other characters could have had more depth and be more relatable if you make them more human… so much of this script/concept could have been punched up more and made stronger with a dedicated person, maybe a writer on the outside of this production.

Kristen Stewart, Mackenzie Foy, Robert Pattinson in “Breaking Dawn Part 2″ photo courtesy Summit Entertainment

I did like that there was considerably more action and less romance… although its still in there, just less of it… in a different, more grown up way.   I love that Bella is not so mopey anymore.  Edward and Jacob almost have this Han/Lando old buddies/rivals relationship going – like they don’t completely trust each other – but they know they need to for everything to work out.   I also liked that the final climatic scenes are troubling — putting the heroes in peril… as we’ve seen in other great movie franchises… challenging your main characters and seeing how they respond builds depth and makes the characters more interesting.

Many scenes towards the end are quite violent and gruesome/brutal/disturbing action sequences – as many death scenes are in supernatural fantasy movies – that could be nightmarish for the younger ones.

The apparent twist ending had some fans in the audience gasping… but I thought it was interesting and refreshing for the Twilight series to do something slightly different.  But don’t worry Twi-hards – I’m told its in the book – you just have to kinda read between the lines and find it… and all the fans at the screening I attended didn’t really have a problem with it.

Fans will love “Breaking Dawn Part 2″…  its a solid way to wrap up the series.  Including a video yearbook style montage just before the end credits set to (another reference) Christina Perri’s song “A Thousand Years”.  It features a cast roll with names and images of all the characters from all 5 movies in the series in ascending order of billing… its a nice touch for the fans.

THE BOTTOM LINE:

“Breaking Dawn Part 2″ is the most entertaining non-angst riddled movie in this often staggering series that took itself too seriously at times with both decent entries and forgettable chapters in this wildly successful and misunderstood franchise that became a worlwide phenomenon … I give it 7.0 out of 10 … I wish this style of storytelling would have been used earlier in the series.  “… And all along… I believed… I would find you…” (final reference)

Video of my review from EightWest: http://youtu.be/RF8hYfdt98s

MORE INFO (possible spoilers):

Kristen Stewart, Mackenzie Foy, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner in “Breaking Dawn Part 2″ photo courtesy Summit Entertainment

“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2”

(2012) (rated: Rated PG-13 for sequences of violence including disturbing images, some sensuality and partial nudity)
(1 hr, 55 min)

Starring: Kristen Stewart (Bella Swan), Robert Pattinson (Edward Cullen), Taylor Lautner (Jacob Black), Peter Facinelli (Dr. Carlisle Cullen), Elizabeth Reaser (Esme Cullen), Ashley Greene (Alice Cullen), Jackson Rathbone (Jasper Hale), Kellan Lutz (Emmett Cullen), Nikki Reed (Rosalie Hale), Billy Burke (Charlie Swan), Chaske Spencer (Sam Uley), Mackenzie Foy (Renesmee), Maggie Grace (Irina), Jamie Campbell Bower (Caius), Christopher Heyerdahl (Marcus), Michael Sheen (Aro), Dakota Fanning (Jane), Cameron Bright (Alec)

Director: Bill Condon ["Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1" (2011), "Dreamgirls" (2006), "Kinsey" (2004), "Gods and Monsters" (1998)]

Writers: Melissa Rosenberg (screenplay), Stephenie Meyer (novel)

Genre: Adventure/ Drama / Fantasy

The Plot: After the birth of Renesmee, the Cullens gather other vampire clans in order to protect the child from a false allegation that puts the family in front of the Volturi.

So what did you think?  Please post a comment!

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“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2” poster and photo courtesy Summit Entertainment

Laff at the Movies

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