Review: 'Twilight: Breaking Dawn - Part 2' Almost Had Me for a Minute

November 16, 2012

Twilight - Breaking Dawn - Part 2

They almost went out with a bang. Roughly 15 minutes near the end of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2, the last - or so they say - of this particular franchise, resonates with the awesome insanity we believed the series capable of. It's not giving much away to say there is a battle at the end of this film. After five abysmal movies, there damn well better be a good one. There is, but even that ends up gutted by the dull, lazy writing and cheap execution this series is actually known for. Afterwards, it's not the 15 minutes that resonate you remember, it's the 100 minutes it's wrapped in that annoyed so much. Read on!

Really, was there ever any doubt the last of the Twilight movies was going to be a horrendous movie? It's no big revelation that there are Twilight fans and there are the rest of us, and the former may as well have blinders on to how poorly crafted these films - and books - are. For those of us who didn't line up to buy Meyer's novels at midnight release parties, t was pretty obvious somewhere around the release of the first Twilight movie that this series would have little to offer anyone who wasn't a die-hard fan. Probably earlier. There was always this scent in the air about this franchise that, financially successful or not, it was going to deliver some truly terrible movies.

On that note, it met expectations to the very end.

Sure, after Breaking Dawn - Part 1 (the book) debuted, there was evidence to show the finale could be something quite amazing. It could pay fan service with all the wildly absurd plot turns while winning new fans over with wildly absurd plot turns. Having Jacob, the Native American werewolf played by Taylor Lautner's abs, imprint on Bella and Edward's (Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson) newborn baby, Renesmee, essentially claiming her as a soulmate, was a step in the right direction. Director Bill Condon and crew find a nice way here of making this even creepier by using a computerized face for the baby, an effect that is so obviously fake you wonder how difficult the real baby was.

Fake baby faces and the werewolves who love them isn't where Breaking Dawn - Part 2's list of absurdities end, either. Bella, now a vampire, must control her hunger, find a way to feed without killing humans, and basically tear ass through the forest looking for deer. Or, at the very least, tackling cougars who might hunt those same deer. Never mind that the forests of Washington state are probably littered with deer. This one was Bella's, and the cougar got in her way. At least the visual effects are so awful we know no actual cougars were harmed in the making of this film.

Twilight: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 - Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart

Kristen Stewart once again returns to the role that made her an Us Weekly favorite, sleepwalking through her education as a vampire like only K-Stew knows how. Again, it's no big revelation that the acting isn't top-notch, and Stewart, Lautner, and Pattinson make minimal effort in bringing anything with range to this table. Pattinson, playing the part of Edward the lovable, teenage vampire for one last time, seems to have finally given up. He was the one glimmer of acting hope in this franchise's principal cast, but his half-closed eyes and mumbling throughout Breaking Dawn - Part 2 may as well be a cry for help.

The rest of the cast is equally drowsy save for one. Michael Sheen once again plays Aro, the leader of the Volturi, with a childlike wonderment. The glee in his eyes - they might be CG, as well, but it's not confirmed - and Falsetto laugh he slips into at least once - it's enough - makes a believer out of you in this character's uncompromising insanity. No leap in logic has to be made to believe he is a character who will Renesmee simply because of a threat the baby could pose. The evidence against the child is shaky at best, but that doesn't stop Aro and his black-robed crew from taking to the battlefields against Bella, Edward, Jacob, and anyone else who stand in their way.

Twilight: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 - Final Fight Face-Off width=

Which brings us to the film's climactic moments, the sequence in this entire franchise that found its way to the ultimate in ridiculousness, an all-out brawl that leaves countless vampires and werewolves alike dead on the field, most of them headless and burning. The velocity with which this movie dispatches of vampire heads is uncanny, particularly considering its PG-13 rating, and even Condon, still relying far too much on CG battles, gets the series' blood pumping. These 15 minutes find a charge the rest of the series was oblivious to, and then it's gone. As if it wasn't bad enough the preceding 90 minutes or however long the 5 movies combined end up being were terrible. Meyer, Condon, and screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg - Yes, she wrote them all - end up pulling that rug out from under us, as well. They want to have their cake and eat it too here, and the whole thing comes off like a messy kick to the stomach.

That's what this franchise has left us. Not an epic journey of immense grandeur. Not a stirring tale of a fallen hero who sacrifices themselves for a greater good. Not a captivating story of a revolution against a powerful and nefarious organization. All of these are fitting ends to franchises, all of them used a time or two. But Twilight ends up surprising us with its finale. It's not a surprise that it's such a horrible movie. That was presupposed long ago. Breaking Dawn - Part 2, and the franchise, for that matter, ends with visions of a much bigger, a much better, climax. Then it falls back to being just another stupid Twilight movie. Nice work, guys. You almost fooled us.

Jeremy's Rating: 3 out of 10

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My wife, who isn't a fan but usually sees it with friends, says it was the best one of the series. I know she didn't like the last few very much, and didn't get into the books.

hawk99 on Nov 16, 2012


Let the comment rage begins...

Manuel on Nov 16, 2012


Reading negative reviews about the "Twilight" movies is rather like hearing supercilious symphony conductors whine about how pop tunes and country music songs are insipid and banal and are not true music. Yes, we know. Pop music isn't Beethoven, and we like it anyhow. Yes, we know "Twilight" isn't Shakespeare or "Citizen Kane." But we love the series. Reviewers are forced to watch these movies for their jobs, which comes through clearly in that much of the reviews seem to be defensive explanations about how the reviewers are too hip and too cool to watch romantic chick flicks. Why don't reviewers just say that if you love "Twilight," you're going to love the final of the series, too?

Anna Jacobs on Nov 16, 2012


I agree. Most movies are meant for entertainment and that is certainly true for the fans. Too much analysation goes into these reviews clearly because of the people's personal lives (Stewart, Pattinson, whoever) and that really shouldn't be the case. If the haters can just acknowledge the fans and respect their own opinions peacefully, then everything would be good, and there wouldn't be all these heated comments on the internet that get everyone fired up.

SP1234 on Nov 16, 2012


First, thanks for writing an insightful comment that properly expresses your point without resorting to using poor grammar and an explosion of punctuation. Secondly, the whole point of a review is to see into the viewpoint of the person who is reviewing the material. The review is meant to be a reflection of how their personal views on movies, tempered by their own preferences for genre and direction, can be shown to others. It is the readers duty to recognize and admit that they are reading this person's thoughts and critiques in an effort to get one view on a piece of media. You are meant to take this material as an objective source and then add additional sources from other reviews given by even more reviewers. This will allow you to combine them all in an effort to get a much more broad and informed perspective on which to base your decision on whether to expose yourself to the particular piece of media in question. To express dismay at a reviewers personal opinions is akin to taking someone aside and saying "You're wrong in how you think about that and here's why...". It goes from being an objective person taking in myriad viewpoints to make an informed decision and becomes just another closed-minded minion. Be more than that.

Thexn on Nov 16, 2012


Totally agree. The movies help bring the books to life. But no movie can compare to the movies we dream up while reading. That's why many just don't get it if they don't read the books.

It's ok u <3 twilight on Nov 17, 2012


Well at least they changes from the book and did add some action in. That's at least something positive.

Emma on Nov 16, 2012


I mean, there are several reasons why people create movies - to entertain, to educate, to fantasize, to shock, to feel romantic, to scare...And there is different audiance for every single type of movies...I never udnerstood why critics have tendency to compare movies from different genres and moreover, to put it like there are ceratin genres better than others. So Twilight and let's say vampire style genre is a bad one, because it is pathetic or stupid or whatever... Well I just checked videos from world premieres and have a look how many people just love it! And what emotions it brings them! If the movie was as bad as you claim, would its events be as crowded as they are? Don't think so. Let me tell you sth. I'm huge fan of Star Wars, I loved last Batman movie, also I fancy Bond movies, one of my all time favorite movies are Donnie Darko and Schindler's list. Different stuff, right? I love all of them, because they bring up different emotions and I simply watch them when I have need for this or that particular emotion. And yes sometimes I love to watch Twilight. Especially after hard work day, when I just need to relax and fell romantic. And - don't wanna take myself too seriously! I went to midnight premiere in my country and I loved the atmosphere. The movie was great, the twist with the battle was shocking. I actually had fun!

Petra on Nov 16, 2012


Im from Washington, there are many deer. Not so many cougars.

Scott of the Antarctic on Nov 16, 2012


i love twilight bu i love twilight but i dont get why he will take that cheating girl back he is so stupid for taking her back but i am so sicked about the movie

christian on Nov 16, 2012


Yeah, I'm from right across the Puget Sound from you on Vancouver Island, same thing. So many deer that they're officially a nuisance. Maybe Bella is just a crappy hunter?

DarkRaven18599 on Nov 16, 2012


You had me at hell no

TOONFED on Nov 16, 2012


your an idiot.

Elizabeth A Hurtado on Nov 16, 2012


Do you get your spelling skills from the Twilight books?

castingcouch on Nov 17, 2012


People you know when something is truly good and I tried every movie from this series honestly and there not good!!! It is like a star wars fan wanting the Phantom menace to be more then it is! Because we love the idea and what it represents! But The phantom menace isn't good and Twilight fans I'm sorry none of these films were either. As much as you think and want them to be they just aren't!

Christopher Spear on Nov 16, 2012


It's ok if they suck. We love them. Don't spend your time or money on Twilight stuff. We are doing pretty good spending almost 5 billion on the franchise. Lol. Many other movies out there for you to enjoy my friend.

It's ok u <3 twilight on Nov 17, 2012


Like Dan Trachtenberg said on TGB these films clearly aren't aimed at us.

Davide Coppola on Nov 16, 2012


It's obvious from some of the things he wrote in his review that he didn't read the books. But here's the rub- most reviews carry on about the plot and the story line. What do they expect- that the producers would completely alter the story? That's like saying that they don't like the slavery in the movie Gone with the Wind and that ruined the movie. The other thing the Twilight haters generally show is a complete disrespect for the preferences of females. Because females love the Twilight stories- they must be worthless. How about all the stupid male action movies where you have to suspend disbelief? Is it any more incredible that a human/wolf imprints on a baby than Bruce Willis can roll faster than bullets in "Die Hard?"

DianaE on Nov 16, 2012


It's fair, seeing as how the producers thought this story was good enough to adapt, that it be criticised on the merits of its story.

Richie G on Nov 16, 2012


Females love twilight because majority of the men in the books/movies are romantic, sweet, passionate, and handsome. In real life those guys are difficult to find. So like in my case when you find out your fiancé is actually a lying cheating piece o crap. It's nice to get lost in Stephanie's world of "Mr. Perfects"

It's ok u <3 twilight on Nov 17, 2012


THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Danielle on May 15, 2013


Gentlemen prepare to feel jealous... yeah, still haven't seen any of these ...boom

Richie G on Nov 16, 2012


Critics love to write about Twilight so people actually read their reviews. Haters are a strange group. Not sure why they bother taking the time to complain about something they are not forced to read or watch. I'm a fan. I loved the books and movies. Had so much fun with my friends yesterday at the Marathon. Critics don't need to write about Harry, Twilight, Hunger Games...these movies are for the fans. We do a good job killing the box office earnungs. Critics should write about crappy money wasting Eddie Murphy movies...but then no one will read their material. Hater critics secretly love and need Twilight

It's ok u <3 twilight on Nov 17, 2012


Lol earnungs! Sry autocorrect fail. Earnings*

It's ok u <3 twilight on Nov 17, 2012


Good For Taylor Lautner! I think its great hollywood is giving his kind a chance in films. Unfair prejudice against mannequins needs to stop! and should not be tolerated any more. No longer should they be confined to the display windows at your local department store, now you too can manufacture your very own action star like taylor, rob, kellen and others. There is a new era in cinematic escapism and our wooden friends are at the fore front. Gone are the scrappy method acting days of De Niro and Brando and we are gladly ushering in a new world of what was once thought possible in film acting. So please get behind this cause, let your voice be heard and you can help bring the Lautner-Method to movie theatre's everywhere and revolutionize cinema as we know it!

John Singelton on Nov 18, 2012


lmao, this guy's so funny

Ugochukwu Stanley Asogwo on Dec 8, 2012


Apologies for the month long troll-like comment, but I've just finished watching Breaking Dawn: Part II (obviously far later than most people), and I very much enjoyed it! I think I'm most impressed with how effectively the producers/directors have been able to translate the haphazard storyline onto the big screen. There were so many elements I encountered when reading which made be ponder how they would film it! Besides the typical concerns producers/directors must face when trying to articulate a novel (which the reader has a lot of control over in terms of how the characters/locations look, etc) into film, I feel that the finale rounded up the entire series both neatly and powerfully. Anyway, as you mention in one of your responses below, this is a review - so in other words, it's akin to your own subjective personal opinion (which is absolutely fine). I do, however, agree with Anna Jacobs in that there are a lot audiences out there who cherish this kind of genre with its corresponding storyline (i.e. the forbidden romance with the happy ending). That's what genres are - they have a set of codes and conventions which are to be conformed to, and each genre will have particular audiences who invest a lot of time into watching them. Based on this, I assume that teenage fantasy fiction/romance is not up your alley (and that's fine!). However, for those of us who do enjoy this genre, we expect such stories to end in a particular way - and if it did not, it would completely disrupt our expectations. I do agree with you that had the twist at the end of the film not occurred, it could have been quite a dramatic and memorable closing - but, personally, I wouldn't have been satisfied with such a melancholy and cold finale. The very last scene made me (and I'm assuming many others) very content, as a finale of this magnitude ought to provide for its faithful audiences.

Jay on Dec 24, 2012


Well I thought not only was it the best out of ALL the "Twilight" movie, but I think it's the best I've EVER seen. So I was VERY happy with it.

Tam_S on Feb 1, 2013


if u are a 9 year old girl or slightly younger and u love twilight then you are doing fine, if u happen to be anything else and u like even a second about any of the 5 movies u should seek professional help...

wtffr on Feb 15, 2013


and you need to relax

athina on Mar 6, 2013


The Twilight series and the movies should be considered for the simple message of good verses evil and how love concurs all in an unsophisticated and fun way. Neither the books nor the movies merit a professional criticism, anyone who actually spends the time to criticize them should really think twice about their level of professional integrity. If the writer and the film makers and the director were able to make so many people feel good about watching a fairy tale love story, that should suffice. Why not just leave it at that instead of trying to look and sound sophisticated and knowledgeable and cool by bashing it and analyzing it and then calling it criticism. What happened to simply having fun reading the books or watching the movies.

athina on Mar 6, 2013


Wow, you completely slam this movie, and this series. It is absolutely NOT this terrible!!! I'm a twilight fan, not a die hard fan though. And I will give you is bad acting. But your slamming on the effects and to storyline ad the writing?? You sound like someone who just hates the series so you TRIED to sound like you know what you're talking about. If you're going to talk about how poorly these movies and books were written..maybe you should double check your grammar AND your spelling. I had to re-read ALOT of your sentences because

Danielle on May 15, 2013


They were either run-obs or they just plain didn't make sense. Nice try though. Try not to be so sour in life. Judging on this review...I assume you are very unhappy in life. Then know what they say about assuming 😀

Danielle on May 15, 2013


And yes....excuse my spelling errors. I didn't check mine either 🙂

Danielle on May 15, 2013


I've read part of the comments and my conclusion is this: misunderstanding overload. You say us girls like Twilight because the guys in there are handsome and perfect and everything? Yes, maybe, for some of us. For me, me liking Twilight (books and movies) is the definite thrill in the narrate of a young eighteen-year-old girl. Portrayed by Kristen Stewart, I think she's been brought to life. Now, Robert Pattinson. He's not what I'd call handsome, he's what I'd call attractive with a rich kind of look to him. Stop hating on him, he's doing his job and what fantasizes me is that most of the comments don't hate on how he acts. What's more important to a movie than its characters' ability to act? He acts well, in fact. I like Twilight not only because of the romance aspect, also of Bella Swan overcoming her fear over falling in love with a vampire. Plus, in Breaking Dawn Part 2, Renesmee makes the whole story have a lot more emotion to it. Bella's love for her daughter and fear of losing her daughter to the Volturi. Girls would understand that, naturally. Jacob's imprint also made me quite happy, because I kind of knew it before it happened. Anyways. In a nutshell, start hating on how actors/actresses act, and not basic flaws which they cannot avoid. Kristen Stewart is not (hear that? NOT) ugly. She is attractive and her face is well proportioned.

Vivian Tan on Jun 4, 2013

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