Rajeev Masand – movies that matter : from bollywood, hollywood and everywhere else

November 25, 2011

Dawn of the dead

Filed under: Their Films — Rajeev @ 10:33 pm

November 25, 2011

Cast: Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, Taylor Lautner

Director: Bill Condon

It’s hard to feel much sympathy or affection for characters who spend even the happiest day of their life brooding, after subjecting us to three previous films in which all they ever did was sulk over being separated from each other.

In The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1, fourth installment of the ridiculously successful Twilight franchise, Kristen Stewart’s mopey-eyed Bella Swan prepares for her wedding and her honeymoon with pasty-faced vampire Edward Cullen, played by Robert Pattinson. For close to thirty minutes the camera floats lovingly over the glossy wedding, where vampires and humans set aside their gnawing differences to mutually toast the couple.

On their Brazilian honeymoon, Edward and Bella finally get into the sack to consummate their romance, and the morning after, she wakes up with bruises on her body, and the bed reduced to shambles. Roughly fourteen days later, she discovers she’s pregnant.

Given that Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight books and these films they’ve spawned come loaded with messages of abstinence, you’d think someone would have reminded them to carry birth control to the honeymoon. But no! Poor Bella must now pay the price for their foolishness by carrying around a little critter in her belly that’s possibly a human-vampire hybrid. When the foetus hungers for blood, it sucks the life out of Bella who starts to wither away, until someone comes up with the wise idea of quenching its appetite by feeding Bella blood in a Starbucks styrofoam cup.

On the werewolf front, Taylor Lautner’s Jacob is still in a funk over his second-place status for Bella’s affection. Yet he hangs around like a doormat when she gets sick, and even feuds with his wolfpack when they decide to attack her before she can deliver another bloodsucker into the world.

This penultimate film in the saga starts off promisingly, but swiftly sinks into the quicksand of silliness that has dogged this series since after Catherine Hardwicke’s moody first film. There’s a scene in Breaking Dawn Part 1, in which the wolves stand around and chat like normal people – it’s by far the film’s stupidest scene, followed closely by an underwhelming action sequence between vamps and werewolves that shows us just how poorly CGI can be used.

Among the film’s highlights is a freaky birth scene, and a nice cliffhanger that hints at Bella’s fate as we head into the final chapter of this saga that will arrive in cinemas next year. The romance between Bella and Edward is gently filmed in those lush honeymoon portions, but what’s missing is the adequate dramatic tension as their situation gets more somber.

Breaking Dawn Part 1 is an improvement on both New Moon and Eclipse, but it’s still got so much unintentional humor and clunky dialogue that only fans of the series – or Twi-hards as they’ve come to be known – will still be able to embrace it. I’m going with two out of five for The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1. If you’re not a fan, look at it this way – there’s only one more film to go, and then we’re rid of them once and for all.

(This review first aired on CNN-IBN)


  1. Basically, a mediocre movie that will be adored by Twi-hards, with the silliness looked upon as cuteness.

    Comment by Dev — November 25, 2011 @ 11:08 pm

  2. you are too old to even do the review Mr. Masand. Being a twilight fan and (young enough), I liked the movie.

    Comment by anisha — November 26, 2011 @ 2:06 am

  3. Perfect review again!This part of the series makes the fantasy go into ruins.And then,its twilight,unlike Harry Pottar where,though through fantasy you get to learn a lot!

    Comment by Mohit — November 26, 2011 @ 3:09 pm

  4. Oh yes Rajeev I totally agrees with you and your review to the film however giving 2 star is generous of you, as this film deserves no more than 1.

    Comment by Ashutosh — November 27, 2011 @ 2:59 pm

  5. They just want MTV awards nothing else

    Zero or negative would be sufficed

    Comment by priyabrata — November 30, 2011 @ 2:11 am

  6. Stephanie Mayer’s book seems to have poetically covered the marriage and the happenings post that . But the movie is not even close to it by 10% . It could be a good treat for those who have not read the book !!! overall it was a disappointment for me

    Comment by InduPavan — December 3, 2011 @ 4:39 am

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