Sunday, 20 November 2011

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1

UK Release: 18th November 2011
Watched in cinema: Friday 18th November 2011
Rating: 12
Genre: Adventure, Drama, Fantasy 
Runtime: 1hr 57mins
Tagline: Forever is only the beginning
My Plot Synopsis: Edward and Bella finally get married and go on their honeymoon until an unexpected occurrence forces them home into the middle of a clash between the Quileute wolf pack and the Cullens. The future of the tribe, the vampire coven and Bella is at stake...

My Review: Wow, where do I begin with Breaking Dawn? It was incredibly moving, stunning to watch and laugh out loud funny. I’ve been a big fan from the beginning so of course I have been anticipating this film for years and... it didn’t disappoint. Every scene was nicely paced and beautiful to watch. And with Jacob ripping his shirt off in the first minute it was a good start!
The saga has definitely ‘grown up’ with this film - it had a much more of a solid feel to it, more sure of itself. The pacing was excellent and it was really, really tense towards the end, which surprised me as I knew what would happen having read the book!
I think this is one of my favourite of the releases so far - it just felt stronger as a film and with Bill Condon’s direction felt much more artistically and daringly filmed. I loved the dream scenes of the wedding massacres and the flashbacks of Edward when he first became a vampire. Every supporting character that we have come to know and love had there little moment to shine with a smart line from Alice or some hilarious dance moves from Mike. 
The wedding and honeymoon were stunning and while some of my friends thought they were a little too long I loved seeing the ‘calm before the storm’ as it were and we got much more of an insight into their relationship. And it was funny, not just inside joke sort of funny but the whole cinema bursting out with laughter funny throughout the film, which hasn’t been seen in the previous releases. They’ve got steadily darker and while Breaking Dawn is as dark as ever it balances this perfectly with comedy, making this more of an adult film rather than a teen romance. 
It wasn’t perfect however as the wedding scene lingered a bit too long on Stephenie Meyer, breaking the spell for me and some of the jokes felt almost like a parody of the film, taking it a bit too far. But ultimately I don’t think it could have been any better. Clever parts for me was when we saw the wolves all talking through their minds, communicating like humans but in their wolf forms. The whole ‘imprinting’ scenario was skimmed over when it was uncomfortable but thankfully we got to see a glimpse Renesmee all grown up, some one we’ll see a lot more of in Part 2! 
The birth scene was pretty horrific and gory, but stayed true to the book. I’ve no idea how they got away with a 12 certification, but I suppose it could have been worse! And when the camera went into Bella’s body and we saw her blood change was so much better than I had hoped for - it sent chills down my spine! The credits were fantastically bold with a red, black and white theme which matched the mood to perfection and when the Volturi scene came up (after the cinema had mostly emptied - a bet they're going to kick themselves when they realised they missed the end!) it finished on just the right note - gripping, witty and eager to see more...
Lastly, before I close, I must mention Kristen Stewart’s performance. I’ve been quite dubious about her acting skills throughout the saga but, thankfully and finally, she absolutely came into her own in this film and gave a brilliant performance at last, perhaps even the stand out performance of the film. Making for an ending that was even more terrific and let me say this - I am dying to see the last installment! 
Score: 9.5/10

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