The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 has been four years and a million tear-soaked tissues in the making. It all ends with this movie. No more Edward. No more Bella. No more Jacob with and without his shirt on. It is finished.
My history with this film series has been sketchy at best. I come from a proud heritage of those who believe that vampires go “boom” in the sunlight. So, naturally, I poked fun at the notion of a vampire that can exist in the sunlight without so much of a consequence as looking like an innocent bystander at a Disneyland Tinkerbell parade. But, thanks to maturity (mostly my wife insisting that I give the films a chance), I’ve come to accept the films for what they are.
*Warning: I smell spoilers. They smell like a wet dog covered in burnt pasta sauce.*
Breaking Dawn – Part 2 takes place three days after the events of Breaking Dawn – Part 1. Bella is now a vampire, and a strong one at that. Edward takes her out to hunt some wildlife, to quench her first thirst. But while there, she smells a human and takes after him. Edward convinces Bella to not eat him. She ends up eating a mountain lion that was about to attack a deer. Edward is impressed by her self-control.
After finishing the hunt and proving that she has control of her thirst, she is allowed to see her newborn, Renesmee, a half-human / half-vampire. But, Renesmee looks to be older than three days. She seems to be seven to eight months old or more. Carlisle informs her that Renesmee has a fast growth rate. After finding this out, Jacob admits to Bella that he had imprinted on Renesmee. Bella throws him out of the house, but soon reconsiders.
Over the next few weeks, Renesmee continues to grow at a quick rate. One day, while out catching snowflakes with her mom and Jacob, Renesmee is spotted by the vampire Irina and reported to the Volturi as an “immortal child,” a child that was turned into a vampire. Immortal children, they say, have the power to destroy whole villages and to expose the entire vampire race to the humans. As in years past, the Volturi decide they must kill this child and it’s family. All this is to save the vampire race, of course.
Alice, Edward’s clairvoyant sister, sees the Volturi coming for the Cullens’ in a premonition. She knows that they are coming for Renesmee. The family decides to travel around the world, gathering vampires to act as witnesses to what the Volturi may do. But, as they do, Alice and her boyfriend Jasper go missing and are feared to have run off to the Volturi in a last ditch effort to save the family.
After collecting many vampires and devising an escape route for Renesmee (she’d steal away with Jacob if things went south), the Cullens wait in an open field for the Volturi to arrive. As they do, Aro, the head of the Volturi, asks to read Edward’s mind to see where Renesemee had come from. He sees that she is not a child vampire, but rather a dhampir. Regardless, out of fear and greed (they want Alice for their ranks), Aro decides to kill Renesmee anyway. He says that her uncertain future could pose a threat to all vampires. But, out walks Alice and Jasper before the fight begins.
Alice asks Aro to look into her mind to see the proof that Renesmee will never be a threat to them, but as he does, she notices that he has already made up his mind to kill Renesmee and kicks him across the field. Thus ensues an all out war. Both sides take heavy casualties. The Cullens lose Carlisle and Jasper. The Volturi lose most of their upper brass, including Aro until…
It was all just a premonition of Alice’s that Aro was seeing. She said that this was what would happen if they chose to fight. So, with the frightening sight of his own demise still burning in his head, Aro decides to withdraw to leave the Cullens in peace. Well, for now anyway…
Seeing that I have never read the books, the ending came as a big shock to me. It was a well played cinematic moment. But, overall, I thought the film lacked some in quality. Everything about The Twilight Saga has been rushed. That increase in production has left the quality of these films to the dogs. Five movies in four years? That’s just too much in a short time.
That hastiness shows when dealing with aspects of the film like the special effects. For the budget, some $120 to $130 million dollars, the effects seemed pretty shoddy at times. For example: When we first see baby Renesmee, she is clearly a digital creation. It becomes pretty obvious that she isn’t real when Edward goes to hand her to Bella and the baby’s mouth start to float a bit around her face.
That kind of creeped me out.
But, as I do with many movies, I found something redeemable in the lesser characters. Throughout the saga (I still think that Star Wars is the only film worthy of being called a ‘saga’, but what can I do?), I’ve always liked Carlisle Cullen. For a vampire, he is very compassionate and caring to all those he meets. He is the foundation of the group and the clear voice when things get tough. So, when I first thought he had died (again) at the end of the film, I nearly shed a tear. If they would have lost him, the Cullen family would never be the same.
I also could have used some more Charlie Swan in my life. Charlie, Bella’s dad, always came off as too protective. In reality, though, he was just trying to be a good dad. Bella was a rebellious teenager who thought her dad was out to ruin her life. But, in the end, he just wanted what was best for his little girl. Sure, if he had found out that Edward were a vampire a couple movies in, he would have pumped him full of rock salt and garlic powder. But, again, that’s just him being a good dad.
Overall, I didn’t like this one as much as I did Breaking Dawn – Part 1. To be honest, I am a sucker for love, and the wedding scene from the first part brought some tears to my eyes. For me, if a movie wants to grab my attention, it’s got to to either relate to me on some personal level or it’s got to amaze me. Breaking Dawn – Part 1 related to me on a personal level (no, I’m not a vampire). Part 2 didn’t really.
If you are a die-hard Twilight fan, you’re going to love this movie. If you are a casual Twilight fan, it could be hit or miss. If you don’t like love stories, then you should know by now that the Twilight series is not for you. Although the film is lacking in parts and the ending wasn’t all that good, if you let yourself be sucked in, you’ll have a decent time with the film. Alth