I’ve seen all the Twilight movies and read all the Twilight books, mostly so I can criticize them properly. I have to admit that the first and third movies were almost tolerable, which made them much better than the books. Breaking Dawn 2, which deals with the most interesting, most potentially exciting, biggest letdown half of the last book, also had the potential to be an almost decent movie.
Vampire Bella and her new family of wolves and vampires form an army to protect her half-vampire child against the murderous vampire ruling class.
The posters bill Breaking Dawn 2 as “the epic finale that will live forever,” but now that I’ve seen it I have to report that these taglines were misprinted (I blame autocorrect). They should have read “the insipid finale that will feel like it goes on forever.” As you might expect, this is a movie only fans will like.
The movie begins with Bella (Kristen Stewart) becoming a vampire. In the book version, this meant that she suddenly becomes interesting – she stops being so irritatingly shy and demure, she starts tussling with cougars, she grows a superpower, and she and vampire hubby Edward (Robert Pattinson) can finally be on an equal footing (as opposed to their previous stalker/stalkee relationship). In the movie, however, she’s just as blank and stare-y as always, but her eyes are a different color. In fact, her “mind shield” superpower can best be described as super blur stare.
OMG, I have HANDS now!
Gone from this movie too is Jasper (Jackson Rathbone) as the vampire army drill sergeant teaching everyone to rip people’s heads off because he used to be a vampire child soldier during the Civil War (which is a much more interesting story than Bella’s, so maybe that’s why they cut it). Instead, Jasper and Alice (Ashley Greene) take off for parts unknown and we’re subjected to endless scenes of Edward and Bella’s ridiculously named, overly toothed, super creepy-ass CGI baby.
You can tell it’s their kid because it’s already blankly staring.
Inexplicably, no one realizes how creepy Renesmee is. They fawn over her like she’s the best thing since sliced bread, especially wolfy Jacob (Taylor Lautner), who has “imprinted” on her. Wolf Jacob seems to have been growing throughout the movie series (he started out dog sized) and is now roughly the size of an aircraft carrier, so it’s his job to protect creepy Renesmee.
And by ‘protect’ I mean ‘hang around waiting to bone her until she grows up.’
Super creepy baby grows into super creepy little girl (Mackenzie Foy) who communicates only by jamming her thoughts into other people’s brains, except when required by the plot to ask questions like “Mommy, why are the bad people trying to kill me?” (I guess that’s why they all love her – she MADE them).
Well, you see sweetie, it’s because you’re super creepy.
Renesmee’s creepiness does freak out OTHER people though. And they report her existence to the Italian vampire ruling class – the Volturi. The penalty for making a vampire baby is death, so Aro (Michael Sheen) and his super creepy minions Jane (Dakota Fanning) and Alec (Cameron Bright) head to Washington to take care of business.
Read: stare them creepily to death.
Apparently they have decided to mail themselves to Washington by international ground parcel, though, because it takes them about three months to get there, during which time the Cullens have managed to round up an entire army of superpowered vampires who also hate the Volturi. Most of their superpowers are variations of the super creepy staring superpower that Edward and Bella seem to share, along with the super lack of personality shared by everyone in this series.
Oh well. At lease Lee Pace is nice to look at.
All this is way more boring than it needs to be and lasts approximately 100 years. Finally, around the time that the popcorn left in the bottom of your bucket has become sentient and started writing its own insipid vampire love stories, the final showdown arrives. In the book, the climax is a lot of epic standing followed by the Volturi giving up and going home (no, I’m not making that up. I wish I was).
And then they all went home. The end.
Thankfully director Bill Condon (no points for guessing what his unfortunate childhood nickname was) realized that you cannot spend two hours building up to a climax that doesn’t happen in a movie, so they do actually have some action. But they have to tweak the plot a little bit. I didn’t think it was possible, but the new ending is actually EVEN CHEAPER than the old one. When it happened, I was cackling like a mad witch and my friend actually shouted “WHAT?!? THIS IS BULLSH**!”
And then they all went for a leisurely fake jog. The end.
If you’re a Twilight fan, you will love this movie. It’s sappy, it’s trite, and it ends with a montage that will rival the one the graduating committee played at your high school prom. There is a moment in which you will feel, as my other friend put it, that you have fallen into a parallel universe, but in the end you will love it. Everyone else: you can approximate the experience of seeing Breaking Dawn Part 2 by watching the soap opera channel for about six and a half hours.