Though I’ve never been much of a “Twihard,” I’ve read the Twilight book series and seen all of the films — and enjoyed them. Author Stephenie Meyer’s vampire love story has been successful at the box office since the film franchise began, and each new film was decent and entertaining. That is, if one can make it through a bit of overacting and cheesy lines. My expectations going into the theater for the final installment of the Twilight saga, “Breaking Dawn: Part Two,” were just that: it will be decent but a little cheesy. Instead, the film was two hours of suppressed laughter and cringes as the plot wraps in the weirdest of ways.
The film opens with Bella adjusting to everyday life as a newborn vampire, and her reunion with her baby, Renesmee. For reasons unbeknownst to me, the filmmakers decided that a computer-generated baby would work better than casting, oh I don’t know… a real baby. It seems nonsensical, though provided more than enough commentary from the folks seated around me about how creepy the CG offspring of Edward and Bella was. Seriously, they kept this CG bit going until Renesmee is about the size of a kindergartener, making it super-awkward to watch the cast interact with this odd, silent little girl.
The main conflict of the film is found (eventually) when the Volturi, the Italian Mafia of vampires, finds out about Renesmee. Believing she is either a human child who knows the secret or an immortal vampire child that cannot be taught their ways, they set out from their caves in Italy to destroy her. The rest of the film is spent building momentum toward this epic battle of all battles, whittled down to little else but good versus evil. When the moment finally arrives, their supernaturally-gifted vampire ‘witnesses’ show up with the Cullens on a flat snowy tundra. Here the film drops all sense of the romanticism , pointed jokes and weird sex politics that characterized the rest of the series and instead ventures into an “X-Men”-esque duel with the Volturi, complete with several decapitations and ultimately all too much violence for a mere PG-13 rating.
Overall the film lacks the situational humor and personality of “Twilight”’s unique cast of characters that we have come to appreciate through the saga. Empty, sloppy and with more melodrama than a season finale of “The Hills,” the second part of Breaking Dawn fails to satisfy, even when approached with low expectations. Its biggest redeeming factor, in fact, is the soundtrack. Save yourself the money, visit iTunes for the music, and forget “Breaking Dawn: Part Two”—they saved the worst for last.