Movie Review: Twilight (2008)


Writing a book or screenplay with vampires in it has got to be one of the easiest gigs around. These mysterious and charming undead basically lend themselves to just about any scenario possible — generally making said scenario that much more intriguing (its got a vampire in it, duh!). Proof in point: Twilight. Catherine Hardwicke’s adaption of Stephenie Meyer’s novel of the same name is the basic forbidden love story that you’ve seen so many times before, it just so happens to have a vampire character.

The tough part to swallow, mind you, is that Twilight is a campy, pre-pubescent forbidden love story involving a vampire character that never quite finds its mark.

It involves 16-year-old Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), a girl looking to make a fresh start with her father in Forks, Washington (she’s originally from Phoenix, Arizona). It doesn’t take her long to make some friends (it’s never hard for cute girls, is it?), but she soon finds herself smitten with her biology lab partner, Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson). You guessed it, Edward is a really a 108-year old vampire with the looks of a 17-year old Abercrombie & Fitch model. They eventually fall for each other — he entrusting her with his secret; she telling him she’ll give up everything to be with him. While that lovey-dovey stuff may work for them, it doesn’t for James (Cam Gigandet) and his clan of “tracker” vampires. He wants to feast on Bella and he has no problem going through Edward to do it.

While the premise itself isn’t at fault, the way in which it unfolds is suspect. Director Catherine Hardwicke starts off with good character development and build-up but trails off into an indistinguishable mess. Bella is a mature for her age, likable girl, making it easy to identify with her and her uncomfortable situation (how many of us have found ourselves trying to fit in and trying to make friends?). Edward, well let’s just say he doesn’t warrant as much buy-in, which for the part is okay. He’s a good looking vampire — it’s more about his keeping up with the dark, brooding stares than anything else. Even the bit roles like friends Jessica (Anna Kendrick), Mike (Michael Welch), Angela (Christian Serratos) and Bella’s dad Charlie (Billy Burke) are all relatively well fleshed out too.

Edward’s and Bella’s hook-up and ensuing courtship, however, wasn’t exactly on the top of any lists of things I cared to see. At fault for this the most is probably is the cheesiest, “made for Lifetime” type lines written for the lovesick teenagers. Examples of Bella’s cooing to Edward are “I’d rather die than to stay away from you” and “I dream about being with you forever.” No one talks like that anymore, mesmerized by a vampire or not. To offset this, I was hoping for a big payoff in the action department, as fights between characters with superhuman abilities are always a blast to watch. Alas, that wasn’t to be either. Most of the action/fight shots by cinematographer Elliot Davis are herky-jerky and sloppy, not mention everything appeared to be washed-out, leading to some very uninspiring crescendos.

Last time I looked though, I’m not a 15-year old girl, so it is safe to say I’m not a member of the target demographic for Twilight; therefore, it is fairly obvious my expectations of the film are completely different from theirs. And seeing as these youngsters bought 25 million copies of the book series worldwide (other books in the series are New Moon, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn), I have no doubt this film will be a rousing success. It doesn’t, however, mean the film is any good. Harry Potter doesn’t have anything to worry about.

Critical Movie Critic Rating:
2 Star Rating: Bad

2

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The Critical Movie Critics

I'm an old, miserable fart set in his ways. Some of the things that bring a smile to my face are (in no particular order): Teenage back acne, the rain on my face, long walks on the beach and redneck women named Francis. Oh yeah, I like to watch and criticize movies.


'Movie Review: Twilight (2008)' have 37 comments

  1. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 23, 2008 @ 9:41 pm Katey

    Are you sure your not a 15 year old girl??? :D

  2. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 25, 2008 @ 4:43 am weisner

    its a lame love story for little girls and homos.

  3. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 25, 2008 @ 9:32 am Mia

    it’s a good story i can’t wait to see it

  4. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 25, 2008 @ 12:33 pm Tracy

    This movie is huge with the younger girls. I want to see it but I will wait a little until the fan girls get tired of it since the theatres here are packed.

  5. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 28, 2008 @ 11:45 pm Jarrod Whaley

    I haven’t seen this, nor will I. If it looks like a turd and it smells like a turd, there’s a likelihood that the fecal content is at least relatively high.

    I’m glad someone is watching this stuff and being quasi-fair about it, though. It prevents us all from sniffing turds.

  6. The Critical Movie Critics

    December 13, 2008 @ 11:32 pm Paige

    I’m a 14 year old female and therefore part of the target demographic and I have to agree, Twilight is woeful (both the book series and the movie). Please people, not all of us are buying into this shit so don’t make out like every one of us are airheads.

  7. The Critical Movie Critics

    December 14, 2008 @ 7:59 am General Disdain

    Are you sure your not a 15 year old girl??

    Last time I checked, I wasn’t.

    I’m glad someone is watching this stuff and being quasi-fair about it, though. It prevents us all from sniffing turds.

    That’s what I’m paid to do. Oh wait, I don’t get paid for this . . . :(

    Please people, not all of us are buying into this shit so don’t make out like every one of us are airheads.

    I don’t recall saying nor do I think all teenage females are airheads. I will note however, that although you said you are not “buying into this shit”, you have spent money on the film and the books . . .

  8. The Critical Movie Critics

    January 14, 2009 @ 12:23 pm fangproxy

    Well…..its a movie for nutty teens…..
    idk y she was weird….does dat means she was cool or sumthin….n all she need was a vampire to suck her
    blood coz she dnt hav anythin goin on….
    another vampire came….n he only wants to suck HER
    blood……?

  9. The Critical Movie Critics

    January 17, 2009 @ 12:54 pm coffee

    i wonder what will be more successful/popular in the long run, Twilight or Harry Potter

  10. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 4, 2009 @ 11:31 am emily

    bella’s seventeen.. duh.

  11. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 4, 2009 @ 11:38 am emily

    This is a very good review by the way, and, though I’m a big fan of twilight the book, I wasn’t too keen on the movie. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t good.

    “Please people, not all of us are buying into this shit so don’t make out like every one of us are airheads.”
    Just because somebody likes Twilight doesn’t make them an airhead. Haha. To be fair, it’s difficult for a teenager like me (yes, I am 15 and a female.. so I must be obsessed with Twilight! Of course! Don’t you just love stereotypes?) to read Twilight and not become infatuated with it, for a least a small amount of time. There’s nothing wrong with having hormones…

  12. The Critical Movie Critics

    March 3, 2009 @ 11:06 pm DaraGeibel B.L.R.E.

    I find the movie quite captivating, and i know that most people who like romantic genres really enjoyed the twist and the tension between the two characters, Bella and Edward. Most say that it could be a greater hit than the Harry Potter drama, but i think otherwise. I think that the Harry Potter series still got the moving power to keep more interested audience than the Twilight movie can and has. And i think Harry Potter is still rank one. Let’s see how the next twilights go. . . . . .

  13. The Critical Movie Critics

    March 13, 2009 @ 3:42 pm jasmin

    This movie was terrible…. maaaan. Sorry for all the twlight fans out there. it epically sucked.

  14. The Critical Movie Critics

    March 28, 2009 @ 11:59 pm Kendra

    “Edward is a really a 108-year old vampire with the looks of a 17-year old Abercrombie & Fitch model.”

    I disagree. He’s not tan enough for Abercrombie. It’d help if he lost the glitter lotion/ full-body shimmer-stick look.

    In addition to Edward, chick (Bella) also came off very 2D. I wouldn’t exactly call her a looker either (sorry, Kristen Stewart). Everyone was so into her WHY? I guess it really was just her pheromones :)
    Even Edward came off as having SOMETHING there, though he was creepy in a stalker-ish way at best.

    I haven’t read the books and have no intention to. I’m pretty glad I didn’t pay money to see this tripe.

  15. The Critical Movie Critics

    April 2, 2009 @ 6:33 am james

    it good compare to others. the star cast is good i love small artists.

  16. The Critical Movie Critics

    April 23, 2009 @ 2:34 am Sarah

    Being a 15 year old girl (the target demographic) and watching the movie, i found myself entirely let down!
    Catherine Hardwicke has made a terrible adaption of the book to film. Yes, indeed i have read the books and found them Reasonably good. However in the movie, it has been merely cut down and edited into around 2 hours! And not to mention that most of the defining parts have been left out!
    I think Stephenie Meyer didn’t have the balls to say no and object to the obscene ideas of Catherine.
    What the heck was up with the whole scene of finding out hes a vampire? what was all that nonsense of walking of into the forest for an interrogation? and the meadow scene was a huge disappointment. How could Stephenie let this happen?!
    Also, i found Edward to come across exceedingly werid, in all his cryptic talk, it did NOT sound romantic and ‘velvet’ like, just quite creepy.
    GOSH! and Bella…. don’t let me get started on her…

    If movies can do no justice to the books, why bother?

  17. The Critical Movie Critics

    August 10, 2009 @ 4:05 pm Richmond Hill

    This movie is targeted towards female teens. The populariy will likely result in many more movies in the series.

  18. The Critical Movie Critics

    September 8, 2009 @ 2:47 pm Jason777

    The story is really good but i could not say same for the movie.

  19. The Critical Movie Critics

    September 21, 2009 @ 10:03 am Twilight New Moon

    so i watched the movie, and didnt like it. I first read the book and was really dissapointed in the movie.

  20. The Critical Movie Critics

    September 21, 2009 @ 2:45 pm 1000 games

    This is a good movie, I have watched it two times, it’s great :)

  21. The Critical Movie Critics

    October 3, 2009 @ 6:04 pm skill games

    I saw the movie and thought it wasn’t campy or lame or “girly” at all. I read a lot and I’ve read romantic era novels from the early 1800s and the movie captures that sensibility–the twilight zone between improbability, absurdity, romanticism, and sentimentality. The movie works without being formulaic. It is actually refreshing to realize that being romantic and whimsical doesn’t necessarily have to be cheesy or passe. A+

  22. The Critical Movie Critics

    October 21, 2009 @ 4:22 pm Free mobile games

    This video is really very good.Thanks.

  23. The Critical Movie Critics

    October 22, 2009 @ 1:22 pm mobile games FAN

    This is really good moovie.I would like to see more such videos.

  24. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 1, 2009 @ 10:53 am Brad

    The movie is shot using some great new cameras only available in the film industry (for now). We like unique movie concepts and I think that since blair witch and paranormal activity have done so well, someone should consider shooting a crime movie as if the whole movie was filmed by security cameras.

    • The Critical Movie Critics

      November 4, 2009 @ 8:26 am General Disdain

      …someone should consider shooting a crime movie as if the whole movie was filmed by security cameras

      Even though you were blatantly advertising with that statement, it is, nonetheless, an interesting idea . . .

  25. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 23, 2009 @ 5:21 am sean

    the movie was rubbish. ms.stewart was uninspired. hated her acting.

  26. The Critical Movie Critics

    November 24, 2009 @ 6:32 pm HSA

    This film made a lot of money in its first week of showing. I personally probably will not go see it though.

  27. The Critical Movie Critics

    December 11, 2009 @ 4:27 pm Cooking games

    I think Stephenie Meyer didn’t have the balls to say no and object to the obscene ideas of Catherine.

  28. The Critical Movie Critics

    December 13, 2009 @ 12:36 pm Brainload

    Hope this sequel better the first movie

  29. The Critical Movie Critics

    December 21, 2009 @ 3:14 am Avalon

    I think Both Twilight and New Moon were equally good. I have to keep up to date with these movies thanks to my teenagers. Nevertheless they are pretty interesting and fun to watch.

  30. The Critical Movie Critics

    January 5, 2010 @ 11:47 am nathanial

    I found the movie very exciting and I know that most people who like fiction genres really enjoyed the twist and tension between the two characters, Bella and Edward. Most say it could be more successful than the tragedy of Harry Potter, but I think otherwise. I think that Harry Potter was still the driving force to keep the audience more interested in the Twilight movie could and should. And I think Harry Potter is still a hierarchy. Let us see how the sunsets go next. . .

  31. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 3, 2010 @ 12:21 am angel

    The very romantic movie. If my boyfriend likes Edward Cullen maybe I will try to more love him.

  32. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 5, 2010 @ 12:15 pm Mario

    I don’t really like twilight, I can’t undestand the great hype about it. For me it is just another movie. I am still looking for reasons why people love it so much?

  33. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 14, 2010 @ 8:00 am gamer

    Yap The story is really good but i could not say same for the movie.

  34. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 18, 2010 @ 3:40 am Kate The Portrait Artist

    Embarrassed to say I watched this – it definitely has its niche at the moment which it just about gets away with riding off of the back of. I don’t think we should judge it too harshly now!

  35. The Critical Movie Critics

    March 9, 2010 @ 5:26 am kevin good

    Thanks for the review. I think that the Harry Potter series still got the moving power to keep more interested audience than the Twilight movie can and has.

  36. The Critical Movie Critics

    March 13, 2010 @ 7:49 am chriss

    I cannot seem to like this movie even if I’ve seen it twice. Vampires and people, why would you get into a relationship only to see your girl die after some years. Immortality is not a good thing after all.

    Respect!

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