The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part I (2011)

The Twilight Saga. No other franchise has inspired such division in the public conscious. For ninety-nine percent of the population you either hate it or you are gaga in love with it. Even Hollywood itself can't decide how it wants to treat the "saga." Certain films (Red Riding Hood), run to embrace the comparison. While others, (The Hunger Games) do as much to distance itself from the franchise as possible. The latter even went as far as putting an unofficial ban on casting actors associated with "Twilight." So it's into this divisive crevasse that we take our next step into the ever tangled world of Bella, Edward, Jacob and dark blue lighting.

Just to recap if you've been living under a rock. The previous three movies saw Bella Swan move to a dreary place cleverly titled "the Forks." As the new girl, all the boys love Bella Swann but she only has eyes for two of them, vampire Edward and werewolf Jacob. She falls for Edward, but might like Jacob, for three movies she's never sure. The guys hate each other. Their families hate each other. She sulks. Her police chief father never seeks professional counciling for his only daughter while she sits in her room for three months straight. Eventually she kicks a rather pissed off Jacob to the curb for the wonderful glitteriness that is Edward Cullen. Third movie ends with Bella and Edward getting engaged. Fade to black.

Open to white as the wedding invitations are being read. Various folks have different reactions to the. Jacob gets angry. Bellas mother is happy, her father stares off into the distance for a very, very long time. Fast forward an indeterminate amount of time and it's suddenly the day before the wedding. Alice (Ashley Greene, who should skip the gym every now and again. Christ, she has bigger arms than John Cena) is that over excited bridesmaid that annoys the crap out of everyone else in the wedding. She's trying to show Bella the joy in the day, but it's Bella, so good luck with that. Enter Edward who, just in case Bella was starting to feel chipper, makes the whopping confession that he used to feed on people. Bella could care less since Edward only killed bad people. He was like the Dexter of vampires. No harm no foul.

After escaping for a night of vampire debauchery (whatever that is) at his bachelor party, it's finally Eds wedding day. The wedding commences with very few people looking happy for some reason. People give speeches. Jacob crashes the wedding. Actually he was invited by Ed. He and Bella dance and like most of the times he around her, he leaves angry. He's concerned for Bellas safety on her wedding night. Apparently vampire sex is some pretty fucked up shit. It gives a new definition to the W.A.S.P. song (Animal) Fuck Like A Beast. Bella tells him her box can handle whatever Ed is dealing. As expected, Jacob stalks off angry.

We move to the honeymoon after a brief stop in Brazil (no marauding packs of monkeys are seen), Ed and Bella boat out to a private island owned by the Cullens (apparently vampires are part of the 1%). There is more melodrama surrounding Bellas deflowering. She should have a few tequila shots and get it over with, that how they do it in New Jersey. But that would rob us of more shots of a sad Bella. Ed goes to pee in the water leaving Bella behind in her sadness. We get a musical montage of Bella trying to figure out how to put underwear on. I check the DVD player to see if I'm watching "She's All That." Nope. Undergarments are beyond Bellas comprehension, so she just wades out into the water naked where she catches Ed mid-pee.
They retreat to the boudoir where the movie suddenly becomes a Coldplay video. He does a good old job of tossing to his old lady. The bed breaks, the room is trashed, the housekeepers are pissed. Ed wakes up in his best brooding mood, very concerned about a couple of bruises he left on Bella the night before. He's making a really big deal about it, finally Bella, the queen of morose herself tells him to lighten up, he's bringing her down. She's absolutely right, you can do more to a hooker if you slip her an extra 50 bucks.

We move forward two weeks (does anyone in this movie work?) and they are still on their honeymoon. Bella is feeling ill. She's pregnant, and that's as they say "when the freak out began." Everyone, Edward included thinks this baby is bad news. Everyone but Bella that is. Hasn't she ever seen 16 and pregnant? Babies are hard work, half vampire babies are even worse! Bella and Ed sneak back home to get Carlisles advice. Jacob finds out Bella is ill and gets angry. Always with him and the anger? Edward asks Jacob to convince Bella to abort the baby because it could kill her. Seems like an odd request, but at least the Cullens believe in the right to choose. Bella still refuses. Tribal drumming takes us back to the wolf pack.

Where apparently Bellas pregnancy has upset the natural order of all types of shit. The previously passive wolf pack is now out to kill Bella and her unborn child. Jacob takes umbrage with this course of action and in what has to be one of the worst scenes ever committed to celluloid, Jacob in CG wolf form surrounded by all the other CG wolves, renounces his membership in the pack in a weird CG wolf voice. I wonder if his membership dues will be pro-rated? A couple other wolves join him in vowing to protect Bella, if not the hideous unborn C.H.U.D. child. Jacob's not to happy about having people help him and acts like a dick to them. Still they stick around. You'd think Jacob would want all the help he can get.

Meanwhile back in paleville Bellas condition is deteriorating. He bones are beginning to crack because the baby is siphoning all her nutrients. Which is funny because usually you have to wait until the kid is born before it sucks you dry. Jacob, of all people, suggests maybe the baby craves blood. Really? Jacob? Isn't Carlisle a doctor? Jesus, Dr. Spaceman could have done that math. Vampires + Blood = Happy. So Bella begins drinking copious amounts of blood. So much so that the Cullens supply soon runs out. The problem is exacerbated by the fact that with the house surrounded by lycans so no one has been out to hunt in a while.

Jacob pulls a fast one on the wolf pack, assembling them to talk while the Cullens slip away to find more o-positive. The wolves figure it out and track down the Cullens anyway. Meanwhile Bella is doing better, just in time for the baby to come. She chooses the worst baby names a white person has ever uttered right before going into labor. Conveniently, or more appropriately, stupidly, Dr. Cullen isn't around. Edward PG-13 cuts the baby out of Bella. Just enough blood for a 13 year old to say "yuck, blood." With the baby out, no one attends to Bellas gaping stomach wound. They leave her lying there, naturally she dies. Of course she doesn't really die, because we know there is another film after this, so the next 15 minutes of angst are really just a waste of time.

With the baby born the wolves decide it's a good time to attack. Everyone abandons Bella to go and fight. Hopelessly outnumbered, until hope shows up. Dr. Cullen and the rest of the gang arrives with help from the couple of wolves that were on team Jacob. They manage to hold the pack at bay.

Back inside Jacob wants to kill the little runt because it killed Bella. That is until he lays eyes on her. Something happens. They call it "imprinting." I'm sure it's illegal in the 48 contiguous states and most of southern Canada. He falls in love with the newborn (perfectly o.k. I'm told). Having "imprinted" on the baby (just typing that seems so wrong) Jacob essentially puts an end to the fight outside. "Imprinting" is apparently the only thing more sacred to the wolf pack than unjustified anger and sniffing each others butts. So baby Bella (I refuse to type the inane name she chooses) is safe for now. Inside, Bella wakes up as a vampire and everyone stares at the camera. Michael Sheen and the rest of the Voltairi show up during the credits and he gives one of the worst line reads in film history. Something to look forward to!

Part Four of this *cough* saga *cough* is essentially better than the three other films. It took three whole films but we finally past the 14 year old girl wet dream of choosing between two "dream" guys. With that in the past, the film can attempt to tell an actual story. The film is by far the best looking of any of the movies. For the first time the CG wolves look as good as the CG wolves in the Lord Of The Rings Trilogy, of course the LOTR trilogy came out a decade ago, but sometimes you have to take what you can get. If you like the other films, you will like this film. If you don't like this other films, take solace in the fact that this one isn't as mind numbingly awful as the series previous entries. Plus, next time it looks like we can look forward to more Michael Sheen chewing the scenery, and that rules.

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