Rating: 3 out of 5
To be honest, we’re still struggling to decide whether giving this movie a 3 out of 5 is a pity score. We suppose if we wanted to be brutally honest, it would score a pity-3 out of a pity-5. We recommend that you best watch this movie (if that privilege has been so generously bestowed upon you) with a mind independent from its previous four films – as with reading the following review.
Where do we start? Kristen Stewart, to our surprise, gave more emotion than she’s ever did in the previous four films combined. Bella's new vampire DNA has done good on her posture and ability to express aggression and excitement (she's still working on her 'happy' face). Her Oscar-winning moment had to be the epic scene where she screamed “YOU IMPRINTED ON MY DAUGHTER?!” upon finding out that her ex-boyfriend Jacob has a “wolf thing” for her baby daughter (for a full explanation and plot developments, read 5 reasons to watch Twilight). This strange paedophilic relationship between wolfman and child was sufficiently disturbing: the creepy eyes, the creepy gifts, and the creepy and overbearing protective attitude that, after a short while, just looks painful, silly and unnecessary. We get it, true love clearly knows no bounds, but do you have to follow her everywhere?!
Wait, did we mention that for half the movie, Bella’s daughter Renesmee was computer-generated? Her unusually large, anime-like eyes and blurry edges around her head were so unsettling, so much so it begged the occasional "Chuckie, is that you?". Not only until the infant becomes Mackenzie Foy did they finally do away with such gimmicks.
We still don’t understand how these movies/books are supposed to be doing something good for pre-pubescent teens. Bella’s dysfunctional relationship with her dad is completely unrealistic; if anything it teaches kids is that it is ok to fake illness, fake-move to Switzerland, feign death, adopt a child, and go into recluse with a family of incredibly pale people. All because she's in love with a vampire. Must be a nightmare for all parents present.
The final battle scene was pretty comedic, but unintentionally so. Fine, we can come to terms with the fact that it was a fake snow field – Hollywood does it all the time. However, we don’t understand why director Bill Condon had to pan the camera out – multiple times – into a bird’s eye view of the battlefield only to see several black dots running into each other. The dramatic intent fell completely flaccid. The only time where this technique can be rightfully employed is if you’re fighting in Mordor, Hogwarts or Sparta. Otherwise, forget it – it looks like you’re trying too damn hard.
We do give credit where credit is due. The battle scene – which involved the brutal deaths of some of the most likeable characters – turned out to be merely a premonition. Admittedly, when they “killed” off Carlisle, Jasper and Seth (plus points for knowing all their names), our hearts did break in a way that reminded us of Fred’s death in Harry Potter. Upon uncovering the twist, the entire cinema audience erupted into gasps, 'omg's and sighs of relief - they must have done something right because we totally didn't see it coming (of course, you would know this already if you read the book). Special mention goes to Michael Sheen ('Frost/Nixon') who plays the volturi overlord Aro. An actor who doesn't receive enough credit for his work, he plays his villainous role so flawlessly that we almost forgave and forgot the paedophilia.
Overall, we're glad that they spared us a fair bit of what could have turned into a vampire history lesson and just went straight for it: Do Edward and Bella get their happily ever after? Of course they do - it's Twilight, guys.