Sunday, November 22, 2009

THE TWILIGHT SAGA: NEW MOON - chiz moan groan

I have two problems with the TWILIGHT saga. In my review of the first flick, I summed up the first: "Instead of lashings of sex and death and sexy death and death-inducing sex, we get a lot of holding hands and big declarations of love but precious little rumpy-pumpy. Frankly, instead of all the narcissistic angst I would've far preferred the heroes to go and have some healthy sex and get over themselves. But that, my friends, kills the goose that laid the golden royalty cheques."

My second fundamental problem with the TWILIGHT saga is that it's completely dishonest. It's meant to be about pure love and abstinence but at the same time it makes no bones about showing buff guys stripped to the waist. Far from being about spiritual, emotional love, it's as much about the objectifying lust-objects as Baywatch. The only PC touch is that it's the men rather than the women who get their kit off.

These twin problems result in books and films that are as constrained as their characters: teens who want to jump each others bones but can't. And that leads to frustration on the part of the characters and the viewers.

NEW MOON opens with teen vampire Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson) abandoning his human girlfriend Bella Swann (Kristen Stewart) because he fears he can't keep her safe. So follows about ninety minutes of Bella going being depressed and boring. The only time she breaks off from this emo behaviour is to say something assinine to the newly buff teen were-wolf Jacob Black (newly buff Taylor Lautner). "You've buff" etc. Unfortuntely (ironically?) given the lack of on-screen chemistry between Bella-Edward or Bella-Jacob the whole love triangle thing never gets off the ground. In the final half hour we get something that looks like narrative momentum. Edward's sister has had a vision of Bella committing suicide, which has prompted Edward to do the same, Romeo & Juliet stylee. Aforementioned sister and Bella thus rush to Italy (for no other reason than that it looks picturesque) to prevent Edward from inciting some powerful vampires from killing him. All this might have been quite dramatic were it not for the fact that Michael Sheen is evidently taking the piss and hamming up his performance as the super-powerful Vampire king or whatever he is meant to be.

All in all, a movie that is dull, assinine, dull, picturesque, camp, dull.

And there are how many more of these to go?

THE TWILIGHT SAGA: NEW MOON is on global release.


  1. There's an article on the Escapist that makes the point that Twilight's objectification of men is a kind of partial revenge of the she-geeks. After all, men have objectified women a lot in their geeky fiction. Now it's the ladies turn?

  2. It's a bit depressing if the best we women can do is be as Neanderthal as the menfolk!

    And poor Taylor Lautner. He was solidly ignored after the first flick and now he basically knows for sure that all this attention is because he put on muscle.