While I know, deeply—to the core of my existence—that this movie was not made for me, I have now successfully seen all three. I saw the second and third ones in the theater, and the first one (actually, twice) on video. The second one I saw on opening night. I recall every theater at the Palace-Elmwood was playing it. It was packed to the gills with people, young and old, wearing T-Shirts bearing the actors faces [sigh]. I might have been the only man in the audience, which at least partially explains why I snicker aloud at all the parts I’m not supposed to.
This time I saw the movie one week after its local release. The theater was still pretty full for a Tuesday night at 10 o’clock. I did however imagine it would be. After all, I don’t live under a rock. I watched some of the MTV Movie Awards. I’ve been to Burger King recently. My girlfriend has the soundtrack, which bears some of my favorite artists (The Black Keys, The Dead Weather, Beck, Cee-lo, etc.). This I am actually not surprised about since Thom Yorke of Radiohead was on the “New Moon” soundtrack, and basically, whatever Thom Yorke does is gospel.
Back to the film, I think the Vampires often have the dumbest looks on their faces, like when they’re all lined up, ready for battle, and the camera zooms in on the whole gang. That’s one of those parts when I laugh out loud. The romance gets me, too. Not to mention the main character, Edward (Robert Pattinson), usually puts on the stupidest face of all. But sure, I’ll go ahead and show the other side—he’s young and trying hard to look affected. I don’t really think he’s a bad actor or anything like that. His face just looks stupid most of the time.
Then my girlfriend keeps telling me, “You’re so ‘Team Edward.’” No, I’m not. What’s the other ones name again? Oh yeah, Jacob.
“I’m definitely ‘Team Jacob,’” I reply. And here’s why: From a Wordsworthian point of view, the Werewolves are better. They live outdoors, among Nature. They’re a mysterious tribe, protecting their land, concealing hidden mysteries of life. They’re an indigenous, peaceful, spiritual race of beings. I think Wordsworth would agree with me. On the other hand: Vampires. Vampires are pretentious. They’re typically rich and often the epitome of aristocratic society. They cannot to be trusted because they’re barely alive. In my opinion, they are one step above Zombies.
Which reminds me, the film is sort of half original and half terribly unoriginal. I’ll start with the obvious unoriginal: Vampires and Werewolves. Romantic Londoner John William Polidori is credited with writing the first tale of the modern Vampire, called The Vampyre in 1819. Some say werewolves can be traced to ancient Greece.
Further, they are sympathetic, loving Vampires and Werewolves. The Twilight series is a perpetual “Interview With a Vampire,” toned down for your 13-year-old sister. In “Eclipse,” all the fast action possibly down to the red eyes of the Vampires has been ripped off from one of the coolest films of this decade, “28 Days Later.” Of course, in that film the villains are indiscriminant, violence-infected Zombies.
Adversely, I say it’s original just because it comes off as a novice film to me. Unless you want to hear that although original, I think it’s stupid that the Vampires do not have fangs, nor do they sleep during the day.
Certain scenes seem out-of-place across the Twilight Saga. Kind of like the “What doesn’t belong?” questions seen on standardized tests. Like in the first movie, I thought the very violent conflict at the end of the movie was out-of-place. It did not fit into the softy tone of the rest of the movie. In “Eclipse,” I thought it was out-of-place when the blonde Vampire Rosalie Hale, played by actress Nikki Reed, shares her gang-rape revenge story with Bella in the middle of the movie. Maybe I sound like Holden Caulfield trying to be ‘the catcher in the rye,’ wanting to save America’s tweens from coming-of-age?
I wouldn’t want to take anything away from the director of “Eclipse” David Slade (“Hard Candy,” “Stone Temple Pilots: Thank You,” “30 Days of Night”), though. He looks like a young Alfred Hitchcock. Except that there may have been too much time spent on the close-ups. At one point Jacob and Bella are having a moment in the middle of this gorgeous mountain valley and all we can do is count nose hairs. I let out a sigh of relief when the cut came to actually show the awesome landscape. Then I thought why? Why are we cutting out that landscape?
Now, maybe if I were just a tad more captivated by the beauty of actress Kristen Stewart or actor Taylor Lautner I wouldn’t have noticed. The problem is, to me they all look like young Hollywood big shots.