I'm gonna do this review a bit differently than usual (don't worry, you're not missing anything by me skipping the usual plot blurb at the beginning. There isn't much of one to begin with. Anywho...). It's no secret that I have a large disliking of the Twilight books. Yes, I've read them all. No, it's not because I'm a lit snob (I'm really not). If you want a full list of reasons why I don't care for them, you can check here. Otherwise, I'll keep it to New Moon in this post. And on top of not liking the books, I hated New Moon the most of them all. But ever since I saw the first film and discovered, much to my surprise, that the film was actually better than the book (not hard to do when all you can do is make improvements... the books are, for the most part, unfilmable to any common viewer, so they have to add into the films everything the book was lacking to make them work), I actually started to anticipate New Moon. I wondered if it would take out everything that made me hate New Moon: The Book and make New Moon: The Movie actually enjoyable.

So let's go through a list of why I hated New Moon: The Book so much:

1) Bella is an insufferable, unlikable, selfish character who just uses and abuses those around her to satisfy her own needs.

2) Jacob goes from great character and much more suitable love interest to unlikable jerk about halfway in.

3) All depression, not much humor. And without much plot to keep you going, that's not that great.

4) Long, drawn out scenes of Bella being a moaning zombie... and not that kind that eats human flesh.

5) Absolutely zero action (as is the case with basically the whole series, really).

So how does New Moon: The Movie fare with these five aspects? Let's see:

1) Bella, unfortunately, is still an insufferable, unlikable, selfish character who just uses and abuses those around her to satisfy her own needs. But hey, at least she admits it once or twice in the movie (not in those harsh of words, but whatever). Oh, quick note while we're on the subject of admitting things. I love an admission she makes at the beginning of the movie that I don't believe she makes in the book. Bella and Edward are fighting over age, and Bella says something along the lines of "Isn't this kinda gross? I should be disgusted" based on their age difference. That made me smile.

2) Jacob... oh, Jacob. I loved Jacob in the first half of the book and came to hate him in the second half. In fact, Jacob didn't start to turn back around to likable again until about the mid-point of the last book. So I am delighted to announce that not only does Jacob stay likable in the movie, but his bursts of anger feel more rationalized in the movie than in the book. However, because of this, I feel movie goers are going to have an even harder time accepting that Bella would rather choose Edward over him. I think the only thing that helped me rationalize her choice in the book was the fact that Jacob became kind of a douche at times. And while he has some moments in the movie, they actually make some kind of sense, unlike the book. But the actor did a really good job with the character. He was very fitting (and funny).

3) Which brings us to our next point. The book was pretty dark, dull, and depressing. Like the book, the movie still has not much of a plot, and just kinda bounces from scene to scene. But the movie inserted some much needed comedy, particularly with Jacob and his La Push friends (though I'm actually kinda upset that they basically all but removed Quil and Embry, giving them only a couple lines each). And surprisingly, a lot of the humor was purposeful. Though there was quite a bit that wasn't, as well. For instance, there's a scene with Edward walking in slow motion as the wind blows his shirt back, as if he's some TV model (who eventually starts to sparkle). I'm sorry, but that's just so terrible it's funny. That's really the only thing that helped me get over the ridiculous melodrama of the whole thing--it takes itself so freakin' seriously that it almost makes a mockery of itself. In fact, I'm wondering if the director purposefully gave it some self-deprecating moments because he understood just how silly it was.

4) So, I've already mentioned the melodrama. Some of this does, indeed, include Bella as a moaning zombie. Her nightmares are particularly stupid, as she continually screams into the night, annoying her father (who is so far continuing to be one of the better film version characters) along with the audience. However, one of the eye-rolling sequences of the book (at least for me) was when there are just four pages with the name of the month on it, showing how she just mopes about for four months after Edward leaves. This is actually handled very artfully in the film. Bella sits in a chair staring out the window, and the camera slowly rotates around her. As the camera gets back to showing out the window, it shows a different season outside while giving a subtitle of the month. Eventually, there is also some voice-over of her speaking out her emails to Alice, which was a nice touch that I don't remember from the book. I like how they use the emails to Alice throughout the film to show that she's actually missing other Cullens besides Edward (of course, the emails don't go through, but she keeps trying nonetheless).

5) In the first film, they added the climax fight that wasn't shown in the book. They even tossed in some action bits here and there throughout the film to keep the tempo going. So how did this one fare? There were some moments interspersed... nothing really major, though. But they also added in the scuffle with the Volturi at the end, which was awesome. The action looks much better in this film than it did in the first. It's much more stylized and fun. You can tell they had a bigger budget this time around. One of my favorite scenes in the film is when Charlie and Harry are out searching for the "wolves," and Victoria shows up. The whole action of the scene is so muted with the music and it's really nicely shot. Of course, all this leads up to the "big scene" that jump starts (no pun intended) the climax. But tying all of it together was a great way to make it flow into the ending.

So I said the first Twilight film was better than the book. I also said I hated the book of New Moon, but would hope, like its predecessor, the movie version would also be better than the book. Was I right in this assumption? Yes, I think I was. And it pisses me off that Hollywood seems capable of adapting a bad book into an entertaining movie, yet seems incapable of adapting a good book into one. But that's another post.

I can't, in right mind, give it the following score for being a good movie. The acting is mediocre at best (the best of it coming from Billy Burke, Ashley Greene, Michael Sheen, and Taylor Lautner). But that's what makes it so laughably good (in adding to the melodrama). The characters aren't particularly likable (except, ironically, for the characters played by the aforementioned actors... except Michael Sheen, but I only say that because his is a villain, and he isn't 'likable' in the same respect). The dialogue, most straight from the book, is nearly vomit inducing. But there's still just something about it that I liked. Maybe it's just a good 'bad' movie. So I'm giving it this score based solely on entertainment, I suppose. And I can't wait to love/hate the next one (assuming it, like the last two, is better than the book).

A Keanu 'Whoa'


  1. Won't see it till next week, when all the tween girls are sleeping in the Saturday morning after Thanksgiving. I'll probably view it the same way I did the first: as a good bad film, just for fun.

    I didn't like NM much the first time I read it, because Bella was so freaking annoying, but the second time I really started to like Jacob more (since I knew why he was being such a douche, it was easier to forgive him).

    I still think the worst book of the series is Breaking Dawn. The first and second parts are fine (especially from Jacob's POV), but after Bella becomes a vamp, I just wanted to bang my head against a concrete wall. That was the most awful ending to any "saga" I've ever read. Bella and her perfect "Mary Sue" life can go to hell.

  2. Observation: Pattinson should have worked out a lot more for this movie so as not to be so upstaged by other leading actor who obviously worked out a lot for this movie

  3. Rachel: I agree that the best part of Breaking Dawn was Jacob's perspective. But after that, it starts to go downhill. The part after that, though, actually would have been worth it had there been an actual climax at the end of the book, instead of everybody standing around thinking at each other for 50+ pages.

    Dean: Seriously. The part at the end, where he takes his shirt off to go reveal himself... he looked disgusting. Taylor Lautner, on the other hand, went from scrawny kid to big buff guy between the two films. Crazy.


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