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Breaking Dawn, Part 2 (12A) Reviewed

Rachel Winterbottom would like to forget any of this ever happened

Published on November 20th 2012.


Breaking Dawn, Part 2 (12A) Reviewed

IS there anything more romantic than the huskily uttered words: “Now it’s your turn not to break me”? Only the final part of the Twilight Saga would aim to pass off a line like that as mere sweet nothings.

It’s difficult to find a standout performance but it’s a relief to see Stewart widen her scope from awkward to angry.

Breaking Dawn – Part Two  begins where part one left off. Bella (Kristen Stewart) is discovering her new abilities now that husband Edward (Robert Pattinson) has turned her into a fellow vampire. Along with getting used to her new super strength, hearing and sight, Bella must also control her thirst for human blood – which she unsurprisingly does. But can the new mum come to terms with the fact that her werewolf would-be suitor Jacob (Taylor Lautner) has ‘imprinted’ on her daughter Renesmee (Mackenzie Foy)? Yes.

Once that mild peril is out of the way, the sparkling newlyweds soon realise that Renesmee is aging at an accelerated rate. Not knowing that the hybrid tot was conceived when Bella was human, a member of another vampire coven reports to the Volturi – Italy-based vampire royalty – that the Cullens have made a vampire child, a crime punishable by death.

Breaking Dawn Part Two

Leader of the Cullens, Carlisle (Peter Facinelli), is forced to gather vampires from around the world to stand with them against the Volturi as witnesses to the truth about Renesmee – but will that be enough? Probably.

With the main love triangle between Bella, Edward and Jacob neatly out of the way, returning director Bill Condon is left to find an actual plot in the second half of Stephanie Meyer’s final book. But, when the driving force behind the narrative is revealed in a moment of clunky exposition, it becomes quickly apparent that, once again in the saga, the biggest threat is miscommunication. As the film’s finale hinges on such a thin premise, the preceding scenes are mostly filler.

There are plenty of crowd-pleasing displays of vampire talent, particularly Bella’s – and this is where the majority of the film’s entertainment value lies. As the newly made vampire discovers the extent of her abilities, and other vampires show off theirs - manipulation of the elements, electrical shocks – there’s a definite sense of fun involved. However, there’s also a sense of thumb-twiddling until the final face-off between the vampires and Volturi arrives.

Breaking Dawn Part Two

The CGI has always been ropey in the Twilight-verse, and although the wolves have improved – marginally – the decision to make baby Renesmee CGI has resulted in a creation so eerily soulless that you can understand why so many want rid of it.   

It’s difficult to find a standout performance but it’s a relief to see Stewart widen her scope from awkward to angry. Pattinson has already proved he’s outgrown the series with his performance in Cronenberg’s Cosmopolis (although you rarely see anything of the crumpling psyche he displayed as Eric Packer). The only aspect of their relationship that is vaguely believable is the sex – Edward seems so enamoured with the vampire version of his love that you wonder what he ever saw in human Bella.

Unfortunately for Lautner his character has been all but replaced by his CGI counterpart and even when Jacob is human he is reduced to trailing after Renesmee like a lost puppy. No amount of explanation can make that less creepy.

Breaking Dawn Part TwoThe marvellous Billy Burke as Bella’s dad is regrettably side-lined (although not omitted, like her mother), and his acceptance of the supernatural world is shoehorned into a five-minute scene that had little emotional resonance. Thankfully there is Michael Sheen (brilliant in the sumptuous Midnight in Paris), who adds an air of camp menace in his role as the leader of the Volturi, and who can do a high-pitched giggle and still be taken seriously.    

The lack of any significant action for the majority of the film means that when it finally does arrive, the head-popping audacity of it will blow most Twi-hard’s minds (particularly as it contains a few deviations from the book). Unfortunately, this action scene is followed by a monumental copout, and no matter how understandable this is, you can’t help but feel cheated. 

As with all of the films in the Twilight Saga, there are always going to be fans who are easily pleased. For everyone else, this is another lacklustre sequel where nothing much happens, but fortunately it is the last one (unless people really want to see Jacob and Renesmee finally get it on).

4/10  

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DaveNovember 23rd 2012.

worst movie ever. 7.5/10

Simon TurnerNovember 23rd 2012.

You give the "worst movie ever" 7.5/10??? This marks out of ten thing is not something you seem to understand?!

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