Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Twilight Movie Review Part I

Fan Perspective vs. Critic Perspective

For fans of the Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer, the issue is: Does the movie live up to the books? For the critics the issue is: Does the movie live up to the outrageous hype its getting as one of the most anticipated films of the year?

I see only one problem with that. The movie is more of a "compliment" to the first book in the four book series, rather than a "book made into a movie". Obviously, I am with the fans. So, that's the perspective with which I viewed the film and it will differ from the critic perspective. 

Twilight, in movie form, does not translate seamlessly into the best selling novel on screen. But few, if any, book-to-movie films have ever managed to accomplish that daunting feat. Realistically, if movie makers wanted to attempt to do that with Twilight, I think the movie form would end up being 2 weeks long rather than 2 hours! (Not that ANY fans, including me, would complain in the least!)

I went into this never expecting ALL the wonderful scenes penned by Stephenie to make it into the movie. Likewise, I went into it expecting changes and alterations. This way, I was sure to not set myself up for disappointment. And my game plan worked, I'm happy to say! 

As a fan of the novels I enjoyed the movie because so many scenes left me on the edge of my seat with anticipation, left me completely breathless and even, many times, made me laugh out loud. 

If the cast members were able to bring about the imagery that I had in my head of the characters, then I was thoroughly impressed! And many of them did this! Some cast members did such an impressive job that I am having a problem even figuring out how to finish this sentence in a way that would adequately express just how cool they are in my mind after seeing the end product of their dedication to the exactness of the character they portray.

Billy Burke managed to bring to life the endearing traits of Bella's father, Charlie. Mike Welch did an awesome job as Mike Newton. I actually look forward to more "Mike Newton" in the coming sequels (and there had better be sequels!) Anna Kendrick was fabulous! Absolutely perfect! Edi Gathegi, I was already partial to, but now my partiality is justified. He will ROCK the screen in New Moon! I can't wait to hear more of that accent! Rachelle LeFevre... I don't even think I have words for. Her sultry voice alone gave dimension to the nomads' ominous presence. Her portrayal of the vindictive Victoria is very worthy of fan praise and it would freak me out to meet her in a dark alley if I wasn't already comforted with the knowledge that Rachelle was a fellow crazy Joey MacIntire fan back in the day. (I think I have a girl crush.) And I would be amiss if I didn't mention a certain extra in the movie who was AWESOME! I nearly jumped out of my seat every time I saw her! Hooray for my favorite extra!!! She was the best movie extra in the history of extras in movies!

The Sparkle Effect

Few questions throughout history have boggled the mind of fankind  as disturbingly as, "How will they make Edward sparkle in the sun?" The thought of using glittery makeup made me cringe to think about. The fans will be anticipating Edward's big diamond-like skin reveal to Bella as he steps into the sun.  I don't think they will be disappointed. The CGI was excellent! I give it a "thumbs up"! Along with a big "thank you" for not slathering Rob with body glitter. Brilliant work! I loved it! 

The Music

Carter Burwell... Inspiration be thy name! His music catered to and intensified viewer emotion. I experienced  the same emotions that I feel while reading the book. If Twilight were a packaged gift to the fans, then Carter Burwell's movie score and the Soundtrack songs are the ribbon wrapped around it. The music enhanced the beauty, thrill and/or intensity of each scene and the fans will be able to relive the excitement of seeing the movie for the first time again and again through the music and it will compliment Stephenie Meyer's playlists wonderfully. So, make room on your iPod you're gonna want it! 

Watch for Part II of my review. I will talk about each of the Cullens, the Quileutes and THE Kiss! There is much to write about!!! I will do my best to get that written up asap! 



Anonymous said...

YAY! I loved it too. It took me a bit to get the book/running movie of my own out of my head, but I really enjoyed it. I am going again on Friday just because I want to see it again without holding my breath!

Kathy Habel said...

I'm so jazzed to get to see our favorite extra in the movie!

Oh it totally cracks me up that my word verification for this comment is "billy". My computer must have Bella's dad on its mind.

Val said...

Loved the review. Can't wait for part 2. Who is the extra you are talking about so I can look for this person on Thursday night?

Katie said...

I really loved reading your review Lisa. I'm totally looking forward to seeing this tomorrow night!! :)

Melissa said...

Lisa, you ROCK. I am so excited to see this movie, and you just amped that up! WoooHooo!

JoanneMaria said...

Can't wait, can't wait!!!
Yeah, who is this extra???

Anonymous said...

I had the priviledge of going to the premier on Monday. Filled with excitment and not expecting too much. Sadly, I was more disappointed than I thought. It seemed to be a bad low budget movie with holes all through the story and plagued with numerous problems as well as bad acting. People were laughing when they weren't meant to and I was embarrassed. The kids will probably love, it. However, it was a letdown to me....

Anonymous said...

oops spoiler alert

Lisa said...

Actually, the extra isn't Stephenie. She did a cameo. The extra is a personal friend who shall remain nameless. ;)

Anonymous said...

I got to go to the early screening in Dallas, and I completely agree with your review. Thanks for putting my feelings into words for me. ;) I can't wait to see the movie again at the midnight showing!

Sandy said...

Great review. I can't wait. I have my tickets and am waiting for Friday to get here. :D Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Thank you soooo much for this review, Lisa. I feel that I've entrusted one of my personal treasures to Summit and you've given me hope that they were extremely gentle with it. I'll be riveted to my seat at 12:01 AM tomorrow night (or is that Friday morning???)

Amy said...

Where's part two??? I waiting for your review of a certain dazzling doctor ;)

Unknown said...

It was a upcoming release in holly wood every body is talking, so much of romance inside it I hope you will love it to that is why I share. Also movie like this doing so much for the society Twilight it is a grate movie will it be.

Bluestem said...

Thanks for taking your time with the details on this Lisa. I know this isn't Catherine's first film and she and Melissa were courageous to take this on, in the face of expectations, limited budget, and dare I say, ignorance about TW's true and whole audience! This will be a fun experience and I will go see any and all future movies in the series.

Anonymous said...

So, here I am trying to convince some of my friends to go into the movie with an open mind because of all the negative talk out there against the film. As an avid reader, I must say that I agree with your view. Of course much is lost in translation and this does not exclude script writers. However, the essence of this unique love and connection between Bella and Edward, as well as within the Cullen family itself, was brought out nicely in the film. The only scene I would have loved to have seen on film would be the complete beach scene with Jacob and Bella. Here, where he tells his legendary "ghost" stories of the "Cold Ones" lays the beginning of this profound friendship between them. I felt that special scene was rushed but, I also see that perhaps they would have had to extend the move to make it longer and so this scene was altered. When I look at the complete picture though, I see that most of the main ideals were colored eloquently by the scenes and the actors. The actors were chosen "in tune" with the characters in the books. As you indicated, it was amazing to see these characters come to life! The Soundtrack, which not many fans out there talk about, is fabulous!!! The main instrumental piece that plays throughout the move, with its melancholy mysterious undertones, is truly enticing. As for the hysteria in regard to the “special effects”, (the “glittering scene, the jumps, and the fights) I have to say this. To those who haven’t read the books: please try to read the books (my eight year old daughter did), or start using your imaginations! In any case, I’m sure that in future the sequels will have advanced
visual effects since the budget will most likely increase for production. Just remember, this is a love story with a twist. We all love color, special effects, drama, etc…but try to appreciate this mesmerizing romance between this young girl and eternally young vampire and you will most likely enjoy the movie with more of an open mind.

Anonymous said...

Hi Lisa =)
first of all a huuuge "thank you" for your blog-entries *hug*
I've enjoyed reading them =)
the Twilight-hype started here in Vienna really calmly, so I'm always anxious to read about everything around ;)
I would love to add your myspace-profil to my friends, but it tells me, I was getting the name wrong all the time... *sniff*
hope you've had a great start in 2009 and will have an even greater new year =)
all the best to you and your family,
greetings from Vienna,
yours Jutta =)