The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 (2011)

DVD Cover (Summit Entertainment)
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Overall Rating 49%
Overall Rating
Ranked #673
...out of 15,333 movies
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Connections: Twilight

Bella and Edward celebrate their wedding, but, after their honeymoon on Isle Esme, things take a turn for the worse when Bella realizes she is pregnant. As the baby grows at an abnormally fast rate and causes many health problems to Bella, Edward and the wolf pack fear that she may give birth to an immortal child. But the Cullens will do everything they can to ensure that both Bella and the unborn child remain safe. --IMDb
Review by bluemeanie
Added: November 23, 2011
My "Breaking Dawn" experience began when a 16-year-old girl asked me to take a picture of her with her friends. Afterward she thanked me and asked if I was "Team Edward" or "Team Jacob". My response was, "Can't I be both teams and have a threesome?" She didn't find that amusing. I could hear she and her friends making gasps and awes shrieks throughout the film. I also heard others giggling and making fun of the film. And then there was the contingent analyzing every aspect of the film and how it didn't match up with the book. I might have been the only person in the audience looking for similarities between this and Bill Condon's other films.

There was a part of me that really hoped Bill Condon could take this franchise and do something with it; close the whole thing out on a grand note. I thought this film could ever be - dare I say - 'good'. But "Breaking Dawn" just goes to show you that even the best of directors can sometimes bite off more than they can chew. Gone are any and all traces of the genius who brought us "Gods and Monsters", "Kinsey" and "Dreamgirls". Nothing about this film would ever tip anyone off that an Oscar nominated director was behind the wheel. And that's a shame. To my extreme and utter dismay, "Breaking Dawn" is the worst entry into the franchise thus far.

Continuing in the grand melodrama, Bella (Kristen Stewart) and Edward (Robert Pattinson) get married, surrounded by their family and friends. Bella and Edward have sex even though Jacob (Taylor Lautner) thinks it's a bad idea because it could kill her. They do it anyway and Bella gets pregnant. What? Pregnant? Yes. And the baby then starts destroying Bella from the inside out. Cue the shirtless werewolf boys who think the baby is a bad idea and must protect their lands. That is where the principal conflict comes from - the wolves versus the vamps. Will Bella survive child birth? Will Jacob take off his shirt? Will Death Cab make it onto the soundtrack?

"Breaking Dawn" is the most melodramatic film ever released into theatres. It's a step below "General Hospital" in that department. I've seen episodes of "Passions" that were more believable. The overwrought performances are matched only by the cheesy and laughably bad score and one of the worst mainstream scripts on record. This is just bad, bad film making from beginning to end. I have to think this franchise deserves better than this. It almost felt as if Bill Condon was making fun of the film as he was directing it; as if he was so confused as to why he was directing it that he decided to intentionally make it bad. Not just bad...awful. Just plain awful.

The pinnacle of this wretchedness comes half-way through the film during what will now forever be referred to as "the talking dog scene". This is where Jacob and his cohorts have shifted into wolves and have a pretty lengthy and unintentionally hilarious dialogue sequence. It's painfully bad to watch and I felt bad for both the actors involved with the film and the 16-year-old girls who couldn't believe what they were seeing. Yes, even they were giggling with disbelief at just how bad it was. And those lame CGI wolves only heighten the scene. You'd think, over the years, they would have found a way to improve those things. Nope. Same wolves.

Everyone keeps telling me that "Breaking Dawn Part 2" will be more entertaining because there is more action. The lack of action is not my problem. It's the lack of everything else that's the problem. The film just feels cold and antiseptic - there's no heart or soul to the material. The 16-year-old set might be cooing and cawing at the crap on screen but it just seems totally fake and totally uninspired. Bella and Edward seem like the two dullest human beings on the planet. Who would care what happens to them? You have to root for the lead characters in order to make a connection and there is nothing to root for in either one of these crushing bores.

At the end of the day, "Breaking Dawn" might do it for some folks. Maybe. Not me. And judging by the response the audience gave - not most. The inconsistency in directors has made each installment totally different than the others and none of them have measured up to the original. I cannot say I am looking forward to the final film in this franchise, especially now that I know Bill Condon cannot save it. I will watch it because I am not a quitter and will finish this thing out just so the time I've committed thus far isn't a waste. But once it's all said and done, I doubt I will ever find myself wanting to relive any of these films again.

I did make one decision while watching this one. I am most definitely on "Team Jacob". 4/10.
AttnDefDis #1: AttnDefDis - added 12/03/2011, 01:06 PM
Let me just start by saying that this was my second favorite book in the series and this movie was pretty atrocious. It was the worst and most inaccurate installment in the series hands down. The previews appealed to me because it appeared that they took the first part further in the book than I thought they would. What they didn't show were the liberties they took with the original storyline and the blatant disregard for some key moments. I'd definitely have to reread some portions to check myself, but examples include Carlisle's absence during the birth, Esme, Emmet and Carlisle's quick showdown with the pack and the housekeepers. Nothing about this movie said Twilight aside from the obvious. From the lack of humor to those awful red and black credits. The beginning was slow and boring, they didn't focus on Jacob much at all despite the fact that he has a huge narrative in the book and the end was a complete fumble. Also, the overuse of CGI was really tacky and you are so right about the wolf argument scene. God I was laughing at all the wrong places throughout this entire thing.

I've never claimed that these are serious movies that should be given their due. They're simply entertaining mellow drama with a distinct feel. They chose the way wrong director for these final two movies and it sucks that they're going to end this delightfully shallow serious on such a bad note.

On a side note, I am Team Emmett all the way. Why are there never any shirtless Emmett moments? He puts both of the male leads to shame and at least he's got a sense of humor.
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