Saturday, 2 October 2010



Because pretty much everything I waffled about regarding Twilight: New Moon holds true for this third instalment of the series and, I suspect, will also apply to the next two (Breaking Dawn Parts 1 and 2, the first of which isn't due for another year). It's still aimed at young teenage girls and everyone else is rather left standing: we won't derive anything like maximum enjoyment from it. It's still soaking wet, sixth-form love-triangle blathery soap opera with no sense of humour and so constrained by the 12A rating (required for its preferred demographic) that it can't deliver on the vampire/werewolf monster stuff.

Well, that's not entirely fair: anyone who enjoys watching groups of buff young men with rippling abs and pecs running shirtless around the woods will also get their five quids' worth - it almost makes 300 look straight. But the main thrust of Twilight Saga: Eclipse* is the ongoing battle between sensitive romantic Edward and athletic hunk Jacob for the mind, body, soul and virginity of soppy Bella - wet, but not in a good way. (Moist: good, damp: bad.) An army of Newborns - freshly turned vampires which are ferocious and bloodthirsty, but difficult to control - has been created by evil vampire Victoria to kill Bella, in revenge for Edward's killing of her (Victoria's) true love, so he'll know how it feels. To protect Bella (and, frankly, why bother?) an uneasy truce is agreed between the vampires and the werewolves (and, specifically, between love rivals Jacob and Edward, each of whom look on in agony whenever she's with the other).

It is indeed high-school girly stodge, and at 124 minutes it's too long, and it's no fun unless you're sucked into Edward's soulful, tortured eyes or the sculpted torsos of the wolf pack. I think it's probably the best of the series so far, and preferred it to the last one, New Moon, although there's not really a lot between them. Technically, as a film, it's fine: very nicely shot, with a typically gloomy Howard Shore soundtrack, and the CG effects are good - but so they should be. To praise a modern film for its excellent computer effects is like praising it for being in focus. I'm not part of the target audience (and never will be) but I still found it watchable, more watchable than a lot of films for which I am the target audience. The girlies further along my row, however, were practically wetting themselves, whisper-shouting "Edward, we love you!!!" over the studio logos. (Mercifully, they kept quiet for the film itself.)

* What exactly is this film called? The BBFC card and the opening title card just say "Eclipse", but the ending title card says "Twilight Saga: Eclipse". For the sake of clarity I've picked the latter.


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