Friday, November 21, 2008

Twilight - A Review from a Girl who's Obsessed with Making Teen Films

I was supposed to stay up until midnight last night to catch Twilight with a friend. Around 10:30pm, I was fast asleep. No deal. So at 7am this morning, I woke up, took a shower, did a little work and headed to a 9:30am screening where I thought I'd sit in a somewhat empty theater enjoying the film mostly by myself. Not the case. I arrived at 9am and already there was a line of what looked like 40-something book club women ready to giggle and act like 13-year olds. Yes, they had on Team Edward and Twilight garb. They giggled with excitement just like the even fewer teen girls who's mothers were cool enough to let them skip school. Standing alone in a line at 9am with a bunch of other women ... I felt downright silly. But whatever. I settled in to my seat in a pretty crowded theater all ready to swoon over Edward Cullen. And swoon I did. Yes, the Rob Pattison is dreamy. Yes, the hair, the lips, the brooding forehead, all very sexy. Thank god for close ups and lots of them. Because every time he came on screen, the whole audience let out a collective sigh. No joke.

Was the movie good? Uh, no. And as a disclaimer, I've never been a Catherine Hardwicke fan. But I was curious to see her take on a Hollywood, mainstream film. I thought it would have an edginess about it that she forced on us with Thirteen and Lords of Dogtown. But no, it went into ultra cheesy world. Really bad flashbacks, cringe worthy effects ... and yes, I was thinking in my head all of the things that the Book Club women were chatting about in the bathroom afterwards. How could she have cast that girl as Rosalie? Alice is not what I expected at all. Will teen girls love it? Oh yeah. Will they go to the theater more than once? You betcha. The best scenes in the film are between Bella and Edward alone, in her bedroom, in science class, in the car ... the realistic moments when it's not about bloodlust or flying through trees ... it's about being awkward around someone you totally dig. And that's what makes the ladies sigh.

In summation (giggle) ... the book is totally cheesy. There, I admit it. It is. But I'd rather relish those cheesy moments in my head than see someone else's interpretation of them on screen.

Luckily for the studios, the girls will flock. FLOCK to the theaters again and again. They'll show Hollywood that they care and their dollar counts.

And finally, if you really want to see a good recent teen flick, rent Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist when it comes out on DVD. Peter Sollett nailed it.


Jennifer Gandin Le said...

Thanks for your perspective on the movie. I read the book and really, really disliked it. But I love that a movie geared toward young women and directed by a woman is getting such buzz. Hollywood getting the message that women and girls' money is powerful = a very good thing.

abc said...

Kat, I enjoyed the books as much as you did. If you didn't like the film, I'm certain I won't either. I wouldn't mind if the film differed from the book as long as it is cool and interesting in and of itself. But if it's just plain bad, then I'll skip. Or maybe wait until DVD (just for the Pattinson).