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Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1

Women don’t need brains when they have a man

Team Edward finally wins the love — and it would seem, mind, of Bella in the next-to-last Twilight segment. <<© Summit Entertainment>>

Leaving Breaking Dawn Part 1, mercifully the second-to-last installment in the Twilight Saga, I heard a little girl cry:
    “I have so many feelings about this movie, but I can’t put them into words!”
    Me too, kiddo, but they pay me to try.
    Aside from being poorly scripted and woodenly acted, the entire Twilight series spoon-feeds a destructive message to young girls.
    The romantic premise is as follows: Eighteen-year-old Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart: Eclipse) prepares to wed her beau of one year, vampire Edward (Robert Pattinson: Water for Elephants). There’s not much for her to do, since her new vampire friends have taken over the planning. Edward won’t tell her where she’s honeymooning: It’s a surprise. Stylish Alice (Ashley Greene: Butter) won’t let Bella pick her dress or shoes since Bella’s not stylish enough. Best friend and werewolf Jacob (the always shirtless Taylor Lautner: Abduction) won’t talk to Bella because he wanted to be the monster she marries.
    Bella could be replaced by a mannequin at her wedding, and she’s fine with this arrangement, because her only desire is to be with Edward. This is her life: No job, no education, no friends, no human contact — unless darling Edward okays it.
    The script sounds less like the end of a fairy tale than the beginning, when the pretty girl needs rescuing.
    No matter, the pair are married and whisked off to their honeymoon, where Bella is finally allowed to consummate the union with her loving spouse. Bella sees the experience as grand, though Edward points out that his amorous attentions have left Bella bruised and injured. That’s okay, Bella insists, because Edward loves her.
    That’s right, girls: It’s fine if he hurts you so long as he loves you. Be sure to write that one down in your Team Edward notebook.
    A charming montage follows in which Bella dresses up in lingerie nightly, begging her husband for sex. Edward resists like a saint because he knows better.
    Their honeymoon is cut short when Bella realizes that she’s pregnant and, like a true Teen Mom, decides to keep the baby. This, in spite of the fact that vampire patriarch and doctor Carlisle (Peter Facinelli: Nurse Jackie) assures her the baby is killing her. Apparently a backer of Personhood legislation, the suddenly decisive Bella insists that this baby must be born, even if it kills her. She’ll just hope for the best and get turned into a vampire after delivery — if she lives that long.
    The baby threatens problems all around. A vampirish birth will nullify the tenuous pact the vampires have with the werewolves. This means that loyal wolf-puppy Jacob will have to break from his pact to protect the woman he loves.
    Will Bella have the baby? Will Edward turn her in time? Will Jacob ever admit that Bella’s just not that into him?
    None of it much matters so long as Edward remains dreamy and Jacob remains shirtless, because Stewart nails her performance of Bella the good cult convert.
    On the plus side, cinematography is surprisingly artistic, and the werewolves have hilarious arguments.
    I hope for more arguing werewolves in the final Twilight. We’d be saved not only the stilted expressions of the human actors but also more systematic torture of a young girl too co-dependent to function without the guiding hand of a man.

Repulsive Fantasy • PG-13 • 117 mins.