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Friday
Jul022010

TWILIGHT SAGA: ECLIPSE is okay, but ladies your fantasies disturb me (review)

Rating:  (Passable)

Well, this is certainly an improvement. The first Twilight movie is somewhat laughable and it's sequel, Twilight Saga: New Moon (review) is confusing for those who haven't read the book. With a new director, Eclipse finally sets a stable tone for the series, giving us backgrounds on many of the characters (like the Cullen vampire family) that we've seen on screen for two years now, and enough action so all of the boyfriends in the audience won't wish they were as dead as Edward this third go-round.

So the movie is better, but really, who cares? All you Twilightites are going to see it anyway. You probably already have. You don't see these movies because they're good; you're addicted. Those damn books hooked you, and Jacob's abs reeled you all in by the millions. Criticizing the filmic qualities of Eclipse will get me nowhere! If I'm going to engage Team Edward and Team Jacob, I better dig right in. And so I present my unfiltered thoughts on the characters you love and their many bad choices. Many spoilers ahead.

Edward is an old manipulative pedophile

Ladies, your fantasies disturb me. There is nothing about Bella and Edward's relationship that works. He's 120 years old and she is a teenager. He's as old as the incandescent light bulb and every time he looks at Bella, he wants to suck on her insides (not in a fun way either). He likes her because she's an attractive young girl and he can't hear her thoughts (his vampire power!). Understandable, since he doesn't have to hear her drone on about how she doesn't fit in like we do every movie. She likes him because he's everything a young girl dreams of: he doesn't talk much, he has tons of emotional issues, looks pretty, spends all his time with her, and it's clear they should not be together.

But we're past that. That was the first movie. Since then, Edward ran out on her, she fell in love with a werewolf (slight improvement since he's not dead), both of them tried to kill themselves because they "couldn't live" without the other, and now they're back together. Does this sound like a healthy relationship?! If someone breaks up with you and you try to kill yourself, you should seek therapy, not your ex.

Bella also shows signs of breaking with reality. When he was gone, she had visions of Edward that nearly killed her, which my medical friend tells me could be a sign of a major depression disorder, or even schizophrenia. She should seek help, not more vampire time. Her father and mother remain blissfully unaware of their daughter's escalating break with reality, which is sad because they seem like good parents. Especially Dad; he drinks Rainier, which is an excellent beer. (A friend of mine writes about it here.)

Now Edward is manipulating Bella into throwing her life away and joining him forever. In Eclipse, the 120 year old decides that he won't have sex with Bella unless she marries him first. He claims that it's a ritual "from his time," meaning a hundred years ago. What he doesn't tell her--and she probably doesn't know because she never seems to go to school--is that women had no rights 100 years ago. If a man like Edward found a girl attractive (and had some money), she would probably marry him. Love was a small part of the equation. They didn't have sex before marriage because they'd get married within months!

Bella has no reason to marry so young, but Edward keeps holding out on her in hopes that she'll fill the hole in his life forever. If you don't feel like a worthy person without someone, you need to work on your own issues alone, I say. Edward acts like the bigger man when Jacob comes around and says he's giving Bella the choice, but he subtly manipulates her by proposing with a big-ass ring, and ensuring Jacob hears about the engagement. It's a smart tactic by an old man who knows how to pick up a young innocent girl.

And doesn't the saying go "until death do us part"? At least Bella will have grounds for an annulment before she even takes her vows. 

Jacob is a bit better

He's a muscly-armed wolfman prone to violent outbursts and irrational behavior. Still, he's enamored with Bella too and she likes him. The upside of choosing Jacob: he won't try to turn her into a vampire. The downside: he may beat her. Bella routinely ignores the third choice: find a regular man. But hey, where's the fun in that?

Jacob isn't like Edward. He wants Bella and is honest about his intentions. He isn't demanding marriage and she doesn't have to die to be with him. This makes him the obvious runner up. 

The sparkle and turn to stone? 

There are a bunch of fun flashbacks in Eclipse. We learn the origins of many of the Cullen family members and finally see them duke it out. I wish more time was spent on these flashbacks because they're much more interesting than watching the Bella/Jacob/Edward love triangle. Vampires seem more relevant in the world of the past.

Maybe they could flash back far back enough to explain how sparkly vampires came to be. Did a man and his pet bat fall into a vat of diamonds, which magnified themselves into his skin by the power of the sun's rays? Superhero stories and classic vampire stories explain their creatures, but the Twilight series does a poor job--at least in the movies.

When vampires hurt each other, their torn limbs are a crystal-like stone. What's that about? Edward decapitates one, but also has to burn the body because he fears it could come back to life? The thing doesn't have a head. How in hell would it come back alive? Do Twilight vampires turn to liquid and reform themselves like T-1000 from Terminator 2? Maybe Alex Mack was a vampire.  

What's ahead

I can only imagine. It looks like there's a marriage coming up and I've heard rumblings of a baby. My fingers are crossed! Everything I've heard sounds even more absurd than what's already happened, so it should at least be fairly entertaining. 

Am I crazy? Do you find my thoughts on Edward and Bella offensive? Let me know!

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