Twilight reaction post

  • Nov. 23rd, 2008 at 3:36 PM
my_daroga: Mucha's "Dance" (self)
Some disclaimers: I just got back from the film and fear if I don't talk about it now, I won't bother later. And I'm also writing this from the point of view of someone who read all the books for the horror of it, rather than 1) a fan or 2) totally disinterested. I think that'll color things. Plus, I'm about to go to play a gig, and I need to pack up. Basically, this is not the review for those who have no idea who Bella and Edward are.

So. Twilight. A theater full of Sunday matinee Twi-fans, ambiguously-aged young women and a few older women. And us, whatever we are.

In short: It was a lot better than the book. To the extent it was successful at all, it was in spite of Stephenie Meyer's original. It cut out most of Bella's whining, the overt Romeo and Juliet references, any talk of dazzlement. The actors were forced to play characters that made some kind of sense at least to them, which meant that Bella's dad and others were granted that kind of consideration for the first time. Meyer only included such periphery individuals because she needed them, but she never seems to build a world that humans live in--Charlie, and to an extent Bella and Edward, actually show up as better fleshed-out here than when filtered through whatever fantasy Meyer was trying to live out.

Kristen Stewart is amazingly not annoying as Bella--this is a highly biased view on my part, because within about half a paragraph I hated her and my not wanting to strangle her is equates to high praise indeed. She's still remarkably stupid, but she doesn't have the smug superiority based on utter nothingness that she does in the novel; her martyr complex is set up at the beginning and otherwise Stewart plays her like a stupid-in-love but generally pretty normal teenager.

Robert Pattinson's Edward is, in a word, perfect. I've heard reviews (from disinterested film critics) that say he fails to distinguish himself or Edward, but from the point of view of someone who thinks that Edward is a ridiculous, maudlin, bipolar, stalkery weirdo, Pattinson is amazing. Actually the majority of my entertainment in this film was in watching him create the Edward I saw in my head instead of the one haunting the masochistic dreams of at least half the 13-year-old girls in America. It's possible he made that one, too, and I haven't the magic glasses to see it. If he fails to make Edward a heartthrob, he's failed the task the studio set him--but he's succeeded in the one I would have.

Lots of the film was terribly sloppy. The special effects were uninspired, and the camerawork attempted to be too inventive in the sense that it seemed to move constantly in order to make up for the average audience's perceived inability to sit still while people are talking to each other. There were also flubs of the "Oregon license plates in Washington" variety and quite visible foundation especially on Carlisle's (Peter Facinelli's) part.

All in all (I'm running out of time), the film could have been a lot, lot worse. It's unoriginal, and without my interest in Pattinson's take on this year's Byronic stand-in I'd have found it pointless and too interested in hybridizing unmotivated teen love and bad action. But the biology class scene, where Edward first catches a whiff of Bella's pungent yumminess, is overblown to the point of hysteria and cannot have been intended seriously by the creators. If only they'd maintained that sort of over-the-top tongue in cheekiness for the rest of the film. Still, for all I know, they fully meant to.

Breaking Dawn

  • Aug. 3rd, 2008 at 10:27 AM
my_daroga: Mucha's "Dance" (Default)
I need a Twilight icon.

On Friday night, as no doubt you all know, Stephenie Meyer's latest/last book in the Twilight saga, Breaking Dawn, was released at midnight parties around the country. [livejournal.com profile] tkp and I attended the one at the University Bookstore at the UW.

It was significantly less funny when I could see the pre-teens' excitement and their suffering-parents' good natured acceptance.

But here are photos! I took more, but I feel uncomfortable posting those where kids are too recognizable. Which is weird, considering I take photos on the street all the time.
I am Switzerland! )

Link Roundup

  • Jul. 29th, 2008 at 8:44 AM
my_daroga: Mucha's "Dance" (julian)
Some items of potential interest:

*How Did Stan Lee Pour Himself Into Those Jeans on the Hooded Utilitarian's blog. It's about the "feminist" status of Mary Jane, but also about what it means to have one's heroes owned by corporations: "To fall in love with a character in a mainstream title is to be, inevitably, betrayed."

*Uncle Bobby's Wedding on myliblog. A librarian's eminently sensible response to a patron who wished to remove said children's book from the shelves. "Library collections don't imply endorsement; they imply access to the many different ideas of our culture, which is precisely our purpose in public life."

*And a little fun: the Seattle Times reports that Fans of "Twilight" vampire series pump new blood into Forks. Scary. "...you would not believe how many people come in here expecting to see a vampire. Or a werewolf. I am not kidding."

*Scott Walker performing "Rosary". I didn't know this existed. My husband and I are big Scott Walker fans, and Mr. Daroga just found this vid and this explanation:

"true story: for this performance, he was introduced, the audience clapped, they remove everyone from the set, they brought him in, recorded this song, then after he left the studio, they brought the audience back in and they applauded."

Walker is now apparently producing but not appearing in live shows of his music. He's an amazing artist, and somewhere in there is an amazing story that needs to be written about the course his life/music has taken.

My Trip to Forks

  • Jul. 8th, 2008 at 11:56 AM
my_daroga: Mucha's "Dance" (undead)
As you may know, I was recently on a camping trip at the southern part of the Olympic Peninsula in Washington. On the way back, we (myself, Mr. Daroga, [livejournal.com profile] tkp and Mr. Darcy) took the scenic route, ostensibly to bask in the wonders of our glorious natural setting but in actuality to see the illustrious home of one Bella Swan and a family of perfect, sparkly vampires.

I refer, of course, to Forks, former timber town and current very sad place. It has achieved new life and hope through the fairly random placement of Stephenie Meyers' books here, my review of which you can find here.

But you'd be better off checking out [livejournal.com profile] tkp's amazing comic rendition here. It's basically why I love the girl, distilled into stick figures.

Anyway, considering our shared ire (fueling the fact we can't stop reading them), there was no force on Earth that could have kept us out of Forks. Mr. and Mr. went along obligingly once we'd fed them, and on a potty run actually found the high school.

I give you... Forks High School. OMG DRAMA! )
Forks, WA: the main drag )
And the crowning glory, we actually found this across the street from the school. No lie. I love people. )

ETA: I just found out through [livejournal.com profile] ontd_twatlight that [livejournal.com profile] gemma_violet did the above. All hail!

By the way, I'm a few chapters into Eclipse and already Edward's been abusive, deceitful and disabled Bella's car, she's been insufferably condescending about her mother, and several people have described her as a satellite orbiting Edward and she's had no problem with that. He's still the most kind, loving, and generous person she's ever known. It's like the cliched train wreck, with "russet" colored Native Americans. I cannot look away. I AM DAZZLED.

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