Whether you like it or not, Twilight is here to stay. With four books in the series and only two top grossing movies completed, fans of Twilight have plenty to keep them occupied until the third, Eclipse, hits theaters this June. New Moon was released in theaters at midnight on November 20, 2009 and fangirls and their fanmothers lined up to see the latest movie in the saga. How would the new director, Chris Weitz, handle the material? How will the Volturi look? Will Bella and Jacob have as much chemistry onscreen as they do in the book? And of course, they also go to oogle Jacob’s insane washboard abs and Edward’s ageless “beauty” (not my words, that’s how he’s described in the book).
To pick up where we left off in Twilight, Bella Swan and Edward Cullen are unconditionally and irrevocably in love. This bothers both star-crossed lovers. Bella is bothered because Edward won’t turn her into a vampire, and her approaching birthday is just another reminder of that. Edward doesn’t want to turn her into a vampire because he wants her to be able to live her life and is concerned for her family. Being a typical teenage girl, Bella doesn’t care about her mother or father, just Edward. Edward sees the longing in Bella to become like him, so he leaves her in the hopes that she will forget about him. In fact, that’s the worst thing he could have done. She falls into a deep depression and only comes out of it at certain times that she is around her childhood friend Jacob Black.
This film belongs to Bella and Jacob as we get to see the relationship blossom between the two. It’s very obvious that Jacob feels more for Bella than just friendship, but Bella can only think of Edward and is at the same time thankful for having Jacob to take her mind off of him. During Edward’s time away, Bella learns a secret about Jacob; learns why he has become so massively huge in his growing up. His family, and his whole Indian tribe, are werewolves. With all of these distractions, Bella still yearns for Edward and in an act of desperation, jumps off of a nearby cliff into the freezing ocean below.
Edward learns about this, thinks that she has died, and goes to the Volturi to expose himself in public as a vampire knowing that they will kill him. He cannot live without her. Bella teams up with Alice and they rush to Italy to stop Edward, and have a run in with the Volturi themselves, narrowly escaping death.
Chris Weitz’s movie has everything that a New Moon fan would be looking for in a big screen adaptation. The book has several intense scenes that are perfectly done in this film. The scene where Bella is riding the motorcycle through the woods, and she sees Edward in glimpses as she races past. This was perfectly done. The scene where Bella jumps off the cliff and sees Edward in the water, this was perfectly done. The werewolves, although skeptics say they aren’t really werewolves, were perfectly done and are exactly as described in the book. The Volturi, when actually seen onscreen, are even more threatening and terrifying than they are in the book.
Even though some of the dialogue may be corny and some of the acting may seem rigid, this is actually very close to the book. Stephanie Meyer is no Shakespeare, but her Romeo and Juliet are still intriguing. This saga will never appeal to everyone, especially vampire or werewolf purists. The only way to fully enjoy the story, is if you can put aside all logic and every other sort of thing that has been associated with vampires or werewolf lore and accept these characters as they are. At its heart, it is a love story. And one that has appealed to millions of girls and women across the world. With countless midnight DVD release parties across the country, New Moon is probably breaking DVD sales numbers as you read this. Naysayers just stand by: Twilight isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
Presented in a 2.40:1 aspect ratio, this film looks and sounds just as good as it did in theaters.
Filmmaker Commentary track
The Journey Continues – A 6 Part Documentary On the Making of the Twilight Saga – New Moon – An extensive making of and behind the scenes that includes footage of the New Moon screenings, the fan base (Twihards), director and cast interviews, filming, costumes, sets. The director also talks about taking over for Twilight director Catherine Hardwicke. Then they go behind the scenes of shooting the entire movie. Perfect for Twihards! (1:05:28)
Music Videos – “Meet Me On the Equinox” Death Cab For Cutie, “Satellite Heart” Anya Martinez, Behind the Scenes rehearsal of “I Belong To You” Muse, “Spotlight” Mutemath
Trailers – Remember Me, Letters to Juliet, Astro Boy
Most Twihards will already be watching this release by now, which is a testament to Twilight’s popularity and appeal. It is difficult to review this film as a critic, as it’s really not that great of a movie. But it is completely faithful to the book, and the books are definitely not the best written books in the world. New Moon makes no apologies that it is for the fans. If you’re not already a fan, stay away. Or the sparkly vampires and wolfy werewolves will come after you.
Summit Entertainment presents New Moon. Directed by: Chris Weitz. Starring: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner. Written by: Melissa Rosenberg. Running time: 130 minutes. Rating: PG-13. Released on DVD: March 20, 2010. Available at Amazon.com.
Jenny is proud to be the First Lady of Inside Pulse Movies. She gives female and mommy perspective, and has two kids who help with rating family movies. (If they don't like 'em, what's the point?) She prefers horror movies to chick flicks, and she can easily hang with the guys as long as there are several frou-frou girlie drinks to be had.