Ok, let me start by saying that Eclipse is my favorite book in the series. So if anything, I think I was more inclined to be picky about this one. I’ve now seen the movie twice: once in IMAX about three weeks ago in LA with a bunch of movie critics and last night in NYC at midnight with fans. Stop reading here if you don’t want spoilers
Overall I think the movie had a nice balance of action and romance. It did a particularly good job of bring a book that is loaded with Bella internal monologue the screen. I also really like the expanded universe point of view segments such as the transformation of Riley, the Volturi watching, and especially the Cullens in fighting mode.
I’ve had various people ask, “Should I see it in IMAX?” Let me start by saying, I’m not really an IMAX person. It makes me dizzy. This was the first movie I saw at an IMAX in almost a decade. The first 5 minutes was just really hard to watch in IMAX, so fast too intense, but keep in mind I don’t do well in IMAX and maybe that’s exactly what another person would like. I also feel some of the intimacy is lost in IMAX.
So let’s break this down into the pro’s & the cons:
None of these are of they “it ruined the movie for me” quality. It was more like “damn, 5 more seconds, a hat, or a car would have solved that.”
- The pace was just a little too fast for me. I get the action is needed but it was too quick at times.
- The one part of the book I missed was Bella seeing the possibilities of life with Jacob flash before her mind. We don’t get that she really considered the alternative so much as feel like it’s one impulsive kiss to save a friend from death. You don’t get the full weighing of choice.
- The wolf telepathy isn’t adequately explained. You understand that they communicate telepathically, but not that there are no secrets. The non-book person isn’t going to grasp that they cannot hold back a single thought.
- Our mod Shelley (Something Blue) said it best. “Bryce isn’t feral enough” She doesn’t look like a nomad, you don’t get that sense of wildness. Victoria was dressing in cast offs with leaves in her somewhat bushy hair now looks like she’s now shopping in Armani exchange and coiffing with high end hair product. Even in the battle with Edward there is barely a hair out of place. It doesn’t visually work which impeded the acting. Bryce does a good job manipulating Xavier’s character, but when the embrace leads to that over the shoulder shot you needed much more of that “I’m only putting up with this cretin till I have my revenge.” look. The scream is good in the battle with Edward but you don’t get the consistent crazed murderess who will stop at nothing(we get that from Xavier, but not from Bryce). I wanted to really see her lose it. Not sure if that was a directorial, actress or both choice, but for me it fell short. Didn’t ruin in, but it didn’t live to potential.
- The Volvo continues for me to be utterly laughable. They blew the chance at doing the iconic car. At the very least, since the exact model Stephenie cites is no longer in production, a bright silver sedan should have been used. To repeat myself from New Moon. “The car is forgettable. It blends into the background, and that’s exactly what you DON’T WANT when you are talking iconic car.” It’s like hooking James Bond up with a Caddy instead of an Astin Martin, or giving KnightRider an Impala. It doesn’t take me out of the story, but it doesn’t enhance it. I don’t notice it and I doubt that’s what Volvo was gunning for. Granted Bella’s truck is slightly off, but it has the flavor of what was intended, there is NONE of that flavor when you swap from a sports car to a SUV.
- Kristen’s wig in the battle training scene is horrible. The pinned back look screams flattened wig. She would have been better in a hat or hood.
- You miss the wounded feeling that you have at the end of Eclipse, that each party a la Wuthering Heights has been rotten to each other on more once and that their actions have come at a cost.
- I couldn’t put my finger on it until I saw today’s MTV discussion with Phil Tippett, but I really liked the looked of the New Moon wolves better. They were richer, deeper coats and colors. I also really liked the human eye aspect. These wolves looked like they went on a diet. they didn’t look like they were going to pound the earth. If the human forms are built, shouldn’t the wolf forms be built too?