Okay, confession time. I am one of the only people I know that will watch the Twilight films every single time they come on TV. I know they are awful, I know the acting is sub par, I know the writing is atrocious – I just can’t seem to help myself. When people ask why I continue to watch these films I like to compare it to seeing a horrific train wreck, I just can’t seem to not stare. But just because I, for inexplicable reasons, seem to enjoy these films doesn’t mean that I overlook its many flaws. So, with a Twilight marathon about to begin on TV (for the thousandth time), I decided to compile a list of everything I think is wrong with Twilight. Now, I will only discuss the first film in this post but I reserve the right to go on a tirade later on to discuss the rest.
To be fair to the cast, they really didn’t have much to work with in terms of material. I’m sorry, but the Twilight novels read as though a middle schooler wrote them (Tina Belcher writes better paranormal exotic fiction). The lack of depth and personality is demonstrated right from the get-go. Bella Swan moves to Forks, Washington from Phoenix, Arizona to live with her father and give her newly wed mother some space to enjoy quality time with her husband. On Bella’s first day at her new school, she goes beyond being shy. Bella is painfully awkward. Her comedic timing and snarky comments are supposed to demonstrate her personality but they just make her seem a bit stuck up. Then she meets Edward Cullen for the first time in her biology class – the face he makes when he ‘smells’ her is absolutely hilarious. Someone taking a dumpster juice shower would look less repulsed. For reasons Bella doesn’t understand, Edward seems to hate her immediately upon seeing her and doesn’t show up to school the next day. At this point, I just naturally assumed Bella was the most self centered person on the planet. Who would assume that a person stopped showing up to school for weeks just because he thought you smelled bad? The assumption was proven to be right later on but I thought it was insane that she would take an absence of a stranger so personally.
When Edward returns from his few week hiatus and shows up to biology class, Bella thought it would be appropriate to berate Edward for being gone. Berate a complete stranger……about an absence….that has nothing to do with her. In this particular scene, Edward resembles an alien more than a vampire, struggling to act even remotely normal around this average looking, extremely pale girl with a staring problem. Then comes the infamous car accident scene. When school ended for the day, Bella was walking out to her vehicle when a fellow student hit an ice slick and started careening towards Bella. Edward, appearing out of nowhere, pushes the car away before it could crush Bella. Commence awkward staring between the two of them and then Edward just casually hops over one of the cars, effectively disappearing. At the hospital, Bella has the only true moment of clarity and reacts in a way most people would in that situation, she begins to pester Edward about how he was able to stop a moving car. He plays dumb, blaming her head injury, saying it caused her to hallucinate.
The remainder of the film just becomes one big stalker fest. Bella manipulates the people around her to try to find out more information about Edward. While Edward just straight up follows Bella around without her knowledge. I know its been stated before but these movies truly showcase the most unhealthy relationship of all time. Joker and Harley Quinn are a more desirable couple (and that is saying a lot) because at least they are up front in their abuse.
I could go on and on about the shortcomings and strangeness of this film, but I will mention the 2 redeeming factors in my opinion. The first being the soundtrack. I mean anything involving Paramore is a win in my book, but the soundtrack is genuinely enjoyable. And the second redeeming factor is Bella’s father Charlie, played by Billy Burke. He was the only character that made any damn sense. He had realistic reactions for an unrealistic situation. He managed to shine in every scene he was in, despite the circumstances.
At the end of the day, even if you don’t like Twilight, you have to feel a begrudging respect for what this franchise was able to create.
(If you haven’t before, I highly recommend checking out the soundtrack. It can be found here:Twilight Soundtrack )