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Breaking Dawn broke mine …

Or at least my pre-dawn. 😦

This is a rant, and this is NOT a spoiler-free zone. You’ve been warned.

I’m just going to admit it. I am a 34-year-old well-educated mom who, yes, bought tickets to the midnight screening of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1, and went out into the darkness with one of my mom BFFs, all excited to see this latest installment. No, we didn’t dress up in our old bridesmaid dresses, or even our white makeup and black cloaks (even if we’d wanted to… everything in either of our houses that resembles any of that stuff has long been confiscated — and ruined — by little girls).

And … I was crushingly dissapointed. Really, I need a coffee IV today for that? About halfway through the wedding, I started wondering if the whole thing was a practical joke aimed at Twilight fans, like  maybe the director and the actors were literally making fun of the people sitting there in the audience.

Not that those of us sitting in a theater at midnight to watch a teenager marry a sparkly vampire don’t deserve a little ribbing… I just thought it would come from other sources than the film itself.
While there are some decent moments … the actual wedding ceremony itself is quite beautiful, most of the movie leaves much to be desired.

Gone is the subtle humor of the first three movies. The only few glimpses of that we see in this movie are from Billy Burke’s portrayal of Charlie. (I, for one TwiMom, am Team Charlie all the way). His speech at the wedding is the one truly sweet, purposefully humorous moment of the entire movie. (Whichever editors left the rest of the wedding speeches in should be forced to sit and watch it on repeat for days).

There are two other moments in the movie worth watching. The first is when Edward watches Bella come out of the bathroom in a revealing negligee and he falls over laughing, and the second is when he “hears” the baby inside her for the first time. The rest of the movie made me want to pull my hair out.

I get that the source material may have been a bit challenging to work with. Breaking Dawn is far and away my least favorite of the Twilight books. There were plenty of moments in it, though, that could have been fun and fanciful to watch on the big screen. And director Bill Condon ruined nearly every single one of them.

The best parts of the books and the other movies, in my opinion, are the tender little moments that happen between Edward and Bella. I’ll tell you now that the engagement scene in Eclipse surpasses the honeymoon scene by leaps and bounds in terms of sweetness, emotion, and even passion. Heck, the scene in Eclipse where she cuts her finger and he kisses it has more tenderness and genuine connection than any scene in Breaking Dawn, with the possible exception of the scene where he’s kissing her swollen belly — and the audience is overly shorted on that one.

The thing is, I didn’t go into the movie expecting Oscar-worthy material. I didn’t intend to leave thinking “wow, my life was changed by that two hours.” I had realistic expectations, I thought. I was more than willing to suspend my disbelief, and just immerse myself in the rich world of fantasy love. And I just … couldn’t.

I thought that Kristen, Rob, and Taylor did as nice a job as they could possibly have, given a lackluster script and a director who clearly has no love for the story. Billy Burke, for his part, stole the show in the scenes where he appeared. Everyone else… well, it might have been more entertaining (and no less like a self-parody) had all of the actors been replaced by muppets. Or CGI wolves whose internal conversations we can hear.

Eclipse left me craving more time with Jasper, Alice, and Emmett, but all three characters are nearly nonexistent in this installment. And don’t even get me started on Renee, who completely ruined every scene she was in.
I am one disappointed – and tired – mommy today.

Oh… and if you were planning on breaking out the cloaks and makeup in your support of the Volturi — so prominently featured in all of the promo clips and trailers (every single one of the trailers is far superior to the movie) — you, too, will be sadly disappointed. You’ll need to stay in your seat through most of the glaringly obnoxious flashing red and white credits to even see the Italian vampires.