My Film Review of "New Moon"

(Previously posted on my Twilight blog, The Danger Magnet)

I've been debating whether or not to post this pseudo-review of "New Moon" since I saw the film, because some of my readers hadn't yet seen the film. But the awesometastic Betti Gefecht and Mrs. Vanquish were the only ones I knew who hadn't yet seen it, and right this moment they are either still watching or just finished watching The-Movie-of-the-Forever somewhere in Germany. So I'm no longer worried about spoiling anyone.

If for any reason you have NOT seen the film, obviously you don't want to keep reading. Otherwise, I hope you enjoy my ramble rant review of the film.

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I went with fellow Danger Magnet Gracie to see the double-feature of "Twilight" and "New Moon" Thursday night. At first I was all, why do I want to see "Twilight" for the 1,805,211th time and pay good money for it when I can see it for free at home? But the tickets were only $5.00 and at least it gave me something to do before midnight. Oh, and I got to see this again on the big screen:

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This is my favorite part in "Twilight." Not even the waitress's disastrous butt-shaped hair can ruin this scene for me!

There were two added bonuses to watching "Twilight." Firstly, we didn't have to make the line from hell to see "New Moon." Gracie and I arrived at the theater sometime before 8 PM and there was already a HUGE line of people waiting to get in for "New Moon." We were able to walk right into the auditorium for "Twilight" without making a line. The second bonus was the best bonus -- an employee from Cinemark walked in shortly before "Twilight" started to let us know that we could stay in the same auditorium and wait for "New Moon" to start without having to make the line. So that made me very happy indeed.

You guys know how nervous I was about my audience misbehaving during "New Moon." Well, I'm happy to report that my fellow audience members were super well-behaved, both during "Twilight" and "New Moon." So no duct tape was needed. :-)

Sure, there were some shrieks of excitement by the time the opening credits appeared for "New Moon," but that was to be expected. (I may have even shrieked a little myself, but only very quietly.)

As for my thoughts on the movie, they are so scattered right now that I'm going to organize them into "Like" and "Do Not Like" piles for easier reading (and less *headdesk*-ing):

LIKE:
  • I like that the film started the same way the book did, with Bella's creeptastic dream. I would've been upset if that had been missing. Because I'm a crabby book purist that way.
  • I like the scene early on where Movie-Jacob visits Movie-Bella at school on her birthday. I especially like the scene where Movie-Jacob hugs Movie-Bella goodbye and gives Movie-Edward that especially knowing look.
  • I like that they finally decided to ditch Movie-Bella's oogly hairband. I hate-hate-hated it in the first film and was so upset when it made its reappearance in the first third of this film. She looks so much better without it! And yes, I am superficial that way.
  • I like that Movie-Bella seems to have learned to control her manic blinking and lip-biting. I get that she was wearing contacts that were uncomfortable in the first film. I get that her lips were probably chapped on account of the cra-azy Forks weather. But it didn't make it any less annoying.
  • Not only did Movie-Bella look better in this film, but she gave a better performance, too. Some people were bugged that they didn't see her cry after the breakup scene, but to be honest, her listlessness (especially in the OCTOBER...NOVEMBER...DECEMBER scene) was more convincing than crying ever could have been.
  • I like love Movie-Charlie. I love that he says the line "Always am" to Bella's concerned admonition for him to be careful again in this film, in the same-exact-tone-of-voice as the first film. All exasperated yet loving. Movie-Charlie, please adopt me. My dad won't mind, promise.
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  • I like Movie-Jessica. Her zombie monologue was hilar. She is so snarky and mean. I want to be her best frenemy 4 lyf.
  • I like "Face Punch," like a lot. I would pay to see this movie. I mean, just listen to the dialogue: "Put your gun down." "Put your gun down, or I'm going to blow your fricking head off." "Both of you put both of your guns down, or I'm going to blow both of your fricking heads off." Yeah, pretty much comedic gold right thar.
  • I like Movie-Jacob. Who knew the kid can act! Heck, even his abs can act! Seriously, though, a testament to Taylor Lautner's acting ability is the fact that I hated the character Jacob in the book and I loved him in the film. Even though he sometimes would take off his shirt for no reason. (Band-aids were invented for a reason, Jake. Just saying...) He did a great job in his "break-up" scene with Bella. My heart went out to him when he said he's not a good kid. I just wanted to hug him. (And his abs. ::chanting to self: "He's only 17, he's only 17, he's only 17...::)
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  • I like the improvisation regarding Harry Clearwater's death. That scene was just vague enough in the books to allow Rosenberg to have some creative license in the script. And I think the way it was written was awesome. Plus the CGI in that scene is awesome. I love the crow hanging in mid-air as Movie-Victoria whizzes by underneath.
  • Overall, I felt they used the soundtrack in only meh ways, with the exception of the song "Hearing Damage" in the scene mentioned above and the song "Possibility" in the montage immediately following Edward's departure.
  • I love Movie-Victoria's hair in this movie. If I could marry that hair shade, I would. She will be missed in the next film. ::sniff, sniff::
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  • I like Movie-Aro. He is exactly the way I pictured him, if a little younger. He perfectly captures Aro's giddy, crazy, bipolar personality. Where he'll bake you a cake one minute then tear out your heart the next.
  • I like Movie-Jane. Even if she's a little too good at being creepy!
  • I like the musical score only okay. It's not as memorable as Twilight's score, with the exception of the song "Memories of Edward" that plays when Bella is remembering being in the meadow with Edward.
  • I like the CGI effects in this movie. I love that the vampires now make a whoosh sound whenever they move at super-speed. It reminds me of the sound Harry's wand makes in the HP films -- it's got that magical, otherwordly feel. I especially liked the wolves -- the phasing was not cheesy like I feared, but actually pretty impressive and fearsome.
  • I liked the makeup better in this movie. The new vampirey contacts were cool, especially the ones for the Volturi and the Nomads. HOWEVER -- I felt Movie-Edward could've done without so much lipstick.
  • I like that there brief moments of humor interspersed throughout the film. Like Movie-Eric crying during "Romeo and Juliet" in class. Or the whole "You can't trust vampires ... trust me," line that Movie-Edward says. The film would've been a lot heavier without this.
DO NOT LIKE:
  • I do not like that Movie-Edward's sparkles STILL make a sound. It's like a windchime. Or a bunch of overexcited fairies. And I can't help but remember the snarkiest scene in all of "Twilight" every time I hear that sound ... the scene where Movie-Edward sparkles for Movie-Bella for the very first time (Cue: "Like a vampire ... sparkling for the very first time"). I'm sorry, y'all, but I just can't buy Edward when he tells Bella oh-so-dramatically, "THIS-IS-THE-SKIN-OF-A-KILLER-BELLA." Not when he's sparkling and chiming like some fancy chandelier.
  • I do not like Movie-Alice's wardrobe in this movie. At one point she's wearing a painter's smock. Which would make sense if she were painting. But she is not. So no. I do not like.
  • I do not like Movie-Jasper's hair in this movie. AGAIN. But hey, at least it wasn't as bad as this:
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  • I do not like Movie-Laurent's accent in this movie. It just sounds so fake. It weaves in and out of different accents. One second he sounds French, then he sounds American, then he sounds Jamaican. Pay special attention to when he first says the word "visit" -- he goes on to say it in at least three different accents after that.
  • I do not like Movie-Edward's hair in this movie. Where did the James Dean bouffant of wonder go??? ::sob:: You just can't JAAAAAMES DEEEEEEAN without the hair, ya know? ::sniffle::
  • I do not like that Edward parks his car in such a douchey way, taking up not one but TWO parking spaces. And then he has to walk across the parking lot in slow motion. As if he wasn't attracting enough attention by taking up the TWO parking spaces. Sheesh.
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  • I do not like that Movie-Bella doesn't cough up water after Movie-Jacob pulls her from the water. Okay, there was like a trickle of water that streamed down from her mouth. But that wasn't believable enough for someone who almost drowned and probably swallowed a gallon of water.
  • Okay, you are going to think I am strange when I say the following, but I know I'm not the only one who noticed this, so here goes nothing ::deep breath:: what was up with Movie-Edward's left nipple in the Great Sparkle Reveal? The only thing I can think of is that it's makeup not smoothed on properly or something. Because I think we would've noticed before if he had a scar there ... right? Yeah, I know his shirt was ripped in the exact same place, but still... it wasn't explained properly and it just bugged me. Movie-Edward is supposed to be perfect.
  • I do not like that Movie-Jane says the word "Pain" prior to sending Movie-Edward into psychic convulsions. It was silly and stupid. If it's a psychic power she has, why would she need to say it? It's not like the Cruciatus curse, where you have to say the word... Okay, I'm done.
  • I'm still undecided on the whole Bella and Edward running in slow mo when Alice shows Aro her future memory of Bella as a vampire. Honestly, their cheesy clothing didn't bother me as much as the slow mo running.
  • I do not like that the movie felt rushed after the scene where Bella and co. leave the Volturi. I think it needed to be further developed. We should have seen them arrive home with Charlie all freaking out.
  • I do not like that Edward's magnificent monologue is missing from the bedroom scene near the end. This is another scene that needed more development. I get that they decided to extend the scene where Bella and Edward reunite, but I would've preferred the bedroom scene to be longer instead. And where's the line where he says, "Before you, Bella, my life was like a moonless night..." ::sob::
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  • The vote scene also felt rushed, although I liked Movie-Rosalie's performance and Movie-Edward's, too, when he realizes everyone (minus Rosalie) is voting against his wishes.
  • I do not like that Movie-Jacob transforms at the end. He's supposed to convulse and come close to phasing, but no cigar. We already got the point, Mr. Weitz -- you've got mad CGI skills. Now stick to the story.
  • I do not like the dramatic PAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAUSE in the last scene where Edward proposes to Bella. Sorry, but this was overkill. The ending was already cliffhangery enough without this dramatic pause.
  • Overall, I do not like Movie-Edward's acting as much in this film as in the first one. I get the impression that he was just going through the motions. I know a lot of you will disagree with me on this, but consider how he acted in "Twilight." I think he did a much better job in that film. The only scene where I felt he gave real emotion was at the very end of the break-up scene, where he kisses Bella goodbye. The brief flash of passion in his eyes was so raw, you felt it. But the rest of his performance felt like so much sleepwalking.
  • And perhaps the most significant thing I don't like about the film... the fact that I had already seen so much of it. Now, I could go blaming Summit Entertainment and the media in general, but the fact is that the blame belongs only to me. I had the choice whether or not to be a spoiler bunny. I chose to be a spoiler bunny. And I regret that now. To that end, I've decided to cool it on the spoilers leading up to "Eclipse." My other Danger Magnets are welcome to post them, but I myself won't. In fact, you'll be seeing less of me on this blog in the next seven months or so. I will be hosting the occasional book or character discussion, but I've decided to nix the Twi-Spam feature because it tempted me to spoilerify myself too much. So yes. I'm officially now a Born-Again Twi-Virgin. Bring on the chastity belt.
As you can see from my bullet points above, I like a lot about the film, but I also don't like a lot about the film. However, I am left with a positive impression every time I finish watching it. To date, I've now seen the film three times -- twice in the theater and once at home (if you know what I mean). I had the same issues every time I saw the film. Could it have been better? Yes. But it could've also been much, much worse, and it is better than "Twilight" overall.

(Yes, I finally saw the trailer to "Remember Me" -- the second time I saw it in the theater. But honestly? It didn't interest me that much. ::gasp:: "Lovely Bones" interested me more.)

If you want to read two very funny, and in my opinion, truthful reviews of "New Moon," check out the Made of Fail podcast team's reviews here.

And of course, you're welcome to tell me what you thought of the film in the comments below! What did you like and dislike about it? I'd love to hear your thoughts. :)


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9 comment(s):

Ann Marie said...

THANK YOU!
I thought I was the only one in the world that found LOTS of flaws.. now when I do my review.. I know you won't murder me.. :)

All I have heard is how great looking Jacob is.. and how awesome Chris is. Really? I agree with many of your points and disagree with some also.. but this is my FAVORITE review I have read so far!

Bravo for telling the truth! :)

Alicia Wimpey said...

I laughed a lot while reading some of the things you posted, especially about edwards nipple. It looks as if his nipple began to slowly decay.....it was weird. i was likt WTF.

robynxx said...

i'm a sucker for spoilers, so even though I only get New Moon on december 3rd, I read your review anyway, hahah. Can't wait to see the film! :D

as for Lovely Bones, I must must must watch that too!

marie said...

I agree with you on many of your likes and dislikes. Ugh, especially Robward's lipstick! Didn't we have enough of his weird colored lips in Twilight? Sheesh!

I'm so glad you've decided to be spoiler free like the rest of us! =)

Malia said...

i agree on many of your points, especially the dislike.
the cheesy running?
laurent's accent? awful awful.

Kstews acting was wonderful this time around and yet, Rob was boring. I wish he would take SMeyers advice and lighten up a little. That's why we like Edward, he is strong and has a good sense of humor. And he smiles! Not even in the beginning when things are fine, his smiling was weak.

however, i am going to just take it as it is. with the first movie, we were all so worked up to see if it was right. i'm not going to do that anymore and just enjoy it as it is, as a movie and not a book.

especially with breaking dawn and eclipse, i know they are going to change a lot. but such is moving making i suppose. i very much enjoy them as movies.

Annie said...

@Malia: You're absolutely right. As hard as it is, I need to distance myself from the books or I won't enjoy the movies as much. I'm already worried enough about "Eclipse" since it's being dirercted by someone who mostly does horror flicks...

Dean Sanderson said...

It was pretty obvious that they had a much bigger budget for New Moon than the original Twilight, which made a big difference in a lot of the action / special effects scenes

Malia said...

Annie, I feel you on that one.

For some reason I imagine cold coloring, the whole look of the picture.
I know Chris has described this one was glossy and I'm curious how a horror director can bring vibrancy to the story.

Adri said...

OMG! You seriously had me rolling from laughing so hard at this post!

I agree with everything except one thing... the makeup. I actually thought the vampire makeup was HORRIBLE in this film. I mean, it was so white and so thickly spread that you could see their pores, as they were accentuated by all that gunk! I hated it. I thought Edward looked way to white... even for a vampire.

Just my opinion but omg, this post is amazing! I really needed a laugh and all your dislikes were the same as mine so it had me thinking back and laughing! ha ha!

Ok, I'll stop now. =D