Movie Review: The Twilight Saga: Eclipse

The third instalment of the super-successful vampire film franchise

Movie Review: The Twilight Saga: Eclipse

7 / 10 It’s mostly good news: after the ponderous, labored ...New Moon, The Twilight Saga returns with an enjoyable third movie.

Compared to the relentless inertia of the last outing, the Z-movie CGI, the questionable, deeply conservative moral message, and a Michael Sheen performance that seemingly saw him channel - fuck, I don’t know what he was doing to be honest with you - Eclipse is a work of wonder.

And it is enjoyable. Much like the polarizing first movie was, which I hope in time will come to be reassessed as a fine supernatural high-school drama - albeit akin to a below-par episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer on Virgin On Demand, viewed through the fug of flu when you’re off work sick one day (rent Lost Boys for your vampire kicks first though).

It’s got spirit and it’s got laughs. Bella (Kirsten Stewart) doesn’t spend scene after scene moping and sucking her bottom lip anymore. The numerous
occasions where Jacob (Taylor Lautner) gets his pectorals out are spiced with humor (there’s a great exchange with vampire Jacob whether he exclaims he is, just by being a werewolf and not the living dead, “hotter than you are”).

And by opening and ending with action sequences – and ramming a bunch of them home in the middle - new director David Slade has breathed some thrills back into the franchise. It’s got some edge too (unsurprising given Slade’s debut feature was 2005’s highly controversial Hard Candy). Say what you like about the much-decried CGI wolves, but I think they look badass.

After watching the faithful recreation of the source material in the last movie, I think even the uber fans – the Twi-hards – the people who sit crying on internet forums and cutting themselves because a line in the film is paraphrased from how it appears in the book – will bow down to their
R-Patz calendars for Slade’s creative license. I sorta wish he’d gone a bit further mind, and written into the script that dithery Bella couldn’t decide
between the vampire or the werewolf and so decided to fuck a zombie instead.

But here’s the bad news.

Like all the films thus far, it’s way too long. There’s some terrible wigs placed upon the heads of the Cullen clan. Distractingly bad wigs in
fact. And, if you’re not a Twilight fan (or like me, just someone who’ll watch anything with vampires/Kirsten Stewart in it) Eclipse isn’t going to be movie that will lure you into the fold.

You will enjoy it though, I’m moderately certain of that.

James McMahon

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