Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Twilight: a movie review, by Media Study South Africa

 (Media Study South Africa ; C.f. Decent Films (Catholic; independent; American; Reviews both "good" and "bad" films) __/__/__; USCCB Film Review __/__/__ ; CathNews (Australian; Catholic; independent: Quotes review by: - Jim Murphy, Australian Catholic Office for Film and Broadcasting) 12 / Dec / 2008)

Article by Marc Aupiais

It seems darkened, in the rainy region, in that rainy town, in Washington. Bella Swan (played by Kristen Stewart), an oddly nervous looking girl, moves there, to live with her father. After the divorce, the mother met someone, and the mother wanted to move around with them: so Bella, Bella decides that it is better to be with her father: so as to let her mother be "happy". She isn't happy herself though. The sun is hardly out, and there have been deaths "Animal attacks", of sorts.

Her new chemistry partner, who she likes, wanted to sit anywhere but with her. He covers his mouth, when he sees her, and looks at her, as though looking at a tasty morsel. He doesn't turn up for a few days: then he returns periodically, and things seem just a bit mysterious: until something happens, and soon Bella begins to suspect...

Like our introduction, well, we had to say something: this film is both offensive, and possibly interesting, probably not suitable to impressionable teenage girls.

Twilight is a Vampire thriller/horror/romance, where a young, and nervous looking teenage girl: falls in love with a dangerous, but somewhat self controlled Vampire: who finds the thought of her blood near irresistible, and therefore, at first seeks to avoid this dessert (food, not area) like tasty morsel, whose smell, almost makes killing her impossible to resist, whose mind he cannot read.

Obviously, this is a romance: between an "immortal" predator: designed to kill human beings, and a human being, both in "love" with each other, if it were possible at that age. It is sort of a "doomed romance". It is the romance between: in their description: a "Lion and a Lamb" (paraphrase): in which the male lead struggles with the incumbent urge, to eat the female lead, whom he also apparently "loves".

It has got elements of a horror, and has got violence, and a sort of "supernatural". It has a sort of chastity, whereby the male lead only can slightly kiss the female lead, as he doesn't want to devour her (with his teeth). It turns into a bit of a scary scene: when other vampires, sniff her "Irresistible" smell. The Vampire, also sounds a bit like George Bush at some points, who isn't all bad, even though he abuses lots of human rights, but seemed just as illogical; when he started taking away America's privacy: in his insistence, that his prying: is for Bella's protection.

Ultimately, as proven by the Facebook group: this type of film is dangerous to teenage girls: and gives women abusers more power, and stinks quite cruelly, of a world, where feminism, has not achieved its goals, but where women seem as exploited as ever. The movie, is well played, and has good screenplay, but the ideas behind it, can cloy people.

Like the titanic, it has danger in its cultural effect, and perhaps reflects a loss of chivalry amongst men. Ultimately, it stinks of a desire for subjection, is a game: where the vampire holds all the power, and the girl: trusts unconditionally ("In Theory"), that he won't use her trust against her. It truly is the deathly fascination, which a human prey item, can have with their potential psychopathic killer. It is the making of romance, out of the abusive, unequal relationship.

At least in the Phantom of the Opera, where a similar intoxication occurs: the bad guy who does such: does not get the girl in the end.




Issues:
- Written by a Mormon, which has different elements: this may be why they wait until marriage (later in the series), to do something about reproduction. Definite Mormon touches to the story line.
- Considered to be cliché by some, with too much sniffing, and head movements, apparently, by the female lead.
- The mother's pursuit of happiness, having left her father: is almost, if not portrayed positively.
- Reminds some of Dracula, and the Titanic.
- In the book series, as is in the movie, the Vampire lead, seems abusive, the relationship only seems to hurt, or harm Bella, and the Vampire does not respect her privacy, and hates it when any warn her away from his dangerous hands. He could be any abuser, and the book series treats abuse of Bella lightly, where she does not seem to mind the effects of a certain act, the pain inflicted on her, as she is licking her wounds.
- Vampires could represent aristocracy, or a high school popular kids group, and a desire to join this.
- Like the poster/cover: the screenplay is suggestive, and seems to reflect adult insinuations: for a teenage girl, and 90 year old "17 year old" Vampire (remind anyone of internet dating?)! This means that fascination, and lusts for the physical form, is romanticized.
- Use of the word "God", by a non-lead character: to denote surprise that the lead female; had landed the lead male character. (Blasphemy?)
- In a phone conversation with the divorced mother: the female lead: notes that she likes a guy, the mother tells her to use "protection" (Artificial contraception, is considered intrinsically evil: by the catholic Church; also: seems to indicate consent of the parent with fornication: another negative; which could encourage teenage pregnancy! The Mother does not seem concerned about how he treats her, while the father simply gets her what looks like pepper spray, and there is insinuation about the father and a gun. The relationship, of course, seems to be kept from the parents, who are not told of the dangers, but lied to.)
- Violence, including the ripping apart piece by piece of a Vampire: although this is not too explicidly shown: it is known what is happening.
- Scene where female lead seems to be in underwear, lying on a bed, maybe with a shirt, and she embraces the male lead,: they then kiss, and he jumps back: in fear of eating her. (Ethics).
- Insinuation, whereby the "Adopted" children of the male lead's adopted "Father": hook up with each other.
- The Vampires don't seem to mind the other Vampires hunting people (Ethics).
- The Female lead does not mind if the male lead has killed people (Ethics).
- The female lead is prepared to risk her life, at the whims of the male lead, and his family (lack of Prudence). This could encourage teenage pregnancy, and crime, as well as dispose women to abuse.
- Male lead watches female lead sleep: seems like a stalker: she DOES NOT mind this, and is interested.
- Female lead lies to her father, and hurts him badly emotionally.
- Female lead lies to her mother about events.
- American Native Americans: try to suggest that Bella leave the Vampire alone: they are considered by the Vampire as the "wolves", who attack when he leaves her alone for five minutes.
- Possibly dispose women to abusive partners.
- Elements, much like horror in Anne Rice: where people are attracted to dangerous, even evil people, or concepts: and give into their power.
- Female lead is blasé about nearly dying in a car crash, parent is portrayed as overprotective, that they care so much.
- "Bad" Vampires, act towards people, as though prey: and "play" with their "food".
- The entire movie, could likely be predicted from adverts, in fact, in this regard, it disappoints: the bad guys simply catch a sniff of the female lead, and the showdown, is almost too familiar of film's abusive bully, and strong jock boyfriend showdown.
- Could be a comic book: which isn't a good thing!
- Plays on fascination with revolting subjects and danger!
- Bit like a symbolic main character, and film: stylization may be overdone.
- Follows predictable Hollywood patterns.
- Main female character, simply searches the internet, and gets onto a sort of cult-like website.
- Plot is thin, and obvious.


Possibly good elements:

- A sort of chastity emerges.
- The Characters "struggle" to be "ethical", but a negative is that: there doesn't seem much concern if they aren't.
- Killing, except in the case of animals: is done reluctantly by the "Good" "vampires".
- The fight not to eat his girlfriend, portrays the Vampire, almost, like a man fighting lust, which can be good.
Negative: the girl doesn't mind, and they both risk her life.
- The characters "put themselves out" for one another: doing what they "think" best for the others.
- The Vampires value "Family", but then again, apparently: only seemingly protect the female lead for this (negative on ethics scale).
- Brilliant screenplay: at least, in the average eyes. A critic, has considered it pathetic, but it is entertaining.
- A sort of cold "romance" is "victorious", over urges of the body, though in later books, a sort of abusive relationship emerges, and this "romance", is behind Bella's parents' backs: parents, who don't seem overly concerned.
- There is a sort of "unconditional" love emphasized: between the main characters, negative of this, is that Bella falls right into the Vampire's arms: i.e. Trusts a dangerous creature absolutely, and what teenage girl knows what "love" is?
- Violence against women, or certain thoughts: seem portrayed negatively, though for a while: the vampire is in danger of finishing off that one extra beer (killing his girlfriend).
- Well woven, if not predictable plot, and interesting screenplay.
- Vampires, the "good" that is: are portrayed, like recovering addicts: one almost can laugh: as a female vampire treats such like smoking, even though it is terrible/ the other side, is that killing is treated lightly, and consequences are the main concern, as though killing someone, is like taking a smoke.
- Suspense is contained.
- The film website, says that Bella does not care about fitting in with the popular girls, but then she seems absolutely fascinated with the "popularity" of the vampires (which counter this somewhat, if not completely).


The film, is the work of director: "Catherine Hardwicke"; based on the novel: Twilight, by Mormon: "Stephenie Meyer". The vampire, male lead: is: Edward Cullen (Played by Robert Pattinson); the Female, "Human" Lead is: Bella Swan (played by Kristen Stewart), who wore contacts in the film.

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