Review: “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse”

The (blood) sucking continues.

Bella and Edward passionately remaining abstinent

Bella and Edward passionately remaining abstinent

Tony Libera

âÄúThe Twilight Saga: EclipseâÄù Directed by: David Slade Starring: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner. Rated: PG-13 Showing at: Area theaters ThereâÄôs not much to say about âÄúEclipseâÄù that hasnâÄôt already been said about its predecessors in âÄúThe Twilight Saga.âÄù ItâÄôs painfully boring, monotonous and full of simple characters that serve as little more than eye candy for preteen girls and their sad mothers. But this installment actually reaches for some thematic complexity, and thatâÄôs commendable âÄî even though it fails miserably. âÄúEclipseâÄù opens with a random and ambiguous act of violence before quickly shifting to Bella (Kristen Stewart) and Edward (Robert Pattinson), sitting in a field, swapping spit and exchanging sweet nothings (with emphasis on the nothings.) Edward pleads with Bella for her hand in marriage like a dog begging for a bone, or like a real teenage boy trying to bury his bone, but Bella continues to shoot him down. She wants to be turned into a vampire, she wants to knock boots and she wants it now, now, now. What a feminist. Yes, what an obsessive, male-dependent, slave-to-her-emotions feminist. What follows from here is mostly passive-aggressive tedium injected with a shot of plot every now and again. It seems that nefarious coppertop Victoria is back, seeking revenge on the Cullen clan and Bella for killing her beau in the first film. But thatâÄôs all secondary to BellaâÄôs hyper-repetitive mulling and her interactions with Edward and Jacob (Taylor Lautner), who wears a black shirt, rides a dirt bike and says things like âÄúassâÄù and âÄúhellâÄù to show that heâÄôs a tough guy. Repetition is really the albatross around this filmâÄôs neck, which is unfortunate because certain scenes of introspection and Jacob-Edwardian conflict would be, dare I say it, rather interesting were they not repeatedly drilled into the skull for over two hours. ThereâÄôs some nuance in BellaâÄôs decision to become a vampire; her choice has ramifications that she cannot fully understand until it is far too late. This tragedy is magnified by the other charactersâÄô attempts at dissuasion and by the dramatic irony that arises when Bella must lie to her father and say goodbye to her mother. But letâÄôs not go crazy here; these scenes arenâÄôt enough to make the film laudable or to redeem the previous atrocities committed by the series. Their poignancy derives from the conventions of vampire fiction, not Stephenie MeyerâÄôs genius. Still, one must give credit where credit is due. The other major problem with âÄúEclipse,âÄù and âÄúThe Twilight SagaâÄù as a whole is its complete and utter lack of subtlety. HemingwayâÄôs Iceberg Theory âÄî which states that a good writer can conceal seven-eighths of a story below the metaphorical water and still make the reader understand the intent âÄî is thrown out the window in favor of MeyerâÄôs version, wherein the iceberg hovers a mile above the water shooting laser beams and blasting an air horn. Granted, this is a series for young adults, but would-be-complex moments, like those in the tent scene, are stripped of all emotional weight because they are so explicit. âÄúEclipseâÄù closes after running about 40 minutes too long, leaving almost everything as it was in the beginning. Bella is still conflicted, though she leans closer to the vampire; Edward is still fighting fang and nail for their marriage; and Jacob is still convinced that Bella loves him. When is something of consequence going to happen in these movies? 1.5/4 Stars