Eclipse

First of all, let’s get one thing straight. The Twilight Saga: Eclipse.

No.

The god-damned movie is called Eclipse. Your movie isn't a “saga” just because it makes tons of money. Now, onto the review.

Everyone is back for what promises to be an Epic Final Showdown with the Cullen family and their uneasy allies, the Quileute werewolves, on one side; and the recurring Evil Redhead, her dupe (Xavier Samuel, who looks like a young Willem Dafoe), and a small army of newborn vampires on the other. “Newborn” as-in freshly turned, not vampiric infants. That’s a whole other brand of movie.

The showdown angle is actually the decent movie hidden deep in the recesses of an all new chapter of this overwrought teenage love story, and while I have praised the previous films for being focused, this one is-by comparison-quite overstuffed. Bella (Kristen Stuart) is still vapid and useless, unable to decide which boy’s emotions she’d rather toy with. I know there’s some subtext here, but seriously, girl, pick one! She’s not sure yet if she loves Jacob (Taylor Lautner), while he’s more or less insisting she loves him but doesn't know it yet. Edward (Robert Pattison) on the other hand, is acting fittingly like a 100-year-old man. The whole thing builds to its dramatic climax when Bella finds herself succumbing to hypothermia while hiding out from the rogue vampires, and Jacob has to keep Bella warm with his puppy-man body heat.

Eventually Ed and Jake have a little chat.

JACOB: I lurv Bella, even if she is a dumb girl ::ab flex::

EDWARD: I lurv Bella, even if she is a puny hoo-man. ::sparkles::

JACOB: You’re a dick.

EDWARD: No, you’re a dick.

JACOB: ::glowers::

EDWARD: ::glowers::

What’s really irritating about Jacob is that he sounds like he’s 16 years old, but his ripped as all hell, it’s really weird to see.

On top of this nonsense, Eclipse is the edgy flashback chapter of the Twilight movies, revealing the dark and angst ridden origins of two the Cullen Family “children.” One was a confederate major in the Civil War, and the other was some sort of gangster’s moll. There’s also a flashback to the reason why the local werewolf tribe hates vampires, featuring Peter Murphy. Yes, “Cuts-You-Up” Peter Murphy. All of these little vignettes actually add some much needed tension and horror to the story.

Then they remove all that tension by making the act of killing vampires look like breaking statues. During the long-awaited Epic Final Showdown, a whole lot of vampires die, and if it were any other movie, this would have been a scene full of well-earned gore and violence. The choice to not have more than an ounce of blood ruins the tension they built between scenes from the romantic comedy “Everybody Loves Bella.” It even feels like they edited the fights for TV. Honestly, I thought for a second that I needed to rent it on DVD, as this cut sucked. I then realized to my dismay that I was in a god-damned movie theater.

One thing they’re starting to get right when they make these movies is that it’s a comedy gold mine. There is a hysterical scene where Bella’s dad (Billy Burke) tries to give her “The Talk,” and insist she use condoms, because he’s just that clueless. Lesson learned: Always, always, always ask your daughter if she is dating some sort of supernatural humanoids. That’s just good parenting.