Rewriting Twilight or how you just cannot make pudding and souse on Saturday with Tuesday’s chicken steppers.

I was all prepared to hate Twilight, it is unashamedly a teen movie and makes no apologies for it’s hormone laden IV directly into the veins of adolescent teen-aged girls. I didn’t hate the movie, it was a little bit of a guilty pleasure, a righteous girly romp that took me back to my teen years, I giggled at the absurdity and I was convinced that I had never acted so silly even when I was sixteen.  I do however stand firm in the knowledge that no self-respecting Caribbean teen was going to walk into a wet spooky wood having just discovered that her man was in fact a member of the genus Nosferatu but that affirmation has nothing to do with the movie. twilight_bigteaserposter

The problems I have with Twilight aren’t actually with the movie, the movie is beautifully filmed and there is even a baseball scene that just wows the photographer in me, the problem I have with Twilight is the simple fact that the story is so badly written that screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg simply cannot make anything remotely resembling realistic dialogue or a plausible storyline out of the utter dreck she is presented with by Stephanie Meyer. I like Meyer’s concepts and I even like Edward Cullen, the hot tortured vampire teen, but the dialogue is so bad it is actually painful to read,  alright already, we get that his skin is cold if I have to read the words “smooth cool marble-hard skin” or “Perfect statue-like chest” one more time I think I will vomit.

Robert Pattinson as Edward Cullen does his best with what he’s given but since he isn’t given very much it is hard for him to to do more than alternate between a scowl and looking remarkably pretty, Kristen Stewart as Bella Swan has the worst gig, trying to make such an utterly unbelievable vapid character believable, poor thing, she fails miserably but I don’t hold it against her either, it isn’t her fault.

Meyer’s work reads like the first draft in an English class, a class which she might fail if she doesn’t do some quick editing and a few rewrites. Her characters are shallow and lifeless and not in a way that relates to the story, the dialogue is implausible, the relationship Bella has with her parents unbelievable and her adoration of Edward false and  vaguely psychotic. An unfortunate situation given that the potential for me to get hooked on the story was teetering near Harry Potter on my “love it” scale but I have to agree with Stephen King and say the difference between Rowling and Meyer is simply that Rowling actually knows how to write.

So Meyer, good concepts, great potential but really bad books and the movie was just meh simply because you can’t make pudding and souse on Saturday from Tuesday’s chicken steppers.


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February 2009


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