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Friday, March 19, 2010

DVD Review: The Twilight Saga: New Moon

The Twilight Saga: New Moon – An E1 Films’ Release


DVD Release Date: March 20th, 2010

Rated PG for violence and frightening scenes

Running time: 130 minutes

Chris Weitz (dir.)

Melissa Rosenberg (screenplay)

Stephenie Meyer (novel)

Marcus Miller (music)

Kristen Stewart as Bella Swan

Taylor Lautner as Jacob Black

Robert Pattinson as Edward Cullen

Anna Kendrick as Jessica

Michael Sheen as Aro

Dakota Fanning as Jane

*Read our thoughts on Twilight here!*

Our reviews below:


New Moon Review By John C.

**1/2 (out of 4)

In The Twilight Saga: New Moon, Bella (played by the usual one-note Kristen Stewart) has a tough choice to make. She has to choose between suicidal vampire Edward (Robert Pattinson - still not sure he's much of an actor, but he gets points for trying), and wolfman Jacob (Taylor Lautner - who is topless in the majority of his scenes). Jacob is the obvious better choice, but I think we all know where Bella's "priorities" lie.

New Moon is arguably a bit better than the first Twilight in terms of better special effects, but it is arguably worse in terms of pacing. Neither one is a bad movie, but they aren't exactly great either. They're both just kind of average, though in my opinion, Twilight was a better film. Either way, I still don't quite get the mass appeal.

The film's major flaw, besides soliciting some unintentional laughs, is that it is about 30 minutes too long. It clocks in at a grandiose 130 minutes. Not much actually happens, and the scenes that should be “tense” just look silly. Ultimately, New Moon is worth renting if you're curious, but worth buying if you're a "Twihard."

The DVD includes audio commentary with Director Chris Weitz and Editor Peter Lambert, a 6-part behind the scenes documentary, and a few music videos. The approximate running time of the bonus features is 78 minutes.


New Moon DVD Review By Erin V.

**1/2 (out of 4)

Well, the wolf's out of the bag - in New Moon, Bella's officially crazy, and not just crazy in love with Edward. Why does she stick with him?

In this sequel to Twilight, Bella Swan is still swooning over, and then becoming more depressed over vampire Edward Cullen. But why is Bella so crazy? Well, she does a lot of crazy things, since the Cullen’s leave Forks at the beginning of the movie because people are starting to notice that they never age... So, the only way to see Edward, (in a vision), is to do reckless things that cause near death experiences. She's too fixated on Edward in my opinion.

This movie though, also shows more of her relationship with her childhood friend in Forks, Jacob Black. Jacob just happens to turn into a wolf when becoming angry or protective. But, even as a wolf, he seems more appealing than Edward.

You see, she could just be with Jacob, and try to get past the whole Edward fiasco. But, I guess she has trouble picking between the two opposite guys she loves. Edward as a vampire has ice-cold skin, while Jacob as a half-wolf is warmer than usual for example. Wow, when picking a boyfriend that must be a hard choice. Why snuggle up with a wolf, when you could be with a vampire... I don't know, safety maybe? The wolf option seems far safer to me.

The real question though, is why on Earth would Bella put herself through all of this craziness? Because it writes a good story. If the character was a reality, she would certainly be in therapy (you'd hope) - not crashing motorcycles or jumping off cliffs to see visions of her undead boyfriend.

If you ask me, I don't see why Edward would appeal more than Jacob. It's not a believable choice. As for comparing this movie to the first movie, Twilight, it's pretty close for me. The action scenes at the end of the first one had slightly more of a danger feel, while at the end of this one were just a lot of laughable whooshing special effects. Although, the technical elements of the special effects were way better in this one - especially with the CGI wolves - the tenseness wasn't really there. I liked some parts of the middle of this one better, since Taylor Lautner's definitely a better actor than Robert Pattinson, but in neither is Kristen Stewart a standout - she seems to always have the same expression on her face.

Both films could have had shorter running lengths. Looking over my review, I think this movie both bored and annoyed me enough to cause a bit of a character analysis rant... Eclipse, the next one in the series, comes out in June. Will the series ever get any better? One could only hope.


New Moon DVD Review By Nicole

**1/2 (out of 4)

Following where Twilight left off, New Moon further develops the characters from Twilight. Now, it is Bella's 18th birthday, and she is becoming aware that while she ages, Edward doesn't. The fact that the Cullens don't age means that they must move often.

After a near disaster at Bella's birthday party that is like the shark scene in Finding Nemo, Edward, now depresses at the prospect of having to leave Bella, goes on a suicidal trip to the Volturi, a secret group of vampires in Italy, who will destroy any vampire who reveals himself to the world.

Meanwhile, back in Forks, Jacob develops feelings for Bella. He also realizes that he, like a few others in his tribe, has the ability to transform into a wolf the size of a Shetland Pony. The pack of young, horse-size wolves, exists to protect humans from man-eating vampires. (As an wildlife artist with a fondness for wolves, I was pleased that the wolves, while ridiculously larger than life, look and move accurately.)

Jacob saves Bella from some of the dangerous hobbies that she engages in (Edward appears to Bella if her life is in danger.) Jacob feels, that as a living creature, Bella would be better with someone big, warm, and fuzzy, as opposed to someone cold and undead. But Bella's heart is with Edward, and she will do anything to get him back.

The special effects in this movie are better than in the first film. The acting is decent enough, and the score by Alexandre Desplat is hauntingly beautiful. At 130 minutes, however, it is a little long. The Twilight Saga is also not without controversy. Some Christian groups have expressed concern about the prospect of losing one's soul to become a vampire, as well as this film's romantic portrayal of reckless behaviour. However, if viewed as a fantasy, fans of the saga will be entertained by this film.


New Moon DVD Review By Maureen

**1/2 (out of 4)

Some people might say that New Moon, the second instalment in Stephanie Meyer's Twilight series, has gone to the dogs. In fact the first half of the movie focuses on Jacob Black (Taylor Lautner) and his deepening friendship with Bella and his emerging protector werewolf side. With Edward gone in his attempt to keep Bella safe, Bella comes to rely on Jacob. Bella in her anguished attempts to have glimpses of Edward engages in reckless activities that keep her in peril and call Edward and Jacob to the rescue.

It is only in the second half of the movie that we see much in the way of vampire activity with most of the activity taking place in Italy with the Volturi clan. Unfortunately the vampire scenes lack the energy and intensity of the first Twilight movie.

The real shining light in New Moon is Taylor Lautner. His role as Jacob is believable and strong. The same can't be said for Kristan Stewart's Bella and Robert Pattinson's Edward. The score by Alexandre Desplat is absolutely beautiful and one of the few highlights in the film.

I really preferred the first half of New Moon and found the first Twilight to be a way more entertaining movie. However true Twilight fans will want to add New Moon to their DVD collection for continuity purposes and for the extras.

Those who are merely curious about New Moon can rent the DVD. Despite New Moon's disappointing efforts compared to Twilight, I am looking forward to the next installment, Eclipse, in theatres this June.


New Moon DVD Review By Tony

**1/2 (out of 4)

Twilight New Moon is the second feature of the saga. It will surely please the fans while providing the rest of us with moderate entertainment value and a few unintentional laughs along the way. Just as Edward the vampire attempts to simplify Bella’s life by leaving town, things become more complicated when Victoria comes back hungry and Jacob and his werewolf clan come to her defense. When Edward thinks Bella has died, he tries to get himself executed in Italy by the vampire enforcers known as Volturi.

Now directed by Chris Weitz with a much bigger budget, New Moon is technically better than the first installment but it still is too long with the same brooding atmosphere and gratuitous slow motion whenever Edward walks or Laurent’s dreads are waving. The corny dialogue within the triangle that shapes up between Bella, Edward and Jacob is at least commensurate with their performances. Despite enough action to keep us mildly interested I didn’t experience the same suspense as in the first film. At least there were a few amusing cameos from Anna Kendrick as Bella’s valspeaking shopping companion, Michael Sheen as the Volturi capo and Dakota Fanning as one of his red- eyed minions, and a decent score by Alexandre Desplat.


Consensus: Though the special effects are technically stronger, in terms of pacing, New Moon is not as good as Twilight. It is simply too long at 130 minutes. Still, it is worth a rental if you're curious, although "Twihards" will want to buy this one. **1/2 (Out of 4)

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