Monthly Archives: November 2011

Spend Your Money/Save Your Money Movie Review: The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1

Because I am a loyal customer of AMC theaters and a card-carrying STUBS member, I was able to see the new Twilight movie Breaking Dawn four hours earlier than the general public. Awesome because as we were leaving the theater tonight at 10:30 and we saw all those people waiting in line for the midnight show, I felt, well, relieved. Thank goodness that wasn’t me!

Before we start, let me clarify one thing. I have read all four of the Twilight books. I think the books are loads better than the movies…I’ve always felt the movies were WAY too dramatic and always super cheesy. That being said, I go into these movies with an understanding of what is to come…usually this allows me to overlook some of the cheese drama. Usually.

Question time!

“What is the movie about?” – Bella and Edward FINALLY get married (you know, after a year of being together, its totally normal for an 18-year-old to get married). They head to their honeymoon, engage in honeymoon-type activities that involve broken headboards and destroyed pillows and boom, Bella finds herself pregnant! But wait, is this possible? What kind of spawn is growing in there? Edward wants to get rid of it, for fear that it will kill Bella, Bella wants to keep it and the lines are drawn at the Cullen household. Jacob (without a shirt within the first 30 seconds of the movie!) is conflicted, but ends up leaving his pack so that he can protect Bella from the other werewolves, who are weary of this impending “child”. Will Bella survive the child birth? What will the baby look like? Is Edward going to FINALLY turn Bella in to a vampire?

“Is this movie a sequel?” – The movie is number four in a five part series. The fourth book in the Twilight series, Breaking Dawn, has been split in to two movies to maximize the cheese story.

“I haven’t seen the first three movies. Will I be lost?” – Absolutely. There is WAY too much stuff going on for anyone to jump on the ride at this point. Stay home, rent the first three, then go see this. It’ll keep you from asking a lot of questions of the people around you.

“Does it stay true to the book?” – There are a lot of changes the director made, but the main plot points are there. There’s a lot more drama and tension between the vampires and the werewolves in the movie than are in the book, which I found annoying. Other than that, it followed the book an acceptable amount.

“How are the special effects?” – Disappointing actually. The werewolves are all CG and look fake. There’s a lot of money invested in showing the inside of a body (heart, veins, etc) and I felt like I was watching an episode of The Magic School Bus for a large amount of that scene.

“Wait, don’t I know that actor from somewhere?” – There’s not really any new players in this movie. Maggie Grace of Lost and Taken fame has a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it part as Irina, part of the “cousins” to the Cullens.

“Anything I should know going in?” – This movie tips the scale when it comes to being over dramatic. The scene in particular that annoyed me was when the werewolves were discussing what to do about Bella and Edward’s child. When werewolves are in their wolf form, they communicate with each other through their thoughts. These thoughts are translated in movie world as loud, echoing, jilted pieces of dialogue that literally made me both groan and burst into laughter. I found it very distracting whenever the werewolves were talking. Actually, I could have done without them entirely.

Overall, the movie was okay. There are a lot of tense glances and growling wolves. Probably the most interesting thing in this movie is seeing Bella when she is pregnant. The baby is starving her and Bella loses so much weight on her face and arms that it’s terrifying. And gross.

Spend or Save? I feel like this is pointless…people are going to see this movie whether I say to or not. Go ahead and spend your money. That way you can participate in the conversations going on around you at school or work. Plus side to seeing this movie? Hunger Games trailer! Though I was the only one cheering for this…what the heck? I guess no one took their shirt off, so it just wasn’t as exciting…Oh well. Don’t forget to stay through the credits…there’s a few extra minutes of movie at the end, and it’s an important set-up for the final movie. Oh, and don’t order a red Icee…just trust me 🙂

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Spend Your Money/Save Your Money Movie Review: Puss in Boots

I had high hopes for this movie. As a cat lover, I was expecting witty, feline-related humor mixed with Zorro-like adventure. I forgot the most important thing to know about animated movies – their main audience is kids! Everywhere! Kids! Talking, crying, running around….yikes. Keep that in mind if this is a movie you wanna see.

As usual, let’s start with the questions you probably wanna know.

“What is this movie about?” – Puss is out on a quest to clear his name. He was betrayed by Humpty Dumpty and has been an outlaw ever since. While attempting to steal magic beans from Jack and Jill (who are married…did anyone else think Jack and Jill were brother and sister?), Puss meets another cat who reunites him with Humpty. Together, the trio embarks on an adventure that involves stealing the magic beans and kidnapping the Golden Goose (you know, the one that lays the Golden Eggs).

“Is this movie a sequel?” – Actually, it’s a prequel. This movie outlines Puss’s life BEFORE Shrek. It could have been called Puss in Boots : Origins. You will even see how Puss got his boots!

“How are the special effects?” – It’s an animated movie! It’s all special effects. Now, I didn’t see it in 3-D (I refuse to support that technology until I absolutely have to) so I can’t comment on the 3-D but the overall feel of the movie was good.

“Wait, don’t I know that actor from somewhere?” -Animated movies can be so frustrating because you only have the voice to go off of. Let me help you out so you don’t go crazy like me.

  • Puss in Boots – Antonio Banderas
  • Kitty Soft Paws – Salma Hayek
  • Humpty Dumpty – Zack Galifianakis (the “one-man wolfpack” from Hangover)

“Anything I should know going in?” – Like I mentioned earlier, this is a kids’ movie. So expect lots and lots of kids. There were times during the movie that I could not hear the dialogue because a little girl behind kept screaming “I wanna go home! I wanna go home!” If you don’t like talking or distractions while you watch movies, I suggest you wait to see this…or watch it at Alamo Drafthouse.

Overall, the movie is okay. It’s meant for kids but has some humor for adults. There is a lot of fighting and heroics, but I checked to see what time it was more than once.

Spend or Save? Unless you’re an 8-year-old, save your money. This movie will be better at home when you can stop it whenever you want and take a break. The movie wasn’t incredibly long (90 minutes) but the kids around us were getting very antsy only halfway through. This is definitely not on par with Shrek, but is worth watching…just don’t spend $20 in tickets like I did. 🙂