Rapetastic

by Wardog

Wardog rambles about Twilight.
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Look, there's no way of saying this gently, but Twilight (the movie) is awful. It's just awful. It's so badly paced, it's actually boring a lot of the time. And when you stop and think about it for half a second you realise that it's stupid and, potentially, offensive as well. But that's Meyer's fault, not the film's. But, still, like the book to which it is almost co-dependently true, there's something about it that makes it ... addictive, in the most tepid, bloodless way possible. Like ready salted hula hoops.

But what the Twilight movie does exceptionally well is capture the atmosphere and preoccupations of the book. The lingeringly dreary tale of Bella Swan falling for Edward Cullen, the biggest vampiric pussy ever to grace the pages of romantic fiction, is re-created with all the intensity of the original, and told without a glimmer of humour or self-irony. Which, remarkably, works in its favour - since a sense of self-irony is something that develops after being a teenager has already fucked you up beyond redemption.

So in terms of fidelity to the original, it is, at least, well done. The Cullen clan are all spot on, especially Alice (although Jasper looks lobotomised a lot of the time). And the guy playing Jacob - who I always preferred to Edward although I understand Meyer psychos him up in later books - is, true to form, hotter than Edward, much as I love Robert Pattinson. The two leads have impossible tasks but somehow they manage to imbue their lingering looks and clunky dialogue with some sense of conviction - I thought they were both nuts but I believed in their nuttitude.

But let's face it here, there's no way this review can ever be fair (or even a review) because Twilight isn't aimed at me. Far more interesting than the film, to be honest, were the reactions of the audience. It was comprised mainly of teenage girls, who shrieked, sighed and swooned their way through it, and their long-suffering kid brothers who couldn't contain their utter contempt for everything that transpired, occasionally bursting into uncomprehending, hysterical laughter or expostulating "dude! This sucks!" in tones of utter despair. As I left I ducked into the lady's toilets and was thus subjected to a barrage of high-pitched enthusiasm about the gorgeous Edward Cullen and the romance of it all. Waiting outside, my companion in being grown up enough not to get it, overheard two boys as they left:

First boy: That was the worse film, ever!
Second boy: That's the last we ever see a chick flick.

Oh bless. But then Twilight wasn't for them either.

I reason I quite enjoyed Twilight when I read it was because I gave it too much credit and thought it was an allegory. I've always really like paranormal teenage stuff. It makes perfect sense to me. I mean when you're between the ages of 13 and, well, 27, attractive members of the opposite sex do seem like these impossible, unknowable, unattainable creatures so they might as well be vampires or werewolves or vampirates (okay, maybe not vampirates). And since a large part of growing up is getting to grips with a world both hostile and full of secrets people won't tell you, again, it makes perfect sense for those secrets to be "there are vampires in it". And since you're undergoing a horrific process of unstoppable uncontrollable change that you both want and don't want, why shouldn't it be represented by discovering that you're also the High Queen of Faerie, or a Vampire Slayer, or whatever? And, finally, of course there's the problem of sex - its dangers and attractions are beautifully encapsulated by the dangers and attractions of supernatural power, manifest either in others of yourself. That it articulated these ideas so clearly, so cleverly and so wittily is one of the (many) strengths of early season Buffy.

Unlike Buffy, Twilight is not knowing. But it is terribly terribly serious and that's why it works. Teen crushes and love affairs (to be honest, crushes and love affairs in general) are rarely humorous to those involved: unrequited love is the most painful of adolescent experiences and your first taste of romance the most intoxicating. And although when you look at Edward Cullen with the eyes of an adult you see an obsessive, domineering, disempowering, semi-misogynistic nutjob, when you look at him with the eyes of a teenager, he's utterly, profoundly desirable. His whole world is Bella - because he never sleeps, he can literally spend every hour of every day either with her, watching her or thinking about her. He has no life and no interests outside her - for the rest of us that alone cries out "restraining order", for a teenager (to make this less patronising, I'll say, for my teenage self) the idea of someone being completely bound up in you is breathtakingly romantic. As a teenager, you are still semi-dependent upon various authority figures (school, parents, etc. etc.) and very probably highly uncertain in yourself - thus the idea of another person needing you for anything cannot fail to be appealing. Again, I'm making a lot of generalisations about The Way Teenage Girls Feel here, but I associate my own teenage years with confusion, helplessness and a fair quantity of misery. Quite frankly, I wanted an Edward Cullen - because I thought that through the value given to me by another I could learn to value myself. Feeling incomplete, because, quite frankly, I was, I was searching for romance to "complete" me. That real loves exists only between two fully self-actualised, functional and capable human beings is something one learns only in later life.

What I'm trying to say here is this: it's theoretically okay to like Twilight. I even believe it performs a useful function: rarely are these private ideas and desires as well-realised as they are in Twilight. It's nice to have someone stand up and say "yeah, sometimes girls want this"; unfortunately, where it becomes problematic is that it never acknowledges its own status as fantasy and it never grows up. Now, I read a lot of a romance so I'm quite happy with fantasies progressing down whatever path they happen to progress - the alpha male may not appeal to me personally but I'm capable of recognising that it's perfectly acceptable to fantasise about having a domineering man with storm grey eyes who is secretly in love with you but doesn't know how to express it fling you down across the bed and have awesome sex with you until you get to like it. Women are very capable of recognising that when they want flinging it's on their own terms and that a man who behaves like an attractive asshole in a book may not be so attractive in real life. I like romance because it's such a grown up genre: it's a safe space where we get to shrug and let ourselves get swept away in what could be a rather politically incorrect fantasy and nobody accuses you of being too dumb to be able to tell the difference.

Because, as I have said, that Twilight isn't knowing, its status as a fantasy becomes problematised. Basically there's no acknowledgement that it is one; there are elements of the fantastic, gorgeous vampire falls for everygirl etc, of course, but the book never invites us to question their relationship. And, really, given its nature, we should. I could easily list the ways in which Edward and Bella's relationship is fucked to high heaven but since we're all intelligent readers I won't bother. I suppose the quintessential example, however, would be Edward's refusal to turn Bella into a vampire. This is never really open for discussion, one gets the feeling Edward has made his decision and that's that. You'd think that, as an equal participant in a relationship between two people, Bella's opinions should be at least relevant and that their final decision on the matter should be one they have reached jointly. That's what happens in functional relationships. But Edward is not to be persuaded: thus it is very much his decisions, not their decision. He thinks he's protecting her but his behaviour implies that he does not trust her to know what she wants and, in this, as on many other occasions, his protective streak is actually revealed to be rooted in fundamental disrespect for Bella's ability to live her life and make decisions.

Interestingly, despite the chorus of sighing from the teenage audience, I was impressed by Robert Pattinson's portrayal of Edward Cullen. I found him genuinely a bit creepy. He's so obviously ill-at-ease with who and what he is (unlike the rest of the Cullen clan who seem perfectly content to be vampires) and his self-loathing is both evident and off-putting. I think the other girls were titillated by the air of danger and emo but, actually, it's hard to love a man who hates himself. With a weirdly twisted smile, Edward characterises their relationship: "a stupid lamb and a sick, masochistic lion" - the point that Pattinson (bless him) seems to be trying to convey is that he genuinely means it. He thinks Bella is stupid for loving him and, quite frankly, she is (never trust a man who wants to eat you, girls); and he hates himself to such a degree that he cannot respect anyone who purports to love him. This is, of course, precisely what Pattinson has said in interviews - and I'd like to send him about two tonnes of love for actually managing to bring it out of the text since, you can see from reading about half of page of the book, it is something one reads into it, rather than something that is meant to be read.

Edward's love for Bella is truly masochistic at heart - since he must exert constant control to avoid eating her, he never allows himself to forget his own predatory nature, the very nature he despises. I think, through his protection of her, he is attempting to protect the part of himself he conceives as lost - his innocence, his mortality, whatever you want to call it. Regardless, it's messed up and in no way a grounding for a healthy relationship, even, or perhaps especially, with a 17 year old girl. Combine this tortured emotional masochism with an equally tortured attitude to sexuality and things really get nasty. Given Meyer's background, it's not surprising that Twilight, despite the gushyness of its romance, is essentially sexless but the intermingling of Edward's bloodlust and, err, lust-lust, however, serves to present sex as something dangerous and potentially fatal. Noticeably Bella spends most of Edward's kisses (and also her wedding night) unconscious. By this stage we have left the realm of fantasy far behind and moved full time into "just plain wrong".

Now I'm not going to get onto a soapbox and start sputtering that this not appropriate reading material for our children. The first book at least functions as a fantasy and as an honest expression of not-entirely-healthy teenage desires. And, although if you pay even the slightest bit of attention, you can see some very disturbing undercurrents, it was clear from the giggly enthusiasm in the cinema nobody gave a damn. We went there to see Robert Pattinson looking intense and beautiful with his insane bedhair, his silly sparkling skin and his dodgy crimsoned lips. That's what we were looking for, and that's what we got. And, for the moment, that's okay.

Some Rockin' Twilight Links

Oh God, no

Growing Up Cullen

Cleoland's Discussion of Twilight, including her recaps of Midnight Sun

My second favourite Robert Pattinson interview

My top favourite Robert Pattinson interview
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Comments (go to latest)
Gina Dhawa at 00:28 on 2009-01-03
Whilst I'm not sure I can actually bear to fork out as much money as my local cinemas is asking for in order to see Twilight, I am actually intrigued by the movie because of what Robert Pattinson has been saying about how he's approached Edward. If he's managed to bring any hint of that about at all, it's no bad thing.
Wardog at 19:44 on 2009-01-03
Basically it's not a good film - so it's hard to recommend it. It's very true to the book so if you hate the book, you'll hate the film. On the other hand, Robert Pattinson is obviously the best thing about it. He's fabulous to look at (although the film does its utmost to make him look *stupid*) and his interpretation of the character really comes through the performance. Which is a pretty impressive feat, when you think about it.
Nathalie H at 21:03 on 2009-01-03
"It's nice to have someone stand up and say "yeah, sometimes girls want this"; unfortunately, where it becomes problematic is that it never acknowledges its own status as fantasy and it never grows up."

I think here you've really hit the nail on the head and said everything about my problem with Twilight.

I hated the book because it was astonishingly badly written; and I haven't seen the film, but I think I'll like it more because I am a step further away from the astonishingly bad writing, and only have to deal with astonishingly bad dialogue. ;) Oh and pacing and all that. But yes, props to Pattinson here.
Wardog at 00:14 on 2009-01-04
The style of the book didn't bother me too much - I think I rated it as clunky/pedestrian rather than actually terrible but I was really looking at it with a proper critical eye.

The dialogue is - as you would expect - rather cringe-inducing. The ludicrousness of it seems more marked when spoken, than when read:

Edward: I've never wanted a human's blood so much.
Bella: I trust you.
Me: Wrong answer.
http://serenoli.livejournal.com/ at 12:59 on 2009-01-10
The point where I wanted to give it up was when Isabella Whats-her-name got annoyed with people for not knowing her nickname was 'Bella' not 'Isabella'. The book is annoying enough in its portrayal of the obsessive/dependent relationship they have, but Isabella is just such a self-absorbed twit that I kept wanting awful things to happen to her, and getting angry with Edward for saving her in the nick of time.
Wardog at 00:51 on 2009-01-11
Hello and thank you for the comment. Yes, I entirely agree - Bella is infuriating. I found Kristen Stewart moderately sympathetic, insofar as I thought the actress was doing a tolerable job with an awful part (and I thought the relationship between Bella and her Dad was one of bearable aspects of the film), but the character is beyond redemption. I think she's basically a placeholder ... a big walking sign with "insert yourself here" written on it; unfortunately the fact she has no personality to speak of just makes her actions/reactions both irritating and incomprehensible.
Jamie Johnston at 02:22 on 2009-04-19
Hurrah, I've finally got back to reading FerretBrain! And to prove it, I'm going to comment on this review of a film I haven't seen, just like I used to.

So no, I haven't seen the film and have not the slightest inclination to do so, especially having read this, but I have read the first three books, and I like them, and two remarks spring to mind as I ask myself why their uncritically positive depiction of an unhealthy teenage relationship doesn't bother me. The first is that I'm not sure that it's uncritically positive, and the second is that I'm not sure that it bothers me that it's uncritically positive. (Yes, these remarks are mutually contradictory, but never mind.)

Being unfashionably opposed to spoilers, I warn readers that as I unpack those two remarks I'll be mentioning elements of the plot of the first three books. (Likewise, if anyone replies, please warn me if you're going to mention any plot from 'Breaking Dawn' so I can close my eyes!)

So yes, having recently finished reading 'Eclipse' I don't feel that, at this stage of the series, I'm being asked to whole-heartedly approve of Edward and Bella's relationship. I think it's fair to say that by the end of 'Eclipse' we've seen, quite comprehensively dramatized, the tendency of the relationship to cause emotional and physical harm to people who don't deserve it, and that Bella and Edward have each engaged in some - perhaps tediously much - self-criticism on that point. They've even to some extent acknowledged that there is such a thing as a normal, emotionally balanced, non-obsessive relationship that can be had, one that would not be a pale imitation of 'true love' but a genuinely loving long-term relationship such as people should count themselves lucky to find, and that theirs is not it. Of course they cling to the belief that theirs is equally valid, or perhaps more so, but surely to ask anything else of these characters would be to ask the writer to be morally responsible at the expense of emotional truth. People in an unhealthy relationship do, at some level, believe that love redeems, trumps, justifies, cancels out the unhealthiness, otherwise they'd address the unhealthiness or get out of the relationship. So naturally Edward and Bella don't see their relationship as a Bad Idea, but what about the reader?

I won't deny that Meyer puts the reader in a sort of default position of assuming that the relationship is a Good Thing and the couple should stay together. But I'd have thought that was the inevitable and proper consequence of making Bella the point-of-view character. We identify with her and therefore we shrink from the emotional pain that would come from breaking them up, even if we feel it would be better in the long run. We also, through her eyes, feel strongly positive about Edward and therefore don't want to put him through the wringer either, and we have to admit that frankly he is probably the one character who genuinely would be worse off if they broke up. That's not because Bella is all that, but because he seems to have no better options and because he, unlike everyone else including her, doesn't obviously suffer any real ill effects from the relationship (apart from the fact that it perpetuates his unhealthy view of relationships in general, but that's not a problem since he's not remotely interested in having any other relationships ever).

Oh, and a quick digression here in response to the comment that "the intermingling of Edward's bloodlust and, err, lust-lust, however, serves to present sex as something dangerous and potentially fatal". Yes that's true, and yes it's a rather unhelpful way to encourage teenage girls to think about sex. But at the same time - and I admit that here I venture into dangerous territory for someone who's never been a teenage girl - is it encouraging teenage girls to feel that way, or is it merely providing a rather apposite metaphor for the way many American small-town teenage girls probably *do* feel about sex? Let's face it, there are umpteen things in modern western (and particularly unreconstructed American) culture that conspire to make sex seem to them both dangerous and desirable, fearful and forbidden and, yes, even potentially fatal but at the same time the proper and expected fulfillment of female life? Aren't they told that they mustn't but also that they inevitably must, and am I wrong to suppose that quite a few of Meyer's readers will find (or will already have found) themselves in clinches where, like Bella, they want to go further than they 'know' (as it were) it is 'safe' to? I agree that Meyer's metaphor to some extent reinforces that unhealthy fear of sex by having sex as a literally life-threatening process for her heroine. But at the same time it goes some way to redeeming itself by at least reversing the traditional 'girl resists, boy insists' caricature of sexual initiation (on which, of course, traditional 'male vampire bites screaming female virgin' stories depend) - she at least is not saying to her young female readers that they shouldn't feel sexual attraction to their boyfriends, and she does a fairly decent job of sharing the responsibility for avoiding the 'dangers' of sex between the boy and the girl (the message being that the girl is entitled to expect the boy to restrain himself, but she should also be aware that what she's doing can make that easier or harder for him, which is perhaps not the most role-busting message ever but is better than many). And, as things stand at the end of 'Eclipse', the message seems to be developing from 'sex is dangerous' to the more balanced 'sex can be dangerous but that needn't stop you doing it with the proper precautions' (though it remains to be seen quite what the precautions are in the case of Edward and Bella); and although it would be nice to live in a social and medical world that justified a rather more positive and cheerful message, I'd say that's a reasonably constructive message considering the world we (and, again, small-town American girls in particular) do live in.

So, returning from that digression, I'd say it's no surprise and no serious moral or literary failing that the most frequent and obvious signposts in these books point to 'Bella Edward 4 Eva' land. Still, as I've said (and as you've said too, Kyra), there are plenty of fairly visible signposts to 'This Relationship Is Going To Hurt Everyone Around It', and at least a few to 'Just Plain Wrong'. The question for the reader in the end is whether 'but they love each other' is an adequate answer. Isn't that the case with 'Romeo and Juliet' similarly? Don't get me wrong, I don't compare the two works for quality, and I don't suggest the central relationship of Shakespeare's play is quite as messed up as that of the 'Twilight' series. But they both depict intense teenage romances that are almost certainly, when looked at from a sober adult point of view, Bad Ideas, and that can only be seen as positive if one accepts the leading couple's belief that the intensity of their love is sufficient to overcome all objections and excuse all damage caused to themselves and others. And although in both cases there are plenty of clues leading to the sensible conclusion that it isn't, there's also sufficient force in the lovers' own view, and sufficient attention given to that point of view, that significant parts of the audience (whether teenage girls in cinemas or eighteenth century Romantics in theatres) can end up approving of the Bad Idea.

The big objection to what I've just said, I suppose, is that 'Romeo and Juliet' isn't *specifically marketed at teenage girls*. That's a fair point. But, well, I don't know, somehow that doesn't quite convince me. Partly that's perhaps just because I don't want to blame Meyer for the way her books are marketed; and even if she consciously wrote them for that audience, I'm still not entirely comfortable with the idea of not trusting young people to cope with it. I remember hearing Richard Eyre on the radio talking about his production of 'King Lear' and saying that when he was in his 30s he thought 'how could Lear treat his children like that?' and when he was in his 50s he thought 'how could Lear's children treat him like that?' Teenagers are going to read a story of teenage romance differently from us sensible jaded sort-of-grown-ups, but does that mean writers should over-compensate by steering them strongly to see things the way they 'should' see them, i.e. the way we see them? Or should we let them believe that 'Twilight' and 'Romeo and Juliet' are about all-conquering all-redeeming love and trust that the more-or-less subtle indications to the contrary will lodge somewhere in their unconscious minds and give them a richer view of the texts as their view of life becomes more complex over the years?

Of course this all partly depends how the series turns out in the end. If it ends, as it may well do, with everything hunky-dory for everyone, then my argument here will be a lot weaker than it seems to me now at the end of 'Eclipse'. But at the moment I think the most important thing for books like this is to be emotionally honest and truthful, and I think the series so far, and perhaps 'Eclipse' in particular, have enough of that for me to feel fairly comfortable about the more troubling side.
http://viorica8957.livejournal.com/ at 05:04 on 2009-04-19
tl;dr

Seriously though,I think that Meyer's comparisons of her work to other famous "love stories" and her belief that hers leaves them all in the dust, and the fact that she's openly stated that she would leave her husband for either of her male leads proves that she isn't just writing from a teenage POV; she's living through one.

(By the way, is anyone else having trouble logging in? Half the time it refuses to accept my password, and the other hald, it logs me in automatically.)
Rami at 11:10 on 2009-04-19
@Viorica: I'd noticed you were commenting via OpenID lately. Could you drop me an email (webmaster at ferretbrain.com) with details? Let me know what browser you're using, etc?
Dan H at 11:38 on 2009-04-19
Speaking as somebody who has *not only* not seen the film but *also* not read any of the books (but who *has* poked around fandom a fair bit) I'd echo Viorica's comments that Meyer's comments about the series undermine a lot of the saner, more sensible interpretations of it.

It's a classic Death of the Author problem - you can probably read Twilight as an interesting portrayal of a destructive relationship from the point of view of somebody currently caught up in it, but if you *know* - for a fact - that the author didn't intend it to be read that way it becomes a lot harder to see that interpretation.

You get a similar problem with good old HP. The early books are convincingly written from the point of view of a naive, slightly self-absorbed teenager. Later we discover that no, they were actually written by an omniscient narrator, and that Harry's warped perceptions of the world map 1-1 onto Wizarding reality.
Shim at 13:54 on 2009-04-19
(By the way, is anyone else having trouble logging in? Half the time it refuses to accept my password, and the other hald, it logs me in automatically.)


Not the same trouble, I reckon. But I always have to log in exactly twice.
(also, if using Firefox you have to quickly "allow" whatever the bar asks about before it disappears - once you've done it once it seems happy enough to work in future)
Wardog at 15:43 on 2009-04-22
Welcome back to Ferretbrain, Jamie :) Yay. I'd be interested to know what you think of Twilight after Breaking Dawn...

I think both Dan and Viorica have in to some extent my concerns with your points. But essentially, to me, the Twilight series only feels emotionally honest as you claim if you're willing to problematise it on your own behalf. And although there are plenty of sensible people of all ages who read Twilight and end up asking the interesting, complicated questions you ask about it (is twue wuv really enough to justify all this), there are plenty of people who simply don't. I can't really quality this clearly to myself I think it comes down to a few interacting issues:

1) Surrounding cultural framework and the problem of authorial intent - basically I don't think you can discount this sort of thing when you're reading a text (although, of course, you shouldn't be constrained by it). And Stephanie Meyer is basically nuts. She is very obviously not only unaware of but wilfully blind to potential dysfunctionalities in her text. Furthermore, many of the things you draw attention to, for example the fact Edward and Bella angst all the time about their relationship and the fact it seriously damages anyone who comes near it, I believe are meant to *validate* the twueness of their wuv.

2) Moral responsibility - maybe this is going to make me look like some kind of fascist and I'll probably regret it but I believe that if you're writing for children and young adults you have a moral responsibility to your audience. All readers are, of course, to an extent vulnerable. And by a moral responsibility I mean you don't necessarily need to say morally righteous things, or even give a damn about morality, but I think fostering uncritically (and I know you dipsute this) the unhealthiest notions of love and romance is genuinely hugely problematic. I know this sounds like hypocrisy because I'm also going on about and about the fundamental human right of fantasy but, again, I think this is becomes very dangerous territory when it is not accompanied by awareness. Essentially Meyer does not seem to be saying "we all have fantasies about this kind of thing" or "isn't it intriguing the way romantic may not be the same as healthy" but "hey girls, I wish I had this, so it must be okay."

3) Connected to the above - I often find reading teenage romances interesting, mainly because when I started I had to make a psychological adjustment. Initially I was found I was grumbling away in my adult "you think this insipid guy with floppy hair is the love of your life but he's just some 16 year old" way and then I realised I was missing the point completely. Ultimately what I'm trying to say is that it's possible to being true to the way love and life feels when you're a teenager, right down to the unhealthy aspects of teenage love, without also being nuts about it.

Anyway, I'm going on and on and on. I do see your points, but I think you're being way to generous to Meyer who doesn't deserve it =P
Arthur B at 16:27 on 2009-04-22
The first time I read Wikipedia's plot summary of Breaking Dawn I thought someone had vandalised the article. I was wrong. This series is its own parody.
Jamie Johnston at 22:28 on 2009-04-24
tl;dr

Story of my life. :)

Okay, I take your collective word for it that Meyer is nuts and creepy and probably shouldn't be allowed to write for children. It's a shame. She plots well. In fact one of the things I most enjoyed about the books was nothing to do with the teenage romance but the rather thrilling moment in the first book (spoiler alert) when it occurred to me that (1) there was a big vampire cross-country hunt possibly followed by an even bigger vampire battle going on somewhere, (2) I wasn't being given a description of it as I would have been in any fantasy / horror book not specifically aimed at teenage girls, and (3) I didn't feel I was missing anything at all. But that's by the by.

Basically I say this stuff not because I'm an 'authorial-intent-is-irrelevant' hard-liner but because I almost never read interviews with authors and generally haven't the foggiest idea what the author thinks. Partly because it's disappointing to discover that an author adheres to a less nuanced and sophisticated interpretation of his or her own work than I do. :)
http://descrime.livejournal.com/ at 03:03 on 2009-04-25
Okay, I went on YouTube and watched the first 6 parts of the movie.

I have to give her credit for one thing: Bella and Edward clearly deserve each other. They're both self-centered, anti-social, emo kids. In fact, I think Meyers/the screenwriter does a really great job of showing that Bella would never be happy except with Edward.

I mean, on her first day of school, six kids try to befriend her. We're shown that the adults in the town also go out of their way to acknowledge her. And yet, she spurns all offers from the other kids to come join them hanging out in the parking lot. She agrees to go with the other two girls to pick out prom dresses but then sits in the window and reads a book the whole time, clearly sending off signals that she's such a martyr for coming. She derides all the towns welcoming efforts to her mother. And she never freaking smiles. She's a permanent flatline. Might as well date the dead.

And oh god, the moment in the science lab when they meet for the first time. Their eyes meet and she steps in front of the fan so that her hair blows dramatically. It was hilarious. And you know Edward jerked like that because he totally popped a boner felt their mystical connection. The actor clearly went out of his way to show how awkward Edward is and how out-of-control of his own emotions and body. I appreciated that in a movie he could have just cruised through.

Since I don't care to track down the rest of the movie, do we ever learn why Bella has such special smelling blood or why Edward can't read her mind?
Arthur B at 03:31 on 2009-04-25
Since I don't care to track down the rest of the movie, do we ever learn why Bella has such special smelling blood or why Edward can't read her mind?

I believe the answers are a) she eats a lot of asparagus and b) she has no mind lol.
http://poeticalengine.blogspot.com/ at 17:29 on 2009-04-25
I admit that I've never read the books or seen the movie (I pretty much swore not to the minute I saw someone selling "Edward Body Glitter" on eBay). However my flatmate has been reading them and doing a fairly amusing read through on LJ. Between reading this article and watching her chuck the book at walls, I think it's safe to say I won't be reading it despite my curiousity. Or seeing the movie which is a shame, really, because Robert Pattinson really is very nice to look at.

Still, I'm a bit worried at how lack-of-self-awareness is becoming a prerequisite for writing a mega-successful book series these days. It's possibly just my cynicism showing through but between Meyer's "This is True Love! Really!" and JKR's plea for tolerance, my belief that canny self-reference can be found on the bookshelves of my local ASDA for less than a fiver may have been irrevocably shaken.

-Heather-Anne
(My flatmate's read through, if anyone's interested, is here: http://augustm.livejournal.com/ )
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