After the disastrous New Moon, director Chris Weitz has been replaced by David Slade who previously made the thriller Hard Candy. His efforts here as a director do not provide this sequel with the drastic leap in quality that some have spoken of. If anything this film is a step-down from the first installment, which was filmed by Catherine Hardwicke on a modest budget and at least had a rich romantic atmosphere. Eclipse will mean little to those who have not read the books. This is because the story between each of the films has become increasingly banal. Much of the film is devoted to the love triangle but both the dialogue and the performances fail to spark any reason why we should care. Whereas in the first film characters like Bella and Edward were awkward in the uncertainty on each other, and rather ironically human, here the actors are left with schmaltzy and uninteresting conversations about how much they love each and how they are never going to give up. There are also several flashbacks, detailing the origins of the conflict between the werewolves and the vampires, just in case anyone was actually curious. The material is dreary and further compounded by the monotone performances of Stewart and Lautner. Pattinson has a slightly cooler, more charismatic presence here than the others at least. The boring scenes of dialogue and exposition are interspersed with more lively action scenes that are chaotically handled, with many of the vampires being smashed into pieces as though they are made from blocks of ice. Why this is happening and who is being attacked other than the trios are things that the film is not particularly interested in.
The movie isn't awful, but it's totally emotionless and saves nothing of the Twilight atmosphere and the characters' personality. The only good scenes are DIRECTLY QUOTED from the book, so it's not even the director doing a good job. The book is my favorite of the saga, thus the movie was a huge disappointment. The plot is fractioned, there are these beautiful scenes from the book, but they aren't connected between each other. All that happening in-between is insignificant or just emptied of its emotional tension or value. The characters' personality is totally bent to fit in the plot fewer movies; Edward even appears as a villain in some scenes while in the book it's the absolute opposite. He's noble and always thinking of what's best for her, not a tyrant that tries to have it all and make it bad for Jacob. Once again this movie is UNWATCHABLE for one who hasn't read the book. I find the actors great, but the director wasn't even able to direct their performance to be as good as it can get. Nothing is really awful in it. It's just NOT good. Plain and dull at times! What I appreciated was the humor that was finally let in, which didn't happen in the previous movies. In the books of the saga there are multiple jokes but only this time they seem to play a decent role, finally! The acting was inferior to the previous but still I find the cast brilliant, so I can't say it's a bad product overall. Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner are simply perfect. But for them, we have to thank the first director, certainly not this one!
2 / 5