Friday, November 20, 2009

Part one of New Moon opening night recap: Twilight

Last night I caught a double feature of Twilight and New Moon at the AMC in South Barrington. Several theaters in the area screened last year's Twilight at 9 PM before screening the next installment, New Moon, at midnight. In anticipation of the craziness I bought the tickets online and then picked them before the actual date of the showtime. It was a good deal to do the double feature. My friend and I got to the theater around 8:30 and saw that there were already two holding pens of Twilight fans waiting for the midnight showing, but we were able to go right into the theater. Although I've seen Twilight twice before in the theater I thought it would be fun to see it with a packed crowd of hard-core fans. I didn't see many people dressed as the characters, but plenty of fans (including myself) were wearing Twilight-related shirts.

Shortly before 9 PM an AMC employee named Peter welcomed us and then proceeded to mock our decision to see Twilight in the theater again: "Everyone feeling satisfied you paid $6 to see a movie you already own on DVD?" (screams!) Perhaps he was also trying to give the audience's lungs a workout; he mentioned something about the new Alice in Wonderland with Johnny Depp (more screams!), and then asked if anyone watched the TV show True Blood (screams!). He asked the audience whether Twilight or True Blood was better (indistinguishable screams!). His response: "The correct answer is True Blood."

By the time the lights went out for Twilight, the screams started up again. I heard audible gasps erupt from the audience the first time we saw the Cullens walk into the school cafeteria. The first close-up of Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson) provoked the loudest screams. Interestingly enough the only other character whose appearance caused screams was Carlise (Peter Facinelli). Yep, that's right, nobody was screaming for Jacob, played by Taylor Lautner (yet).

Seeing the movie this time around I noticed things I hadn't before. On Bella's (Kristen Stewart) first day at Forks High School she gets a prime parking spot right in front of the school. Not believable! And, why doesn't Emmett Cullen (Kellan Lutz) like to sit down when he rides in cars? He always stands or crouches. Also, what's with the monkey references? Edward calls Bella a "spider-monkey" and Rosalie (Nikki Reed) refers to Emmett as her "monkey man." Furthermore, the head cocking and air sniffing that Cam Gigandet brings to the role of James is also something he used in the movie Never Back Down. Finally, while I always paid close attention to the hilarious strained looks on Jasper's (Jackson Rathbone) face, I never realized he is doing a sort of jig when he and Emmett burn the body of James in the ballet studio. Dance, Jasper, dance! Things to think about. I also kept a few tallies going during the movie:

Twilight tallies: The number of times...
... the audience screamed: 3*
... the audience clapped: 5
... Bella is helped/rescued: 5
... Jasper makes a painful face: 11
... Edward appears as if he's in pain: 38
... Edward smiles and/or laughs: 33
... there were bad special effects: 8

* I didn't start counting until after the movie began. I wish I would have kept track of all the screams during AMC Peter's "welcome."