New “New Moon”

Roger Ebert hated it.

The New York Times dismissed it as the “big tease that turns into the long goodbye.”  (Gotta love the wordplay.)

And rottentomatoes.com ranked it 29% rotten.

Good work, “Twilight Saga: New Moon.”   You are even less popular with critics than your predecessor, “Twilight,” which more or less confused journalists last fall, scoring 49% on the freshometer.  (Edward actually glamoured the ones that hated it.  Fact.)

Of course, “New Moon” wasn’t filmed, edited and released in less than a year to please the critics.  It was rushed to theatres to capitalize on the pre-teen, teen and cougar crazies who were screaming for more. (I realize I fall within this group, although my self-awareness makes me a shade less scary).

But while I loved the “Twilight” movie and subsequently read all the books, I hated the “New Moon” book.  I know many of my friends felt the same.  Hated that Edward left after just a chapter or two.  Labored through all the werewolf crap ’cause, seriously —  Where the hell was Edward? Of course, I perked up at the end of the book, but if I had encountered Stephenie Meyer on the street at that point, we would have had words.

Director Chris Weitz of “New Moon” knew fans like me were out there, too.  So he made a film that’s better than the book.  No mistake — he stuck to the story more religiously than even the “Twilight” movie did, but his visual interpretation is more satisfying than Meyer’s original text.

How often does that happen?

Now, granted, I saw the movie at midnight at a theatre in my Upper West Side neighborhood, so you might think I’m a tad giddy.  I was worried about staying awake or being coherent.  But when 500 other people are watching a movie with you, and they are just as stoked as you are to be there, it makes for a great movie-going experience.

I had a blast.  I loved the movie.  Story aside, the cinematography, effects and makeup are head-and-shoulders above the original.  It’s just a beautiful movie to watch.

Oh — and Edward doesn’t suck either.

Well, he does.  But, he doesn’t.

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