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Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

POSTER ART
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FILM DETAILS
Certificate
12A
Cast
Kristen Stewart
Robert Pattinson
Taylor Lautner
Billy Burke
Ashley Greene
Kellan Lutz
Elizabeth Reaser
Rachelle Lefevre

Dakota Fanning
Tyson Houseman
Jamie Campbell-Bower
Michael Sheen.
Directors
Chris Weitz.
Screenwriters
Melissa Rosenberg.
Running Time
131 minutes

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Twilight: New Moon
The sequel to teen-vampire romance Twilight


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Plot
After an unfortunate near-death incident at Bella’s (Kristen Stewart) 18th birthday party, vampire Edward (Robert Pattinson) vows to leave his true love for her own good. Bella is devastated, but the help of her friend Jacob (Taylor Lautner) helps her through. But Jacob is dealing with issues of his own…


Review
Twilight: New Moon
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Let’s assume that you’re going into the second episode of Stephenie Meyers’ vampire saga with an open mind, having been pleasantly surprised that the first film didn’t turn out to be Vampire High School Musical. If that’s the case, you’ll probably enjoy this slice of high melodrama. If not, stay away. This is a series almost entirely lacking in irony, one that takes its central tortured romance too seriously to waste good gazing-soulfully time on filling in the background or winning over naysayers. There’s moping to be done, after all.

That’s not entirely a criticism. To berate the Twilight saga for indulging in moping would be like suggesting that perhaps John McClane and Hans Gruber could have sat down and talked their differences out. This is a series about the all-encompassing, deadly seriousness of first love, and judged on those terms the first Twilight did convey that feeling of mad romance and the second film picks up that theme and snogs it senseless. But in the same way that most second superhero movies are about our hero trying to give up the cape, this sequel is about the heartbreak that almost certainly follows such unthinking passion.

Robert Pattinson’s upright, buttoned-down Edward gives up Kristen Stewart’s Bella for her own good (as it seems to him) and disappears from her life. After turning into a virtual zombie as a result, the heartbroken Bella finds some comfort in the friendship of Native American Jacob Black (Taylor Lautner), himself afflicted with a searing crush on the self-effacing heroine. Unfortunately, it turns out that that’s not the only thing Jacob’s afflicted with, as he starts turning furry and lupine and also abandons Bella for her own protection.

Amid such masculine faffing about, Bella’s character is the only constant, and she comes across as a little stronger this time around, gradually pulling herself out of the fog of depression and fighting to keep both men in her life – if only in hallucinations in Edward’s case. Stewart still relies a little too heavily on the tactic of blinking a lot, but then the same could be said of the male leads’ reliance on slight frowns, and all three are doing a good enough job to win over the fans and convey the high drama of the novel. Incoming director Chris Weitz, taking over from Catherine Hardwicke, is more reserved and perhaps slightly less attuned to his teenage stars, but handles the action and the effects well despite the breakneck production schedule.

While there’s only a tiny and very occasional hint of humour from the love triangle members, however, the addition of Jacob’s fellow Wolf Pack members and more traditional high vampires the Volturi allow for a little looseness and the opening up of the Twilight world. The Wolf Pack are given, at best, momentary character sketches but receive just enough attention to establish them for future instalments, while the Volturi threaten to romp away with the film in just moments onscreen. Then what can you expect when they’re led by Michael Sheen’s deliciously dangerous Aro, and boast a psychic torturer played by an immaculate Dakota Fanning?

The plethora of shirtless men (sometimes shot in – god help us – slow-motion) and general fetishisation of Bella’s love interests may raise a giggle or an eyebrow in audiences more accustomed to seeing women in their scanties, and the pace does sometimes slow to a crawl, but this is another faithful and largely successful adaptation of Meyers’ old-fashioned love story.


Verdict
If you buy in to the central romance, you’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll swoon. Otherwise, the lingering glances, lip-chewing and regular de-shirting may cause uncontrollable giggles.


Reviewed by Helen O'Hara

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Twilight: New Moon
Empire Star Rating

New Moon

There's some hint of interest with the music and characters (more of the minor ones actually), but New Moon feels nothing more than a bloated rehashing of Twilight with more werewolves than vampires and more drama than conflict. Die-hard fans will pleased, though everyone else will be left bored, annoyed, and unintentionally laughing at the ludicrous plot and dull pacing. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by norgizfox at 02:50, 05 December 2012 | Report This Post


better than the original.

more of the same and even more ridiculous! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by tysmuse at 21:55, 28 August 2012 | Report This Post


The Twilight Saga: New Moon Review

The Twilight Saga's second installment may satisfy hardcore fans of the series, but others like myself are likely to be turned off by its slow pace, relentlessly downcast tone, and excessive length. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by the film man at 23:45, 30 December 2011 | Report This Post


Millions of fans can be wrong.

Third instalment in The Twilight Saga manages to suck dry what was left of the potential for a good movie after the New Moon fiasco and also any interest left in the casual audience, in how the story will conclude in the next, final chapter of the franchise. Nothing has changed since the previous film and the opening brings a sense of a deja vu. Bella's love affair continues in almost idyllic manner. But it all quickly fades away as the army of newborn vampires ravages Seattle and Victoria, s... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Mr Oki at 12:39, 05 November 2010 | Report This Post


After being suprised at how good the first film was I was very dissapointed at this load of crap. Full of plot holes, bad acting, bad special effects and overall really boring. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by stevolegendbauer at 01:37, 28 October 2010 | Report This Post


Boring

More angsty Bella problems................. i have my own thanks! The introduction of the Volturi were good though. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by lakota at 19:15, 11 October 2010 | Report This Post


RE: Don't waste your time !

I didn't see any flaws with New Moon whatsoever. Where as other book adaptaions feel rushed - Harry Potter - I thought the narrative flowed well in New Moon. All the performances are solid. The guy who played Jacob faltered a little when he was doing raw emotion but Stewart and Patterson really surprised me. Faithful to the book and a great sound track to boot. The highlight for me was the sequence with the hunters and Victoria in the woods. I loved how that played out. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by The REAL Bozz at 16:02, 30 June 2010 | Report This Post


Don't waste your time !

The genre has improved ,but it's still crap. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by elimonator at 14:10, 05 May 2010 | Report This Post


Improves on its predecesor

Although at times New Moon still feels like a recap of Buffy seasons two and three, Chris Weitz luckily realises the mistakes Hardwicke made the first time round and creates an enjoyable experience. This film actually feels like the book now. Characters really shine and the themes that Meyer enforces in her writing actually make an appearance here. The acting is as good as ever, with Pattinson, Stewart and Lautner delivering worthwile experiences and never losing track of their characters' moti... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by djphilips at 13:36, 11 April 2010 | Report This Post


RE: Mon Opinion

First of all, I must say that Twilight: New Moon was a huge improvement from Twilight, but then again, that's not hard really, is it? We start off with Bella's birthday, and everything's going pretty swell for Edward and Bella's relationship. That is, until Bella's clumsiness gains her a papercut from opening a present and the tempting smell of her blood sends Jasper wild. I was actually fairly impressed by this scene; watching Jackson smash backwards into Edwards precious grand piano was pretty... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by SudrabaLapsa at 20:26, 01 April 2010 | Report This Post


RE: If Youre In To It, It Is Good

Sigh , where to begin.   Rented it on friday to cheer up the missus. I diddn't "get" the first one, but once I stopped being pissed off at sparkley vampires playing baseball I could kinda see why this appeals to it's target audience. Going on the theory that warewolves , like monkeys, improve every film they're in I bit the bullet and sat down with herself to watch it.   Things I would like answered.   If Bella is meant to be the hero why is she such a self centere... More

Posted by blackduck at 13:32, 29 March 2010 | Report This Post


A movie about nothing. Include the most comis scene of 2009. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by ARmy2510 at 16:09, 25 March 2010 | Report This Post


RE: New Moon

I liked new moon it was better than twilight which is not that hard really. It was a bit slow with the scenes with bella in it moping over edward, but she got over that the film picked up a bit more with the wolves in it and the one best chase scenes ever with them chasing victoria and the death of laurent was great, the bare chested- ness of the male leads didn't really bother me. But the women i was surrounded by in the cinema i was in sure enjoyed it. I am looking forward to eclipse though f... More

Posted by anakin solo at 20:56, 23 March 2010 | Report This Post


Ignoring all the plot holes, the silly effects and the morose soundtrack i really tried to get some understanding as to why this series is such a phenomenon. But I really cant see anything beyond just that young girls and their mothers fancy the two main guys in it. There is nothing else to it. And Wow! i am absolutely gobsmacked at how insane the main character Bella is in this movie. not to mention how selfish and generally unlikable she is. What kind of a role model for girls is this mopey, ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by strangeone at 23:56, 17 March 2010 | Report This Post


arrrgggg !

I thought edward and jacob were gonna fight each other, daaam ! This film was also to long and i almost fell asleep ! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by spartan24 at 11:52, 14 March 2010 | Report This Post


Arse

I have never ever wanted to punch a female in the face, until I watched this film. Stewart is despairingly awful, and Lautner may as well keep taking his top off, to detract from his painful performance. I only gave this low budget romance fantasy (anyone labelling the word Horror near this will have their spleen removed) two stars, because of Sheen and Fanning's five minutes of screen time. Other than that, two hours of horrendous American daytime soap. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by sonofjor-el at 12:41, 10 March 2010 | Report This Post


RE: another film for the brain dead bunch

L: Roddersj04 crap, like usual. come on, empire. 3 stars is too generous. sp; i agree twilight SUCKS its just a low budget,amature,zero plot line teeny bopper story. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by hpmoviefan777 at 18:37, 22 February 2010 | Report This Post


RE: Old enough to know better

Kristyw i couldnt agree with you more. It made me feel like that and im 30y.o. I don't understand some people that are over judgmental. The books and the movies are not about the 'vampire' thing itself. Its not about why vampires are out in the morning or they don't have fangs! Who cares!  It's fiction! The books are great! They all have a deeper meaning about being in love, a love that is forbidden and it's bound to be a disaster according to the stereotypical relat... More

Posted by Ian_Phoenix at 13:26, 15 February 2010 | Report This Post


Old enough to know better

OK, let me say this straight away - I'm 32 years old and I know I should know better. But, I can't help myself - these films make me feel like a teenager again. This would get 3 stars if it wasn't the long awaited sequel to Twilight (which frankly was much better) but as it is it gets 4. I know the book is not as good as the first but they could have made the film better - the director sucks. It only picks up when the Volturi come into it. Looking forward to number 3. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by kristyw at 22:54, 06 February 2010 | Report This Post


RE: If Youre In To It, It Is Good

Having known nothing about the Twilight saga last year I saw the first one because of all the hype, and it wasn't that bad. The scenes were quite arty and the music was good, however the second installment is different story! All the actors do is pout, the music is crap and there is no general direction and pace to the film. A definate disappointment is comparison to the first film. The second one could have been so much better, never mind, it'll still make a bomb at the box office with all the... More

Posted by ice_surge at 02:32, 18 December 2009 | Report This Post


If Youre In To It, It Is Good

I saw Twilight last year because it got a good review. I took my 13 year old sister to see this a few weeks ago and she tells me it is fairly true to the book. I admit it was funny in parts because of the cheesiness, I like this film its a good story. I already know what happens at the end of the books but I will be coming back for more . ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bighousewill at 22:23, 11 December 2009 | Report This Post


RE: The problem is...

I loved it and mostly because they kept it very well with the book and didn't leave vital things out. Kristen's oerformance was less stuttery but i did get annoyed at the whole 'job to protect you' ' Your my only reason to be alive' they would make Edward seem more light hearted and funny. Not too serious ... More

Posted by katie92 at 15:33, 10 December 2009 | Report This Post


RE: New Moon

Is it just me or are we all missing something?  The fact that it doesn't make sense?  Why if there is no mortal threat to these creatures, you can become a wolf at will, live forever etc, why would all of these creatures become the dominant spieces on the planet instead of repeating high school over and oover again?  Sure, if they woke up in 21st Century they would be hunted, experimented on, but 400 or 500 or 1000 years ago?  How about they would eb worshiped like gods!&nbs... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by EdiWan Kenobi at 12:15, 07 December 2009 | Report This Post


RE: TEAM JACOB

L: MariannaBelle I love this movie Ilove the book I love Taylor Lautner So i can never give a reasonable unbiased view. And i'm glad because all those you dont see or understand the beauty of twilight are losing out. That must suck! ou do know Lautner is gay, right? ... More

Posted by spamandham at 14:30, 05 December 2009 | Report This Post


TEAM JACOB

I love this movie Ilove the book I love Taylor Lautner So i can never give a reasonable unbiased view. And i'm glad because all those you dont see or understand the beauty of twilight are losing out. That must suck! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by MariannaBelle at 16:42, 04 December 2009 | Report This Post


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