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Vol. LXV, No. 47
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
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For more movie summaries, see Kam’s Kapsules.

EVEN THOUGH YOU MADE MY LIFE A LIVING HELL, I STILL LOVE YOU: J. Edgar Hoover (Leonardo DiCaprio, right) sits at his mother’s (Judi Dench) deathbed. Even though she may have played an important role in his homosexual orientation by forbidding his desires to dress in women’s clothing as he was growing up, Hoover is mourning the impending death of his mother.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1:This Latest Vampire Episode Is More Campy Than Scary

Kam Williams

Taking a page from the Harry Potter playbook, the Twilight Saga series also splits the last of Stephenie Meyer’s supernatural romance novels into two screen adaptations. Cinematically, however, Breaking Dawn Part 1, is a striking departure from the earlier episodes because it is more like a campy soap opera than a spine-tingling horror film.

Instead of generating tension with fog-enshrouded bloodthirsty vampires locked in combat with rabid werewolves, this cheesy spoof relies on puns and inside jokes that are aimed at the loyal fans of the series. The movie picks up where the previous one left off, with the engagement of 18-year-old Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) to Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), who is a century-old vampire who can pass as being her contemporary.

Bella’s parents (Billy Burke and Sarah Clarke) and the eerie Cullen clan have no problem with the impending wedding, however, teen werewolf Jacob Black (Taylor Lautner) is conspicuously absent at the ceremony after having been rejected by Bella. The rest of the couple’s high school classmates do attend, including Jessica Stanley (Anna Kendrick), who does her best to ruin the reception by spreading a vicious rumor that Bella is pregnant and suggesting in her toast that Edward should have fallen for her instead of Bella.

After each of their guests has had a chance to make disparaging remarks, the newlyweds depart for a remote island near Rio de Janeiro for their magical honeymoon. Unfortunately, vampires and humans weren’t meant to mate and Edward couples with Bella with an unbridled passion that leaves the hotel room in shambles.

Bella finds herself facing a fateful decision when she realizes that she’s carrying a developing fetus that is going to destroy her unless it is aborted. What to do? What to do? A cross-species cliffhanger that will be answered in episode 5, although you’ll get a big hint by sticking around for the closing credits postscript.

The movie is aimed at Twilight diehards but this underwhelming, unfunny melodrama amounts to little more than a setup for next year’s grand finale.

Fair (*). Rated PG-13 for violence, sexuality, disturbing images, mature themes, and partial nudity. In English and Portuguese with subtitles. Running time: 117 minutes. Studio: Summit Entertainment.

For more movie summaries, see Kam’s Kapsules.

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