If there's a cinematic alchemy award to be given this year director Bill Condon deserves to take it home after magically turning the tedious Twilight franchise into entertainment gold. 2011's Part 1 was a horror camp romp that turned the supernatural love triangle — the naval gazing trio of Bella Edward and Jacob — on its head. Breaking Dawn - Part 2 continues the madcap exploration of a world populated by vampires and werewolves mining even more comedy thrills and genuine character moments out of conceit than ever before. The film occasionally sidesteps back into Edward and Bella's meandering romance (an evident hurdle of author Stephenie Meyer's source material) but the duller moments are overshadowed by the movie's nimble pace and playful attitude. Breaking Dawn - Part 2 will elicit laughs aplenty — but thankfully they're all on purpose.
Part 2 picks up immediately following the events of the first film Bella (Kristen Stewart) having been turned into a vampire by Edward (Robert Pattinson) to save her life after the torturous delivery of her half-human half-vampire child Renesmee. She awakes to discover super senses heightened agility increased strength… and a thirst for blood. One dead cougar later Bella and the gang are able to focus on the real troubles ahead: Renesmee is rapidly growing (think Jack) and vampiric overlords The Volturi perceive her a threat to vampiric secrecy. Knowing the Volturi will travel to Forks WA to kill the young girl (a 10-year-old just a month after being born) The Cullens amass an army of bloodsucking friends to end the oppression once and for all.
Packed with an absurd amount of backstory and mythology-twisting plot points (some vampires can shoot lightning now?) Condon and series screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg mine revel in the beefed up ensemble of Breaking Dawn - Part 2 and thanks to a wildly funny cast it never feels like pointless deviation. Along with the usual suspects Lee Pace adds swagger to the series as a grungy alt-rock vampire Noel Fisher appears as a hilarious over-the-top battle-ready Russian coven member and Michael Sheen returns has Volturi head honcho Aro and steels the show. Flamboyant diabolical and a steady stream of maniacal laughter Sheen owns Condon's high camp vision for Twilight and he lights up the screen. There are a few throw away nations of vampires — the oddly stereotypical Egyptian and Amazonians sects are there mostly there to off-set the extreme whiteness — but the actors involved bring liveliness to a franchise known for being soulless. Even Stewart Pattinson and Taylor Lautner give personal bests in this installment — a scene between Bella and her dad Charlie (Billy Burke) is genuinely heartfelt while Jacob's overprotective hero schtick finally lands.
Whereas Breaking Dawn - Part 1 stuck mostly to the personal story relying on the intimate moments as Bella and Edward took the big plunge into marriage and sex Part 2 paints with broader strokes and Condon has a ball. Delving into the history of the vampires and the vampire world outside Forks is Pandora's Box for the director. One scene where we learn why kids scare the heck of the Volturi captures a scope of medieval epics — along with the bloodshed. Twilight might be known for its sexual moments but Breaking Dawn - Part 2 will go down for its abundance of decapitations. The big set piece in the finale is something to behold both in the craftsmanship of the spectacle and in its bizarre nature.
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 had the audience hooting hollering and even gasping as it twisted and turned to the final moments. There's little doubt that even the biggest naysayer of the franchise would do the same. No irony here: the conclusion of Twilight is a blast.
The one-time soap star, who will play vampire Zafrina in the new Twilight Breaking Dawn movies, is the brains behind The Film & Television Guide to Working in America.
The actress reveals she learned the hard way - and squandered her savings on visas, hustlers and expensive advisers - and now she wants to help other Brits dreaming of success in Hollywood and New York avoid the nightmare she went through.
The former EastEnders star tells WENN, "I didn't realise you needed a work permit to work. I didn't know nothing (sic) and so basically I just spent my money trying to figure out what to do... There are so many mistakes that you make and there are so many things people don't tell you.
"I thought it would be of great service to put this information down in a book so that someone could spend three hours reading it and get all that information, rather than it taking them three years and costing them their savings."
The book started life as a pamphlet Shekoni would offer to friends who wanted to work as an actor or actress in the U.S. and she began to realise she had a lot to offer.
She adds, "There's also so much choice in Los Angeles - you want an acting teacher, there are 10,000 acting teachers, there are 20,000 photographers. There are so many of everything and there's everything from hustlers who are just taking your money to people who are at the top of their craft.
"By writing the book out and publishing the book it made me feel better about some of the experiences I've had here."
The British actress, who will vamp it up as Zafrina in the new Twilight Breaking Dawn movies, tells WENN she set up Extensions Evolution with a friend last year (10) and business has really taken off.
The stunning star explains, "I've always been wearing hair extensions since the age of 16 and I've definitely made a few weave mistakes in my time. It's just always been important to me to find better techniques and to make my hair look good.
"My friend already had a company in England where she had done it before and she was interested in doing it again and so we decided to go into partnership.
"We researched it for about a year-and-a-half; all the manufacturing, and figuring everything out before we launched in 2010 and it was instantly successful. We now have stockists in Nigeria, Australia, England, America and Switzerland."
Shekoni insists her line is a success because it's user-friendly and does away with the pain of extensions.
She adds, "We use hair extensions and techniques that don't damage your hair. The idea is you use our product until your own hair grows and then you don't need the extensions anymore, versus using hair extensions that rip out your own hair.
"It has been amazing. We have wigs that Beyonce wears and Tyra Banks wears... and we get hair from Russia and China and Brazil."
The company became so successful so quickly, the actress considered quitting showbusiness and going back to school to study business.
She says, "I moved back to England and studied for an MBA at Westminster University. I did it for a while but acting came calling again and I decided to move back to L.A."
That decision resulted in her landing a dream role in the new Twilight movies.
The stunning former model-turned-actress has been picked as the star of the ambitious new reality show, which was shot in Fiji.
The Brit tells WENN, "It's the same format as a British show and the concept is what would happen in a world where women ruled and men obey.
"We went to an island to put that into action - the men had to do what they were told. It throws up the question who would be your ideal man in a woman's world."
The six-foot stunner admits she struggles to find a costume for her adopted Los Angeles trick or treating, and often gives up and simply stays at home on the spookiest night of the year.
She tells WENN, "It all overwhelms me. I've gone to the Santa Monica Boulevard Halloween parade and been a part of it all and then other times I've been like, 'I'm just gonna stay home and watch a video'.
"My costumes have never been elaborate; I basically have a white dress and I'll buy a pair of angel wings and I'm an angel. One time I wore reasonable-sized underwear and my angel wings and went as Tyra Banks - I was impressed that people got it.
"Even this year, as of now, I don't have an outfit and I don't know what I'm gonna wear. There's three parties that I've been invited to and I have no idea what I'm gonna wear. I've got a day off on Saturday, so I'm gonna go hunting.
"Because of Twilight, I feel like I wanna go the other way and so I think I'll probably be an angel or a fairy; something light and frothy - so I can save my dark side for the movie."
And Shekoni can't wait for her Twilight debut to hit the big screen - because she'd like to hit the streets and parties as Zafrina.
She adds, "At least I can go out at Halloween next year, as Zafrina."
The Brit is hoping her character's costume becomes a Halloween staple for Twilight fans: "Please God and the universe, make my character have an impact that occurs. That would be great."
The thing is Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties doesn’t even have anything to do with the classic Charles Dickens novel. Two Kitties is more a pauper/prince type story. I guess kids probably don’t know what a “pauper” is and well The Prince and the Pussy wouldn’t really work would it? Still they could have at least come up with a clever story to go along with the title. This time around Garfield (Bill Murray) wants to stop Jon (Breckin Meyer) from asking cute-as-a-button vet Liz (Jennifer Love Hewitt) to marry him on a trip to London by stowing away. Once over the pond the fat yellow cat ends up being mistaken for a royal fat yellow cat Prince (Tim Curry) who has just inherited a castle. Sure Garfield likes all the perks--minced pie anytime he rings a bell; pampering beyond your regular tongue bath; and no Odie. There are a few downsides namely an evil relative (Billy Connolly) who wants the cat dead so he can get the estate but it doesn’t matter. Both cats are killed in the end anyway. Oh I’m kidding (I only wish). The laconic Murray is certainly a wise choice to voice the indolent fat cat and was mildly entertaining in the first Garfield. But for the Oscar-nominated actor to agree to do it again let’s just say it must have been very costly for the producers. I would hope anyway that he asked for a lot of money because why else would you do something as inane as this? The character interminably grates. There are also a bevy of British actors in Two Kitties who are equally annoying doing animal voices--from Curry as the mollycoddled Prince to Bob Hoskins as a bulldog and Sharon Osbourne as a pig. As for the human factor Meyer and Love Hewitt are gag-producing sugary sweet while Connolly just makes a complete ass of himself as the dastardly villain. It’s kind of embarrassing actually --for everyone involved. It still boggles the mind the first Garfield grossed $75 million domestically. Yes it was an understandable endeavor since the comic strip has always been immensely popular and with the advent of CGI creating the Garfield we all know and love for the screen was finally possible. But the first Garfield was so mind-numbingly ridiculous you just have to wonder what the audiences saw in it. I guess maybe it had something to do with keeping 7-year-olds occupied. Of course all the studio execs saw were dollar signs so it stands to reason they’d make a sequel. It made money dammit so we have to do it again can’t you see that? OK so let’s say we go with that reasoning hoping maybe they’ll have realized their mistakes with the first and come up with something better. No such luck. I have feeling this time around however those same execs may be disappointed. In a summer full of far more stellar entertainment for the kiddies these Two Kitties are going to thankfully fall by the wayside and put an end to the franchise once and for all.