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.
Britney Spears fans, don't despair. The pop princess may be a little tired from going nonstop over the last four years with three top-selling albums and a world tour, but after a much-needed break, she will return to the recording studio. In Italy for Donatella Versace's spring/summer 2003 fashion show (the designer says her new line was inspired by Spears' "all-singing, all-dancing, all-acting" style), the 20-year-old Spears admitted to Reuters, "I think I may just go to Los Angeles and record a little bit. But other than that I just plan to hang out."
Jennifer Aniston, who just won her first Emmy for best actress in a comedy series, has also won her first film award for her work in the dark comedy The Good Girl, nabbing the actress of the year award from the sixth annual Hollywood Film Festival. The awards will be handed out Oct. 7 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
VIP and Baywatch star Pamela Anderson is close to an agreement with ex-husband Tommy Lee over the custody of their two sons. The lawyers for each party have told Superior Court Judge Lee Smalley Edmon, who warned she would declare a mistrial if the custody papers weren't signed soon, that the deal should be delivered by Monday, Oct. 7. Anderson originally petitioned for full custody, while Lee asked for equal time.
Just what we need--a movie about the rock band AC/DC. The film Thunderstruck will follow five friends and devoted fans of the band who, after a near-death experience in 1991, vow to bury whoever dies first next to the grave of former AC/DC front man Bon Scott. Jumping ahead to present day, the friends reunite when one of them dies. No one has been cast as yet.
Paramount Pictures has delayed the release of their sci-fi disaster film The Core because more time was needed to complete the special effects. The Core stars Aaron Eckhart and Hilary Swank as experts who must journey to the center of the Earth to jump-start the planet's slowing rotation. The film was to hit theaters Nov. 1 but will now be released sometime in early 2003.
MTV is developing a TV biopic on the life of Stephen Fanning, the ingenious creator of the now defunct, music-swapping site Napster. The story will follow the young man's life from his childhood, to the creation of music-sharing software in his college dorm room, to the tremendous success of Napster and finally to the legal battles between Fanning's Napster and the major record labels. The movie should air sometime next year.
British pop star Robbie Williams has signed one of the biggest record deals in British history, London's The Sun reports. The singer, who has been hailed as the new Frank Sinatra, signed a deal worth $125.5 million with EMI Group Plc, which would include four albums and a commitment to try to make him a star in the U.S., a market he has yet to break into.
And speaking of British pop singers…Stuart Goddard, known better as '80s pop sensation Adam Ant, walked away from court a free man on Wednesday. The judge ruled Goddard, who pleaded guilty to threatening pub customers with a starter pistol in August, was suffering from mental illness at the same time and could not be held responsible. The judge did, however, order the singer to serve a 12-month community rehabilitation.