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End of the Twilight Era
From the Beginning
When I picked up the first book, I thought, OK ... let me see what my teenage daughter has been gushing about. What's this about a vampire love story?
Four days later and all four books in the series completed, I realized I had been 'bitten' by the Twi-bug.
From there, my sister caught the bug and so we planned a trip to Forks, Washington; the most beautiful place we have ever seen. The movies also happened to coincide with my daughter's birthday every year so it became a tradition to go see the newest installment come out on her big day.
The Twilight series, for us anyway, has become a sort of bonding experience that we are sad to see go. We realized that by purchasing the last DVD, an era had come to an end.
Thankfully, Twilight is cemented in the Hollywood history books and it's something that my daughters will be able to tell their daughters about someday. This is for them :)
"I've never given much thought to how I would die."
The first of the installation of the Twilight series introduces us to mild-mannered yet awkward Bella as she prepares to leave Arizona, where she stays with her mother and new husband. Bella has no idea that the relocation to live with her dad, Charlie, in Forks will start a chain of events that will change her life forever.
From the very beginning Stephanie Meyer fused an understanding into our minds of this old soul stuck in a teenage girl's body. Bella is not your typical teenager and this is evident by the maturity to which she made the decision to move to Forks, her forced peer relationships with what she has to consider mere children and the demeanor in which she carries herself.
Of course, there are still moments in this star-struck love-story that hormones and romantic thoughts take over her normally clear minded thoughts. It is when she sees Edward that there becomes a reason to be interested in this small town.
As with any good story, the lovers path won't be an easy one to travel because she realizes fairly quickly that the world he lives in is very different from the one she has stumbled through for seventeen years.
Edward is a vampire.
The plot thickens as this vampire becomes completely enamored with this human girl but then again, most of the male characters seem to be taken with her from the beginning. Including Jacob Black. More on him later.
Edward and Bella begin this sort of song and dance with one another that makes his family uncomfortable because this human could easily expose them for who they really are. Especially after he saves Bella from being smashed by a truck skidding on ice in the school parking lot.
His family, Carlisle, Esme, Alice, Jasper, Rosalie and Emmett; are all vampires. None of them drink human blood in any form. But unlike the rest of them however, Edward, Alice and Jasper have special gifts. Edward can hear thoughts, Jasper can control emotions of others and Alice can see the future which adds "fictional fuel to the mysterious fire" when they figure out Bella is immune to their powers.
Edward is fascinated by the girl whose mind he cannot read and so he sets out to get to know her. More importantly, it takes the duty upon himself to be her protector; mostly because he realizes how clumsy she is and the fact that she seems to attract trouble just by breathing.
Between her brush with death by almost being hit by a truck and almost being attacked in nearby Seattle, this girl is just an accident waiting to happen, which is irritating to Edward to say the least.
It's not until a trio of misfit vampires, Laurant, James and Victoria; stumble upon the vampire family playing baseball during a thunderstorm, with their new-found human friend, that the story takes a turn. Edward can no longer deny his feelings for Bella as he is faced with the thought of losing her.
The Cullens come together to protect Edward's love and their beloved Forks against the troublesome vampires, James and the "red-headed one", Victoria. The third, Laurant; has warned Carlisle and the family of these two and wants no part of it.
The game is on for James with Victoria just along for the ride in his mission to feast on Bella's blood. Little does he realize, Edward and the Cullens will move the Earth to keep that from happening.
James' plan is thwarted by the vampire clan though Bella is battered and bitten. Edward sucks the venom out before it can spread while Alice, Emmett and Jasper rip James' body to pieces before setting it ablaze.
Bella wakes in the hospital to find Edward hasn't left her side. Out of concern for her he tells her that it might be best for him to get out of her life while she still has one. Bella won't hear of it and knows her place is with him. She wants to become like him but it's his turn now not to hear of it. He doesn't want Bella to lose her soul and believes that is what will happen should he turn her; that the life of a vampire isn't one that he would have chosen if given the chance.
In the end, Bella and Edward are headed for their high school prom because Edward feels it is an experience she should have. Bella is still hopeful that Edward will change her as they dance under the lights and to a soft tune.
The dance floor is empty now as Edward dips Bella and his lips find the crease of her neck ...
The movie ends with the "red-headed one" walking down the stairs with a smile on her face that this isn't the end.
Thankfully it isn't.
"These violent delights have violent ends."
In this second installation of the Twilight series, we open with Bella finding herself in an open field, seemingly waving to her grandmother. Edward appears and is walking toward the elderly woman with her but when she goes to introduce them; she realizes the old woman is actually her. Only Edward hasn't aged.
Bella is awaken with a trembling fear of growing old. It is her birthday and it makes her realize that she is continuing to age while Edward stays frozen in time. Humans love celebrating their birthdays but Bella isn't your typical human. She wants Edward to change her but he is still reluctant.
The story takes a quick turn into depression following Bella's botched birthday party at the Cullen's house that ends with Jasper lunging at an open wound on Bella's finger. This leads to a small scuffle that leads to an even bigger issue for Bella. The guilt eats away at Edward that the love of his life has been injured, yet again, simply because she knows him. He feels that the only way to protect Bella is to leave her.
And so Edward leaves.
This is our first glimpse into the world of the wolves, the unrealized world of Jacob Black. We watch as Sam (the leader of the wolf pack) finds Bella tucked away sobbing in the woods incoherently and returns her to Charlie.
October, November and December show us Bella sitting in her room in a state of depression that she is only jolted from when Charlie threatens to make her leave Forks. This is an unbearable thought because she is still clinging to the hope that Edward is going to come back to her.
She is forced to begin getting out of the house and so her eternal friendship with Jacob begins as they start spending a lot of time together.
Teenagers will be teenagers. Bella tries to survive her heartache through Jacob's companionship until his own path makes way for yet another supernatural twist in Bella's life.
The wolf pack is reinstated after many decades because of the resurgence of vampires in the area. Even though the Cullens are gone and they have a treaty with the tribe the wolves are transformed from boys of the tribe in order to protect the town people and the reservation.
Jacob reveals he is a wolf and Bella learns the history between the Quileute tribe and the Cullens; but not a moment too soon.
Victoria has sent Laurant back and Bella is left defenseless without Edward. But thankfully, she still has Jacob and the pack. Laurant is ripped apart before he can harm Bella.
The pack is still on high alert after chasing the "red-headed one" out of the area but despite the danger, Bella is still on an adrenaline rush to find ways to 'see' Edward. In one of her escapades, she almost finds herself dead. Yet again.
Not long after, Alice appears at Bella's house fearing she has committed suicide. Once she figures out she hasn't, they must now rush off to save Edward, who believes Bella is dead and going to seek help from the Volturi, to die.
In the end, we meet the Volturi and witness Bella offer her life to save Edward's. They both make it out alive of course as Bella wakes up in her own bed. This time, Edward is there, promising to never leave again.
This, of course, causes problems for the Bella and Jacob love story as Edward declares his undying love. He lived without Bella and it almost killed him too and he vows to never inflict that pain upon he or Bella, ever again.
But the Twilight love triangle doesn't stop there.
"Some say the world will end in fire, some say in ice. From what I've tasted of desire, I hold with those that favor fire."
The third installation to the Twilight series still finds Edward at Bella's side, with the promise that he will never leave her again. We still find Bella with qualms about marriage although Edward promises to change her should she marry him.
The topic is avoided temporarily as Bella tries to reconnect as Jacob's friend, of course met with opposition at first by Edward and as they plan their high school graduation.
That is, until they are forced to work together in an effort to save Bella's life against Victoria.
The "red-headed one" has built an army of newborn vampires to take out the Cullens so she can finally get her hands on Bella.
The wolf pack and the Cullen family come together in the first battle scene of the Twilight series. Newborn vampires against more tenured vampires makes for very good screeching metal sounds and lots of body parts being thrown around but not so gory because they have no blood after all.
Everyone makes it out alive but not before Jacob's wolf body is broken by a straggler newborn vampire.
"Childhood is not from birth through a certain age and at a certain age the child is grown and puts away childish things. Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies."
The final installment of the Twilight series, and perhaps the best of all four installations is broken into two parts for the movie (but just one very large book).
Breaking Dawn Part 1 opens with Jacob taking off (shirtless) into the rain when he receives a wedding invitation.
Edward has finally convinced Bella to marry him in exchange for him being the one to change her into an immortal. Alice is going overboard as usual with her wedding preparations but minds are preoccupied.
Edward concerned with Bella's immortal life and Bella concerned that Edward may back out at any moment. Of course, his feet are cold but that's because he's a vampire.
The wedding goes off without a hitch, even if Bella looks so nervous she may just pass out walking down the aisle. Lavish, blissful and beautiful ceremony thanks to Alice. And a just as equally tantalizing reception follows.
What wedding wouldn't be complete without the best man? Jacob comes through for Bella by showing up after the ceremony. The smiles quickly subside when he realizes Bella will be a human when she and Edward make love for the first time on their honeymoon. Since there is a high probability she will die, Jacob becomes upset all over again. (Poor guy just can't catch a break)
The newlyweds head off to Brazil for their honeymoon, to the Isle of Esme; a private island offshore that was a gift from Carlisle. The scenic views of the ocean and the tropical rain forest make for a romantic getaway.
Their first night on the island is the first night they make love. We are not privy to anything other than the skinny dip in the ocean followed by a tasteful love scene in the white, feathered bedroom. We knows it's feathered because feathers are flying around the next morning.
As Bella reminisces about the night before, Edward's brooding presence makes itself known when he sees Bella's body is full of bruises. Vowing not to touch her again while she is human, he begins to fill her time with mundane activities that will wear her out.
Until the last night she'd ever make love as a human.
Things progress quickly after that, when Bella learns she is with child; a fetus that grows at super speed and before we know it, her nine-month term has turned into something a little over a month or two.
Bella's only goal is to ensure her child is born into the world, healthy and happy, no matter what it means for her or her body. Bones are broken, bruises engulf her stomach and the fetus thirsts for blood. Still, Bella remains strong for the sake of her child, even if it is causing Edward to suffer at seeing her hurt this way.
In the meantime, Jacob has turned his back on his fellow pack because they want to kill Bella before the child is even born. They do not know anything of this situation because as far as anyone knows, it's never happened before. They are fearful that this newborn, half-human, half-vampire child can control it's thirst for blood.
Sensing the time is drawing closer Edward and his family make preparations to hunt to ensure they have the strength needed to fight off the pack.
But Bella goes into a bone-crushing labor that isn't waiting for Carlisle to return and so it is up to Edward to deliver his child and save the love of his life from dying during childbirth.
In the end, Renesmee is delivered safe and sound while Bella's broken and fragile body begins to slip away. Edward sends a shot of his venom directly into her heart but she isn't writhing in pain like most newborns do so he's fearful that she has died.
A fight ensues between the vampires and the pack but only long enough for Jacob to let them all know he has imprinted on Renesmee; making it impossible for anyone in the wolf pack to harm her.
We are left to watch Bella's body make a transformation into immortality while she suffers through the pain in silence.
The last shot of the movie is of this new vampire opening her red eyes.
"My time as a human is over, but I have never felt more alive."
Breaking Dawn Part 2 begins with Bella's red eyes opening for the first time and her new vampire sight coming into focus. Her senses are heightened and she becomes immediately aware of Edward's presence in the room. Naturally, she wants to see her child but Edward advises they hunt first so that she can control her thirst.
This is the first we are able to see Bella adjust so well to being a newborn vampire. We are mesmerized by her ability to see a flower bloom as she runs past it, the ease to which she leaps across a river and how she is able to turn away from human blood.
When they make it back to the house after their first hunting trip, Bella sees Jacob hasn't left even though she is now a vampire. She'll soon find out that she isn't the reason he stayed.
As they bring her to meet Renesmee for the first time, Bella is in awe at how fast the baby has grown in just a couple of days. This brings to light a new set of concerns but not before Renesmee 'shows' Bella her earliest memory of her mother. The child is gifted just as her parents, though Bella has yet to realize what she can do.
Of course, Bella first has to confront Jacob for imprinting on her daughter. (Big no-no when mama is a vampire.)But it doesn't take long for everyone to be on good terms again and there's still the issue of Renesmee's growth spurts. No one seems to have answers so they cherish every moment they have with her.
Renesmee continues to grow at an alarming rate but before Edward and Bella are able to set out in search of answers Alice has a premonition that the Volturi are coming for the family. The Volturi have been told that the Cullens have created an immortal child. It is against vampire law to create such children.
Preparations must be made and witnesses must be gathered but first, the family must try to understand why Alice and Jasper have fled in the middle of the night, without so much as a goodbye. There isn't much time to wonder so each pair sets out to gather vampires that will witness that Renesmee isn't an immortal child.
With the long, tragic history surrounding these immortal children, the Cullen's friends are hesitant to say the least but they manage to gather eighteen vampires that are all willing to witness.
Interesting enough, they manage to amass other vampires with powers of their own, making for a strong army if the need to fight arises. Combined with the expanded pack of wolves fighting to protect their reservation, the battle will still be a difficult one.
"When the snow sticks to the ground is when they will come." Alice has left a note for Bella that leads her to a man that will help her secure identification documents for Renesmee and Jacob. The realization that she and Edward won't be a part of their daughter's life is heartbreaking but she is resolved to allow her daughter a chance to live.
Goodbyes are out of the way. Bella and Edward have ensured Charlie won't be around for Bella to worry about and a small red backpack holds Renesmee and Jacob's future. Everything is in place.
And here come the Volturi across a field of snow.
Carlisle asks Aro to listen to reason but everyone has figured out that this vampire royalty has an agenda and that is to obtain Alice. He has no one like her, a vampire that can see the future.
Words are exchanged, Aro meets the child and the informant against the Cullens is killed. Almost inciting an early battle but instead, Bella realizes her grand power of 'shielding' against anyone's powers that tried to hurt her or her loved ones. As Jane tries to cripple Edward with her powers, Bella puts up her shield and smirks, really ticking Jane off.
It is then that Alice appears from beyond the horizon walking toward Aro to explain the child will be of no danger to the vampire communities. She places her hand in Aro's to show him what she has seen only to realize he isn't going to change his mind. Alice turns to Bella signaling her to get Renesmee out of here.
Bella places her daughter onto the wolf's back and instructs Jacob to take care of her daughter. He turns and gallops away with his precious cargo.
Alice kicks Aro square in the face, kicking him back a few hundred feet. The battle begins with Carlisle running to Alice's rescue.
And then ... Carlisle is dead, decapitated by Aro; a fight ensues between all, vampires and wolves alike converge on one another.
Jasper is beheaded, Seth is crushed to death and Sue falls into a fiery crack in the Earth (caused by Benjamin) while saving Esme.
Toward the end of the battle, Alice has thrown Jane to Sam in his wolf form, all of the Volturi soldiers and leaders are dead, except for Aro who ends up beheaded at the hands of Bella and Edward and set afire.
AND THEN THE VISION IS OVER ...
The theater was crazy loud at this point. It turned out the director had us going. It was all in the premonition Alice was giving to Aro. He witnessed his own death and didn't like what he saw.
Just then, an Indian appears to validate that the child will not cause harm as he too is half vampire and half human. His mother was seduced by a vampire but died during the birth. His aunt raised him as her own. He made her immortal by accident when he was a baby.
This comes as a relief to Edward and Bella but the bigger relief comes as Aro announces to the crowds that there is no danger and they will not fight today.
Everyone is alive and happy.
In the end, we are given a small glimpse into the future of a grown Renesmee holding her head on Jacob's shoulder as Bella and Edward walk in for a hug.
In true Twilight style, Edward and Bella are last seen sitting in the field of flowers that became a centerpiece for each film. Bella shows Edward her thoughts for the first time, from the first time she saw him to the first time they made love after getting married. We close with a kiss and a promise of forever.
The End of an Era
Bella, Edward, Jacob, the Cullens and even little Renesmee; will go down in the history books as one of those all time favorite teen romance movies that brought moms and daughters together as equal Twi-hards.
Every November, was a new 'cinema' chapter to look forward to just to see it play out on the big screen and hope that what you had read on the pages was portrayed in the film. Usually it was.
Stephanie Meyer revived the vampire fascination and brought werewolves into a sexier light. It satisfied that craving for drama and anticipation.
Twilight gave way to the possibility of forever; even if it came by way of an over-the-top, romance triangle, teenage heartthrob, immortal living, werewolf howling, Volturi threatening, childbirth carnaging, happily-ever-after vampire movie ... well so be it.
Twilight Official Trailer
New Moon Official Trailer
Eclipse Official Trailer
Breaking Dawn Part One Official Trailer
Breaking Dawn Part Two Official Trailer
In Case You Missed the Books
How to Get to Forks, WA
Just about every location in the Twilight books can be found in the area.