Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Over the (New) Moon

by Sariah S. Wilson

I can tell my grandkids that I was officially there.

Opening night to see "New Moon."

It gave a new definition to royal craziness.

I wanted to go opening weekend. I'm not exactly a Twihard, but I did really love the first two books (and enjoyed the first movie). So I wanted to see "New Moon," particularly before anyone could tell me anything about it. I didn't want to go in with any preconceived notions.

Turns out I wasn't the only one.

I had to arrange for a babysitter (which is one of my least favorite things about my family moving far away) and since there was a stake dance Saturday night, she agreed to come over on Friday. We also try to go out after our kids are in bed 1) because we want people to come back and babysit for us again and 2) we're never really sure how our oldest son will (or won't) behave.

Before we finalized our plans, I made sure to go out and buy my seats from, because it would have been no fun had we shown up to the theater only to find all of the shows sold out. This was also due to the fact that my husband had heard on the radio that "New Moon" had managed to break the pre-sales record of any other movie. Better safe than sorry.

Our movie theater is located in an area that has several restaurants, bookstores, and some other cutesy niche type stores. We came over the rise and saw that every single stall in every single establishment was taken. There were cars driving everywhere looking for spots, and no one leaving the movie theater. I've never seen anything like that before.

We managed to find a spot on a street behind the entertainment complex and ran over to the theater. People EVERYWHERE. Lines and lines and lines of people.

Now, I went opening weekend for the second set of Star Wars movies. And these were movies that people had grown up with - had watched and rewatched multiple times. I remember the frenzied anticipation and giddiness over "Phantom Menace." And even that, IMO, didn't compare to what I saw for "New Moon." People were lined up inside for shows that started anywhere from half an hour to two hours later. Hundreds and hundreds of people.

We got into our show, and while looking for seats, someone offered to scoot over so that we could sit together in a very good row.

Now, I would recommend that if you plan on going to see "New Moon" that you definitely go to a showing that has multiple teenage girls. They make the movie more fun and will give you infinitely more laughs than you'd probably typically have (although some of the movie is unintentionally funny - you'll know what I mean in the scene where someone "sees" Alice's vision). Every time good old Jacob took off his shirt, we had a nearly Beatles-sized reaction in the audience. Totally funny.

As to my thoughts on the movie - very faithful adaptation of the book. I actually sort of like movies like Harry Potter's "Prisoner of Azkaban" where they remain faithful to the story, but have little new touches either in the scenery or scenes like the shrunken head talking. I think it makes it more fun to have something unexpected. For me, there was nothing like that in "New Moon." I knew exactly what everyone was going to say and going to do the entire movie, and I think that made it a little less fun for me.

The production values on this movie are infinitely better than the first. The special effects probably won't want to make you laugh in this one. The cinematography/background scenery is just gorgeous. And everybody is very pretty in this one.

Now, I really like Kristen Stewart (Bella) and Robert Pattinson (Edward), and I think they do good work in this movie. Taylor Lautner (Jacob), not so much. I can't help it - every time I look at him I think of him as being Shark Boy (from "Shark Boy and Lava Girl" - possibly one of the stupidest movies ever made, but my second son had a phase where it was his favorite movie so I was forced to watch it a lot). Things I loved character wise with Jacob I felt like was sort of glossed over or Taylor Lautner wasn't able to play it so that we understood how he was feeling. That was a bit of a disappointment to me.

Apparently I'm the only one who didn't think this was the best movie ever made. Don't get me wrong - I did like it and my husband liked it ("Yeah, it was good," he just said in an offhand way), but I didn't love it. I understand that this makes me weird because every other person I've talked to fanatically loved it (and said it was the best movie they ever saw and that it made them more Team Jacob than Team Edward, which I don't get because we all pretty much know how that team thing works out in the end). And box office numbers were astronomical - and broke a lot of records - nipping at the heels of "The Dark Knight" and "Spider-Man 3" for best opening weekend.

If you read that article about the record breaking, you'll see that they're negotiating with Stephenie Meyer for "Breaking Dawn." If that were me, I'd be giving Summit Entertainment instructions on where to bring their armored truck with my boatload of money. (And I still can't wrap my mind around what it must be like to be Stephenie Meyer and to have caused all of this.)

Have you seen "New Moon?" What did you think? Will you go and see it if you haven't already? Do you have any expectations for the movie?


At 11/22/2009 10:19 PM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Well, I might as well go first, since my comment is going to be completely out of step with most of the comments to follow. I thought the Twilight movie was boring and have no plans to see New Moon.

But I do have a question from the Twilight movie. What was the deal with Edward's pompadour hairdo?

At 11/22/2009 11:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hate to say that I'm more in line with Stephanie on this one. I'm not a huge Twilight fan--not because of the writing or characters. I think Stephanie Myer is talented and deserving. I just didn't care for it much. I liked The Host a lot but Twilight didn't do it for me. =[

At 11/22/2009 11:44 PM, Blogger Marcia Mickelson said...

I saw Twilight and thought it was okay. I liked New Moon a lot better. I wouldn't say it was the best movie I ever saw, but I really enjoyed it and had a lot of fun watching it.

I loved the werwolves--those were my favorite scenes.

At 11/22/2009 11:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Edward looks really bad with his makeup in BOTH movies. How ridiculous is the white FACE PAINT the Cullens wear. Im pretty sure in everyday life SOMEONE would notice that more than their "absolute beauty".

The Twilight movie might have been one of the worst movies I have in fact ever seen. The special effects are awful as in character development and acting. As you said with New Moon, Twilight is also highly predicatble, having read the books.

I am a big fan of the books. But feel they slightly ruined them for me with the movie.

At 11/23/2009 10:21 AM, Blogger Heather Moore said...

Waiting for the crowds to die down before venturing out with my daughter.

At 11/23/2009 10:24 AM, Blogger Kerry Blair said...

I'm so glad I read the comments because I love Sariah and value her opinion. But maybe it's safe to admit this just the same:

I, too, dragged my husband to a movie this Saturday. There cars and teenage girls and Twilight t-shirts everywhere. There was even a contingent of girls with painted white faces (I got that) and another dozen all in prom dresses (I still don't get that.) By the time we got to the window, my husband had forgotten the name (well, number) of the movie I was making him see. The ticket seller turned to me and asked, "What movie do you want to see?" Sariah, forgive me, but I replied, "Pretty much anything but New Moon."

My daughter, however, is doing her part to launch it further into the stratosphere by taking in a second showing today.

At 11/23/2009 10:26 AM, Blogger Janice Sperry said...

I may be lynched by some twilight moms in my neighborhood but I'm not a huge twilight fan. I read the books and enjoyed all but the last and I laughed my way through the first movie. It was a comedy right? I'm not planning to see the second movie unless I see it at the library and I can't find a book to read and I don't have anything on hold and I experience a temporary lapse in sanity.

At 11/23/2009 10:44 AM, Blogger Melanie Goldmund said...

The Sunday School teacher in our ward is a woman a year or two older than I am, who is apparently obsessed with the Twilight series. Each week, she brings her laptop and a beamer to help her give her lesson, and each week, her screensaver is the movie poster, first for Twilight and now for New Moon. The first time I saw it, I got all excited, thinking we were going to talk about the little known history of vampires in the Early Church. I mean, for all we know, Brigham Young could have been married to one! Alas, no.

And although I've read the books -- once each, except the last one, which I just skimmed through and didn't bother to finish -- seeing those pictures of Edward and Bella are as close to the movies as I'm going to get. I'm just not a fan.

At 11/23/2009 1:30 PM, Blogger Anna said...

I went to see New Moon at the midnight showing. CRAZY. I'm not usually the midnight showing person. That's usually where you get all the diehards. Holy cow. I wanted to tell half the people to shut up because they were annoying. (I went because my sister and sister in law were going and it was fun to hang out with the group of girls.)

As far as the movie goes. I liked it. I saw the first one... mixed feelings on it. The second one was much better done. I never saw Shark Boy/Lava girl movie, so this is my first time seeing Taylor Lautner and I thought he did a great job.

The overly white makeup does bother me, but wasn't as bad as the first movie (IMO). Yes, there were a few cheesy parts that the teenage girls went gaga over.

I think my expectations were higher for the first one and was somewhat disappointed. My expectations were lower for the second one and I enjoyed it more than I thought I would.

But as an overall, I really liked the books and movies. I'm a fan... not a crazy fan. Though I also think it would be cool to have a book I wrote have this much hype. With this many fans, it shouldn't bother her for all the ones who publicly hate it. To each their own. :)

At 11/23/2009 3:06 PM, Blogger Heather Justesen said...

I remember the insane lines for Prisoner of Azkaban the day it came out, so I think I have a glimmer of what you went through. I haven't seen New Moon yet, though I do plan to. Unfortunately, the movie options are somewhat limited in my neck of the woods, and the closest theater with surround sound is 35 miles away. (The closest theater is twenty feet away from me, but the audio experience leaves much to be desired and they only have one screen.) The closest THX theater is 90 miles away...

I may make my way to Delta this week, if I can verify that the movie is showing there (another problem with small-town life, no 12-plex in sight--that's okay, the benefits far out-weight the drawbacks).

At 11/23/2009 7:10 PM, Blogger Rachel Andersen said...

I haven't gone yet - I don't like crazy crowds. But I spoke with teenage girls that did go to the midnight showing. They said the movie was lame. Then my sister and niece went on Saturday. They both loved it. I'll get around to it when it's on DVD.

At 11/23/2009 8:42 PM, Blogger Charlie Moore said...

I think the fame Stephenie Meyer has gained is good. I couldn't say how she views it. But it can also be a curse. With all that fame (and money) she could very easily let her relationship with her family and her church falter. As a priesthood holder I hope that doesn't happen. As a person who likes to be creative, I applaude her. I hope she is cautious not to fall in love with all that money. Of course, one day she may be as famous as Donnie and Marie and we'll she her competing on Dancing with the Stars. Partnered up with Derek Hough. I wonder if she likes to dance.

I haven't read any Stephenie Meyer books, simply because the genre doesn't appeal to me. I have seen the first movie on DVD simply because other family members (my kids) were watching it. No comment on whether I liked or disliked it.

I do believe Sister Meyer is a wonderful mother, wife and church member. None of my comments in this post are meant to suggest otherwise.


At 11/23/2009 9:26 PM, Anonymous brandon knight said...

New Moon is an incredible movie and Kristen and Robert give amazing acting performances. I cant wait for the next installment!

At 11/24/2009 12:11 AM, Blogger Laura said...

I saw it. I needed a good distraction and it was perfect. Not to mention the fact that my husband and I were sitting in a row with teenagers. I had just as much fun rolling my eyes at certain parts of the movie while girls screamed and giggled. Yeah, it was fun. What can I say- I'm easily entertained.

At 11/28/2009 12:38 PM, Blogger Karlene said...

We went on Saturday to a theater that does assigned seating. (Worth the extra drive time!)

I pretty much agree with you. It was better than Twilight. It was good. I liked it. It wasn't the best movie I ever saw.

I did a review with pictures over on my blog.


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