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2 December 2012 Edition

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Broken Down

Movie review

The introduction of an Irish vampire made me want to drink my own blood

Twilight: Breaking Dawn – Part 2

Directed by Bill Condon

Cast: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner

12A – 1 hour 56 mins

Reviewed by Mairtín Ó hEartaigh

VAMPIRES have been a part of human mythology for millennia. The Mesopotamians, Romans, ancient Greeks and those that came before them all had their own stories of vampire-like creatures. Ancient Irish mythology spoke of Dearg-Dul, a beautiful woman who would rise from her grave, seduce her victims and drink their blood. There was no way to kill Dearg-Dul but you could trap it by piling a cairn of stones on its grave.

Come to think of it, there are a number of cairns atop Slieve Gullion and nobody is quite sure who is underneath them.

People would often go to great lengths to ensure their loved ones did not rise from the grave. Archaeologists have discovered decapitated and burned bodies in coffins, skeletons with stakes driven through their chests, garlic stuffed in their mouths or their arms and legs bound with hawthorn. 

As late as the 19th century it was still common for people burying a loved one in parts of eastern Europe to put a bullet through the coffin.

But why am I writing all this in a film review? Because it’s all far more interesting than the final chapter in the Twilight saga.

In truth, a review of Twilight is an utterly pointless endeavour.

So long as Pattinson and Lautner get their tops off at some point (which they do) the Twihards will love it. There is something in their blood that makes them return to the series again and again no matter how bad the previous instalment was (a bit like Fianna Fáil voters).

Meanwhile, those of us with two or more brain cells to rub together sit mystified as we attempt to deduce why this badly-written, badly-acted teenage fantasy with surprisingly rubbish special effects is so popular.

With that said, Breaking Dawn — Part 2 is undoubtedly the best chapter in the Twilight series. The least rotten apple in a bag of rotten apples, it will probably give you a nasty dose of the squits as opposed to the protracted, violent death that the others would induce. 

Actually, the final battle scene in Part 2 had me quite enthralled. It was surprisingly visceral, savage and satisfying. For 15 brief but brilliant minutes Twilight almost entered the dizzy heights of two-stardom.

However, a total cop-out of an ending that renders the battle scene null brought me back to Earth with a thud.

Meanwhile the introduction of an Irish vampire, who arrives with a huge ginger beard, a flat cap and (I kid you not), an Aran sweater so thick it would make even the most misty-eyed American tourist cringe, made me want to drink my own blood.

And so, after four years, five films and a Mariana Trench worth of teenage tears, the Twilight saga comes to an end.

Now stuff its mouth with garlic, stake it, behead it, burn it, bind it with hawthorn, nail the coffin shut, shoot it, bury it underneath a mountain of stones and let’s never speak of it again.

One star.

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