January 13, 2012

Movie Review–Twilight

220px-Twilight-dvdI’ve been planning to review movies for a while, but I certainly never expected the first one to be on Twilight. The thing is, I’ve considered writing a post on Twilight for a long time, but, ever since the books and movies exploded into our lives, I have adamantly refused to read or watch them. I wanted nothing to do with them for very specific reasons, and since I hadn’t watched or read them, I didn’t share my thoughts on them. However, after a lot of thought and debating, I came to the decision that I wanted to be able to adequately defend my reasons by knowing exactly what I was talking about. So, the other night, I sat down with my mom and watched the first two movies. To say I’m disturbed, upset, and deeply saddened is probably an understatement. I have always been saddened about the diehard following Twilight has, but to actually see it for myself really drove home why I am upset.

Let’s look at the obvious for a moment. The story centers around vampires, werewolves, and evil elements no one, let alone Christians, should be dwelling on. It would be one thing if it were portrayed as what it is, evil. Something wrong and repulsive. But it isn’t. All these things are portrayed in a positive light. That is my biggest objection to Twilight. It makes things that are undoubtedly wrong and portrays them as okay and desirable. It portrays giving into desire and temptation without any real regret or consequences. I will say right now, I firmly believe it's dangerous, especially to the hearts and minds of young women, and that is horribly troubling.

Now, to get into some of the details. One of the very first things that jumped out at me was that Twilight exhibits the very height of foolishness when it comes to relationships. Bella’s constant “I’m not afraid of you” and “you won’t hurt me” to Edward after learning he is a vampire is as naïve and foolish as it gets. If you’re attracted to a guy you shouldn’t be with, convincing yourself you’re safe with him and that he’s a good guy isn’t going to make it so! I can’t think of any area more dangerous to throw caution to the wind, which is what Bella does throughout the first two movies. Edward’s “dedication” to Bella may seem romantic, but trust me, in real life there is NOTHING romantic about such obsessive, stalkerish behavior. Nothing. When you really sit and think about it, his behavior is just plain scary. Seriously, sneaking into her bedroom to watch her sleep at night? How can that be romantic? And Bella doesn’t even bat an eyelash at it. I’ll be the first to tell you, if God blesses me with marriage someday, I want to be married to a man who will protect me, but a guy who is so obsessed he’ll do anything is wrong. The entire thing gives such a poor and warped view of a true, loving, and God honoring relationship. Say what you will, but I completely believe it has the power to influence how young women might view a relationship and give them a desire for something that isn’t wholesome.

One thing I found particularly disturbing is Bella’s complete disregard for her soul. All she wants is to be turned into a vampire so she can be with Edward, and she doesn’t care at all that she’ll end up in hell as a result. As long as she has what she wants now, her eternal future doesn’t concern her. Seriously consider that for a moment. To be so obsessed and desire something so much, you don’t care what it costs you. What kind of message is that? Adding to this is how neither one is willing to live without the other. Edward comes right out and tells Bella that she is the only thing worth living for. No one is the only thing worth living for except for God. Our relationship with Him is the only relationship that should consume us. Everything and everyone else is second, and shouldn’t dictate our lives, which leads to that fact that, at the end of the second movie, when Edward comes to the false assumption that Bella is dead, he goes to the head vampires to have them kill him because he won’t live in a world without her. Oh, this is such a dangerous, dangerous message, having two people who don’t even think twice about committing suicide if they lose each other. And it wasn’t just Edward. Throughout the second movie, Bella, deep in depression after Edward leaves her, turns time and again to self-destructive behavior just so she can see these visions of him.

And I can’t overlook the obvious gruesome violence and darkness that comes from having a story centered around vampires. Numerous times you see them biting into the necks or wrists of helpless victims, and while this should be something horrific, most of the time it was portrayed as an act of kindness by the “good” vampires in order to save the dying since the venom turns them into vampires themselves, saving their lives. Really no mention is given to the fact that, in the story, this means all these people are now going to hell when they eventually die. Not only that, but on other occasions, you see the “good” vampires either lose control or nearly lose control of themselves at the scent of blood. It’s horror, plain and simple, and all very uncomfortable to watch.

There is so much more than what I’ve covered, but it all pretty much boils down to two things. First, there is no purity in this story. Everything is just so warped and twisted. It goes against everything in Philippians 4:8. And two, there is so much obsession with self-desires that there is nothing God honoring about it. I could say there were little redeeming qualities. Bella’s dad is a really nice, loveable character, Jacob (despite the fact he is a werewolf) is a sweet guy (and far less creepy than Edward), and Edward’s sister Alice is really a great character. I’m sure there is a long list of other things someone could point out to me. But why? If you sit and be 100% honest, what purpose does it serve? Does it take away any of the other facts? Despite what good may be taken away from this story, the rest is still there. You can’t take that away, you can’t justify it. It taints everything. Evil can’t be excused or justified.

The conclusion is that I came away feeling shell-shocked and disturbed. To re-enforce that, I had a horrible night sleep because of it, waking up in the morning feeling burdened and repulsed. Yes, Twilight is fiction, but the things we let into our lives, the things we do for enjoyment, do have an effect on us. Unfortunately, nothing is just harmless entertainment. That is why we must be so careful in guarding our hearts and minds. Satan will use whatever he possibly can to sway and deceive us, and something like Twilight, I believe, is powerful ammunition.


Anonymous said...

I encourage everyone to read Molly Evangeline's review of Twilight. Though it will be very unpopular for many, her evaluation of it is amazing, insightful, and challenging, to say the least. Thank you Molly for your willingness to expose the dark side of these types of movies and the godless realities that are being promoted.

Emily and Ian said...

I would just like to add that I read the first book (didn't watch the movies) and did not find it to be well-written enough OR interesting enough to make me want to read the second one. :/ Personally I don't think she's a great writer... so yeah, I guess I can't really think of even one redeeming quality of the series.

Molly Evangeline said...

I heard that about the quality of the writing. I also heard the books get progressively darker. If the Plugged In review I read of the fourth movie is an indicator, it's true.

Bush Maid said...

Molly, I would like to thank you for being so brave as to watch these movies and to put your imagination on the line for what you believe about them. I know what it is like to stand for something strongly and yet have to admit to not reading/seeing the material for yourself. It was very brave of you to do that.

I have never read, nor seen any of the Twilight series for all of the reasons you have shared here. I agree with you, %100.

Whenever I am told that I am missing out on something "awesome" by not getting involved with the Twilight scene, it never bothers me because I know there are so many other wholesome, exciting books out there that are worth my while. Why waste your time reading something potentially horrible or even dangerous when you can read something that you know will benefit you?

Anyway, thankyou again for sharing your thoughts. :)