Dear Kristen Stewart,

I’ve spent a lot of time over at Letters to Twilight, so it’s sometimes hard for me not to think of my reviews, and other communications with people I will never meet, in anything other than letter format. So, that being said…Adventureland. Yeah. I think I kinda loved it.

While I would really love to one day see you play someone healthy and (gasp!) happy, you once again did a good job of playing depressive and damaged. I wonder why you were chosen for this role. Your character (Em Lewin) was an NYU student. I don’t know if she was a grad student like the male lead (James Brennan, played by Jesse Eisenberg). I might have missed it, if it was covered. The only reason I bring it up is because I know I was distracted by the ages of your characters. I think it was knowing how young you were while filming (what, 16?) or if it was because the two of you had crappy summer jobs, but I couldn’t help but think of both of you as high school kids. I know others were concerned by this as well because the couple next to me had a conversation about why it was that you two were always drinking, and in bars no less. One of them hadn’t caught on to the fact that you were both college students and probably over 21. So, I think we were all trying to keep in mind that the characters were older than they appeared.

Aside from that I thought everything was great. I was surprised to not like the character (Mike Connell) played by Ryan Reynolds. Good job on his part, because I really like him. I loved the 80’s feel of it, though at times it did seem much more ’83 than ’87. Ok, so I guess I had one more somewhat negative thing to say. Sorry. None of that is your fault, however, so please don’t take offense. I read a review before going to the movie (they gave it an A-) and they compared it to American Graffiti and Dazed and Confused. That’s excellent company to keep. Only time will tell if Adventureland becomes the classic that these two films have become, but I definitely agree that it captured the feel of the moment in much the same ways these other two films capture the feel of the eras they were portraying.

I hope Adventureland does well for you at the box office. I know our theater was pretty full 40 minutes before the movie started. It’s been a while since I’ve seen that kind of showing for a non-fanboy/girl movie. The theater was pretty packed by showtime, and everyone seemed to really enjoy it. So, well done, and I hope filming New Moon is going well. Have fun!

♥Christa

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Some things started seeping into my brain. I kept thinking about how the movie was given a low budget before the fan base exploded. While I don’t condone doing a movie with effects you can’t afford to do properly, I do understand financial woes and not being able to do what you really want to do. I thought that there had to have been things that were frustrating for Catherine Hardwicke. I still don’t think she and I see Twilight the same way, but does that mean it was a horrible movie? I started to doubt.

I also thought about the crappy theater I saw the movie in. I hold a grudge against this theater for ruining Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix for me. OotP is my favorite of the HP books. When Arthur was getting attacked by the snake suddenly the film stopped and the house lights came up. No theater employee came in to explain. We sat there, stunned. The film came back and the light dimmed once again. When the DA were learning Patronuses the film stopped again. The house lights came back on again, and this time there was an employee waiting in the exit. He came in and said something lame like, “Sorry, we just have to do this. It’ll be a few minutes.” He never explained what This was, or why This had to be done. He certainly didn’t offer any compensation. And he certainly didn’t hang around to hear customer complaints. Nor did his co-workers. Nor did his boss. It was a ghost town when we walked out of the theater.

So as I was thinking about the theater, I thought about how during the battle of the ballet studio in Twilight the sound system made a really annoying buzzing sound that drown out all other sound for a few seconds about 4 times. I thought couldn’t it be possible that this theater sucks in much more subtle ways? Say maybe the picture is ever so slightly out of focus. You might not notice it, but maybe it makes a certain sparkly special effect look worse than it really is. Like I said, I started to doubt my original assessment of the film. Regardless, I think I’ll push for a different venue next time I’m in town for a midnight movie.

I also considered the emotional climate of the theater. I know, that sounds very Jasper of me, but I felt disappointment and anger all around me, most notably from my cousin sitting to my right. I thought the movie was a little weird to begin with, sure, but I was enjoying myself. I thought that the scene when Edward first catches Bella’s scent was well done, until I started hearing groans all around. Sure I thought the fan blowing Bella’s hair was a little over-done, but Edward’s reaction was pretty much as I pictured. Feeling and hearing the crowd’s reaction, though, I started to pick things apart. Suddenly I noticed the music was annoying, and it was downhill from there.

So, when Old Man Bobby asked me what I wanted to do when we were done gaming on Saturday I said, “See Twilight?” He’s a good man for taking me after I made him read my blog. He’s glad I insisted. He enjoyed the movie. It’s not the best movie he’s ever seen, and he does see what I mean about a lot of my complaints, but he liked it. I liked it better a second time, I must admit. Today I read an article that said many people are seeing it again and deciding it’s better than they thought.

Knowing what I already didn’t like about the film, I could focus on more positive things, like the chemistry between Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart. They didn’t make as much use of it as they might have, but there was more there than I originally thought. I still wish that there was more conversation between Edward and Bella, but there were a few more scenes in which you knew they were talking and getting to know each other than I originally thought.

There’s lots I still don’t like. I could go on and on, but I won’t. The point of this post is that I really did enjoy it more the second time. Catherine Hardwicke and I just see Twilight differently I suppose. I would have grounded it more in reality. I would have used real light. I would have spent the money on clothes befitting Cullens and the right Volvo (I’m assuming that’s not just a loaner anyway). I would have demanded dialog closer to what was written (or that certain lines not be ad-libbed, whatever the case may be). For example, I would have left the line, “I hear voices in my head, and you think you’re the freak,” instead of changing it to, “I can hear people’s thoughts and you think there’s something wrong with your brain,” or whatever Edward ended up saying. I would have also demanded more Cullen time, made those characters more real. The added scenes showing the bad guys killing around Forks was necessary to show the real danger, but the cooking for Bella scene, the flying through the trees, and the field trip scene were not necessary–not at the expense of important scenes from the book which were left out like the blood lab scene, and a real Bella’s Lullaby scene.

Apparently I do want to go on and on, but it’s bed time. What I really want to say is that Catherine Hardwicke might be able to do New Moon, but I’m skeptical. She won’t be able to rely on a certain character to make it all work. It’s going to be a much harder movie. I think a new director might still be in order, but I’m kind of curious about how she would do it.