I missed Tuesday night's screening of Twilight in order to see The Wrestler, so I'll have to brave the crowds this weekend and check it out at a regular showing.
The early reviews popping up around the web seem to confirm my impression of the film based on the trailer. Variety's Justin Chang called Twilight "a disappointingly anemic tale of forbidden love that should satiate the pre-converted but will bewilder and underwhelm viewers who haven’t devoured Stephenie Meyer’s bestselling juvie chick-lit franchise."
Roger Ebert essentially concurred, predicting the movie will more than satisfy its target audience. Ebert also deftly condenses the entire story into a couple of quick sentences: "Come on now, what is Twilight really about? It's about a teenage boy trying to practice abstinence, and how, in the heat of the moment, it's really, really hard. And about a girl who wants to go all the way with him, and doesn't care what might happen. He's so beautiful she would do anything for him."
The Associated Press' Christy Lemire came down hardest on the film, claiming "much of what made the relationship between Edward and the smitten Bella Swan work in Meyer's breezy book has been stripped away on screen. The funny, lively banter — the way in which Edward and Bella teased and toyed with one another about their respective immortality and humanity — is pretty much completely gone, and all that's left is a slog of adolescent angst."
Finally, there's The Herald's movies editor Sara Frederick, who is a big fan of the books and reviewed the film for us. Her critique will be posted a little later today, but she recommends bringing along a certain accessory when you go see the movie this weekend:
"Note to mothers and teenage boyfriends accompanying Twilight fans to the theater: Bring earplugs. You'll want to protect your hearing from the shrieks and screams coming from teenage girls. And there will be screams each time a beloved character from the first novel in Stephenie Meyer's bestselling young-adult series appears for the first time; each time a particularly juicy line of dialogue from the book is recalled; and each time the story's star-crossed lovers touch."