The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009) (part 3 of 6)
Bella returns to Jessica, who’s pretty weirded out by her going off with some random biker, and calls her a lunatic. But Bella realises that she enjoyed the ride, calling it a “rush”.
More time passes, and Bella dictates another email to Alice. Having just risked her neck (and possibly her virginity) in an idiotic stunt, she’s come to a conclusion: doing stupid stuff makes her hallucinate Edward’s sweet, sweet face. So therefore, the obvious course of action now is to do more stupid stuff. Brilliant!
With that sorted out, she drives Truck to Jacob’s place. He comes out to greet her with a happy hug, and she shows him what she’s got in the back of the truck: two wrecked old motorbikes that she found in a junkyard. She wants to fix them up, and she thinks Jacob can help.
Clearly smitten with Bella, Jacob agrees and effortlessly lifts one of the bikes off the truck with his bare hands. Bella is amazed and remarks—yet again—on how big and muscly he’s gotten. It’s called “performance enhancing drugs”, Bella, get over it.
They take the bikes into Jacob’s garage and Jacob gets to work. They banter a bit, and there’s obvious chemistry between them. In fact, they’re much happier and friendlier together than Bella ever was with Edward. So as far as I’m concerned, Jacob is (spoiler alert!) a far more appropriate boyfriend for Bella.
Call me unromantic, but in my experience the relationships that work best aren’t just about romance. They’re about friendship, pure and simple. Friendship that includes smooching, but friendship nonetheless. Sexual attraction doesn’t last forever, but friendship can, so if you want a long-term relationship, date a friend.
Speaking of friends, two of Jacob’s “boys”, as he calls them, show up. They’re fellow Native Americans (Quileutes, apparently), and Jacob does the introductions. One of them is called Quil, and you really don’t want to know what happens to him in subsequent books. But now you’ll want to know, so here you go: he falls in love with a three-year-old girl. Hey, don’t look at me, I didn’t write it. And he’s still better off than Jacob, who ultimately winds up effectively betrothed to a newborn baby. Don’t ask. Just… don’t ask.
Thankfully, that won’t happen for a while. Quil teases Jacob over the rumour that Bella’s his girlfriend now. Bella denies it, and so does Jacob, who teases Quil back. Jacob and Quil wrestle playfully while we segue into yet another montage.
In this montage, Jacob and Bella fix up the dirt bikes together and enjoy a budding relationship, even if Bella doesn’t seem to know it. She dictates a letter to Alice about how she feels better with Jacob, and I suppose I could call her an idiot for not realising she’s falling for him, but it’s not as if this sort of thing doesn’t happen all the damn time in real life.
In the meantime, however, Bella is still screaming her head off at night, and we now learn it’s because of her nightmares. Oh, come on, as if people really scream at the top of their lungs when they have bad dreams. What a freak.
She dreams that she’s back in the forest, but she gets woken up by Charlie before we see anything interesting. Poor, patient, sweet-hearted Charlie tries to calm her down, and subtly advises her that maybe she’d be better off with Jacob. Yes, even Charlie has it all figured out, but not Bella.
The next day, Jacob and Bella take the bikes out on the back of Truck, and chat some more, and the chemistry between them is getting more and more obvious. As they drive along a cliff side road by the sea, they spot some of Jacob’s friends. They’re all shirtless, of course, and standing together on top of a different, much higher cliff. One of them is named Sam, and Jacob calls the rest of them Sam’s “cult”.
As Bella watches, one of the guys gets thrown off the cliff by the others. She’s horrified, and she brings the truck to a screeching halt, but Jacob reassures her that they didn’t just throw their friend to his death—they’re cliff diving. Sure enough, another guy jumps off. Jacob describes the experience as a rush, and Bella says, “Rush?” I think he said the magic word!
Jacob then goes on to express dislike toward Sam’s gang and how they follow Sam around “like a puppy”, which just might be foreshadowing. It seems Sam is overly interested in Jacob, who’s creeped out by the attention.
There’s a dramatic shot of Sam jumping into the sea after his pals. And in this scene, it’s notable that he and his friends all sport identical (and actually rather cool) shoulder tattoos, which may possibly be important later.
Bella and Jacob arrive at their destination, which is a damp dirt road in the middle of nowhere, where they unload the bikes and prepare to test them out. Bella gets onto hers and Jacob gives her some basic instructions, but the instant she starts the engine, Edward mystically appears and tells her to stop.
She lurches forward and stops, which scares Jacob, but she quickly decides to start up again. She hauls ass down the road, seeing ghostly Edwards appear all along the roadside. Distracted, she quickly loses control of the bike and falls off.
Jacob mounts his bike and rides over to Bella, who’s hit her head on a rock, but she wants to keep going. Jacob tells her no way, because there’s blood gushing out of her head. She apologizes for bleeding, but Jacob laughs this off. And this is the big moment where it suddenly dawns on Bella that she’s finally found a man who’s not thirsty for her blood all the time. She could totally paper cut the hell out of her finger and Jacob wouldn’t bat an eye.
And then, all the pre-teen girls in audience get their money’s worth when Jacob obligingly whips off his shirt so he can wipe away the blood. And yes, if you must know, his abs are pretty impressive.
Bella obviously thinks so too, because she actually tells him, “You’re sorta beautiful.” Which is not really the sort of thing you say to a guy, but Jacob finds it flattering anyway.
Back in the school lunchroom, Bella walks by her “friends”, and overhears Angela talking about some kind of animal she thinks she saw. Shock of shocks, Bella actually joins in the conversation. She tells them her father’s been getting reports of hikers killed by what might be a bear.
Mike is happy to see Bella back among the living, so to speak, and asks her out to a movie. So I guess he broke up with Jessica at some point? Bella accepts, and he suggests a romantic comedy called Love Spelled Backwards is Love. And before you say anything, that title was obviously meant to be stupid because Mike immediately says it is.
But Bella is over the whole romance thing, and picks an action movie instead called Face Punch. You see, she’s hooked on adrenaline now. She then casually crushes Mike’s hopes and dreams by inviting the others to join them. And this may in fact be the only time in either movie where she actively tries to spend time with her supposed friends, so note this on your calendars, everyone.
The night arrives, but it turns out Mike and Jacob are the only ones who have turned up to see the movie. Yeah, this is going to be awkward. Indeed, they make stilted conversation while they wait for Bella, and it’s pretty obvious that Mike is jealous.
Bella shows up with the movie tickets, expositionizing that Jessica changed her mind at the last minute, and Angela caught the stomach flu that’s been going around. And I should note that Mike looks a little red around the eyes in this scene, since it’s probably a clue for later on.
And then they’re in the cinema watching the movie, which we don’t get to see, but we do get to hear some of the deliberately over-the-top dialogue, which is actually pretty damn funny. In fact, I’ll quote it for you.
—Both of you put both your guns down, or I’m gonna blow both your frickin’ heads off!
—Alright, forget it, let’s do this!
[gunplay and general sounds of mayhem]
Bella sits between Jacob and Mike, and eyes both of their hands, apparently considering which one to hold. Alas, she doesn’t get to make up her mind, because Mike has started to look a bit green around the gills. He suddenly declares that he’s about to throw up.
He runs out and into the toilet, and outside the door we get a brief glimpse of the poster for that Love Spelled Backwards movie mentioned earlier, as well as one for what looks like a horror movie involving parking meters. Tee-hee.
Bella and Jacob stroll past the bathroom, with Jacob making fun of Mike for being such a wimp, but Bella says that Mike probably just has the stomach flu. The two of them walk over to some stairs, hand in hand, but Bella lets go. Jacob is all hurt and asks why he’s not allowed to hold her hand.
Bella has finally started to cotton on, and hints that he might be reading too much into things. Jacob takes this as a cue to get to the point, which is that she’s admitted she likes him and that she thinks he’s “sorta beautiful”. Bella doesn’t have the spine or the brains to just turn down his advances, and instead tries to change the subject, but Jacob isn’t in the mood for pussyfooting around anymore.
Bella fends him off, finally admitting, more or less, that she doesn’t want to commit to him because she’s afraid he might run off like Edward. Somehow, Jacob doesn’t understand. He just sits there confused while Bella gives us her own priceless quotable quote:
Seriously? Has the person who wrote this ever heard other human beings speak?
Jacob intuits that she’s being cagey because she doesn’t want to let go of Edward, and he promises that he would never hurt her the way Edward did. They nearly kiss, but Bella doesn’t go for it, and before they can do anything further, Mike shows up. Looking miserable, he says he has to go home.
There’s a weird, awkward stare-off between Mike and Jacob, and then Mike defends the unspoken accusation of wussitude by saying he felt sick before the movie.
Jacob randomly turns aggressive and threatening, telling Mike to get going or get beaten up. Bella jumps in to stop him, but is surprised to find that he’s suddenly become very hot. No, not attractive-hot; physically hot, like he has a fever. But he’s actually running a temperature of a hundred and werewolf, if you know what I mean.
Jacob acts scared and leaves in a hurry, saying he knows what’s happening. After he’s gone, Mike calls him a weirdo, which is fair enough, I guess.
Cut to a few days later, and yet another voiceover from Bella, leaving a message on Jacob’s phone. He’s claiming he has “mono”, and she hasn’t been able to contact him. Another message follows, establishing that Jacob too has now disappeared. Poor Bella just can’t catch a break, can she?
Bella gets off the phone after yet another unsuccessful call, just as Charlie leaves on a fishing trip with his Quileute friend. Left to her own devices, Bella drives to Jacob’s house on the first rainy day we’ve seen so far in the supposedly rainiest place in the U.S.
Jacob is there, but horror of horrors, he’s shirtless now, and he’s also cut his hair, and he has a tattoo just like one of Sam’s gang! Actually, I have to admit that it’s kind of a relief to see him without the long wig; he looks much better without it.
Bella runs up, demanding to know what’s been going on. But Jacob is hostile, telling her to go away. Bella asks if Sam got to him, but Jacob is now on Sam’s side, saying he’s “trying to help” Jacob.
Showing genuine and fairly well-acted despair hidden by anger, he tells her that if she wants someone to blame, she should blame the “bloodsuckers” she’s so fond of, i.e., the Cullens. Yes, he knows about the vampires. And he even growls at her when she tries to deny it.
Sam and the others appear at the edge of the forest, yelling at Jacob to join them. Jacob turns back to Bella, and tells her they can’t be friends anymore. Bella tries to apologise for hurting his feelings, but he says the problem is him, and not her. He tells her he’s become “not good” now, and she should stay away or she’ll get hurt.
And with that, he runs off to his friends and leaves Bella depressed again.
Accordingly, there’s another dictated email to Alice, in which Bella says that without Jacob there’s nothing to make her feel better anymore. In the meantime, she walks through the woods again to find the famous meadow, hoping she might have another vision of Edward.
She finds the meadow, and we helpfully get flashbacks to the famous Meadow Scene along the way, but when she arrives, she sees the flowers have gone and the grass is dead. Well, hit me with the symbolism club, why don’t you?
Bella stands there looking miserable (shocking, I know), and bends over to touch the dead grass, which I now see is obviously just dead lawn trimmings that they spread out over the ground. As if that wasn’t silly enough, Bella clutches at her chest while she does this, like she’s having a heart attack. Or possibly a severe case of indigestion.
She stands up and sees an intruder: It’s Laurent, the Jamaican vampire with the cravat! As you might or might not recall, he’s the vampire who helped the Cullens fight James in Twilight. None of this is mentioned here, by the way, so I guess they’re just assuming that everyone has seen the previous movie.
Laurent says he went to visit the Cullens and discovered they were gone, and he’s surprised that Bella hasn’t gone with them, given that she’s their “pet”. Tee-hee.
Laurent asks if they ever come back to visit, and before Bella can answer… Bam! There’s Hallucination Edward, telling her to lie. My friend and I, watching this movie, took a drink every time he appeared. If we’d been drinking something stronger than mead, we’d have been sozzled by the end of this movie.
Bella obliges, lamely saying that yeah, they do come back sometimes, sort of. Hallucination Edward snaps at her to “Lie better!” Wow, even as an hallucination he’s a jerk. Bella tries her best, saying that she’ll tell the Cullens that Laurent came by, and along the way mentions that Edward is very protective of her, hint, hint.
Laurent looks unconvinced, and Bella asks him why he came here. He admits that he’s come as a favour to the aforementioned pissed-off Victoria, who asked him to find out if Bella was still protected by the Cullens. Victoria, he says, thinks it’s only fair that she kill Edward’s “mate”, given that Edward killed hers.
Hallucination Edward appears yet again, telling Bella to threaten Laurent. Bella does, but Laurent sees right through it. He casually remarks that Victoria won’t be happy when she finds out Laurent killed Bella before she could, but he can’t help himself. Bella is just so “mouth-watering”. Yes, he actually says that.
Voice trembling, Bella asks him not to kill her. Laurent gets creepy, saying he’s “doing [her] a kindness”, because unlike Victoria, he’ll kill her quick. Bella, rather than pepper-spraying his arse (not that it would help), just stands there and waits to be eaten, muttering, “Edward, I love you!” Obviously, she’s planned for those to be her last words, which is just plain sad.
But before Laurent can strike, he stops at the sound of something coming. He expresses disbelief as we zoom in on the shrubbery, and here comes…
A giant black wolf, snarling ferociously. Actually, a giant black CGI wolf. As it turns out, the CGI team didn’t have much time to work on the wolves, because this movie, like its predecessor (and now its successor) was made in a pretty short time frame. Come to think of it, I don’t think I’ve ever watched a series come out as fast as this one; the DVD just came out for New Moon, and we already have a trailer for Eclipse.
Some people have said the hurried work on the wolves made them look fake, but they look alright to me, especially given how hard it is to animate fur.
Regardless of the quality of its animation, the wolf advances on Laurent, and other wolves start appearing behind the first wolf. They’re huge! A human’s head reaches to just below theirs. Laurent sensibly runs for it, and the wolves run off in pursuit. One of them, a big tawny red one, passes close by the petrified Bella. We see her reflected in its eye for a moment, which might be a clue to something, before it goes running off with the pack.
Laurent flees in stylish slo-mo, and bats away the black wolf. But the wolf gets up immediately and the whole pack lunges in for the kill.
Cut to Bella rushing back to her house, screaming at Charlie about how she’s seen the killer beast he’s been tracking. Charlie is there with his Quileute friend, who we now learn is named Harry, and the pair of them listen to her descriptions of giant wolves. Charlie thinks this is ridiculous, but Harry is conspicuously noncommittal. Regardless, Charlie asks Harry if he wants to go hunt the wolves.
Meanwhile, we cut back to the red wolf fighting Laurent, while Bella VOs about how the wolves must surely be dead by now, and she assumes that Laurent is now on his way to tell Victoria that she’s unprotected.
Charlie leaves, advising Bella to stay home, and we cut to Bella having yet another nightmare, this time about being stalked by Victoria. As opposed to being stalked by Edward, which is totally hot.