Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson return as vampires Bella and Edward for one last bite of the cherry in the final chapter of the Twilight saga which doesn’t hold back on the tooth and claw.
Until now the franchise has been an anaemic exercise that was all teeth and no trousers but this time the gothic horror runs red with passion, anger and blood.
Bella and Edward’s daughter has been wrongly accused of being an immortal child by the Volturi, the royal family of vampires, and so as a threat to them they have decided she must die.
To protect her child, the now rampant Bella must gather help from a motley crew of vampires and werewolves in order to face down the Volturi in a final confrontation.
Stewart is full of furious, motherly anger and rips into her role with gusto, putting Pattinson firmly in her shadow.
Taylor Lautner as Jacob the love-sick werewolf is more petulant than ever and still afraid to put his shirt on, despite the heavy snow on the ground.
Michael Sheen is a great actor and as Aro, the leader of the Volturi, he is a prowling, preening, power hungry vampire who has the best fun delivering the film’s lines.
The film is beautiful to look at, not just for the actors but the stunning Canadian landscape is majestic in its wild, snow-covered glory.
There is again lots of running through forests and jumping from treetops but when the film kicks off in the second half there is some excellent fight choreography and the final confrontation is terrifically and excitingly staged.
I haven’t read the books and I’ve no idea if this is a faithful adaptation or not but I do know this is a handsome and exciting finale to a consistent and successful franchise.
If you’re not a fan of the film series this probably won’t make you change your mind, but if you are then you won’t be disappointed.