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Guilty Pleasures: Twilight is good, despite what the critics say

Soundtrack, cinematography, acting make this film a worthwhile watch
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FIONA TUNG/THE VARSITY
FIONA TUNG/THE VARSITY

Nostalgia is a powerful force. It gives us the urge to revisit things from our past, like films, regardless of how they were regarded critically. 

In speaking to people my age about films we find ourselves constantly revisiting, I find that nostalgia seemed to always play a part in our choices. Films are memories; they bring us comfort, make us feel good, and we grow more appreciative of them with every re-watch. 

Nostalgia, although not the only factor, is what often brings me back to my guilty pleasure — Twilight.

Twilight was first released in 2008. I was nine years old and probably too young to watch a movie about a somewhat intense love triangle between a human girl and two different supernatural creatures. I watched it anyway and fell in love — my biggest worry at nine years old was whether or not Bella was going to even survive the first movie. 

As I’ve grown up, I’ve realized that the Twilight films are not exactly critically acclaimed and are often mocked. I revisit those films every year regardless; I love them — and I have good reasons outside of nostalgia, especially concerning the first film. 

I’d like to start by noting that I am not the only person who loves Twilight. It is globally the 14th highest-grossing film directed by a woman — I still believe that Catherine Hardwicke should have directed all of the films in the saga. 

Twilight captures everything that is embarrassingly good about the late 2000s: film adaptations of young adult novels, overt obsessions with the supernatural, and lines like, “You better hold on tight, spider monkey” making the final cut of a film. 

So, yes, Twilight reminds me of that specific time in my life and is an ultimate comfort film, but every time I re-watch it, I find more things that I appreciate about it. 

The soundtrack itself is something that most fans of the film are particularly proud of, and this can be said for every film in the saga. Twilight has an amazing soundtrack — you cannot deny this. The tracklist included two Paramore songs, Iron & Wine, and featured Muse’s “Supermassive Black Hole” playing over the iconic baseball scene. Yes, the movie showcased vampires playing baseball in a thunderstorm to a Muse song. 

Another thing I will say in Twilight’s defence is that the cinematography is outstanding. It’s beautiful. There is a slight blue tint that falls over the entire film — which I’m sure has been mocked by ‘film brosʼ several times — yet, if I could, I would have my life play out in that same tint. 

Any shot of Edward and Bella laying in the meadow was actually shot on a golf course in Los Angeles, yet we see this beautiful, majestic field full of blues and purples. It’s spectacular and something the other films in the saga lost once Catherine Hardwicke was no longer directing. 

People also love to criticize the performances in Twilight, but I’ll defend them by saying this: Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart are brilliant actors and did the absolute best they could given the dialogue they were working with. Go back and watch Twilight and you’ll realize they play Edward and Bella perfectly, even though the roles came down to a telepathic vampire who is over 100 years old and a teenage girl who is blindly in love with him. Twilight is good — and it’s not just the nostalgia talking.