I can feel the Twilight zeitgeist in the air tonight, perhaps it’s because I live across from the cinema and the line around the block and I hear them out there, howling. Maybe I’m too sensitive but the liberal arts feminist in me digs it, baby. It’s TWIN PEAKS kind of foggy mellow, with purple mountain majesty. I dig Kristen Stewart’s pouty expressions, my inner 13-year old girl swoons with the idea of a daemonic protector, a nice inversion of my own older male anima relations.
This concept of inverted ego/animus ratio works in context of the film’s relation to the rest of Hollywood’s teen-related output, even the best of it, such as GI JOE and DARK KNIGHT have a ratio of about 10 to 1 as far as “dumb romance scenes with girls” vs. guy action. In TWILIGHT that ratio is beautifully reversed. Now the girls get to watch you groan for a change!
Like TWIN PEAKS, TWILIGHT really benefits from the combination of good cinematographers colliding with old growth Northwest scenery. It infuses the whole thing with a comforting mist, good for the lungs. If you’ve ever been to Washington state you know what I mean. I’d get off at the SEATAC airport, take a deep breath and feel my lungs suddenly work for the first time in years. Just seeing that air onscreen almost does the same thing. You can see the cleanliness of the air!
Of course that’s the selling point to, the nature of the cosmic con job of the simulacrum, the myth onscreen bleeding into your own, woken up to in the woods of TWILIGHT, the melancholic high of “purity,” of not submitting to the base passions of sex and desire, while simultaneously torturing oneself with longing and obsession. TWILIGHT fuels the fire of sadomasochistic alchemy wherein torture becomes pleasure, denial becomes acceptance, submission becomes freedom. Through recognition and release of the associated fear, not having becomes having it all. The girls of TWILIGHT ween themselves off desire through recognition of its impossibility. They’ve been set free, like Jonathan Pryce at the end of BRAZIL, looking out at the clouds while one of his torturers (Michael Palin) sadly realizes, “he’s gotten away from us, Jack!”
These TWILIGHT girls have gotten away from us, Jack. They’ve found a streak of neo-Victorian repression that leads them clear away from Big Brother and his sublimation dream wheel. May Satan grant them the neck bite they deserve.
See also my earlier entry: “The Beautiful and the Darned: Avenging Twilight.”