Cast: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, Peter Facinelli, Billy Burke, Mackenzie Foy
Director: Bill Condon
So, it's finally here - the big finale.
At the end of the last film , Bella (Stewart) had been transformed into a vampire by Edward (Pattinson) after their super baby broke out of her womb, effectively killing her.
As we rejoin the Cullen clan, Bella's enjoying her new life as a mum to daughter Renesmee (newcomer Mackenzie Foy) and the new powers being one of the undead brings. Soon, though, their happiness is threatened.
When Vampire Irina (Lost star Maggie Grace) starts to believe that Renesmee's birth could signal a threat and the end of
, she rallies the secretive group together to destroy this perceived threat of an Immortal child.
However, Bella and Edward pull together all the allies they can to help them fight one last crucial battle to protect their family and their future....
So, with the end nigh, the question is does this one last Twilight deliver?
And the answer is kind of a surprising yes, actually.
The reason this latest entrant
sparkles a little brighter than the rest is because they finally put aside the truly dire lovesick moping which has peppered the last 4 films, dialled back some of the awful dialogue and actually get to some action and deal with the menace of the Volturi.
It's not without its initial wobbles though - from a truly creepy CGI child that is Renesmee (seriously, you'll never be so freaked out by a newborn CGI/animatronic kid) to an awful slow mo/ soft focus sex scene between the two vamps and ending with a credits montage of everyone involved (no doubt to mark their work from all four of them), there are still the moments which have dogged the franchise from the viewpoint of anyone who's not a rabid fan of the books. The wolves this time are a little more solid and work better - laying to rest some of the CGI shambles which lumbered the previous films with unintentional laughter.
But director Bill Condon wisely holds back on all of those moments to focus on raising the stakes for
Edward, Bella, Jacob and Renesmee
by ramping up the menace facing the Cullen clan from the
Volturi, led by Michael Sheen's ethereal, occasionally OTT and extremely sinister and preening Aro.
As the Cullens pull together a battle force to take on the Volturi, the franchise opens up a world of vampires which have previously been hidden. Bringing in vamps from Ireland, Russia, Egypt, the Amazon, it does occasionally feel like Twilight: X Men as various powers are shown off to prep for battle. However, when the showdown comes on a wintry battlefield, it's packed with suspense, gory and gruesome action - and slight deviation from what fans of the book are likely to be expecting.
All in all, fans of the series won't be disappointed by the end after 4 years and 5 films - and for everyone else worried about attending this with them, by veering away from the love story and painful teen angsting, Bill Condon's given the franchise the film it really needed right from the start.
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 isn't going to sweep the Oscars as the best movie ever, but it is a satisfying end to the franchise for fans - and a massive improvement in spectacle and cinema for non-fans - alike.