Metascore
45

Mixed or average reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 36
  2. Negative: 9 out of 36
  1. Reviewed by: Carrie Rickey
    Nov 17, 2011
    75
    Worthy of mention is Carolina Herrera's design for Bella's wedding dress, sophisticated and demure in the front and Pippa Middleton sexy, and proper, in the back.
  2. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Nov 17, 2011
    75
    It's the most imaginative picture in the franchise.
  3. Reviewed by: Scott Bowles
    Nov 16, 2011
    75
    It is in many respects the best installment of the franchise as its stars go from sullen kids to sullen young adults, where their expressions look more natural.
  4. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Nov 17, 2011
    70
    The latest and best of the movies about a girl, her vampire and their impossible, ridiculously appealing - yes, I surrendered - love story.
  5. Reviewed by: Alison Willmore
    Nov 17, 2011
    67
    It may be impossible for anyone but existing fans to take this seriously, but for the unconverted, it's still a legitimately engaging, gape-worthy nutso spectacle.
  6. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Nov 19, 2011
    63
    Here's hoping Breaking Dawn Part Two gives us more of what Part One provided in the final 30 minutes than what it forced viewers to endure to get there.
  7. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Nov 17, 2011
    63
    Part 1 does something that no other previous Twilight movie had achieved: This one draws you close and keeps you there.
  8. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Nov 17, 2011
    63
    Absorbing, if somewhat slow-paced, and has without doubt the most blood-curdling scene of live childbirth in a PG-13 movie.
  9. 60
    In any case, the last twenty minutes of Breaking Dawn are so harrowing that it's possible to forget that most of the acting is soap-operatic (the guy who plays Carlisle is aging to look like Liberace) and the dialogue from hunger. The movie's that primal.
  10. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Nov 19, 2011
    60
    To my taste, savvy Hollywood veteran Bill Condon debuts as director of the two-part "Twilight" conclusion in satisfying fashion, delivering a voluptuous if often inert spectacle that splits the difference between high camp and decadent romance.
  11. Reviewed by: Joshua Rothkopf
    Nov 18, 2011
    60
    "Rosemary's Baby" it's not, but color us stoked that a Twilight movie even strays into evil-fetus territory.
  12. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Nov 16, 2011
    60
    To outsiders, in fact, Breaking Dawn: Part I will probably look like the weirdest, most expensive chastity commercial ever created. But Meyer's massive fan base will see something else entirely. They'll see a faithful, well-made depiction of the most eventful book in a beloved series. They'll see the actors they adore embodying characters they cherish.
  13. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Nov 19, 2011
    50
    One seriously sick little blockbuster.
  14. Reviewed by: Liam Lacey
    Nov 18, 2011
    50
    It's the most jumbled and tonally confused movie yet.
  15. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Nov 18, 2011
    50
    Bill Condon returns fans' love and gives them exactly what they have shown they want. That is: uneven storytelling, maudlin dialog and decidedly one-note performances, even from the big names in the cast.
  16. Reviewed by: Sara Stewart
    Nov 18, 2011
    50
    Still, it was a beautiful wedding.
  17. Reviewed by: Amy Biancolli
    Nov 17, 2011
    50
    About as loony and soapy as a movie can get. In other words, it's about as loony and soapy as the novel, and I say this as one who obsessively consumed all four installments in Stephenie Meyer's mega-selling series.
  18. Reviewed by: Jane Henderson
    Nov 17, 2011
    50
    Twilight fans who have followed the series will want to see "Breaking Dawn," and like Bella and Edward may find brief moments of pleasure.
  19. Reviewed by: Wesley Morris
    Nov 17, 2011
    50
    The movie is long and uniquely bad, the last of Stephenie Meyer's four books greedily tortured into two installments.
  20. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    Nov 12, 2011
    50
    In the end, given how little goes on in Breaking Dawn - Part 1 despite the major plot points, what you're left with is to gaze at the three leads, all of whom have their constituencies and reasons for being eminently watchable. The only hope is they'll have more to do next time around.
  21. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    Nov 12, 2011
    50
    All the more disappointing, then, that a story so pregnant with dramatic possibilities should wind up feeling like such an unconsummated opportunity. Drawn from Stephenie Meyer's polarizing, weirdly compelling fourth novel, the film is rich in surface pleasures but lacks any palpable sense of darkness or danger.
  22. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Nov 18, 2011
    42
    I would imagine that even those who line up for this film will be somewhat let down, if only because it's clear that most of the juicy stuff will arrive in Part 2 – which won't be released until next November.
  23. Reviewed by: Lisa Schwarzbaum
    Nov 17, 2011
    42
    What we learn in this all-pain/no-pleasure episode is that marriage feels like a life sentence, weddings are miserable events, honeymoon sex is dangerous and leaves a bride covered in bruises, and pregnancy is a torment that leads to death in exchange for birth.
  24. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Nov 17, 2011
    40
    The film doesn't have nearly the bite - ferocious or delicious - that any self-respecting vampire movie really should. It's as if all the life has drained away.
  25. Reviewed by: Mary Pols
    Nov 17, 2011
    40
    This is Meyer's worst offense - her disturbingly Victorian attitudes about sex and love, which this particular movie falls modestly in lockstep with, even though it concludes years of cinematic foreplay.
  26. Reviewed by: Helen O'Hara
    Nov 17, 2011
    40
    The acting's better than it's ever been, but with the best will in the world, this can't get past the fact that the story's demented.
  27. Reviewed by: Vadim Rizov
    Nov 17, 2011
    40
    Sex and abortion are the main topics of this installment, which tips between dullness and total camp.
  28. Reviewed by: Mark Jenkins
    Nov 17, 2011
    38
    The "Twilight Saga" hasn't matured along with its heroine. In fact, the latest movie regresses a bit, delivering more filler, less feeling and crummier CGI than last year's "Eclipse."
  29. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Nov 17, 2011
    38
    Reveals a flash or two of real filmmaking (mostly in a suggestively grotesque birthing sequence), enough to save it from pure lousiness.
  30. Reviewed by: Roger Moore
    Nov 16, 2011
    38
    At long last, The Twilight Saga sinks utterly into camp with Breaking Dawn: Part 1.
  31. Reviewed by: Dan Kois
    Nov 17, 2011
    30
    Condon delivers the most authoritatively directed Twilight film so far, which only brings into sharp relief how tonally incoherent its story is.
  32. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Nov 16, 2011
    30
    Overall the film is goofy, slight, without a truly deep thought in its pretty little head. And for a movie with vampires and werewolves, the only scary thing is in the title - "Part 1," which means "Part 2" is on its way. Shudder.
  33. Reviewed by: R. Kurt Osenlund
    Nov 17, 2011
    25
    Intended as the cinematic equivalent of an orgasm, this tirelessly hyped insta-blockbuster is loaded with OMG developments (marriage! Sex! Baby!) and seemingly regarded by everyone to include the most epic and gratifying scenes of romantic release in modern movie history.
  34. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    Nov 17, 2011
    25
    Start hating me now, Twihards, but the sexless, bloodless, padded and plodding Breaking Dawn, Part 1 is the worst Twilight movie to date. (I don't get it either.)
  35. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Nov 17, 2011
    25
    Breaking Dawn Part 1 confirms suspicions that all four books could've made a heck of a single movie.
  36. Reviewed by: Kimberley Jones
    Nov 23, 2011
    20
    Bill Condon (Dreamgirls, Chicago, Gods and Monsters) takes over the directing reins for these final two parts; his most noteworthy contribution to the series so far is a terrifyingly staged birth scene that should turn the teen fan base off of sex altogether … which is precisely what this whole dumb, punishing series has been gunning for from the start.
User Score
4.2

Mixed or average reviews- based on 470 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 67 out of 196
  1. Nov 21, 2011
    10
    Absolutely loved it! This movie is all about sheer light hearted entertainment . Anybody who takes this seriously should really get their heads examined!! I'm talking about all those people who can not just go to the movies for a bit of fun!! Lighten up people! It is not supposed to be all serious. I like how this movie did not try to be anything other than what is is. Fun. Full Review »
  2. Nov 21, 2011
    10
    This movie really is for the fans of the books. I hate the way others try to spoil it for them by constantly putting it down. If it is not your cup of tea...fine...but why all the hate? Get over it! I'm glad the fans love it so much as it is portrayed exactly as the books described. Well done to them for being true. Full Review »
  3. Nov 25, 2011
    10
    Enjoyed this movie a lot. It delivered on screen exactly how it is described in the books. You can not ask anymore of a director or actor so I say a job very well done. Full Review »