10 Harsh Realities Of Rewatching Twilight, 15 Years Later


  • Edward’s actions towards Bella are creepy, not romantic – his stalking and sneaking into her room are major red flags in a real-life relationship.
  • The special effects and makeup used in Twilight haven’t aged well, coming across as unnatural and even silly by today’s standards.
  • Bella and Edward’s relationship develops too quickly and lacks depth, making their intense romance seem unrealistic and toxic upon rewatching.



Twilight became a major phenomenon when it first released in 2008, but there are several harsh realities of the movie that become more apparent when rewatching in the modern day. Based on Stephanie Meyer’s book series, Twilight (2008) adopts the first book of the same name, which follows teenager Bella Swan’s move to Forks, Washington to live with her dad. Bella has to grapple with many of the common issues of moving to a new school and making new friends, but her world becomes increasingly complicated when she discovers that her burgeoning love interest, Edward, is actually a vampire.

Twilight was a huge pop culture event in the late 2000s, but some of the details that viewers might have taken for granted at the time the movie adaptation was released stand out even more upon a rewatch. From the true implications of Bella and Edward’s intense love story to awkward filmmaking decisions, there are plenty of aspects of Twilight that didn’t stand the test of time. While Twilight is still just as entertaining 15 years later, some of its undeniable realities are impossible to ignore when rewatching the first installment of the Twilight Saga‘s five-movie series in the modern era.

Related: 10 Harsh Realities Of Rewatching The Twilight Saga

10 Edward Was Actually Super Creepy

Edward’s Attempts To “Protect” Bella Are Weird Rather Than Romantic

Edward is treated as a romantic hero in Twilight, but his actions are really less romantic than they are incredibly creepy. Throughout Twilight, Edward takes several actions in his pursuit of Bella that come across as inappropriate, such as stalking Bella. This oddly works out for Bella and Edward more often than not, allowing him to save her both from the car crash and the gang that tried to assault her. However, the fact that Edward follows Bella when they’re not together would be a huge red flag in real life, not the romantic gesture of protection Twilight wants viewers to see it as.

Perhaps the most disturbing thing that Edward does in Twilight is sneak into Bella’s room to watch her sleep. In fact, Edward reveals that he has been doing this for months before Bella ever found out, which is even creepier. While Bella clearly takes this action as a sign of Edward’s affection for her, his weird tendencies should have made her want to run for the hills rather than get romantically involved with the vampire.

9 Twilight’s Special Effects Don’t Hold Up 15 Years Later

Twilight’s Special Effects Come Across As Unintentionally Funny

Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson as Bella Swan and Edward Cullen Jumping Scene in Twilight

Special effects and CGI have greatly improved in the past several years, ajd Twilight’s use of them hasn’t stood the test of time. Though Twilight doesn’t use as many special effects as the later installments, the movie does employ some effects to convey Edward’s vampiric superpowers. However, these effects come off as incredibly unnatural and uncanny, even by 2008 standards. Twilight is known for its unique color filter, but these effects are almost more jarring, making these scenes where Edward uses his special powers or sparkles in sunlight unintentionally come across as funny rather than awe-inspiring upon a rewatch.

8 Charlie Swan Starts Out As A Bad Dad (Despite Being A Fan Favorite)

Charlie Isn’t Actually A Good Dad In Twilight

Billy Burke as Charlie Swan wearing his police uniform in Twilight (2008)

While Charlie Swan is one of Twilight’s most beloved characters, his guardianship of Bella doesn’t start out great. Not only do they have an awkward relationship, since Bella and Charlie have rarely seen each other, but Charlie doesn’t make many efforts to connect with his daughter in the first movie. Charlie expects Bella to adapt to his routines, while he spends much of his time either working late hours, watching football, or going to the local diner. He even admits to these shortcomings when Bella says she wants to return to Arizona. Though Charlie improves as a dad throughout the series, he’s not always the great dad fans remember him as.

7 Rosalie Is Right To Distrust Bella (At First)

Rosalie’s Reasons To Distrust Bella In Twilight Are Well-founded

rosalie (Nikki Reed) looks concerned in the kitchen with Carlisle behind her in twilight

Twilight frames Rosalie in a negative light for not wanting the Cullen family to get involved with the main character, Bella, but Rosalie actually has a point. Allowing a human like Bella to intermingle so closely with a family of vampires who abstain from human blood like the Cullens is playing with fire. Bella’s presence also brings unwanted attention from other vampires like James, Laurant, and Victoria, who have less-than-altruistic intentions. If the Cullens didn’t take Bella into their folds, they never would have had to go through the major battle at the end of Twilight, and they likely would have gone on having a peaceful existence in Forks.

6 The Vampires’ Makeup Doesn’t Hold Up

The Makeup Used On The Vampires Looks More Silly Than Realistic

edward (Robert Pattinson) smiling up in Twilight

In addition to special effects, Twilight also used practical effects to try to convey the Cullens’ vampiric features, but sadly, these efforts don’t look great through a modern lens either. Naturally, all the Cullens are clearly wearing makeup to make them appear more pale, but the execution of their visage isn’t always successful. Though it works in making the vampires stand out from their human counterparts, it isn’t always for the right reasons, and the paleness rarely comes across as natural. At times, the line where Robert Pattinson’s makeup ends is visible, which makes the effect come off as silly when revisiting the movie. Considering how far makeup has come since 2008, the Twilight vampires look a bit ridiculous when rewatching in modern day.

5 Edward & Bella Have A Problematic Age Gap

The Difference In Bella & Edward’s Ages Seems Even Worse In Light Of Modern Events

Edward (Robert Pattinson) and Bella (Kristen Stewart) standing together in his house in Twilight

Twilight wants its viewers to get invested in Bella and Edward’s vampire/human romance, but rewatching the movie with a modern lens leads to some problematic implications. When Bella finally confronts Edward with the knowledge that he’s a vampire, she asks him how long he has been 17, to which Edward replies, “a while.” The movie merely treats this statement as Edward’s admission that he is in fact a vampire, but really, it’s evidence of one of several problematic aspects of Edward and Bella’s relationship: their lengthy age gap.

The full timeline of the Twilight saga reveals that Edward was born in 1901, making him several decades older than Bella at the time of the first Twilight movie while giving the two an uncomfortably large age gap. Since Twilight is mostly focused on establishing Bella and Edward’s relationship, his age doesn’t come into focus beyond this scene. However, given the increased focus on problematic relationships in light of the Me Too movement, the fact that Edward is technically an adult with a teenage Bella is a shocking realization upon a rewatch, which makes their relationship a bit less romantic.

4 Edward & Bella’s Relationship Is Really Sudden

Edward And Bella’s Intense Romance Is Too Fast & Unrealistic

Edward and Bella have a whirlwind romance during the Twilight Saga by all accounts, but the genesis of their relationship in the first movie seems especially sudden. The two characters start out on the wrong foot, with Edward being quite rude to Bella when they first meet. However, Edward and Bella swiftly begin an intense relationship after her discovery that he’s really a vampire. While it doesn’t take much to buy into Edward and Bella’s romance, the speed and extreme nature of their obsessive relationship is jarring upon a rewatch.

It’s easy to accept the events of the movie that lead to Bella and Edward’s relationship at face value, but it does seem to come out of nowhere when considering the actual timeline of the movie. Since the movie concludes with prom, Edward and Bella have really only known each other for a few months, making the intensity of their relationship seem a bit fast since they realistically should still be getting to know each other. When considering how rapidly Edward and Bella become obsessed with each other, it’s no wonder some viewers find their relationship more toxic than romantic.

3 Twilight’s Dialogue Is Awkward

Some Of The Characters’ Quotes Can Be Unnatural Or Even Funny

Edward stands in the forest with sunlight rising behind him in twilight

Twilight has spawned several famous quotes over the years, but rewatching the first movie makes it clear that not all of its lines are remembered for the right reasons. Although the movie is quite faithful to the original book and even incorporates some of its lines verbatim, the writing of Twilight’s dialogue often comes across as unnatural, leading to several awkward conversations. At times, Twilight’s dialogue can come across as downright hysterical, featuring lines like, “You better hold on tight, spider monkey,” or, “This is the skin of a killer, Bella.” Though this can arguably make Twilight more entertaining, such silly, unnatural dialogue certainly ruins the movie’s immersion at times.

Related: Twilight: Edward’s 10 Most Cringeworthy Quotes

2 Twilight’s Characters Come Across As Flat

Twilight’s Characters Don’t Get As Much Development In Its First Installment

Viewers later get a full exploration of Twilight’s aging and non-aging characters alike throughout the rest of the series, but they come across as shockingly flat upon rewatching the first movie. Many of the characters, namely Bella, Edward, Charlie, Rosalie, and Bella’s friends, only seem to have a few character traits in Twilight. Several others, like Jasper, Alice, Emmett, and Esme, seem to get even less characterization since they receive so little spotlight in the movie, which is surprising considering their major bearing on the story. It’s also difficult to pinpoint any meaningful character development by the end of the movie, despite the massive events the characters have just endured.

Since Twilight mostly functions as an introduction to the series’ main characters, world, and Bella and Edward’s relationship, it’s understandable that they might not show the full depth of the characters right away. However, considering how vital several of the characters introduced in Twilight are to the saga’s overarching story, it’s surprising to see how little development and characterization they get in the first movie. Luckily, Twilight’s characters only get more compelling throughout its sequel movies, but the blandness of many of the characterizations in the initial movie is certainly surprising when rewatching it.

1 The Acting In Twilight Feels Forced

Twilight Has Surprisingly Stilted Acting Considering The Now-Famous Actors In The Movie

Edward and Bella stand together looking at Charlie in Twilight

Over the years, Twilight’s actors have gotten plenty of flack for their performances in the Twilight saga, but rewatching it shows that some of the criticism is deserved. Since Twilight is an early entry in many of these actors’ filmography, it’s understandable that the movie doesn’t contain the best performances of their careers, but the deliveries can still be overacted, underacted, and stilted at times. Some of Twilight’s dialogue didn’t make it easy for its actors to give dynamic, compelling performances, but it does result in their characters coming across as strange and unrealistic. This can make it difficult to get fully invested in Bella and Edward’s relationship, whose chemistry often seems forced.

Where To Watch Twilight

Although audiences have been discussing the awkward acting in the Twilight saga since the movie series was originally released, the performances are especially jarring upon a rewatch with the knowledge of the actors’ later careers. The Twilight movies have spawned several young actors who went on to have hugely successful careers, namely Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, Taylor Lautner, and Anna Kendrick. When considering the later performances that these actors would deliver, their early awkward acting in Twilight is one of the harshest realities of revisiting the first installment of the series.

  • Twilight

    Release Date:

    Catherine Hardwicke

    Robert Pattinson, Ashley Greene, Peter Facinelli, Rachelle Lefevre, Elizabeth Reaser, Kristen Stewart, Nikki Reed, Jackson Rathbone, Cam Gigandet, Kellan Lutz, Taylor Lautner, Anna Kendrick, Billy Burke


    121 minutes

    Romance, Fantasy, Drama

    Melissa Rosenberg

    Based on Stephenie Meyer’s book of the same name, Twilight follows Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), who falls madly in love with Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), who she soon finds out is a vampire. Falling in love with her at the same time, Edward and Bella must overcome obstacles to preserve their forbidden relationship.

    $37 million

    The Twilight Saga: New Moon, The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1

    The Twilight Saga


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