Twilight tantalizes

Nov 21, 2008 at 2:41 a.m. ET

The most striking aspect of the Twilight movie experience is the ride. Fast and dramatic, fierce and touching, Twilight treats for audiences regardless of their awareness of Stephenie Meyer's books.

Bella discovers Edward's secretTwilight has hit the screens and although SheKnows saw the film last week, it is still reverberating through our system.

Faithful page to screen

Fans have been fantastic, with the review embargoed until release day; the only people to share this new found treasure are the fans in the anonymous world of the blogosphere. I have the fever as viciously as anyone following the books. Why can one film achieve such a feat?

The story is that good. Twilight is much more than a vampire love story.

First, audiences meet Bella. She has moved to the Pacific Northwest to live with her dad after her mom and her boyfriend follow his baseball dreams across the country.

Vampire love

Bella is a high school junior and feels every bit the outcast walking into her new school. Then, she meets Edward.

Edward, entering the school cafeteria moments after his Cullen clan of "brothers" and "sisters" – seems also struck by the beauty Bella. Immediately it is established through look and dialogue that there is something different about the Cullens.

Boom! And we're off. The story charges at that point and audiences have no choice but to never look back. It is a credit to Stephenie Meyer's writing that this story is so compelling. But as any author can tell you, the right team had to put the vision on screen and with Twilight, Meyer has screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg and director Catherine Hardwicke to thank for a seamless transition from page to screen.

Do not mess with these three!

Meyer's vision achieved

Casting is another coup for Meyer and her hopes of a big Hollywood blockbuster series. Kristen Stewart was cast as Bella first and screen tests were done to determine the Edward. As soon as Robert Pattinson rolled around with Stewart, Hardwicke knew she had her vampire.

Witnessing the finished project, Pattinson and Stewart are Edward and Bella. Readers of the series should feel bloody fantastic about the fact that their fantasy story so close to their hearts is about as faithful as a book to film has been in a long time. Yes, I'm talking to you Harry Potter!

After speaking with friends who have read the book and clued them into how this review was going to go, they all marveled at the minute details in the film that were the very elements of the book that had charmed them into spending an entire weekend inhaling Meyer's vision of vampire love.

Twilight takes you out to the ballgame

Batter up!

There is a joy to the film as well.

The discovering of young love, sure, but scenes such as the famous baseball scene from the book are executed with such flawless fun - the audience is moved to cheer.

Finally, Twilight is not only for teens. It is especially not for teenage girls.

The facets that make it compelling for that segment is actually what pulls the viewer into Hardwicke's Twilight world. Two people, much as Romeo and Juliet accomplished before them, from two sides of the world that share one vision – love and a shared future.

Both have mountains of obstacles in the way, yet still pursue because of the unyielding pressure of the heart.

There has not been a cinematic saga story this compelling since Lord of the Rings. And as with that series, the Twilight sequels are being awaited on with baited breath.

SheKnows complete Twilight coverage

The Twilight all-female creative team talks
Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart: The SheKnows Interview
Meet the Cullens!
Take the SheKnows Twilight trivia test
 The Twilight soundtrack rocks
The SheKnows interview with Twilight author Stephenie Meyer
Do you have Twilight fever?
Enter to win a Twilight prize pack
Get the Twilight widget!
Chat with other Twilight fans on our Message Boards