REVIEW: Only Fervent Fans Will Believe New Moon Shines Brightly

11/20/2009 at 05:55 AM EST

REVIEW: Only Fervent Fans Will Believe New Moon Shines Brightly
Taylor Lautner and Kristen Stewart
Summit Entertainment
Romeo and Juliet have nothing on lovebirds Bella and Edward, who pointedly are seen studying Shakespeare's tragedy in a high school English class in New Moon, the stylish but water-treading sequel to 2008's Twilight.

When it comes to star-crossed teenage love affairs – though to be literal, the immortal Edward (Robert Pattinson) is 104 but passes for 17 – this chaste duo didn't pick the easy road. She's human and he's a vampire. If that wasn't problematic enough, it turns out that her best bud and would-be beau, Jacob (Taylor Lautner), is a werewolf, the sworn enemy of vampires. What's a girl to do?

In Moon, based on the second novel in Stephenie Meyer's bestselling series, Bella (Kristen Stewart) seems almost pained as she listens to constant swoony protestations of undying love from both boys ("I just couldn't live in a world where you didn't exist!"). Though the battles between good and evil vampires and between vampires and wolves generate excitement, mostly Moon is a stilted, soapy supernatural romance.

You'd have to be an already ardent Twilight fan – girls and moms, you know who you are – to get moony over this teen twaddle.

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