Victoria is dead, there is no longer any threat to Bella. So she and Edward get married, while on their honeymoon they do the dirty deed and oops, Bella gets pregnant. Vampire pregnant, which means the fetus is growing at 5 times the normal rate and is killing her from within. The wolf clan cannot have this, as it breaks their treaty somehow and they come to kill the baby. Now Jacob must team up with the people he hates, the Cullens, in order to protect Bella.
While this premise does sound interesting, it's a shame that the producers wanted to milk this poorly conceived franchise for every penny they can get. Instead of making one film, they split the story into two and Breaking Dawn Part 1 clearly suffers from over stuffing and filler. Nothing happens until the last twenty minutes of the film. We know they get married, we know they have sex and we know she gets pregnant. It takes way too long to get these plot points across. The wedding, the honeymoon and the pregnancy could have all happened in the first 30 minutes, but it's instead stretched to an obscene length.
Books have more room to breath. The world is created an the writer has hundreds of pages to tell their story. Films don't have this luxury, so when a film comes out based on a book, you need to chop out the stuff that's simply not needed or wouldn't translate well to the screen. Since the people behind this film want to make more money, they split the last film into two. WB did the same for Harry Potter, but I can forgive them because there is actual story to tell in that film, here there is nothing. She doesn't get pregnant until 50 minutes into the film. Which means we are stuck with boring characters either being jealous of what others have (Jacob) or two people having sex over and over (Edward/Bella). The amount of time that was dedicated to the honeymoon is insane. What should have been a ten minute sequence, at most, takes about 30 minutes of screen time.
Once Bella starts dying, the film tries to get into motion, but it's too late. When she goes into labor, that's when something finally interesting happens and the rest of the film makes for some of the most thrilling moments in the entire series. A standoff between the Cullens and the wolves is finally shown here, something that people have been waiting for since the first film. The tension between the two families finally explodes. This is exciting stuff, this is what people have been waiting for, but the film still suffers from bad CGI work when humans interact with the wolves. So the fight sequences, as exciting as they are, never really reach their full potential.
The final frame of the film is so obvious half way through that I actually chuckled to myself when it happened. I still can't shake the feeling that the conflict of the whole series finished with Eclipse and what we have left is an overstretched denouement. Am I excited for the next film? Not really. Half the job of Part 1 is to get you excited for the next, this film fails horribly at that. What's left to happen? An after the credits sequences is shown where we are given a glimpse of what to expect, but I'm too far drawn away from the conflict by that point.
Breaking Dawn is not the worst in the series, but clearly not the best. Had the film been one piece instead of two, then it would have been exciting. The simple fact that it drags on for so long is proof that splitting the film in two was a mistake, creatively. Financially, it's smart. Because young teenage girls will flock to anything, case in point -- this entire series.