Well. I'm trying to decide just what to say. Let's break it down.
1. The Casting
I was pleased with the casting of the movie. I really like James. I think just about everyone was cast well. I wasn't wild about Bella's mom, but I guess she's not too important. But I liked James. I actually liked Charlie, though. I have two friends in law enforcement and-funny-they both have a mustache! I felt sort of sorry for the guy who played Jasper-he just didn't have anything to do, but I think I'll be happy with him in later installments, and he looked great with Alice. James did a great job. Loved all of the other Cullens. Especially Alice. She was perfect. I'm not sure what I think yet about Jacob. I didn't see enough of him. I guess we'll see. But I did see James. He did great. Bella and Edward were "right". I adored Edward (AFTER all the weird, uncomfortable stuff at the beginning-I wasn't sure at that point), and Bella was annoyingly pitiful-that's just about right. James, though, he was good.
I do think they almost left Edward's hair too long. Good thing he's so darn cute anyway. James' hair-not too long.
Oh-and did you catch the cameo by the author, Stephenie Meyer? She was in the diner and was served some food just before the waitress asked Chief Swan if they'd "caught anything" yet.
2. Trueness to the book (Is that a word?)
Hmmm. I think they did about as good as they could do in a 2 hour movie. There were a few changes, but I guess it was all in line with keeping the storyline moving along. Nothing that really bothered me.
3. Overall feeling
I enjoyed this movie, and I'm sure I'll see it again. My biggest issue, I think, is that this movie needed to be about 45 minutes longer. If I hadn't read the books, and didn't already love the characters, I think I would have come away feeling like I still didn't know them. I don't remember hearing why Carlisle is a doctor, or how he can pull that off. I didn't learn anything about any of the Cullen "kids". And especially Jacob. If I hadn't read the books I wouldn't care anything at all about him just based on what I got from the movie. I just thought more time should have been spent on character development. It made the whole movie feel a bit...shallow.
The only issue I had with the "age appropriateness" of it was a kissing scene with Bella in her undies. They could've just put some sweatpants on her.
But, like I said, I enjoyed it for what it was, and will see it again.
I'm adding an addendum. As I've thought about this movie today, and talked to my mom about it, I've come to a conclusion: They just busted it out too fast. It could've been a great movie, but they just missed some things that, to me, matter. Did you notice that in a couple of the thousands of close-ups of Edward's face that you could see his contacts? That bugged me. I'm still whining that I didn't get to see more of the Cullen family, too. They all seemed to have such potential, but it went untapped.
Oh well, I could go on for hours. I still liked it, but I was hoping to LOVE it.