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On Kristen Stewart’s birthday, watch 9 films she made to purge herself of Twilight

On Kristen Stewart’s 29th birthday here are nine non-Twilight movies she has done that have established her as one of the most experimental young Hollywood stars of her generation.

hollywood Updated: Apr 09, 2018 08:45 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Kristen Stewart,Kristen Stewart Birthday,Kristen Stewart Movies
The many shades of Kristen Stewart.

If there’s one positive thing about the Twilight movies, it’s that the series has given the world Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson. While audiences who have only seen them in the teen vampire saga may not appreciate the direction to which they’ve steered their careers, it’s quite fascinating to note how the ex-partners and co-stars cashed in on their stardoms to work with renowned filmmakers and (perhaps) distance themselves from the films that were their launchpads.

Since the Twilight saga ended in 2015, both Stewart and Pattinson have been exclusively working in smaller movies, directed by award-winning international directors, telling stories that wouldn’t necessarily even get made without their significant popularity.

And what better occasion than Stewart’s 29th birthday to list her best non-Twilight work. Here are nine movies she has done that have established her as one of the most experimental young Hollywood stars of her generation.

Welcome to the Rileys

Kristen Stewart as Mallory in Welcome to the Rileys.

Perhaps the most concentrated effort on Stewart’s part to distance herself from the teen-friendly Twilight saga, she played a sex worker who is shown kindness by a lonely man (James Gandolfini) in this underrated drama, directed by Ridley Scott’s son, Jake Scott.

On the Road

With Garrett Hedlund in On the Road.

In yet another deliberate move to show her fans that she wasn’t the performer they thought she was, Walter Salles’ adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s seminal Great American Novel became notorious for being the first time Stewart went nude. Sadly, that bit of information overshadowed any discussion about the film’s actual quality. On the Road is a difficult novel to adapt, but the film captures the beat generation spirit perfectly.

Camp X-Ray

Camp X-Ray was a major diversion for Kristen Stewart.

Stewart plays a young guard at Guantanamo Bay in this Sundance film. The story charts her growing friendship with a prisoner (played by A Separation’s Peyman Moaadi), and how the relationship alters her worldview.

Clouds of Sils Maria/Personal Shopper

Personal Shopper was Stewart’s second collaboration with Olivier Assayas.

Stewart has done two films with French director Olivier Assayas, both of which are perhaps among her best. And both films couldn’t be more different, despite the similarities of her characters. In Clouds of Sils Maria, Stewart plays a movie star’s personal assistant, and in Personal Shopper, she plays, well, a personal shopper. But while the first film is a drama, the second is more of a psychological thriller.

Certain Women

Stewart starred with a host of other fine female actors in Certain Women.

Stewart joined the cast of Kelly Reichardt’s newest drama, based on three short stories from Maile Meloy’s collections, Half in Love and Both Ways Is the Only Way I Want It. Reichardt is one of the most acclaimed female American directors, and the collaboration was yet another notch on Stewart ‘scareer.

Still Alice

Julianne Moore won the Oscar for Still Alice.

While most of these movies highlight Stewart’s abilities as a leading performer, Still Alice is a great example of how adept she is playing the supporting role. And in a film that won Julianne Moore an Oscar, giving a worthy supporting performance is all the more vital.

The Runaways

Dakota Fanning played the Runaways’ lead singer, while Stewart played Joan Jett.

Made during her days playing Bella Swan, this ‘biopic’ of the short-lived rock band and its charismatic lead singer, Joan Jett, wasn’t perhaps the most ideal role for Stewart, who usually plays it low-key. But watch the film and decide for yourself. She can bring the rage when she wants to.

Adventureland

Adventureland is a sweet coming-of-age movie (that also featured a sneaky Ryan Reynolds).

Made just one year after the first Twilight (and in the same year as the equally great Zombieland), it was Stewart’s first on screen partnership with Jesse Eisenberg, with whom she would go on to star in American Ultra and Woody Allen’s Cafe Society (which we cannot in good conscience recommend here).

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First Published: Apr 09, 2018 08:43 IST