My initial thought was to avoid Eclipse altogether, considering the awful time I had with New Moon last November. But with four sources — Variety‘s Peter Debruge, the Hollywood Reporter‘s Kirk Honeycutt, EW‘s Nicole Sperling and Lynette Rice and Indiewire‘s Anne Thompson — claiming it’s the best Twilight pic yet, I’ve decided to catch tonight’s all-media.

The reason for the uptick, they’re all saying, is director David Slade. I was down with Slade’s Hard Candy but not so much 30 Days of Night .

I’m most impressed by Honeycutt’s praise considering the fact — I need to put this delicately — that he can be a bit of a grump at times. (Like someone else I could name.) I’m figuring if a half-grumpy guy says a popcorn franchise flick like this is okay, you can half-trust him. But you can’t trust positive-minded people who smile and laugh and hug their friends and always say the glass is half-full. I’ll trust happy-face people when it comes to smaller films, the theory being that if a person with a relentlessly sunny attitude likes something that’s edgy or thoughtful or darkly trippy then it might have that open-window element that draws people in.

“While Catherine Hardwicke did a strong job establishing the franchise, Slade is by far the best director,” Thompson says. “And the story of Eclipse, adapted per usual by Melissa Rosenberg, is far more satisfying and well-structured than New Moon, [and] the central love triangle, as both men press their suits with Bella, is front and center. All three actors are comfortable with their characters, and Slade finds the right balance of action and romance; the story feels organic.”

The one “uh-oh” is Honeycutt’s line that “the CG wolves, huge creatures whose ferocity fails to mask their tenderness, are very cool.” That’s an ixnay, I’m afraid, if they’re the same size as the New Moon wolves. Those were the silliest-looking beasts I’ve ever seen in a supernatural fantasy film, bar none. And what does Honeycutt mean about “tenderness”? Wolves can’t be tender except to their own young.

Like a Gatling gun, the names of the Seven Dwarfs: Sleepy, Grumpy, Doc, Wheezy, Snoopy, Sleazy, Happy, Dopey, Bashful…wait, that’s nine.