Monday, November 22, 2010
Written by Steve Kloves, J.K. Rowling (book)
Directed by David Yates
Starring Those three kids, every other British actor except Colin Farrell
after dumbledore is killed in the last installment, harry, ron and hermione drop put of school and go on a mission to find and destroy the rest of the horcruxes (objects in which voldemort has placed a piece of his soul). meanwhile, the death- eaters, the ministry of magic, and pretty much everyone is looking to kill harry potter. lots more danger, lots more death and violence.
It's difficult to view this as a standalone film, but it's not impossible. I suppose the better question is, "is it worth it to view this as a standalone film?" and the answer to that is an unequivocal "no." So in 50 words or less, with a slightly different ending the movie could probably stand up on its own.
Much like the book, this movie is chock-full of important exposition with some relatively short excursions into action. Each of these is played for the necessary overall effect, and as an adaptation it's first or second out of the 7 films to date: There were some changes for the good, like Hedwig's more-glorious death as well as some that didn't make any sense at all to me. One was the reversal of a couple of lines which I feel actually really changed the scene for the worse; and another spans most of the action setpieces and I'm not sure if it was done for time or for (believe it or not) budget. Regardless, the movie does a better-than-average job of bringing the story to the screen. I'm interested to see how long the second film is because where the first book provides plenty of cuttable "and then they went here stuff a LOT goes down in the last 300 (out of 800) pages.
While Watson is certainly the strongest actor of the three, none of them are anything less than great or (dih), anything near as poor as they were at 11. Aside from the obvious improvements in the younger actors, practically every competent British character actor was employed by this production, and in a role which perfectly suited his or her talents. Excepting direction by a hair or two--personally I think Cuaron's dark touch was the most suited to the material--this trend continues through the rest of the production. Effects have come a long way since motherfucking Jar Jar Binks to the point where almost everything is seamless; and the production value throughout is consistent in style and quality.
As the curmudgeon, I can only close this by saying that the movie didn't disappoint me as badly as I expected it to.
i read these books only once so by the time the movie comes out i only have a vague recollection of what went on in them. i tend to do a lot of "oh, yeah"s. i think this is actually a benefit because i don't really remember what the movies have left out. i guess that's a reading comprehension problem because no one else in my family seems to have this problem.
i highly enjoyed this movie. i got a little antsy knowing that certain characters were/ are going to die, and i don't like to reveal this thing you humans call emotion. especially in public. but i think i fared well. definitely way more dark, and scary, and violent and sad. there are dead bodies and such, so if you have a small child please don't traumatize them and annoy everyone else by bringing them to the theater. it didn't feel like a two and a half hour movie either. that says a lot right there, i think. i also *gasp* enjoyed the mixture of the audience in the theater with us. i think this is the first time i've ever said that. it wasn't just the fact that during the intense scenes there wasn't a sound coming from anyone. it was the social experiment too. there was this big group of teenage girls across the way from us, and i quite enjoyed their gasps, and sighs, and "awwww"s and giggles. there was also this group of three or four skater looking teenage boys sitting in the row in front of us. definitely the "cool" kids. what? at harry potter? what's the appeal there? emma watson? probably not. probably the fact that they've grown up with these things before they knew what cool was. at least that's what i like to think.
moster and i kept leaning over laughing to each other saying "now, he, looks thirty!" and they do.