Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince or Hogwarts High School Non-Musical?

20Jul09
It was during the previews for The Dark Knight on iMax that I heard the familiar haunting tones of the Harry Potter theme song. I actually squealed out loud, only to be disappointed by the reality that this was no trailer, only a black screen stating “Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince – Coming November 21, 2008”. This teaser trailer was almost as anticlimactic as the release of the movie itself. Still reeling over the end of the Potter book series, fans all over the world counted down the days to that original release date.  And then with the wave of the executive Warner Brothers wand – for whatever reason- the movie was put on hold until July 2009. 

So… was it worth the hype?

Yes.

Was it my favorite Harry Potter movie?

No. That award still goes to movie 5, The Order of the Phoenix. I’m a die-hard Sirius Black fan… what can I say?

If you haven’t seen the movie…
This movie was obviously intended for people that have followed the story. There isn’t much back history, so if you haven’t seen the previous films or read the books, you’ll be a little lost. THBP bridges the gap between the rise of Lord Voldemort and his impending demise. So if you’re looking for a nice, neatly wrapped timeline with a series of events, a climax and a resolution, you will be disappointed with the movie. Now… stop reading this blog, leave a nice comment, and go find a date to see The Half Blood Prince.

-SPOILER ALERT-

What’s Missing
The biggest complaint that you will hear from Harry Potter fans is that the movies leave too much out of the original story. Well, isn’t that the case with all book-born movies? The films are never as good as the books. With Harry Potter, there isn’t really any choice but to make some major cuts and adaptations, otherwise each movie would be three weeks long! Some of the major elements left out of THBP include the meeting with the Prime Minister of England (not a monumental scene, but I was looking forward to it), Bill Weasley and Fleur Delacour, the memories of Tom Riddle’s family history, the battle at Hogwarts, and Dumbledore’s funeral.  All in all, I think that the screen writers did a great job of condensing the story into a two and a half hour production.

What They Got Right
The cave scene made the whole movie. While the writers didn’t (in my opinion) give enough history as to why Voldemort chose to hide his horcrux locket in the cave, from a cinematic angle, it couldn’t have been better. It was exactly the way I’d pictured the scene as I read the book. The inferi, Voldemort’s reanimated corpse army, creeped me the hell out.

 As with all the films the casting is impeccable. I’ve hated Draco Malfoy since Harry’s first year at Hogwarts, but he may very well have been my favorite character in THBP. Tom Felton did an outstanding job at playing his part. Everyone in the theater felt the inner turmoil as Malfoy battled against living up to the standard of his evil father and desperately wanting to be an innocent child.  Halfway through the film I was ready to give Draco a hug.

   

Minor Disappointments
The whole movie was a bit choppy. It didn’t have the nice flow to it that the last two movies had. Granted, there was a LOT going on. As a true fan, I would’ve loved to have sat in the theater for another 5 hours while they explained every little detail and recreated every memory in the pensieve. While I realize that’s just not possible, I think the writers/directors did the best they could with what they had.

It did sort of come across as a little too “teeny-bopper-romance” for my taste. The relationships formed in THBP are, no doubt, important but I thought too much of the movies emphasis was placed on them. There were moments I wondered if I was actually watching “Hogwarts High School Non-Musical”. And on a side-note, the girl that played Lavender Brown drove me NUTS.

Overall, I LOVED THE MOVIE. I’m planning on seeing at least one more time, if not five, while it’s still in the theaters.  I have already begun the countdown to the release of The Deathly Hallows Part 1 on November 19th, 2010!

Have you seen the movie? What did you think???

 

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4 Responses to “Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince or Hogwarts High School Non-Musical?”

  1. Hey there, eL.

    I have not seen the movie, but I intend on going!

    I’ve heard the same thing about the “teeny-bopper” romance.

    • 2 eL.

      I will say that there a few scenes of the teeny-bopper romance that are quite hilarious. 🙂 Be sure to let me know what you think!

  2. 3 Joan

    Too much “snogging”, not enough plot! If you had not read the books, you could not follow the movie. I did think it was well-made and would watch again, after I read the book again. Hated the end, but I seem to remember the book being that way, too. Just seemed like a “stay tuned for tomorrow’s conclusion of…” ending.


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