First, a correction to an entry in the July Calendar in the Summer issue of OWL: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince doesn’t come out this Friday. It comes out today (er, last night at midnight). To make up for our mistake, I’ll give you the inside scoop on the movie as I was lucky enough to see a sneak preview.
As you probably know from the past books and movies in the series, Harry Potter is a legendary boy wizard. He is the prime target of Voldemort, the most feared wizard in the history of wizardry, and yet manages to survive all sorts of attacks with the help of his friends Ron and Hermione.
In this installment, the sixth in the series, Harry must look to the past to help stop Voldemort, all while trying not to fall under the spell of a textbook that once belonged to the mysterious Half-Blood Prince.
Here are three observations about the movie:
1) The special effects are incredible. Everything looks perfectly real and believable, no matter how strange or otherworldly. Aerial acrobatics for Quidditch matches? Easy. Huge fire storms swirling around a single character? No problem! The effects were so good, in fact, I found myself thanking the folks at the studio for not making the movie in 3D. If they had, it would be a little bit terrifying.
2) I’d heard this movie was going to be darker than others in the series. I heard right. I mean, the bad guys are badder than ever, the good guys are fighting amongst each other, and, quite literally, dark things are constantly falling from the sky and attacking things. It makes me question whether I really want to be a super wizard after all. (Psych! Of course I want to be a super wizard!)
3) Every dark movie needs a little comic relief. In this case, that comic relief is spelled “Ron Weasley.” It’s a good thing, really, because Ron doesn’t have a whole lot to do with the actual story. He’s not a good enough wizard to help Harry with anything, so he spends a good deal of time making funny faces and calling people names.
Overall, this movie does a good job of bringing the book to the big screen. As with all book-to-movie adaptations, the filmmakers had to make a lot of decisions on which scenes and details to keep. As OWL’s associate editor Mandy said, “If they included everything that happened in the book, it’d be 10 hours long.” (Note: as it is now, it’s already 153 minutes.)
Let me know in the comments if you’ve read the books and if you plan to see the movie. And, if you hit theatres to see it, let me know what you thought.
Talk to you soon.