Tuesday, July 14, 2009

It's Finally Here!

It's July 14th, that means tonight at midnight we will finally be able to see the latest film in the Harry Potter franchise, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

I'm not going to lie. When I first learned of Warner Bros. decision to delay the film for eight months last summer I was quite angry, especially when I learned that the reason for the delay was not because of the movie it was because Warners was lacking a big blockbuster this summer so they moved Harry Potter so they could have a financially more successful year. But now the frustration of the delay has become a distant memory and finally after two years of waiting Half-Blood Prince is about to be unleashed upon the legions of fans around the world. Today I'd like to take a look at some of my expectations for the new Potter film as well as what I know has been cut or changed from the book to film.

As most of you'll already know I wasn't too terribly fond of the last two Harry Potter films. While they both had their moments and were in the end entertaining, there was something missing. The films were not entirely faithful to their source material. While I am by no means a zealot of the books I do want to see them be at least faithful to the characters and the tone of the stories, and the past two Potter films were kinda mixed in this particular department.

Now I have always felt since this book first came out that the book was so cinematic that if done right it could end up being possibly the best of the entire series. The only other book that I thought was this cinematic was book seven, but I think the reason I feel these last two installments were so cinematic is just simply J.K. Rowling's writing had grown and become a lot more visual in style, but back to this particular installment. My expectations for this film are very high, so what do I expect from this latest Potter installment that'll make it better to me than the last two installments?

What I truly want from this latest Potter film is a film that is first and foremost a great film that genuinely feels magical. The next thing is I want to see the characters be the characters that we all know and love from the books. Some of the previous movies have been hit or miss in this department, so I'm hoping here it'll be a touch better. Then the last thing is I'd like to see majority of the major plot elements included in the film and realized as brilliantly as they were on the page, cause as I said earlier I felt the book lended itself so perfectly to a cinematic adaptation that so many of the plot strands could be a visual feast if done right. My expectations have compelled me to try and learn all that has been cut or altered.

Beginning a few months ago I was doing extensive research trying to learn everything that has been cut or changed from this particular installment and for the most part the film seems to be fairly faithful to the story. Majority of the major plot points seem to be in tact, which makes me very happy. Quidditch is back this time about and looks better than ever. The teenage romance from the books seems to be in full force within the film, which is definitely something that pleases me since that was my favorite aspect of the book.

Now while they have cut certain things, like Dumbledore's Funeral and the big battle at the end of the film, the film didn't necessarily need these two things in order to tell the story so I can accept the reasoning as to why these were omitted, plus there are rumors that the filmmakers are saving Dumbledore's Funeral for the beginning of film seven. Some of the biggest news about the latest installment is that the filmmakers have added a new action sequence in the middle of the film where the Death Eaters attack the Burrow. They got J.K. Rowling's permission to add the sequence and I'm fairly excited to see it, it looks really cool and could potentially add some great drama in the middle of the film.

Overall I am highly excited for this latest Harry Potter film. I'm trying not to get too excited because I've had my fair share of disappointments in the past, but I have been fairly impressed with all that I have seen thus far from this film so here's hoping the film lives up to its potential. I really think that it can. We'll know for sure tonight.

I'll be back tomorrow to give my full review on the latest Harry Potter film.


  1. They cut the battle at the end of the film! It was such an epic battle! harry is trapped and can't help dumbledore and has to stand there and watch him die! WTF? I hope they didn't cut all of it.

  2. OH yeah, and time magazine did a non-spoiler review this morning online and the reviewer was complete gah-gah. So much so i thought you wrote it :)

    I was pretty impressed. They're a bit easier to please than the NYT but still, it was a major publication giving a long winded thumbs up. I'm excited now. See you tonight!