Friday, July 15, 2011

Popcorn and Potter

As I recover from the Harry Potter movie event, and God knows one needs a full day to recover, I thought I'd share some random musings on the experience. I'm not going to go into a long and detailed review because 1) I'm not as comfortable reviewing movies as I am reviewing books, 2) I don't want to spoil anything, and 3) there is simply too much to mention. If you want a detailed analysis, my fiance wrote one--he is a much better movie nerd than I am.

First of all, in my earliest post on this blog I mentioned that Zippy, my Kindle, is pretty much the ideal solution for the reader on the go. I want to add now that when (for example) I'm stuck waiting in line and then in a movie theater for six hours and surrounded by rabid fans, this device is a life saver. I got through 2/3 of a book and several word scramble games before the movie started, time well spent indeed. Also, they make clip on lights for these things which make it possible to remain entertained when the movie theater refuses to keep the lights on consistently. I think the lack of light was an attempt to keep the aforementioned rabid fans in their seats, because they were a bit out of hand.

As for the movie itself, it was very good. Solid 4/5 stars if I were to grade it. A lot of the most important moments are done very well, but it did lack in a few places. I cried twice, which tells you that it managed to be emotionally gripping.

In our after Potter discussion (during which I had pancakes and coffee. mmm, pancakes) I reflected on a few book/movie details that did and did not work for me. (Minor Spoilers Here)

  • As I ranted in my previous post, these books have such wonderful characters. In this movie? Oh Snape, I so feel for you. And Neville, who I didn't mention before, was full of awesome. 
  • The mass death of so many minor characters is addressed really flippantly in this movie. I barely registered the sight of poor Fred, for example.
  • Memory scenes work better in the books than in the movies. This latest movie had probably the most successful memory sequence, but there were still missing pieces.
  • None of the romantic pairings in the movies are believable to me. Eight movies and I still don't feel the love between Ron and Hermione--it feels like the relationship is inevitable but not real or long lasting. And I won't even touch on Harry and Ginny, because I've come to the conclusion that the actress just sucks. All of this is handled slightly better in the books, but not by much. Rowling is just not good at romance. But one can't have everything.
  • Some of the fantasy element and world building seem to get lost in translation. It was glaringly obvious in the way that the hallows are presented. I'm convinced that your average audience member who had not at least skimmed book seven would not grasp their full significance
There you have it, my cliff-notes feelings on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, and the entire movie going experience in general. If your a fan of the books, or even just the movies (go read the books, you heathens) I think you'll enjoy this one.

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