Friday, July 13, 2007

Where's the magic, Harry?


After waiting for so long and eagerly counting down the days before seeing Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix on huge IMAX screen, I came out of the theatre very disappointed. I didn’t want to write about it last Wednesday because, frankly, the only thing I could think of was: “WARNING, non-readers of HP series! Movie. Will. Not. Make. Sense. At. All.”

As a rabid HP nutter, it pains me to write this but the movie sucks (oh, the pain *sniff*). Like Dolores Umbridge, it deserves to melt in a boiling pot of bubotuber pus, aye! The book has so many characters and secrets and sub-plots I knew the director and screenwriters wouldn’t be able to put everything in the movie. What I didn’t expect was they would butcher the story just to make the cut! Except for Harry, most of the characters are brushed aside; essential subplots are ONLY HINTED at ANNOYINGLY fast snatches; horrible sad moments are treated more like an irritation than key pieces of the puzzle! *breathe* Honestly, what the hell?!?
  • No reference to Aunt Petunia knowing about Dementors. She didn’t receive any howler which said, “Remember my last.”

  • No cleaning of Grimmauld Place. If it’s insignificant enough to be removed, does it mean the locket horcrux isn’t in Kreacher’s possession? Who has it then? The crumple-horned snorkacks?

  • No mention of Percy’s estrangement from his family. People who didn’t read the book and remembered his face from previous movies will wonder why he’s acting like a blibbering humdinger.

  • No reference to Hermione and Ron being prefects. No Quidditch at all, that means Ron isn’t on the Gryffindor team.

  • Cho gives Dumbledore’s Army away. Aquavirius maggots ate her brains, forgive her.

  • I was so looking forward to seeing Snape’s Worst Memory and it’s just like 5 freaking seconds long! *GRRR*

  • They put Kreacher in it but he didn’t do anything other than reveal his character. Where’s the lying, foul little bugger we all lurve?

  • The prophecy is never heard in full. No portion that refers to Neville.

  • Sirius calls Harry “James” when they’re side by side fighting Death-Eaters. I assume it has a point but who knows, really.

  • In the book, Sirius and Bellatrix are shooting jets of red light to each other (no mention of which curses) and the second one hits Sirius on the chest and he falls. In the movie, Bellatrix uses the Avada Kedavra curse (which gives out a green light). Translation: Sirius is REALLY dead, you fools!

  • Sirius’ death is one of the most difficult/horrific parts of Harry’s life. Where the fuck are the heart-wrenching tears Harry displayed in the fourth movie? What happened to the angry Harry roaring at Dumbledore, overcome with grief? I want a weepy, crushed, mad-like-a-crazy-kangaroo Harry, dammit! I want him breaking Dumbledore’s stuff! I want him like he’d bleed to death with the pain of it! But nooooo. It’s as if he only lost a favorite Jimmy Choos not a beloved godfather and the only family he got!
Maybe I’m asking too much, but come on! Even POA (which I hated because it didn’t live up to my uber favorite third book) was shot beautifully. True, the special effects of OOTP are top of the line—and the acting is actually better—but I want the core of it: the story, the thrills, the laughters, the horror, the heart-breaking loss... and the movie painfully missed it all.


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37 comment(s):

Blogger Babz said...

Hm. So I guess it wasn't very good then. Ok so now I'm torn. I don't read the books but I enjoyed the movies very much. Aside from my pedophilistic feelings for Radcliffe of course.

My bf, he doesn't even know that much about the movies but he will accompany me if I do go watch. Will this leave him snoring in the cinema? Yes he's done that before.

7/13/2007 12:28:00 PM  

Anonymous donna said...

Only reaffirms my belief that the book is *always* so much better. Thanks for the info, I'll wait for the dvd. I do love the casting. Esp. Alan Rickman. I so hope hope hope Snape is resolved as a conflicted but overall good Wizard. I'm almost at a fever pitch over Hallowed Halls. Knowing it's the last in the series is driving me insane. I wish Rowling had never told us.

7/13/2007 01:07:00 PM  

Anonymous terrie said...

i just watched the movie about an hour or two ago and YES it was such a big disappointment. i could have fallen asleep in the cinema if only it was not for the uncomfortable seats and i NEVER feel sleepy in cinemas! so Babz, don't bring your bf to harry potter if you don't want to find him snoring halfway through.. (it could even happen earlier than halfway through!)

7/13/2007 01:18:00 PM  

Blogger Babz said...

Thanks for the advice Terrie, but I am even more confused! My trusted movie site says go watch it, you guys say no... Oy.

7/13/2007 01:32:00 PM  

Blogger December/Stacia said...

Babz, Danny's legal here in the UK (and I saw him full frontal in Equus, too!)


I agree about the film. Very disappointing. I think what bugged me the most was the way the Death Eaters can suddenly turn themselves into dust ala The Mummy, and overpowered the kids in like a second with ease. Why even bother having the DA then? The point was supposed to be that the kids were good fighters now!

Bleh.

7/13/2007 03:52:00 PM  

Blogger Babz said...

December, he's legal ALREADY?? Damn I feel old. Hm, now that he's legal suddenly he's not that hot in my mind anymore :/

Must.. find.. another.. younger.. crush.

Dish, December! Is he, er, mature, down there? LOL

OK, about the film, the reaction I'm getting is that it's a big letdown for the book fans, but an okay, even good movie, for the movie fans. I shall watch it after all. If BF snores I'm sending him next door to Die Hard.

7/13/2007 04:07:00 PM  

Blogger Harlot said...

Babz,
Most likely he won't understand it. :/ I mean, my little sister who read the book two years ago and couldn't remember parts of it was lost. :S (Die Hard rocks!)


Donna,
I do like the casting. I've always loved Alan Rickman as Snape. Imelda Stauton is pretty good. She really made this teacher from hell come alive. Oh, and i love her wardrobe! They're all pink and fluffy and with cat brooches. :D LOL Helena Bonham Carter is great too, i do think she's a great actress but like most of the cast, she has so little part.


Terrie,
The 4th movie is muchos better, don't you think?


December,
I didn't understand either why the Death Eaters could suddenly turn into dust. Is that the way they apparate? But i think that's how they did it too when they were called by Lord Voldy in the 4th movie..

7/13/2007 04:49:00 PM  

Anonymous Diana said...

Has JK Rowling approved the scripts and the changes from the books? If so, then the details that are removed or changed in the movies must not be crucial to the last book. If not, then I wonder how the last couple of movies will be able to get to the conclusion of the stories if important details have been changed in previous movies.

For example, the fourth movie, Goblet of Fire, is completely devoid of the house elves and Hermione's SPEW efforts. Instead of Dobby giving Harry the Gilley-weed, Neville gives it to him. In the fifth movie, Kreacher doesn't have any significant part. Maybe the house elves (Dobby, Kreacher) aren't going to play much of a role in the final book.

7/13/2007 06:19:00 PM  

Blogger Lily Moon said...

Sirius called Harry "James" as a Freudian slip. I think it tells us how much he really missed James and how he saw him in Harry as they fought together.

I didn't like the movie very much, but they showed little snippets of future/possible stories. Like Ginny jealous of Harry and Cho and that she's a really good wizard (she turned some hulking thing into dust).

7/13/2007 06:31:00 PM  

Anonymous Gabrielle said...

There was nothing subtle in this film. In the book there are undetones of Sirius wanting James back but he would have NEVER called Harry James. Its just wasnt right. They could have done it much moe subtley (sp?).

Harlot, I agree. Snapes Worst Memory was my fave part in the whole book and they cut it down extensivley. I hardly got to see Sirius :'(

I didnt like Harry's reaction to Sirius' death either. He showed more emotion when Cedric died. And how could they leave Harry with that "James" thing?! That was the last thing that Sirus ever said to him! Talk about giving him a complex.

Agree with everyone about the Death Eater dusty smokey thing. That was weird.

And how are they going to explain Harry and Cho's break up if she wasnt to blame for telling on the Army? It doesnt make sense.

Okay that was my vent :D

7/13/2007 06:56:00 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: Has JK Rowling approved the scripts and the changes from the books?

According to fan sites, Jo is consulted however, the directors/producers/script writers can choose whether or not to accept her suggestions.

One example: For the 5th movie, the script writers had originally written "one character" completely out of the movie. Jo told them that while it ultimately was there choice to write out "this particular" character, they would have a difficult time explaining certain events in the final movie.

I have not yet seen the movie, so I cannot venture a guess as to which "one character" they might be referring to.

7/13/2007 07:31:00 PM  

Blogger Shoshana said...

Harlot, my husband's bf loved the movie. He had read HP series like 3 times.

But maybe because he's a guy?

I haven't seen it yet, but so far people whose opinion on movies matters the most both love and hated it. Now, I gotta see what the next person I know say about it.

7/13/2007 07:44:00 PM  

Blogger Lily Moon said...

"And how could they leave Harry with that "James" thing?! That was the last thing that Sirus ever said to him! Talk about giving him a complex."

It's true. But I really like Gary Oldman as Sirius in this movie. With all the director/writers' fault, they at least showed that father/son, godfather/godson/friends relationship between Sirius and Harry. That's what's been missing in the previous movies. Little things like, when Harry arrived at Grimmauld Place, Sirius was having a meeting with the Order but the moment he saw Harry, he lighted up. But yeah...they should have made Sirius' death more emotional.

7/13/2007 07:46:00 PM  

Blogger Jerseygirl said...

Anonymous:
They were talking about Kreacher. I saw an article that said that. They wanted to write all the house elves out, but JK said it would make things harder later. I love the Harry Potter books, and that does disappoint me that the movie seems lukewarm at best to people who've read the novels. I love Alan Rickman, too. Remember when he was the bad guy in the original "Die Hard?" I like Gary Oldman as an actor also. I feel like I have to order "Deathly Hallows" soon because somehow I'll learn the ending through other means!
Well, off to watch the Yankees (who have a couple of hotties of their own..move over, Becks...LOL!)

7/13/2007 07:54:00 PM  

Anonymous malicious strumpet said...

Interesting. I absolutely adored the movie. I thought it was the best one so far. Now granted, I've long since let go of the idea tha the movie will look like what I expect or will be a lot like the book. The LOTR films taught me that (in that they were WONDERFUL films, but changed or left out significant portions of the books).

I thought this HP was visually stunning. The entire sequence at the Department of Mysteries is like a painting come to life. I was openning my eyes wider and wider trying to take in more and more during that. I thought it was amazing.

There were several things that were down-played in the movie (most of which Harlot's already ranted about with sincere passion), but I expected that from the film. The other ones all left out a lot and there was just SO MUCH going on in this film.

For me, the time sailed by while watching it and I loved every minute. I especially adored the girl who played Luna Lovegood. Awesome.

Cheers,
ms

7/13/2007 10:28:00 PM  

Blogger Ladybug said...

My friends went to see it Wednesday midnight, some with their kids. Really, grown ups going to midnight showings of a kid's fantasy movie. You people need to get a life.

Now if you will excuse me, I need to get back to my reading of Prisoner of Azkaban... for the eleventh time... :)

7/14/2007 02:48:00 AM  

Blogger Jolie said...

I too didn't like the movie. Why would they include Kreacher and then omit the part where he lies to Harry about Sirius? That's his main role in the book!

With that said, I like the girl who plays Luna. She's perfect. Umbridge and Bellatrix too.

What's up with Sirius calling Harry "James"? I think the only thing they did right was reinstate DD into the grand wizard that he was in the books. That was a great duel he had with Lord Voldemort.

7/14/2007 04:38:00 AM  

Blogger Danielle De Barbarac said...

My complain about Michael Gambon's portrayal of Dumbledore is that he's always angry. So very far from the always smiling Headmaster in the books. I like Gary Oldman, he's a great actor. I like him as Sirius in this movie.

There are many hints in this movie that might be related with book 7. They also built up Ginny, showing her as a very skilled witch (she's always been portrayed as such anyway). She started using her brothers' brooms for flying lessons at age 6 (or 7?). Somewhere between her 3rd-4th year in Hogwarts, she mastered the batbogey hex, striking fear into George and Fred.

7/14/2007 08:06:00 AM  

Anonymous Ollenska said...

"They wanted to write all the house elves out, but JK said it would make things harder later."

Kreacher obviously plays a role in the last book. And isn't there an elf holding a sword on the UK edition cover of Deathly Hallows?

Olly

7/14/2007 09:25:00 AM  

Blogger Apoorv Khatreja said...

The movie was bad. I have neither read any of the HP books, nor watched any of the movies. I was forced to watch this one by my friends. I couldn't stand it, so I silently walked away in the intermission. (And ya, I spat on the Harry Potter poster too)

7/14/2007 09:34:00 AM  

Blogger Menchie said...

Oh no! I haven't seen it yet -- how disappointing. I didn't like the third movie either but the fourth was ok.

I'm still going to sit through it though, despite the bad reviews.

On another note, I am so THRILLED to finally get my copy of TSG. Harlot, FB has tons of copies in their newest branch. I almost did a dance of joy whe I saw it on display.

7/14/2007 09:39:00 AM  

Blogger LOVE AND IMMIGRATION CRIER said...

I had to fly in from South Africa to attend the show but my jaws sinking down.Yeah loads of fans flew in even from Japan.I personally spoke to 5japanese who flew just because of "Harry Porter",they were not dissatisfied I am.Yeah "Pheonix" still has its place in history and no qualms about that

7/14/2007 11:21:00 AM  

Anonymous terrie said...

it's true that the others were better than this one. i guess that is always the case. i am yet to watch die hard though. i'm praying that it will be worth my money. haha.

7/14/2007 12:26:00 PM  

Anonymous Kirstin said...

I liked the movie in the sense I didn't get bored or fell asleep but after the movie I thought I should have waited for it on HBO. It's a wonder that even with a cast of very talented actors, the movie failed to leave a lasting impression. The fourth movie was much better.

7/14/2007 01:17:00 PM  

Blogger Rachel said...

The movie failed, not because certain parts were omitted, but because of the way they chopped off significant scenes in the book which should have been included in the movie, while those scenes that made the cut were done really fast that there's no time for the audience to appreciate them.

Everyone knows the director couldn't put everything in the movie. But book 4 is almost as long as 5 yet they made a wonderful movie without rushing important scenes.

7/14/2007 03:26:00 PM  

Blogger December/Stacia said...

Tee hee, Babz.

While he clearly hasn't reached his full maturity yet--he is only seventeen after all--he has absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Very, very attractive and appealing in every way. My pervy friends and I were quite pleased--both with his attributes and his excellent, excellent performance in the play.

7/14/2007 03:38:00 PM  

Blogger Lily Moon said...

December, you're pervy! Lol!

So... Dan has some.... quite pleasing attributes huh? :-P

7/14/2007 05:54:00 PM  

Anonymous donna said...

harlot,

imelda stauton looks exactly like the kind of woman that terrifies me on sight. all pinkness and proper and eviscerating. i've considered going gay for a sec watching helena bonham carter in other films, but on the movie previews it looks like her teeth are an awful red gunky mess??

jerseygirl,

i developed a huge crush on alan rickman in sense and sensibility and then gave over to him gleefully and completely in dogma. i never saw diehard as i'm probably one of the few who is annoyed by bruce willis. back to alan- remember him as colonel brandon reading faerie queen to marrianne? **deep and heavy sigh** no BOB required.

7/15/2007 01:11:00 AM  

Anonymous donna said...

"For there is nothing lost, but may be found if sought."

I'm melting into a puddle of mush here but really Alan Rickman just wrecks me.
I am pretty new to this blog, but it's probably already noticeable that a man's reading voice can do me.

7/15/2007 01:46:00 AM  

Blogger Harlot said...

OMG Mench, which branch? And what cover? This is the one i have. I have 3 copies of TBH, 2 T&A (T&A/TBTHC), and 1 TSG. Have to get one more TSG. :P) Ohhh, i am going to stop by a certain bookstore tomorrow!

P.S. I really hope FB will have Eclipse on time. I asked the other night and they couldn't confirm it. :S


Donna,
I know! LOL She looks twisted actually with all of that pink, and then she speaks... great great great. I think the costume people did an excellent job on her.

I think Bellatrix's teeth are supposed to be like that. AFter all, she's been in Azkaban for years. ;)

I love Alan Rickman. He's great in the Potter movies, he's a whacko in Die Hard and he's so lovable in Sense and Sensibility. And that voice! How could you argue with that voice? Ah, he's amazing.

7/15/2007 02:01:00 AM  

Blogger Aggie said...

I thought the movie lacked the magic that was such a feature in all the others (as well as in the books)
With that left out, it was just another goodies vs baddies movie with Star Wars light sabers.
I think it would confuse anyone who had not read the books closely. I thought Imelda Staunton was excellent and Lorna Lovegood. What it lacked in magic was made up for (in part) by really great acting.
I LOVED the Weasley twins ... gorgus!

7/15/2007 03:15:00 AM  

Blogger Vanessa said...

My friend who likes the movies but never read the books got a bit confused. When I groaned about how short Snape's Worst Memory was, I had to explain to her that I didn't even see the young Sirius.

The movies cannot compare with the books but the 5th movie appeared to me like a series of convoluted scenes put together. I like Luna though.

7/15/2007 08:30:00 AM  

Blogger Jerseygirl said...

Donna:
Sorry to say I've not seen either of those movies, though now I have to go get them! I love Alan Rickman's voice too...so silky and sexy. And he just exudes evil, which is so much fun!

7/15/2007 02:32:00 PM  

Blogger Menchie said...

Harlot,

I saw it in their newest branch in Fort. It's a different cover which is probably why I almost missed it! Walked right past it -- good thing I wasn't in a hurry and loitered around for a bit before I focused on the title.

7/15/2007 09:22:00 PM  

Blogger Harlot said...

Thanks Mench! :D Ohh i hope they'll have Bartered Bride too by November so i don't have to oder it.

7/16/2007 01:58:00 AM  

Blogger Experimental Mania said...

made me realise how the movies can completely morph the book..
and also made me realise how much both the books and the movies are hyped in order to pull in audiences..
my experience...
http://conceptualaura.blogspot.com/2007/07/2-large-pepsis-1-popcorn-and-child.html

7/16/2007 02:34:00 PM  

Anonymous Fortain said...

Saw the movie with my g/f, and we both thought the same thing: it was the abriged Cliff's Notes version of OotP. Not just abridged, not just the Cliff's Notes, but the abridged Cliff's Notes.

7/19/2007 09:00:00 PM