15 July 2009

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince: Spoiler-free short review

This is a short review - spoiler-free - and I'll give you a week or so to get to the theatre and see it. After that, I'll assume the die-hard fans went and I'll do a more in-depth post.

I loved it. Best midnight movie premiere I've ever seen. I think the writer and director did a great job streamlining the plot for a 2.5 hour movie; there were some scenes I would have loved to keep in but I really didn't miss them while in the theatre. Particular kudos go to Tom Felton as Draco Malfoy, a really fine job there, and also to the props department because the Room of Requirement set-up was fantastic.

I'm not usually a crier at movies, and thought I wouldn't in this instance because I knew the outcome ahead of time, but near the end (you'll know) the music rose and so did the lump in my throat. In my opinion, the scene is far more touching and intimate than the "do" in the book.

Thumbs down to the billing. Timothy Spall (Worm-tail) is listed individually in the primary cast even though he appears for a maximum of 30 seconds while both Tom Felton and Bonnie Wright (Ginny Weasley) are listed among the secondary characters but have a significant amount of screen time. It's just wrong.

Previews (and there were five official ones this time, so huzzah):
"pre-preview" preview (meaning shown in rotation with the ads prior to the start of the actual previews) - Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs - looks like a Pixar film because all the people look like Ratatouille characters but it's not Pixar, not sure about this one
1. 9 - Tim Burton-produced post-apocalyptic animated film that he didn't direct (but he might as well have because it looks like a Burton-styled film); intriguing but not sure I want to see it in the theatre
2. G.I. Joe - again, different preview than the last, jumps a great deal more through different scenes, the first preview was a better sell
3. Sherlock Holmes - Guy Ritchie-helmed, big-budget, action-hero style update of the Holmes canon, intriguing, but I can't quite see how the minimal-action, intellectual style of the originals will hold in this version, visually quite interesting but the style is beginning to look like all the paranormal action movies use the same cinematographer
4. Shorts - daft-looking tripe in which some kids find a rainbow colored stone that grants wishes, the stone presumably falls into the villain's hands, and the kids have to go save the world; I must vomit now
5. Where the Wild Things Are - looks to be a beautiful adaptation of such a favorite children's book; I almost cried watching the preview


  1. My kids are waiting to see this - I think I will take them on Friday.

  2. I'm really looking forward to taking Aidan to see Where the Wild Things Are. One of my favorite books growing up. 9 just looks fantastic.