Thursday, July 16, 2009

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

I just came back from seeing the new Harry Potter movie. The Half-Blood Prince was experienced by me a little different than the previous movies - as I usually saw the movie first, and then read the book. Most of the time this was extremely helpful, as many locations baffled my mind and where extremely hard to imagine. The layout of the school it's self, in fact, has caused me much confusion reading, resulting in the halls and corridors becoming a blurred haze in my mind. I imagine, for instance, the Dark Arts school room on the right side of the school, but then find a scene that shifts it completely to the other side. In short, the movies have been very helpful in encapsulating the Harry Potter world for me.

So, I went into this movie having already read the book. In fact, I did a marathon session, finishing half the book in one night and morning. It was very, very tiring, but I was very much on a roll, and I figured it would be nice to finally finish one of the books before seeing the film.

Anyway, the movie was very good. I mentally kept saying "that didn't happen in the book" quite a few times, but over all it was another good adaption of the over all plot. The constant romance in the movie was a bit heavy handed, but very comedic. Ron's crazy girlfriend was a delight on the screen, as she portrayed all the qualities of the worst girl friend in the world.

I was warned by my father, who read a review of the film, that the ending was somewhat different from the book. I had the notion that something wildly unexpected happened, but it was more or less the same tale, just told differently. I have to say, however, that I enjoyed the book much more. In fact, this book so far ranks as my favorite of the books. Finding out what the Horcrux was was especially illuminating, as it made all sorts of connections to the other books' events, tying together many of the series' mysteries. A good movie, and an even finer book. I enjoyed both very much.

Here is a trailer of the film. I do confess having seen the trailers before finishing the book, so I did have a few visual references when reading. If the two interact in readers and viewer's minds so much, I wonder how the films themselves might have changed or influenced JK Rowling.

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