Harry Potter, first day on release, 22.45 (after adverts 23.15, sigh…). One of my best friends flew over from Ireland to watch the movie with me. We dined and drank and queued with hope in our hearts and a twinkle of fanatical mania in our eyes.
I did everything right…ish. I didn’t re-read the book immediately prior (the subject of feverish debate in the streams of Twitter) and reminded myself regularly that it would never, ever, ever live up my expectations. My excitement levels were beyond anything that was sustainable or realistic. I knew this.
However, I could not “obliviate” my freakishly good memory. Teeny tiny details from copious re-reading, compounded by the purchase of the audiobook (read incredibly well by Stephen Fry, definitely worth the moolah) are burned into my feverish brain. No movie could ever live up to that. Hence the almost title of this blog (ah, the road not taken…) “For what it is…”.
Also: Here be spoilers!
I think this was the best HP movie yet. *I really do. It was dark and clever and had surprisingly good comedic moments. It was true enough to the book to leave my blood pressure at an acceptable rate (unlike Half Blood Prince…) and I certainly felt, and got wrapped up in, the tenseness of the movie. Particularly excellent scenes include the visit to Godric’s Hollow (Bathilda scared me witless) and the scene I am calling “Harry Potter and the Awkward Dad Dancing”. The whole cinema clenched as we, in one mind, went “ohnoohnonohno, don’t doooooooooo it”…there was a palpable sense of relief when what we all thought was going to happen didn’t. (Sorry for ambiguity, but I don’t want to spoil everything).
On a side note, I don’t think Daniel Radcliffe gets enough props for the funny bits, in Half Blood Prince my favourite scene is when he’s hyper/drunk from the Felix Felicis and, similarly, in Deathly Hallows he plays a blinder with the odd quick quip. Moody was phenomenal as always, best line (paraphrased)? “He’s gorgeous, now let’s all get inside before we get him killed”…doesn’t read like much but it’s all in the inflection. Of course, he snuffs it soon after. This leads me, rather swiftly, on to:
Moody dies, people! He’s dead. D.E.D. And how do they commemorate him? By looking sad. For three seconds (I timed it! Three seconds! Ok, I didn’t, but still. He deserved more, dammit!).
Also, I found a lot of the action sequences confusing…although confusing isn’t the right word. Slight-of-handy-y, maybe? Does that make sense? For example, in the first chase scene when Hagrid ferrying Harry away (on a sidenote, I haven’t seen a side car in a movie since Bedknobs and Broomsticks! Angela Lansbury 4evah!), Hagrid is somehow belted with a spell and slumps over. Harry has to take the wheel…I’ve seen the movie twice now and I still have no idea how Hagrid was incapacitated. Slight of hand, see? Or just a light touch with the details? I might stick with that description. This continues throughout the movie, I think, and makes it feel very “surface”. It is for this reason, and this reason only because I love the weirdo, that I didn’t cry at Dobby’s death. Also, Dobby dies, people! Ahem. Anyway, I cry at everything. The Notebook incapacitated me for 20 minutes, a particularly poignant Mastercard commercial reduced me to floods once. Yet with Dobby’s vicious murder, nothing. Definite lack of emotion depth (the movie, not me. I gots plenty of emotions. Most of them rage).
But back to The positives, or as I shall call it, Totty Count…apart from Voldemort himself (come on, own up, I know I’m not the only one, what woman doesn’t love a man with power, perfectly manicured nails, a cute snub nose and an extreeeeeeeemely large snake?) the winner has to be Yaxley. The man has fabulous hair, is obviously in the whole of his health (the Ministry seems v.large and he ran through it very swiftly) and has the Best Voice Ever. Husky, menacing, slightly Scottish…* thud *
So what I’m trying to say, poorly, I know, is that Deathly Hallows was enjoyable, definitely. For what it was. It will never, ever, ever, match the book; my logical side understands this, my heart, however, fights against this. No doubt I shall await Pt 2 with the same stupid hope in my heart…chief amongst these hopes for the final movie in the series is my most fervent wish that Rupert Grint learns to breath with his mouth closed. Truly, it was reminiscent of emphysema and it made his dialogue disjointed. Ho hum…
* Feel free to chime in with your thoughts, do you think it was the best yet? Am I the only one who noticed the mouth-breathing? Is anyone else contemplating shaving Emma Watson’s eyebrows off to see if she can act without them?