creation finally returns to the big screen in Harry Potter and
the Half-Blood Prince which is based on her sixth novel in this
highly popular series. Although originally scheduled for a release
in December 2008, the movie has finally made its way to the public
and best of all, the movie boasts an impressive IMAX 3D opening
sequence which really transcends the story to the next level, making
it quite "magical".
Unlike the previous films, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
is a considerably darker and more plot driven movie which
creates a mixed affair and at times seems to mimic the teenage
vampire romance Twilight. The story of course revolves around
Harry Potter, however Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger seem to be in
the background in this movie as Harry is "undercover" for Professor
In relation to the story, for the world of magic and the Muggle
world to be free of Voldermort, the vessels holding his soul must be
found and destroyed, unfortunately this is easier said than done.
Dumbledore believes that Professor Horace Slughorn, a former teacher
of Hogworts holds the key to Voldermort's defeat as he was the
one-time teacher of Tom Riddle, aka Voldermort.
Through wit and guile, Harry must somehow befriend Slughorn in order
for him to lower his guard and tell him the truth of a fateful
encounter one evening with Voldermort.
Although this is the
main theme in the movie, this current instalment of Harry Potter
revolves far too much on the romantic angst of the characters,
especially between Herminie and Ron plus Harry and Ron's sister
Ginny. Regrettably for myself, this theme feels too forced and
lessons the "magic" of the series and talking with a colleague of
mine who saw the movie, he agrees, however noticed that key elements
and anecdotes from the novel were also missing in this movie. At
times I was scratching my head at the plot, however my colleague
understood everything due to his previous experience from reading
Without spoiling the
plot, this book made headlines when it was revealed that one of the
major characters in the series would die and this parallels Star
Wars the Empire Strikes Back in the solemn ending. Consider it
the coming of age story for Harry and his friends.
The actors in the movie all reprise their roles quite well,
especially the instigator in the movie who is played by Tom Felton
and plays the troubled Draco Malfoy who is finding it difficult to
be "puppeteered" by Voldermort's lackeys. As per usual, Daniel
Radcliffe as Harry, Michael Gambon as Professor Albus Dumbledore are
perfect as the lead characters.
Alan Rickman also
returns as Professor Snape and once again revisits the story of
whether he is evil or good and the ending is a real highlight for
the character and I'm sure we will see more of him in the next
movie. Helena Bonham Carter stars as Bellatrix Lestrange, however
her wonderful acting is side tracked in the movie, however the star
for me was Jim Broadbent as the dotard Professor Horace Slughorn.
romance, comedy and a touch of romance, Harry Potter and the
Half-Blood Prince will definitely appeal to the younger
generation or those who enjoyed the novel but for me, unfortunately
something was missing. It was not a bad movie per se, however it
lacked the flow from the previous movies and dare I say, a little
tedious, even on IMAX.
IMAX! That brilliant four letter word! The biggest problem with
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince on IMAX is that the movie
is visually quite dark. The clarity of other IMAX movies such as
The Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen or The Dark Knight
seems to be missing in this title which unfortunately hampers the 3D
aspect of the movie. Sure, the 3D bits were great, however the
clarity and sharpness was lacking. Thankfully the sound quality more
than made up for this shortfall and Harry Potter and the
Half-Blood Prince sounded phenomenal through the IMAX sound that
boasts a 15,000-watt digital audio system.
At the end of the day, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince was
probably my least favourite film in the series, probably due to the
sometimes convoluted plot and Twilight-esq romance between the
For those viewers
who are not thoroughly into the novels, a recap at the beginning
would have been nice to jog our memories. Viewers who enjoyed the
novels will more than likely enjoy the movie immensely, provided
they can ignore certain changes and omissions in the transfer from
the book to the big screen.
Needless to say, I
did enjoy certain elements of this movie, however it seemed like a
breather before the climatic conclusion. With that said, there are
two more Harry Potter movies to come which are being filmed back to
back and unfortunately "us" non Harry Potter novel fans will need to
wait until the next movie.
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