Friday, July 29, 2011

Talking Harry Potter with the Biggest Fan in the House...My Wife!


Last weekend my wife Dionne (aka. Potterhead D) , a diehard Harry Potter fan, and I took in the final instalment of the beloved Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. Needless to say she enjoyed the film far more than I did so I decided to conduct a mini interview with her on the ride home.

CS: Fresh out of the theatre, what are your initial thoughts on the film?

Potterhead D: I like how they visually did the various things from the book. It was not what I envisioned, but when you read the book you have your own picture of things. Still, I think they did a great job of bringing the book to life.

CS: Many are calling this the best film in the series, do you agree with that?

Potterhead D: No, though I am probably in the minority, my favourite book and movie is actually the first one. The wonder and awe of The Philosopher's Stone is what I love about the entire series.

CS: Neville was easily the highlight of part two of the Deathly Hallows for me? What were some memorable moments for you?

Potterhead D: Oddly enough it was the comedic moments that stood out for me. For instance Professor McGonagall’s line “I always wanted to use that spell” cracked me up. She is usually such a stoic character in the films that it was funny to see her get her moment to have fun and see the expression of glee on her face.


CS: While I enjoyed the film I was not blown away by most of it. I am not sure if it was the hype, or because I have a love/hate relationship with most of the movies as I prefer the books. I found that a lot of characters were wasted in the film.

Potterhead D: Well, Luna was one of those wasted characters. She usually has interesting moments in each film. There is just something about Luna that is endearing and goofy and they just did not use her well at all in this film. Yes, she has an important line that helps move the story along, but otherwise she is wasted. I was not blown away eithe,r but I knew what to expect because I read the books. Also, I did not know how they could bring it to life in a way that would be as epic, as I envisioned while reading the book.

CS: I guess the problem I have always had with the film adaptations is that my favourite parts of the book rarely make it into the films. Take the big battle scene for example, I watched the werewolfs and trolls attacking, but it really did nothing for me.

Potterhead D: Well your imagination will always be better in the books than in the movie.

CS: True, but in the book you had more time with characters like the Weasley twins. So you got the sense of how crazy this battle was. Sure the film captured the visual aspects, but I would have rather had that moment where we actually see those beloved characters parish. Not just the “oh look these five characters are now dead” pan across shot. It would bring a little more weight to both battle and their deaths.

Potterhead D: Almost like a montage of the supporting characters getting killed?


CS: Not necessarily a montage, but something to truly acknowledge their deaths. I mean we see generic students getting killed left and right in the film. I would have just rather had those frames spent on characters we actually care about. Switching gears for a moment, the idea of young love has always been an integral part of the series. Thoughts on when Ron and Hermione finally get together.

Potterhead D: I thought it came off a little silly in the film. It just happen at a weird moment when you cannot help but think “you are really going to do this now, with all the stuff going on. Another love story that never fully played out was Neville and Luna. They just left it hanging, though the more I think about it, I actually like how that was handled. I would be silly if everyone had that “big kiss” moment in one film.

CS: One thing I will say is that there is a whole lot of action in the film. I still think the film could have been one film instead of two parts. The stuff with the Deathly Hallows which was a major component of the first part, could have easily been cut down to a mere four minutes.

Potterhead D: Yes and no. I mean they're got to milk the series, but I actually like that they did it in two parts. It gave them the chance to expand on certain things. Since I am a fan of the movies I was willing to sit through more of them than probably you are.

CS: Do you think they will reboot the series one day?

Potterhead D: They can never reboot the series. There was an awe and wonderment plus a sensationalism that you just cannot recreate. You will have other series that come in claiming to be like Harry Potter, but there is no way they can top this series. Nor will they ever try and reboot the Harry Potter franchise.

16 comments:

  1. I always say if the franchise gets rebooted it will and/or should be as a TV series which gives us the chance to get more from the series. I'm such a weird Potter fan. I love the books and movies even if I'll readily admit that the movies aren't excellent. The finale was as good as I could hope for, it was a bit too "Radcliffe-show" but then it is HARRY POTTER.

    But, despite the issues I was more than content with it.

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  2. @Andrew - I was satisfied with Deathly Hallows but I do not love it. While I loved six of the seven books (hate Chambers of Secret), I have had an odd relationship with the films. Loved some films hated others. If I had to rank them it would look something like this:

    1) Prisoner
    2) Half-Blood
    3) Deathly Hallows 7.2
    4) Deathly Hallows 7.1
    5) Philosopher Stone
    6) Goblets
    7) Order
    8) Chambers

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  3. Wonder how Potterhead D felt about Mrs Weasley's big moment? I felt a little cheated by it, that we just dropped in and out without getting the power it had in the book. But I seem to be in a minority on that.

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  4. @Louise - My wife says she was rather indifferent in regards to Mrs. Weasley's big moment. She thought what was shown was effective for film purposes but it obviously did not hold a candle to how it played out in the books.

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  5. Very nice article. Hearing what your wife had to say was interesting and a nice change of pace.

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  6. I really hope Rowling (or possibly someone else) doesn't get the idea to do another series based on HP's and the rest's kids'. That'd be terrible. Albus Severus hooking up with Ron's geek girls.. Oh wait they're related. Well..

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  7. @Duke – Yep I thought she would probably be the best person to talk about the final film. Plus I like to occasionally break away from the norm on this site.

    @5plitreel – I would not be surprised if a Potter the next generation series of books pop up. I do not see Rowling doing them but somewhere down the line, after Rowling is gone, a could see a publisher wanting to cash in.

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  8. I'm with your wife that I like it better that it was made in two parts. Watching Part I before seeing Part 2 made me appreciate both so much more.

    And let's pray Warner Bros never dares rebooting this ever.

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  9. @Castor – I can see the benefits of splitting the films up. Still, I think the world could have handled a four hour Potter film. Especially since people are seeing the film two and three times as it is.

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  10. The Harry Potter movies aren't really movies. They're the world's most expensive book illustrations.

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  11. @watchmoviesonline747 – In the cases of Chamber of Secrets I might have to agree with you.

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  12. Great review! I liked the final film. It was a fitting way to finish the series. I'm still in two minds as to whether Deathly Hallows should have been one film, I just felt the actors couldn't carry it during the less flashy parts of the story.

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  13. Very interesting top 8...

    1) Prisoner
    2) Half-Blood
    3) Deathly Hallows 7.2
    4) Deathly Hallows 7.1
    5) Philosopher Stone
    6) Goblets
    7) Order
    8) Chambers

    ...I would agree that Prisoner is the best but, interestingly, feel Half-Blood is the weakest. My top 8:

    1. Prisoner of Azkaban
    2. Goblet of Fire
    3. Order of the Phoenix
    4. Deathly Hallows 2
    5. Deathly Hallows 1
    6. Philosopher's Stone
    7. Chamber of Secrets
    8. Half-Blood

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  14. @Dan – Yet I found some of the performances lagged a bit in the more serious moments. Especially in The Deathly Hallows, Part 1. As for your rankings of the Potter films, it seems we differ greatly on Goblets of Fire and Order of the Phoenix. My problem with Goblets was that it focused way too much on the love stories of the characters, which cut out a lot of the more interesting moments of the book. As for Order of the Phoenix, I found that to be the most boring of all the films. I actually fell asleep during the battle at the end the first time I watched it.

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  15. The problem with the Harry Potter series was that they never could decide if they wanted to be great films or great book adaptations. Cuaron was the only one who seemed to imbue his films with subtlety and grace rather than let the special effects and clunky Rowling dialogue/plotting take over.

    When they remake the series in 20 years, I hope they adhere less to the books and let the movies discover their own rhythm.

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  16. @Danny - I completely agree about the conflict between great film and great book adaptation. Rarely were the two found in the same film. In many ways the films were almost too loyal to the books. Thus some things did not always translate to the screen as well as they could have. Chamber of Secrets in particular could have used more creative freedom in its adaptation.

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