Thursday, July 12, 2007

Harry Potter & The Order Of The Phoenix

The movie was good, as its own movie. However, a lot of stuff was missing. I understand that they need to cut things in order to keep the movie from being 8 hours long. However, it pisses me off when they cut things but then ADD stuff that wasn't even in the books.

  • You never see Ron and Hermione get their prefects badges - there's no mention of them being prefects at all.
  • You don't see Fred and George have their big blowout, where they create a swamp in the hallway before they leave school. They have a blowout, but it's not nearly the same.
  • Cho is the one who squeals on Dumbledore's Army rather than the girl from the book (can't remember her name). And it's done with Veritaserum rather than the spell that Hermione or Ginny does. (Again, can't remember - I'm re-reading the book right now - I'll have to look it up.)
  • The opening scene is weird. In the book, Harry's at a park that's got a fence around it. In my head, it was a park in the town, with trees and stuff. In the movie, it was in the middle of a cornfield. It was bizarre, like something out of a horror movie. And Harry and Dudley met the dementors in a tunnel thing rather than an alley. It was unnecessarily scary. Like they wanted to up the fear quotient.
  • Grimmauld Place (I LOVE the name of that, btw. Great pun.) was in a swanky town house rather than in a run down part of town, as described in the book. When they were flying there, they flew right thru London and didn't try to hide themselves - I thought that was against the rules. It looked cool, but it wasn't true to the whole separation of magic and Muggle world.
  • There was no Howler sent to Petunia after the dementors attacked Harry and Dudley, either, which is a HUGE part of the story line and we still don't know why he said "Remember My Last."

  • Those things aside, the movie had some great stuff in it. The Ministry Of Magic wasn't quite how I'd pictured it, but the fountain in the middle was impressive. The fight scene in the Ministry was good, although again, not quite as I'd pictured it. The Ministry was more modern than I'd imagined, but it was good.
  • Bellatrix LeStrange was friggin' creepy. Dolores Umbridge wasn't quite as I'd imagined, either, but the actress playing her did a great job. She was vile.
  • The girl who played Luna was fantastic. She just about stole the movie.
  • The scene in The Hog's Head, when they convince Harry to form Dubledore's Army, was great - although they left out the coins bit, which is a bummer. I liked that.
  • I liked the movie, but I'm still trying to divorce the movie from the book and it's not easy. TCBIM and I talked about it last night and agreed that it would have been better if they'd left more original stuff in and made it longer. It was 138 minutes, including previews and it felt a bit rushed. When you consider how many people sat thru 3.5 hours of each LOTR movie, I'm sure people would do the same for these last three HP movies. It should have been longer and they should have included more detail from the book.

Edited to add this link from about the screenwriting process for OOTP, with thanks to my friend Timna for the heads up on it.


floreksa said...

Don't hit me, but I've never read a single Harry Potter book and I haven't seen a single one of the movies.

Are they really that good?

Beck said...

I haven't really loved any of the Harry Potter movies - they've managed to be almost completely missing the books' magic.
But the sets are gorgeous, gorgeous. And I'm envious that you got to see it last night!

Major Bedhead said...

I love them, but I'm really into fantasy fiction, especially if it spans multiple books. Chronicles of Narnia, Anne McCaffrey's Pern series, Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials are all favourites of mine. If you don't like that sort of thing, then you may not like Harry Potter.

I'd recommend reading the books before seeing the movies, though. There's so much more to the books - not that the movies aren't good, they're just different.

Major Bedhead said...

I thought Goblet of Fire did a good job, but I agree, beck. The books are immeasurably better.

kittenpie said...

I went to see it yesterday too. I think there was a lot that could be cut, frankly, without relly being missed. Like the 150 or so pages of hanging around in the house before anything happened?

I thought the playground was okay because in plenty of suburban places, they ARE that bleak. I thought the tunnel worked because of the shelter from the rain angle. But I wasn't loving the Ministry. It doesn't fit with the whole look of the magical world, which might be the point, I suppose, but still. Bellatrix was terrIFically creepy. Brrr. But I thought Luna didn't come off so much flakey as just vapid, not quite how I got her.

I think they should film the next two in a hurry, though, before those kids grow up any more.

Stomper Girl said...

As for a very Harry July, I think that there will be a few quiet blogs after the 21st as we all hunker down with the last one.

Anonymous said...

My son loves the books - we have the new one on order - and the movies. I don't know why but I can't get into them. Sorry.
Happy for you though :)

George said...

I agree about the LOTR thing too! And the Extended DvD's were even longer! I would buy those if they included more.

Anonymous said...

Just got back from the movie...

I agree with most of your comments - although oddly enough Luna was just how I pictured her.

I saw the movie with my mom and she hadn't read any of the books or seen any of the movies. I had to explain a little but she said she enjoyed it. She is even talking about reading all the books.

P.S. I thought the fight in the Ministry (especially re: Sirius) was far too short.

P.P.S Saw it at 4:50 on a Saturday afternoon and the theatre was 13% full - I asked!!

Anonymous said...

I Have all the dvd's and so far I only watched Globlet of Fire. I liked that one alot. Thats the only one thT I have seen in theaters. A Co worker of mine said it stunk so bad that he was going to walk out of the showing and he wants his money back .

Kevin Charnas said...


I understand that they have to cut some stuff out, but then ADD STUFF IN??? UGH!!

And I would gladly sit through a longer movie if it could get closer to these fantastic books.

Anonymous said...

I'm booking a plane ticket right now. One way to stab you with a spoon because you posted he must not be named. Passport? Check. Spoon? Check. French accent? Check. OK. Look for me soon.