(The Pop Goes the World Page was not really updateable, so I’ll just keep these here for now, till I figure out a better method to this madness.)
A few days ago I watched the new Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince trailer on You-Tube…several times. As it was starting, my breathing made a certain squealy/bouncing inhalation noise (aprox: h-h-h-h-e-e-e-e) that only happens when I get really, really excited.
When Tom Riddle’s eyes lit up in the reflection of that burning wardrobe my heart skipped a beat. When Dumbledore’s ‘No…’ echoed into the final black screen a big grin overtook my face. (Incidentally when did Microsoft’s spell-check first become acquainted with the name Dumbledore?)
I like most things Harry Potter. I have many reasons both trivial and astute for this love, but I will not go into them right now. Now I wish to focus on what I love. I love the books, and thoroughly enjoy the movies. And it was a good day when I learned to separate these two sides of the Potter-world. I have many fellow fans that do not, or can not, enjoy the films because they have not learned this simple principle: Books are books, and films are films.
I see no reason why these very different and valuable art forms should be held up side by side. For instance, I enjoy the 5 hour A&E Pride and Prejudice just as much, or more, than the next girl. That mini-series was produced to try and capture each huff and furtive glance Austen put down for Darcy and Elizabeth. But even at a running time of 300 minutes there are entire conversations and episodes missing from that 352 page book. By that math (and let’s say right now mine should never really be trusted) an ‘adequate’ version of the upcoming Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince we would need to be 554 minutes (a bit over 9 hours, plus credits) to dig deep in to those 652 pages. At this rate Harry’s movie series would span close to 60 hours (2.5 straight days). And that, people, is disgusting.
The first two films by Chris Columbus were technically dazzling, but lost the charm of their sources. In their quest for minutia these films only managed to get fans in a detail dither. I sat through the first film with a good buddy lamenting the loss of our favorite line (Dumbledore’s hearts desire: a pair of thick woolen socks), instead of getting swept up in the magical world. When I (In London!) first saw the third film, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Spell-check also knows Azkaban?!), I gave it–or rather Alfonso Cuaron–a standing ovation. Yeah! Finally someone had the guts to scrap half the book and make a real movie. It’s been mostly an upward trend on creativity and, thus, my enjoyment since then. David Yates showed similar, though less artsy-fartsy, (for those that know: I reference the ‘mysterious ticking noise’ in the time-turner sequence) guts in his direction of Order of the Phoenix, and this next installment looks equally awesome. Again I say h-h-h-e-e-e-e.
If only we could do something about Emma Watson’s eyebrow muscles.