A Fond Farewell To Pottermania

Joanna’s Note: Ah, Harry Potter, so the end  really has come. The final movie in the series about a boy wizard’s quest to defeat a dark lord opened this weekend. I have yet to see Deathly Hallows. I’m waiting for the more dedicated fans of the franchise than myself to see the movie and mope about how the defining pop culture moment of their childhood is ending. (I’m just being overly cynical to mask my pain.)

I asked my friend Nicole, who you may remember from a certain Criterion Collection inspired vlog, write about her experience a very proud, card-carrying member of Pottermania. It is safe to say that she loves the beloved series far more than I do, or at least she is willing to dedicate far more time to it. That includes going to checking out the red carpet for Deathly Hallow’s NYC premiere and going to the movie’s midnight screening.

You can follow Nicole on Twitter and check out her YouTube channel where she vlogs regularly.

Nicole's Potter memorabilia
Her ticket stubs to every Harry Potter movie

Enjoy!

Continue reading “A Fond Farewell To Pottermania”

“We Were The Chosen Ones” – The End Of Harry Potter

This is just too precious.

I guess I should accept that the Harry Potter movies really are coming to an end and that this isn’t a massive fabrication. I just watched a featurette of the last days on the Harry Potter set as the cast says their goodbyes (“We always knew we were coming back and this time we knew we weren’t”). This is the most emotional I have ever gotten during a behind-the-scenes video of a film set.

Are you crying yet? If not, there’s more.

Continue reading ““We Were The Chosen Ones” – The End Of Harry Potter”

Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Pt. 1

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, the penultimate film in the Potter franchise,  is the best Harry Potter film to date. It is a heart-stopping, violent, and utterly frightening adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s series that never wavers in its depiction of the violence that plagues the wizarding world.

I don’t need to get that into the plot; by now I would expect you to know what happens in the Harry Potter books and films.

Dumbledore’s death at the close of Half-Blood Prince has led to the collapse of the wizarding world and to questioning about the wizard’s life. (“Did you even know him at all?” someone asks Harry.) What should be happy moments Bill and Fleur’s wedding, Harry’s burgeoning romance with Ginny Weasley are cut short by the dangers of the war and the Nazi-like state created by Voldemort.

Harry (Daniel Radcliffe), Ron (Rupert Grint), and Hermione (Emma Watson)  set out on an arduous journey to find the Horcruxes, the items where Voldemort has divided his sole, and destroy them. They have nothing to guide them anymore except some seemingly useless clues from Dumbledore: a snitch, a deluminator, and a copy of children’s fables. They only have each other but that relationship begins to falter because of a lack of progress, their isolated life in hiding, and Ron’s jealously.

Dealthy Hallows is building up to the final showdown between Harry and Voldemort (as always, played perfectly by Ralph Fiennes). Every scene — the fast-paced escape from the Dursley’s; Dobby’s much-adored reappearance; the brilliant, macabre animated short of “The Tale of the Three Brothers” —  has been executed so that the finale is everything that it has been advertised to be: epic.

With David Yates behind the camera, the Harry Potter franchise has matured and developed a necessary consistency. The first four movies provided context and established the series brilliant characters, brought to life by some of the best thespians. But these movies lacked a certain artistry and cohesiveness that Yates brought as the series became more emotional and bleaker.

Now about that controversial added scene. After Ron leaves the trio, Harry and Hermione dance. For a few minutes they engage in a goofy, frivolous act that ends with a short pause and a look. If Yates wanted to frame Harry and Hermione as a romantic pairing, this would have been the moment to do it. But the pause and stare between them would have to linger for longer than a second. Instead Hermione turns away quickly; the brief moment of joy she experienced is still no match for the private anguish she has gone through this journey.

For the audience too, the scene serves a pivotal purpose. This is the darkest, most violent Harry Potter film to date. The blood and deaths will only increase in the final film and the final battle scene bodes to be the most harrowing moment of the films. It is also a reminder that these characters who we have watched for almost a decade now are not the adults we sometimes think them to be. They are still teenagers figuring out how to be normal while dealing with, you know, having to save the world.

July 15 cannot come soon enough.

Trailer Fix: Deathly Hallows – Part 1!

I’m a few hours late with this post. The trailer was released around 9 p.m. last night. Blame it on my lack of internet and the fact that nothing, not even the second to last installment of the Harry Potter franchise, could get in the way of watching the season premiere of Modern Family. (I just really like watching a show with my parents every week, guys.)

But I digress. Here it is. Be prepared to crap your pants.

This trailer has so much footage we haven’t seen yet – the escape from the Dursleys, Ron and Harry’s fight that splits up the trio, DOBBY. Even though I’m not ready for these movies to end, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows will be awesome!

Trailer Fix: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

“Only I can live forever.”

Here it is – the first complete teaser trailer for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and it is intense. This trailer, which is filled with exclusive footage including a clip of that final showdown in the Forbidden Forest, will send chills up your spine.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

The final confrontation between Harry and Lord Voldemort is guaranteed to be an exciting, action-packed, and thrilling ride. Considering how the movies have not always set up the conclusion exactly like books, it will be interesting to see how these last two parts wrap up the franchise.

Is Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows “the motion picture event of a generation”? Do you think that this is one movie worth seeing in 3D? Most importantly, is it November 19 yet?