Before I continue, Happy New Year, and if you are here today reading blogs, I thank you, but I also think you are kind of weird and should probably go get ready to go party, eat food, play with your Christmas gifts, etc.
But Harry Potter. One can never get enough Harry Potter. And I aim to please.
Once again, there are SPOILERS for the series in this post.
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix ~
The Book: This used to be my favorite book, and upon finishing it again, that has not changed! I’m actually kind of surprised because almost everything else has. But I just LOVEEE the writing and the characters in this book. Okay, really sad ending, but overall I love the tone change, I love the Order, and I love the tension created by Umbridge and the Ministry of Magic. Obviously I freaking HATE Umbridge but I love what she brought to this book.
It was just SO suspenseful and SO evenly paced. It felt like the total package. I loved how much Dumbledore we got, and I loved how creepy–and even a bit scary–the book was.
And who can forget Luna Lovegood? Plus we get so much backstory on other characters in this book and we get to meet Bellatrix Lestrange, and god she’s just my least favorite character in the entire book because she is truly, TRULY awful.
Occlumency! Dumbledore’s Army!
Basically I ran the entire gamut of emotions while reading this book. Anger. Sadness. Love. Happiness. It’s all there. Also, devastation for what Harry has to deal with now.
I miss Sirius Black. 🙁
The Film: I just finished the film and I wanted to get my words down before I forgot what I wanted to say.
The first time I saw this film, I was a bit disappointed. I don’t recall the reason why, but I can tell you now that I was not really disappointed in this film at all on a re-watch. I actually thought it was really great. The Order of the Phoenix is the longest book in the series at 870 pages. I thought it was really remarkable how the director managed to fit all of the good stuff in. Now granted, I would have preferred longer sequences on some of it, but this movie was already monstrously lengthy.
I really missed the Quidditch again, and this is starting to disappoint me. I think Harry, Fred, and George being banned from the Quidditch team by Umbridge is incredibly important to the main plot, and leaving something like that out was just negligent. Also, the appointing of Ron as keeper. How could you leave something like that out? Is character development not important anymore?
The problem with this film, though, is that if you have not read the books, I feel you are going to be lost. There is just so much backstory that is not told. The pensieve scene with Harry’s father and Snape as kids. The part with Lily Potter is left out. Cho being the one to rat out the D.A. instead of Marietta, and then everyone still staying mad at her in the end, even though she was under the influence of Veritaserum. Never finding out that Umbridge sent the dementors. And also, I didn’t really care for how Sirius’ death was handled.
But despite all that, I still really, really enjoyed this film. Maybe I am biased-it is my favorite book after all.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince ~
The Book: This always has been my least favorite of the Harry Potter books, and since I’m now finished, I can say it still it. It’s just not my cup of tea. I find some of it boring, there are too many flashbacks, the storyline is pretty much nonexistent, and obviously I hate the ending. I know it had to happen–the mentor has to die so the mentee can take his place. But on top of all the other things I don’t care for (Tonks–I don’t understand the point of Tonks, Lavender Brown), it’s just not a favorite. Like I have said before though, it’s all relative. I still think it’s a decent book compared to other books, but when compared to the books in the series, not so much.
What I do like? I like getting more of Snape’s backstory. I love the amount of time we get to spend with Dumbledore. I love that we are into the books that have more of a darker tone now. But I still prefer the last book more.
The Film: I literally despise this film. The first ten minutes made me cringe and I had to turn it off. From the scene in the subway at the beginning that was not even in the book, to the Death Eaters visibly running around London, to the shortened Slughorn scene that didn’t make a whole lot of sense, I HATED IT.
And then I was reminded of the scene in the middle of the movie where Death Eaters burn The Burrow down, and I just couldn’t bear to watch the rest of it. This movie might work for those that have not read the books, but so many important parts were left out. How can you leave out all the stuff about how Voldemort came to be who he is in the present time?
I am disgusted. J.K. Rowling should be horrified. This director should be fired from working on anything else, EVER. Seriously. This movie makes me so angry. This director ruined everything that was great about this book.
Also, Dumbledore’s death scene was pretty pathetic. It was flat and pulled almost no emotion from me. Whereas the book made me sob the first time I read it.
So I was supposed to finish this project with today’s Part 2. But obviously you can see that did not happen. I bit off a bit more than I could chew, unfortunately. So I will post the THIRD part at a later date. I am not sure of what that date will be yet, but it will be soon.
I am hoping that I enjoy wrapping this series up with the final book and the last two films. I remember not loving the first Deathly Hallows film because it felt incomplete and a bit boring, and I remember the director (David Yates YUCK) ramping up some weird sexual tension between Harry and Hermione in the tent that led nowhere. Basically I think he directing is terrible. We’ll see if I feel differently on a second watch.