Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Harry Potter And The Half Blood Prince Review

Following a two year wait, the new Harry Potter Adventure is here. The 6th movie, "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" is said to be author J.K. Rowling's best masterpiece so far. A masterful visual spectacle, which is the real reason for the popularity of this series. A great drama and the closeness of the actors, who have become great friends while acting in these movies for over half of their lives!

Whereas previous installments of Rowling's series have focused on the hocus pocus and witchcraft, the new movie spends more time focusing on the storyline and actors. A blend of laughter, heartache and a story of love amongst the hormonal teenagers is bound to stir up some powerful memories of your youth!

David Yates, returns to direct this movie. David will be remembered as the person who made the No.5 film, "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix". Yates agrees that the 6th film brings life and a freshness to the writing of Rowling. So rather than becoming a stale adaptation that many would expect the newest blockbuster to be, there is a certain freshness to it.

Though the movie drags a bit toward the end, screenwriter Steve Kloves - who adapted the first four books and returns after a one-film hiatus - generally keeps the intricate plot rolling breathlessly.

Harry's big challenge this school year is a clandestine assignment by Hogwarts headmaster Dumbledore (Michael Gambon), who enlists his protege to retrieve a critical memory that new Professor Horace Slughorn (Jim Broadbent) possesses about young Tom Riddle, the future dark Lord Voldemort.

Academy Award winner Broadbent gives the best performance yet in a "Harry Potter" flick, mingling a cock-of-the-walk flamboyance with the deep melancholy of a teacher bearing the shame of disappointment in both himself and a star pupil gone bad.

The usual teen high jinks and crises lighten the story with plenty of laughs. Romantic entanglements - which have gradually preoccupied Harry, Hermione, Ron and other classmates as they stumbled into puberty - burst out like a wicked case of acne this year.

Ron is dating bubble-headed bimbo Lavender Brown (Jessie Cave), putting Hermione into a jealous snit. Harry's got his own love triangle, falling for Ron's sister, Ginny (Bonnie Wright), who's dating another student.

Along with a romantic rival, Harry has a more dangerous foe in Draco Malfoy (Tom Felton), his bullying tormentor, now a torn and troubled youth himself as an agent of Voldemort.

Radcliffe, Watson and Grint have lived these roles for so long - almost half their lives - that Harry, Hermione and Ron seem like second nature to them. Whether their acting careers flourish after "Harry Potter" or not, they have left an impressive little body of work with these three characters alone, developing them into full-blooded youths that feel real despite their fantastical surroundings.

Most fans know the shocker in store involving Dumbledore and the ominous Professor Snape (Alan Rickman). Like their young co-stars, Gambon and Rickman live and breathe these characters by now, Dumbledore a towering presence of grace and nobility, Snape a delightful cold fish whose actions reveal his tiger-shark stripes.

Others among the returning favorites are Robbie Coltrane as Harry's mountainous ally Hagrid, Maggie Smith as prim Professor McGonagall, Julie Walters as Ron and Ginny's genial mom, Evanna Lynch as ditzy Luna Lovegood, and Helena Bonham Carter, who's a wicked wonder as Bellatrix Lestrange, one of Voldemort's fiercest fanatics.

Visual-effects technology definitely have caught up with Rowling's imagination - and the filmmakers have some rowdy fun with their splendid images.

The Quidditch match on flying broomsticks is like airborne rugby, the way the players hammer into one another. And the broomsticks between the boys' legs take on a bawdy phallic look that wryly complements the sexual themes emerging among the teens.

Director Yates is also making the two-part adaptation of the seventh and final book, the movies due out in November 2010 and July 2011. "Half-Blood Prince" should leave fans as eager for those last movies as a high-school junior is for graduation day.