Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
HARRY POTTER AND ME
Never heard of Harry Potter? Where have you been living? The planet Zog at the far side of the Universe?
Most children and adults, especially in the UK have heard of Harry Potter, many have read the books and most have seen the films. Fans seem to either:-
- Love the Harry Potter books but do not like the films
- Love the Harry Potter films but do not like the books
- Love all things Harry Potter.
Well, despite my ever advancing years, I have to admit that I fall firmly into group 3 above.
It was quite a while before my fascination with Harry Potter began. Hubby, even older than me, read the first two books and was instantly hooked. Around this time he suggested that we hire the DVD of the first Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and The Philosopher's Stone. I was hooked. I loved this film for its quirkiness, story line, great characters, even better actors and freshness.
So began my journey with Harry Potter.
I started to read the books that were available, at that time, and as each film was released gradually saw all of the films available. Each book left me wanting more. Like a child in a candy store I could not wait for the next helping of Harry Potter.
The final book in the saga was released in 2007 much to both the excitement and dismay of fans around the World. By now Harry Potter, and the author J K Rowling, were world famous. Yes, it was great to be able to read the final book but what were Potter fans going to do after that?
Well this Harry Potter fan was going to wait for the release of the final three films which would complete the screen versions of this fantasy tale.
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was released in cinemas 2007. This left the penultimate and ultimate books still to be filmed and released in cinemas.
Filming began pretty sharpish on Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince, which was the next film due out. Time became ever more pressing as the main cast are children, who run the risk of looking ridiculous if they physically outgrow their younger characters. I guess this was always going to be a problem with the Harry Potter films, or any such saga involving children.
The filming was fraught with problems and the schedule was pushed back. However at long last we are seeing advertising, and clips, hailing the arrival of Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince in cinemas. The release date is July 15th 2009-A date for Harry Potter fans to put in their diaries.
Harry Potter through the yearsClick thumbnail to view full-size
WELL, WHAT OR WHO IS HARRY POTTER, AND WHAT IS ALL THE FUSS ABOUT?
Harry Potter is a character in what was to eventually become seven books. The book's author J K Rowling has said that she always had a certain number of books in mind and basic ideas for them all. The title of the books and their respective release dates are:-
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (26 June 1997)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2 July 1998)
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (8 July 1999)
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (8 July 2000)
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (21 June 2003)
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (16 July 2005)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (21 July 2007)
The books are children's books, or at least that is how most people view them. However such is the draw of J K Rowling, and her stories, that as many, if not more, adults read Harry Potter also. So, I suppose they are family entertainment.
The books tell us about a magical world that runs alongside of our normal Muggle (non magical) world and a boy's changing life. Sounds dull? Well it is anything but. The books are imaginative, inventive, funny, sad and at times dark.
The first books were quite small, easy to read and more childlike than the later books. In many ways this has paid bonuses for J K Rowling. The ten years from the first book being released, till the last one, meant that children who became fans from book one were now old enough to cope with a darker tale, which had more grown up elements. With living dead, and more, the penultimate book had enough to keep even adults gripped.
If any of you have not been bitten by the Harry Potter bug why not take a peek and see what you think. As with all books that are transferred to the cinema, sometimes this transition works better than at other times. If you have read the Harry Potter books do not expect all elements to be included in the films. The Order of the Phoenix was such a long book it would have been impossible to include everything, anyway.
What I have found though is that on the whole the films do the job expected of them. Books are usually so much more exciting as they rely on your imagination. This can mean that a film version may seem a let down by comparison. With such good characters, plots and actors this does not happen with the Harry Potter movies.
Look at this list of actors(I have only included a few) who participated in the Harry Potter films, to some degree or another, and ask yourself why so many were so eager to join in the fun. I would say because these are classic films, of the future. Yes, the actors will have received recompense but it is more than that. Its because it is HARRY POTTER.
Robbie Coltrane, Maggie Smith, Richard Griffiths, Richard Harris, John Hurt, Daniel Radcliffe, Timothy Spall, Eric Sykes, John Cleese, Mark Williams, David Tennant, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Pam Ferris, Dawn French, Patricia Routledge, Robert Hardy, Gary Oldman, Michael Gambon, Alan Rickman, Julie Walters, David Thewlis, Jim Broadbent and Helena Bonham-Carter.
The New Film
HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF BLOOD PRINCE RELEASE DETAILS
It is only 30th June 2009 but already the speculation and Internet clips re this film are gathering pace. Some films are best watched at home but Harry Potter films benefit from the large screen and specialist sound of modern day theatres and cinemas.
Harry Potter always creates some excitement, and I have no doubt that purchasing cinema tickets will not be easy. Often Hubby and I decide to wait until the hype of a new release film settles down, but not this time. I am booking in advance and hoping to see this new film on 15th July.
As I now work part-time I should be able to attend the matinee viewing. Children in the UK start their school holidays toward the end of July but hopefully they will still be at school on 15th July. Yes, I know this sounds mean but they are on holiday for 7 weeks this year and will have plenty of time to satisfy their Harry Potter desires. Me, I would like a decent viewing, perhaps with a full cinema, but not one that is brimming over with children.
This film is rated PG, parental guidance, in the UK.
Once I have seen this film I shall update this hub with my review of the film. I will try to be objective. I will also try and write it the same night whilst the film is fresh in my mind. So as they say in the movies:-
WATCH THIS SPACE
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2009 Ethel Smith