Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince is the sixth movie in Harry Potter film series. Too dependent on previous films or expecting the audience to have read the books, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince fails to develop into a complete movie.

Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) is whisked away by his professor and fellow wizard Dumbledore (Michael Gambon )to meet with Horace Slughorn (Jim Broadbent) to encourage him to return to his professorship at Hogwarts School. Harry and Dumbledore continue to attempt to find a way to defeat Lord Voldemort and prevent him from returning to the living world. Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) and Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) dance around their feelings for each other and engage in typical teenage romance melodrama. Draco Malfoy (Tom Felton) sneaks around, waving his wand at bookcases in dark storage rooms, spiraling down an emotional whirlpool.

As an added bonus for the audience, the director and writers have left bonus loose ends for the audience to enjoy. The extraneous footage includes destroying mystical stuff, a girl who has a crush on Harry, some broom related sporting events, potions, and curses. The cinematic loose ends fray long enough to braid and be sold as rope to climbers heading off for K2.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince reminds me of leftover casserole. Leftover casserole is made by taking the remnants of a week’s worth of food, layering it in a casserole dish and hoping it tastes good enough that your family won’t run out on you. If you sprinkle it with parmesan cheese, it can look delicious, but it almost always tastes like week old, reheated donkey-butt stew. Director David Yates and writer Steve Kloves take a bit of left over the Sorcerer’s Stone, covers it in Order of the Phoenix, slathers on Chamber of Secrets, dumps in Goblet of Fire and sprinkles Prisoner of Azkaban, bakes it with parmesan on top (the special effects) and thinks we will eat it.

It shows a total lack of cinematic integrity to assign the audience required reading or mandatory viewing in order to understand anything that is taking place on screen. It is perfectly rational to expect a first time Harry Potter viewer won’t get every mention but they shouldn’t be completely lost. It is not too much to ask for a bit of recap, artfully worked into the story so new viewers can understand what is going on. It irritates me to no end that David Yates, and the production staff think we should pay full price for a half a movie. In one of the more “intense” scenes in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, Dumbledore says, “Once again I must ask too much of you, Harry” but I think it’s the writer and director who have asked too much of the audience by hiding the casserole behind a smoke screen - literally.

Smoke comes out of the water, goes into the water, is outdoors, is indoors, and seems to follow Harry and his compadres, regardless of their travels. Harry would be the alpha caveman of any cave based solely on his ability to attract fire to himself. Based solely on the beauty of the smoke, Harry Potter is a stunning movie.

All of the effects in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince shimmer almost brightly enough to make one blind to the disparities in the plot. Well lit sets are set against green-screen created backgrounds that seem to flow naturally into each other. While some of the scenes don’t work as well as others, they all work well enough to suspend disbelief and make wizardry riveting.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince has no beginning, nor an end; it is only a middle. With nothing to tell the audience what has happened up until now and an unraveling carpet for an ending, it fails to offer the audience a reason to sit through the film. It should be renamed to Harry Potter and a Half.

Views: 66

Comment by dune on July 15, 2009 at 5:24am
Last week I stayed with people in London who know Daniel Radcliffe personally. They provide special laundry services, and Daniel's parents live close by. So their girls get to see all movies pre-release. What does this mean for the Atheist network? Nothing, except that the laundry's owner is an atheist too, I think. And I'll get an autographed Harry Potter photo for my daughters soon.
Comment by Morgan Matthew on July 15, 2009 at 1:21pm
Radcliffe is also atheist.
Comment by Laura on July 15, 2009 at 3:32pm
********Spoiler Warning!********

I thought it was the best film yet, dazzling special effects aside. Out of all six Harry Potter films, not one made me laugh or cry - or experience any real range of emotion, to be honest - like this film did. In the 153 minute run-time the film has, I felt they nicely covered most major plot points within the book. Granted, the film should be easy to follow for those movie-goers who are not acquainted with the book series, but I guess it's just my own personal opinion that to appreciate the films, you must have read the books first.

'Half-Blood Prince' by the very nature of the content of the book is all filler, so I don't know why you expected the movie to have a well-defined beginning, middle, and end. The most important part of the book, the discovery of the horcruxes, is still retained as the most important part of the movie. Everything about the sixth installment of the series is a set up for the final chapter of Harry's journey, so resolution is not a key player for 'Prince'; rather, we're supposed to be asking questions: Why did Snape kill Dumbledore? Where and what are the Horcruxes? Will Harry live or die? The story is thoroughly transitional, and should be appreciated as such.
Comment by LaRae Meadows on July 15, 2009 at 3:45pm
Lauruhhpalooza, I'm not reviewing the series, nor am I judging how close it is to the book. It is one movie and I review it as such. It has to have a beginning a middle and an end or it is a bad movie.
Comment by LaRae Meadows on July 15, 2009 at 3:48pm
I have not read the books so I don't know what happends after and I shouldn't have to know.
Comment by Patrick on July 15, 2009 at 11:36pm
I read the books and I am comparing. The movie sucked big time. And It was an insult when WB (Wiener Brothers), had talked J.K.R. herself into saying that "if you read the books, you will like the movies". NOT! My full opinion and criticism can be found on my myspace blog.
Comment by Patrick on July 15, 2009 at 11:39pm
Oh, by the way LaRae; LOL good one! "Harry Potter and the half assed movie"..rotflmao. Can I use that?
Comment by dune on July 16, 2009 at 2:59am
by the way, it seems LaRae was fed one leftover casserole too many ;-)
Comment by LaRae Meadows on July 16, 2009 at 10:06am
Sure patrick, as long as you site the source yo!

Dune, thank god that never once happened to me. I have heard stories - horror stories!
Comment by Jeremy Roney on July 18, 2009 at 1:41am
I've yet to see this film, but honestly I've thought all the films have been far inferior to the movies (all movies are inferior to books that came before them in my opinion.. and all books are inferior to movies that came before them, lol). They are generally decent movies however.

This book was in my opinion the worst of all of them, the only really powerful moment in the book was DD's death, take that out and the book really didn't have much else going for it. Since I'm going in expecting to see that anyway, hopefully that will helps matters somewhat.


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