Deathly Hallows (Part 1): A Reader’s Movie Notes

I really struggle with writing movie reviews.

I don’t know about you, but I roll my eyeballs at film criticism written by serious book readers in which the reviewer just doesn’t get beyond a throw-away acknowledgment that screened images and printed text are different media so the stories are necessarily different. Reading all the changes made in the jump from page to celluloid, be it in the Potter and Twilight franchises or in Narnia and Middle Earth, especially when these changes are noted with disapproval, disappointment, and a dismissive dismay at what the film-going reader experiences as something like heresy or sacrilege, leaves me marveling that anyone in the 21st Century still doesn’t understand that the movie experience is not and cannot be the reader’s experience of story. (Prof. Baird Hardy, of course, gets it just right.)

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Deathly Hallows Movie Notes: The Dance Scene

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 has opened to great box office success, as we knew it would, and it’s about time I wrote something about it, though I’m not a big movie goer. I want to note first that ‘Twilight: New Moon’ still holds the record for a November opening. I confess that startled me, as much as I admire the Twilight books (having written a book on the Forks Saga, right?), I didn’t think the fandom’s devotion to the cause or just sheer size were comparable. Wrong, again, it seems. Check out Box Office Mojo.

As predicted, the latest addition to the Potter series worked its magic on the box office, raking in a $125 million in ticket sales — a figure that includes it’s midnight/early Friday showings. But while the series topped itself, outpacing its last pre-Thanksgiving opening — 2005’s “Goblet of Fire” — “Twilight: New Moon” still holds the November opening title with $142.8 million…

What I want to write about, though, before sharing some book points is the Dance Scene in which Harry and Hermione ‘cut the rug’ in the tent playfully for a moment just after Ron’s departure. Some folks like it, others don’t, all, I think, miss the Big Movie allusion or hat tip to the Martin Scorsese classic, Taxi Driver.

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Guest Post: An Evangelist at the ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows’ Movie Premiere in NYC

And she was dressed as Dolores Umbridge! Enjoy her full story with tract after the jump —

“Mudbloods and the Dangers They Pose to a Peaceful Pureblood Society”—the tract!

By Melanie N. Lee, November 28, 2010

I slowly got into the Harry Potter movies over the past few years, and then devoured the books in the Summer of 2009.  That Halloween I dressed as Dolores Umbridge, and this year, 2010, in honor of the Deathly Hallows movie release, repeated the costume, albeit in a new pink suit.  I also thought, how cool would it be to hand out copies of Dolores Umbridge’s pamphlet “Mudbloods and the Dangers They Pose to a Peaceful Pureblood Society”—only as a Christian evangelical tract?  Especially in the light of recent events like the tough new Arizona immigration law, the controversy over the proposed “Ground Zero Mosque”, and increased attacks upon Muslims, Hispanics, and gays, such a tract about intergroup tolerance may be needed.

Professor John Granger, in an email, pointed me to the pages in Deathly Hallows with anti-“Mudblood” propaganda.  I lifted the Daily Prophet article from page 209 (fair use, right?), then wrote the tract:

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Movie Thoughts: Harry and the Deathly Hallows – Is it the Beginning of the Beginning of the End?

When I held my copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows for the first time, I felt about it much as I always do about the last piece of candy in the big box. Like Edmund and the Turkish Delight, I could eat those things until it kills me, but I always reach the end; the last piece, the piece I want but don’t want because it means the end of the box, is a bittersweet delight (regardless of what kind of sweetie flavor it is). With the film of Deathly Hallows in two bits, we’ve still one piece left in that big box, but this one is next to last, and has that same degree of joy and sadness. Considering the content of this, the first half of the last installment of our generational Shared Text’s cinematic interpretations, the sadness is certainly in force. Follow after the jump for detailed thoughts on the film, and my two galleons worth.

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CNN: Seeking Questions for Potter Movie Stars!

Your Questions for the ‘Harry Potter’ Cast

The cast of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1” are coming straight from Hogwarts to sit down with CNN, and they’ll be taking your iReport questions!

Do you have a question for Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint, as well as director David Yates?

Wave a magic wand… or better yet, turn on your webcam and take this chance to interview the “Potter” gang. Share your question, 15 seconds or less, before 12:01 a.m. ET on November 9!

If you’re not feeling that creative, of course, you can just share your questions here — and feel free to ask questions of all the movies’ players. No nasty-grams, though, please, for the late Headmaster Dumbledore and the actor who plays that part…