Thursday, 21 July 2011

The Harry Potter movies reviewed in one paragraph:


The first two movies (PS and CoS) were light but charming children's films (7/10), the third (PoA) showed real promise of a proper approach and was the high point (8/10), the fourth (GoF) was a big step back into a distorting dependence on special effects and 'needless peril' (the low point) (4/10); and these same flaws affected the fifth (OotP; 6/10) and sixth (HBP; 5/10) (the latter also felt incomplete and unexplained). But there was a pleasing recovery for the last two-part movie (DH1&2) - despite a disappointingly unsatisfying final half hour (7/10 overall - but a section of about 15-20 minutes from Snape's death scene up to Harry's self sacrific was superb - 9/10). Overall rating of the eight movie series is 7/10 - greater than the sum of its parts due to the pleasure of seeing delightful young actors grow and mature, the brilliant mise en scene, some scattered hints and moods, and Alan Rickman's Snape.



TrueNorth said...

Bruce, for once I can agree with you. Your assessment here of the Harry Potter series is good. Although I rated the third Potter film as a disappointment, you may be more correct in your assessment. I only saw it once and I was perturbed by the change in atmosphere from the first two, and that probably clouded my judgement.

How did you like the LOTR films? I wasn't sure if I liked Fellowship the first time, but that was probably because it was incomplete. By the time the whole series was done, I was hooked and I would rate it very highly: 9/10.

The Narnian Chronicles are a bit disappointing. Too conventional. 5/10.

By the way: Have you ever watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer on TV? It took me several episodes to warm to it, watching it with my kids. However, I now rate it as one of the best TV shows ever made. The creator, Joss Whedon, is an atheist but the subject matter of the series deals with many religious themes.

Bruce Charlton said...

@TN - I also loved the LotR movies - although the Two Towers didn't really work for me: I thought it was poorly edited, I hated the interpolated 'death' of Aragorn and the treatment of the Ents was excruciating. So 10/10; 8/10; 10/10 or something like that...

I liked the first Narnia movie a lot, 8/10; the second one didn't work for me, 6/10; but I really loved the third one, 9/10 (and blubbsville!).

I watched all of Buffy - every episode at least once - for the first several series (?4) - until it began to be farmed out to other writers and directors and seemed like a different show. But I have never felt the desire to go back and re-watch; which for me relegates it by a category.

[I have my own categorization system for movies and TV: the lowest category is 'tripe' which is enjoyable while it lasts - something like Friends or Over the Hedge; 'hokum' which also has something to chew-on - like Buffy or Despicable Me; and the 'serious' category which is fully satisfying - like Northern Exposure or Blade Runner.]