|Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
||[Sunday 2nd August 2009 at 9:54 pm]
I finally got round to watching Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and it is definetely worth watching. They've done a very good job of condensing the book into the film this time (unlike the horrible mangling that was Goblet of Fire), and the characters all fit the way they behave in the books.
Obviously they had to cut some stuff to give a reasonable film length, and they managed to do it well.
The whole teaching of Occlumency was completely removed, and yet I didn't even realise until the Snape/Harry duel at the end. (okay, so it was removed because it was never there in the first place, except for a small reference in the duel - in my defence, it's been years since I read the book) It's like Tom Bombadil and the barrow wights in Lord of the Rings - again that was completely removed from the film (though the hobbit-eating tree made a comback in the extended edition of The Two Towers), and if you hadn't read the books you'd never have noticed.
Speaking of barrows, I'm don't recall (though I don't have the books here) the burning of The Barrow from the book. It's certainly a very dramatic moment, though I'm not quite sure what was going on with it. Perhaps the director just thought the film needed more fire?
I do like the sequence with Draco experimenting with the Vanishing Cabinet, learning how to use it. In the book it's simply a mystical pair of wardrobes that just work automagically (if you'll pardon the expression), while in the film he has to try again and again to get it to transport the object unscathed.
The final sequence was excellently done. It's an interesting change to make: while in the book Harry is invisible and paralysed, here he's hiding the old-fashioned way. He even gets spotted by Snape, and I'm surprised that Harry doesn't try to stop him. And there's the simple "Snape... please..." from Dumbledore at the end - having read Deathly Hallows, it holds a very different meaning to what it would do normally. A very good bit of film.
The soundtrack was excellent as well, although annoying the cinema did the usual thing of turning the volume up too high. I hate it when the sound starts distorting because some fool thinks louder is always better.
Anyway, time to watch the Top Gear from earlier. I love having a TV card in my computer.