July 11, 2009

Movies Opening This Week: Critics Go Spellbound edition

Harry Potter movies have always been the epitome of what a summer movie franchise should be: enchanting, frenetic and entertaining. While the movies also have the tendency to be rather long, it has never stopped anyone from busting their wallets out. The new movie is no exception.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (July 16, Thursday, Philippines; July 15, US)

The highly-anticipated, long-delayed sequel is finally coming, and it seems as if it's geared to be the best of the series. Early reviews are already giving a bit of Oscar buzz to at least one character ("Jim Broadbent does 'Best Supporting Actor' level work here. It's a master class in how to make the most of every moment onscreen without ever once overpowering the film around him." -Drew McWeeny of HitFix.com), and critic aggregator Rotten Tomatoes currently ranks it with a rather stunning 96% rating. True, it definitely will not stay that way as the movie opens to everyone, but it's already rather compelling to just watch it on opening day just because of those reviews-- and maybe that trailer too.
Quite frankly, I've always remembered book 6 as a rather slow-moving book. It's not my favorite (even though it does present a huge revelation that affects the entire series), but the movie seems to make it brilliantly epic in scale while retaining the dark, but humorous elements that people have come to love. I think David Yates is now comfortable with the cast, and is now able to make an even more capable movie, so gauging from early praise, I'm now even more excited to see what he'll do with the last chapter (or in the movie franchise, the last two chapters).

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