(2007) dir. David Yates
My approach to the Harry Potter series has been to read the book before the movie is released. So, I’m still two books away from the ending. And this series is, I think, two installments left now, too.
I think the films as a whole are pretty well-put together. The casting and art design captures the books as well as one could imagine films doing. But the big problem that they have is handling J.K. Rowling’s tomes in the duration of a typical, long feature film. With a running time of 138 minutes, it’s no short film, but still, they bloat by trying to get in as much of the books’ narrative elements and characters.
In this episode (how it feels), director David Yates manages much of the sequences pretty well, but to try and downsize the time and number of sequences, the film drops into 3 or 4 long montages that are meant to depict the passage of time and events in a tighter fashion. While this is a typical cinematic narrative device, here, you can almost see someone reading more intently in places and then skimming large parts in order to hurry the whole thing up. I don’t know if there is a better way, but it felt pretty uninspired.
Most fans of this series of books and/or movies have probably read the finale already, so my speculating on what is to come is a moot point for anyone but myself. I have to say that while I enjoy these films to a degree, there is also a sense of drudgery to it as well. I guess that I’ve committed this much time and energy to them, I might as well see it through to the end.
And not even once did I consider Dumbledore’s sexual orientation.