--I'm disappointed that the other five movies were made, when all along they had the potential to be like this one. Sure, it's far from perfect, but the characters were themselves for once. Bonnie Wright looked a little bit awkward trying to be the confident, flirty minx that is Ginny, but hell, at least she had lines this time. Rupert Grint has never been more Ron. Emma Watson's hair was wonderful, and her eyebrows weren't crazyexpressiveallovertheplace. I am finally attracted to Dan Radcliffe, and I think that's because he finally resembled Harry! Blaise Zabini, Cormac McClaggen, and Pansy Parkison were glorious cast additions.
--I love that it doesn't apologize for the other movies. It's a film adaptation of HBP; not an extension on Warner Brothers' previous mistakes. Tonks and Lupin are there, but no one reminds us who they are. Because we should know already. No one says Narcissa Malfoy's name, or introduces Katie Bell, or says, "Go away, Wormtail-- Peter Pettigrew, the Neville-foil who betrayed Harry's parents to Voldemort!" There's very little cheesy appositive backstory. Kathleen and I did crack up uncontrollably, though, when Dumbledore said, "Voldemort, or, as he was known then, Tom Riddle...."
--I wish they'd have made the Gaunt family scene, as it's my favorite in the series, but I totally understand why it was left out. I knew they'd do Harry and Ginny's first kiss differently, and I was... okay with it. I spent the whole time mourning the real scene in my head, so I'll have to wait and see it again before I form a full opinion. It's sad that they eliminated the Ministry plotline altogether, and that we never saw Percy, but you've really got to choose your battles. We don't get "Dumbledore's man, through and through," but it's not like anyone's casually walking into the Department of Mysteries this time.
--Omg Luna's lion headdress. Omg Hermione's canaries. Omg bezoars. I'm so, so happy with the details. They didn't get into Fenrir Greyback (which suuuuucks!) but he was present, at least. I wish Moaning Myrtle would've had a cameo, but that would have made the Sectumsempra scene difficult, and it was PERFECT.
--The Burrow fire? Wtf?! Kathleen rubbed my arm tenderly at this point, because I almost got out of my seat and ran to have a word with David Yates.
--Do you really think there's any chance in hell Harry would stand there with his wand out and watch Dumbledore die if he had the ability to move? That was just stupid. It makes Harry look pathetic instead of desperate and vulnerable. It seems to me like you can't change that bit without messing with characterization. Harry's fatal flaw is his arrogance and willingness to step up and fight, whether he knows what he's doing or not. Movie Harry just looked dumbstruck and incapable.
--So much of the dialogue was word-for-word! Much of the scene at the twins' shop, for example, and the memory of young Tom Riddle. I was on the edge of my seat at the ending, praying they'd say "With you, whatever happens," but I couldn't really be disappointed when they didn't, because the shot of the phoenix was too perfect. Part of me is glad that scene didn't happen by the lake, too, because that scenery is so intricate in my mind, and it would have been upsetting for such an intimate thing to be put on screen. The lake is one place that's still exclusively for us, and not the moviegoers.
--Romilda Vane! I thought for sure she'd be left out, but I'm glad she wasn't. I don't know how I feel about Lavender. She was very funny and her clothes/accessories were absolutely wonderful, but I thought she was too crazy and not ditzy enough. Yes, Lavender is frightening, but she should be more of an obnoxious bimbo than a dreamy-eyed pop princess Luna. I wish Parvati would have been there with her. It's a weird thing to say, but they're two of my favorite characters. Next time you reread the series, pay particular attention to Parvati. She's like a hidden gift from Jo.
--I LOVE THE NEW TRAIN. That's exactly what the Hogwarts Express is to me. I was shaking in my seat the second it became apparent that they were going to do the whole Malfoy-steps-on-yer-face bit. One of my favorite scenes in the series, and it was executed very well. I can still feel it-- suddenly Malfoy's a scary, adult threat, and not just a pest. He may legitimately have the upper hand. There's a good chance nobody will find you down here, and you're bleeding out your nose like a bitch. Ugggh. I love it.
--Helena Bonham Carter is a fantastic actress, and I was impressed with her after Order of the Phoenix, but... come on. Bellatrix should be weirdly over-sexualized with, like, Voldemort, but not with her nephew. I liked what she was doing, but I'd have toned it down a few notches. I understand that Bellatrix is far from a SUBTLE character, but Helena's portrayal was almost like a Halloween costume mockery this time.
--Narcissa's hair was stupid. It wasn't bad or anything, but she's supposed to be blonde. Her shoes, however, were AMAZING. Pay attention in the bit proceeding her scene: she's wearing classy black heels that scream Mrs. Malfoy.
--The Slug Club was awesome. Cormac was ridiculously sexy, which sort of sucks. It's easier in the book to will yourself to ignore him, because you're obviously never going to be able to like Ron's competition. But kudos to you, Freddie Stroma. You weren't barbaric or frightening, but you deserve some points for being hot.
Obviously, I'm going to have to see the film about seven more times, and I'm sure I'll be full of new insights with each viewing. All in all, though, I'm overcome with positive emotion. My expectations were as low as they could be, and I was pleasantly surprised. At times, it was like someone had extracted the world inside me and projected it in through my eyes. And while there are obvious mistakes and it's obviously not my book, the movie is, shockingly, good enough for me to smile about. A LOT.
Sexy: Freddie Stroma, who plays Cormac McClaggen. Dayum, gurrl. I was going to post a link to a photo, but you have to go google image search him immediately. *drool*
Unsexy: Zooming in on Dan Radcliffe's eyes... all the time... when they're blue.
Chipotle burritos this year: 23
S'mores this summer: 3
Bye, guys! Hopefully I'll see you tomorrow. <3