Friday, July 2, 2010

Thoughts on Harry Potter Film Seven Parts A & B

"I think it's the only way you can do it, without cutting out a huge portion of the book. There have been compartmentalized subplots in the other books that have made them easier to cut -- although those cuts were still to the horror of some fans -- but the seventh book doesn't really have any subplots. It's one driving, pounding story from the word go." –Daniel Radcliffe

Spoiler Warning: Do not read this if you have somehow not read the Harry Potter books yet, but plan on doing so!

With the final film in the series, the producers have decided to do what they should have done for the last four films in the series: pull a two-parter. It will be one film, but shown in two parts so that the film can be twice as long and they can make twice-as-much money. One producer has been quoted as saying that it will give them an additional 90 minutes to do the book justice.

90 minutes? With each of the films so far being well over two hours long, anything less than an additional two and a half hours will simply be a ploy to make more money. The combined length of the two films better be in the five-hour range.

Really the only way this series could have been done justly would have been to pour blockbuster budgets into seven seasons of television series: one for each book. One wonders if this series will remain the definitive cinematic expression of these books forever, or if Hollywood will do another version in decades to come. They remake everything else…

Where will the dividing point come? A natural spot would be after the rescue from the Malfoy mansion. In doing so, they sure are running a huge risk with the non-reading fans. The way they adapted the sixth film, it already has an Empire-Strikes-Back/ the-bad-guys-are-winning feel to it, so part 7a is just going to prolong that. Let’s see… Sirius dies at the end of 5, Dumbledore at the end of 6, and now Dobby at the end of 7a. Yikes! That is assuming they keep Dobby and Kreacher in the movies. They have cut them every chance they have had so far.

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