Harry Potter and the Give Us Ten More of Your Dollars

Credit for the title joke goes entirely to my roommate, who came up with it when a trailer for the movie came on TV. True, they’re milking HP7 for all it’s worth, splitting it into two movies. The seventh book was long, but it wasn’t THAT much longer than five or six. However, we went to see it anyway, and I have to say, it was really good.

I am NOT going to give anything away. I will say I think they did a really good job – I enjoyed Deathly Hallows Part One more than the sixth movie, and I’m looking forward to Part Two next summer. However, one thing they didn’t include in the movie was the desperation over finding food that Harry, Ron, and Hermione experienced in the book. You know (if you’ve read it), they’re wandering around the countryside for months, and though Hermione has packed pretty much every conceivable useful object in her magical beaded purse, they still have to forage in the forest for food, and they aren’t particularly good at it. And even when they do scrounge something up, they’re not very good at cooking it. (Maybe because they’re seventeen and have never had to cook for themselves?) And the laws of the universe hold even for wizards: you can’t create matter from nothing. So the food thing was something they glossed over in the movie – you don’t see them eating anything for a good chunk of time. (Speaking of which, the movie – Part One – is 2 1/2 hours.) (And yes, of course I noticed the lack of food. What can I say, I’m very observant that way.)

The other thing that a LOT of people in the theater noticed – we went to a night showing so there weren’t a lot of young kids – was how utterly useless Harry and Ron are without Hermione. As Ron says, “We wouldn’t last two days without her.” Two days is probably being generous. It seems that the only significant spell Harry has managed to master is “expecto patronum,” which produces the Patronus that can fight off Dementors. Other than that, the only spells he and Ron seem capable of they learned in their first year, as eleven-year-olds: lumos, to make a light on the tip of the wand; expelliarmus, to disarm an enemy; accio, to summon an object; and diffindo, to sever or cut (that’s the only one I had to look up. Maybe I’ve read these too much?). The infamous (there was a lawsuit) Harry Potter Lexicon, by the way, is here.

Also, I bit off two of my fingernails. It gets kind of tense at times.

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4 Comments

Filed under books, events, movies

4 responses to “Harry Potter and the Give Us Ten More of Your Dollars

  1. Ben

    I just re-read the book, and I still don’t remember the food issue being that big of a deal. I remember it being mentioned, but when I saw the movie it never struck me as important. What I did get more from the book was the idea of the passage of time – that they were hiding out and traveling for a pretty long period. The movie didn’t convey that as well, I thought, though it did get colder, etc.

    As for the two movies – it may be “milking it” from the studios’ perspective, but from my perspective it’s the only way. The last movie left far too much out (for the first time, in my opinion – other movies omitted things that were missed but not crucial), and they couldn’t do the same thing with this one. They had to tackle the relationships and the struggle against Voldemort.

    And the spells thing was the same way in the books. I found it odd at first, but I’ve got several justifications. The biggest is that the trio is made of clear archetypes: the academic, the Hero, the loyal friend. Heroes often excel by will and fortitude rather than cunning or intellect. Harry knows enough to get by, but Hermione’s the one who’s been reading spell books all through the years.

    Hah hah … sorry, I’m a little overzealous about Harry Potter.

    • “A little overzealous” – I think your comment was longer than my post! 🙂

      I don’t disagree with you at all – this was a really good movie and the pacing was great. If they had tried to fit everything in, it would have been (a) even longer, and (b) never mind, just impossible.

      Ever since the third movie they’ve been doing a much better job allowing the movies to have a life of their own – the first two movies followed the books SO closely for fear of upsetting fans that they weren’t much fun to watch. Of course, as the books have gotten longer they’ve had to cut things, so that’s part of it.

      You’re right about the archetypes, too, but do Harry and Ron have to be SO helpless without her? Though I have to say I’m glad it’s the girl who’s the smart one. Yay for awesome female role model!

      I don’t remember – do they ever find out (in the book) where the deer came from? You know, right before Harry found the sword? Ron thought it was Harry’s, but Harry’s patronus is, of course, a stag. (Antlers.)

  2. Ben

    Yes. Oh boy, do they find out.

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