RS (rainbowstevie) wrote,

Further Thoughts on HP Movies; also, questions and answers

Oh, Goblet of Fire. Your character botching and plot rewrites make me SO VERY SAD.

Okay, there are some things I like about this movie. For one, even though I complained about their need to conjure up a pair of scissors the first time I saw it, the long hair is preferable to the weedwhacker job done on Harry's head for Order of the Phoenix. In fact, upon second viewing, it's actually quite becoming on both him and Ron. And it's nice seeing the later movies, because the images I have stuck in my head are their first-year selves, which means that even when I'm reading the sixth book, I still see Ron as 11 years old, and Neville still looks like a namby-pamby babyface. This last one is especially too bad, because Neville rather rapidly shapes up into a good-looking kid, and I would like the character a lot more if I could keep that picture in mind while reading.

But overall, the list of bad things outweighs the good.

The Good
  • Karkaroff - AWESOME CASTING. Nearly as awesome as Snape and Sirius, as far as looking sinister
  • No mention of S.P.E.W.! At all! YAYZ.
  • Hermione waking up Harry and Ron. An excellent example of successful plot compaction. Ron's "bloody hell!" reaction is amusing, plus I get a minor bit of H/Hr glee.
  • Harry and Ron's fight upon the former being chosen for the tournament; that was much easier to see onscreen than through reading. Same for Ron and Hemione's squabbling over her dancing with Krum.
  • The Unforgivable Curses scene - very nicely acted by everyone. Also, "Draco, The Amazing Bouncing Ferret" is never not funny.
  • The scene in Snape's classroom - whacking Ron and Harry multiple times for talking in class, along with Fred asking Angelina to the ball. I don't even mind the canon-stomping of multiple years being in the same class together, because that last one is just so funny.
  • The graveyard set, perfectly spooky
Things That Make Me Weep
  • No actual Quidditch at the Quidditch World Cup
  • Harry's inappropriately amazed tone upon seeing the inside of the tents and going "I love magic!" Because he's apparently never seen its capabilities before.
  • I miss Percy
  • DOBBY! *sobs* Where is Dobby...or more to the point, where the hell is Winky? We could have had Winky without S.P.E.W., I promise! Thus leading to a completely different version of events at the World Cup, as well as Barty Crouch Jr's role. I would forgive these sorts of thing by reason of time restraints, but there's too much else that annoys me.
  • The Beauxbatons horses are supposed to be palomino, and they're NOT. I am perfectly aware that's nitpicky, but it bugs me. I don't mind them cutting out Rita being an Animagus (wait, yes I do...but I'm trying to be accomodating where I can), but the pure white horses are a no-no.
  • The casting of Mad-Eye Moody with blond hair, a decidedly non-wooden leg, and a magical eye (on the wrong side) that seems less magic and more bionic/mechanical in nature.
  • Rageaholic!Dumbledore (HARRY YOU STUPID LITTLE FOOL WHY DID YOUR NAME COME OUT OF THE GOBLET?! *rough shaking ensues*)
  • The dragon chasing Harry all around Hogwarts (WTF?) until it plummets to its death. I do not recall anything about harming (much less killing) the dragon in the task description...
  • Sirius' head face in the fireplace...I don't even have the words to describe how weirdly that was portrayed.
  • Dancing lessons for the Yuletide Ball - DON'T ADD POINTLESS SCENES AFTER CUTTING IMPORTANT ONES.
  • How the Yuletide Ball transforms, with the flick of a scene switch, from a dignified wizarding ball into a standard party complete with rock music. This requires fast-forwarding; it's irritating.
  • The Hedge Maze of Doom. Which apparently contained no obstacles whatsoever beyond some semi-menacing shrubbery and an ability to momentarily turn Harry into a starry-eyed glory hog.
  • The random and kind of awkward ending scene. It seemed very disjointed, like they were desperate to end on an uplifting note but not sure how to accomplish that after cutting out all mention of the prize money as well as the twins' plans for a joke shop...
Come to think of it, this is the first time in my life that I've felt a movie really richly DESERVED to be parodied, rather than a parody simply being written for fun.

Now, my rationale for seeing (or not seeing) the 5th movie:

  • Hermione, Ron and Harry are still excellently cast, despite the latter's haircut which was supposed to make him look more mature but instead makes him look like a 5-year-old who recently had an incident with bubble gum...whoops, I'm on PROS here. Okay, so, I like seeing scenes with them brought to life. Same goes for Fred and George, Ginny, all the Weasleys really. And Snape, and McGonagall, and Fudge, and the Dursleys if they show short, anyone who was cast in the first movie.
  • The set pics for Number 12 Grimmauld Place look fantastic; I would love to finally be able to visualize walking through there, rather than the bland, generic rooms in my head.
  • One word: THESTRALS
  • I may not love the casting choice for Lupin,'s Lupin. As a real person, as opposed to the animated drawings in my head. That's kind of a big draw; plus there's always the bonus of him having new and different lines that aren't in the book, and more is always better.
  • Fred + George + Grandiose Firework-Laden Exit = cinematic gold
  • It's my favorite book...the good bits of the story could easily be so good that it's worth suffering the bad just to see the good bits on the screen. The fight at the Ministry, for example, I think could be quite fantastic.
  • This'll be the third movie of me sighing "I know Richard Harris is dead, but why can't Groovy New Dumbledore be Ian McKellen??" (If Tobey Maguire can play multiple superheroes... Edit: Well actually, apparently he can't.)
  • Moody is still worst casting ever.
  • Tonks looks nothing like any of the various ways I imagined, mostly because I'm 99% sure that Tonks is not Spanish. That is going to bother the hell out of me.
  • Speaking of improper looks, I cannot take Sirius and his long auburn curls seriously. I just can't.
  • And going back to bad casting, Imelda Staunton looks nothing at all like plump and toady Umbridge ought to look. There is nothing remotely repulsive about her and very little that seems overtly evil, which is sort of the whole point of Umbridge, I thought. BOO-URNS.
  • While I'm griping, I'm not thrilled about Luna, or Kingsley, or of Helena Bonham Carter as Bellatrix. I can't believe her in her roles anymore; she's always just Helena Bonham Carter pretending to be some character. And yes, these are each getting their own bullet point because they are individually potentially crippling to my enjoyment of the movie.
  • Harry/Cho kiss...*quietly retches in corner* Even though movie!Cho is a million times better than the image I previously had in my head, with an awesome Scottish accent, her quasi-relationship with Harry is still one of the most torturous things in the series.
  • I don't really want to sit through a subplot about Grawp, either. *prays it's been cut and rewritten like Dobby and Winky*
  • After GoF, I really hate the way they portray Voldemort in the films. I don't know why, I just picture his face being slightly more human and less...ghoulish. I really don't want the movie image to replace the one in my head, which often happens once I've seen the movies.
Final tally: 6 to 8 or 9 (depending on Grawp), in favor of not seeing it. Hm. Well, now that I've decided that...I think I'll see it after all. Why? Well, because despite having watched Lupin's scenes in PoA about 10 times apiece today, upon reading R/T fanfic I was quite pleased to realize that my original mental picture slid right back into place without any prompting at all. So perhaps the poor casting won't be a problem after all. (I know, I'll just pretend this one of Tonks' more ridiculous morphs...she's the one I have the biggest issue with) Anyway, I do need a fourth movie this year, and if I follow through on my plan to see Pirates again as well, it'll be all wrapped up.

Now my only question is when. I would like to see it before I read the book, because I doubt I'll have the patience for it after I do, but that gives me less than a two-week timeframe, and I'm afraid of the crowds in the first two weeks. I haven't forgotten the time we went to see one of the movies only to find it was sold out. Dilemmas, dilemmas.

And now for more of the interview questions meme, this time from lessthangreat (who, by the way, I need to wish a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY!) and jeremybrettfan . If anyone else really wants me to keep spreading the meme by asking them five questions, feel free to comment and ask.

1. You have 24 hours to live, but you can't leave your house. What do you do?
Write letters to the most important people in my life, past and present. Otherwise, I'd just have my immediate family with me, and we'd probably look through photo albums and share familiar stories and the like. Oh, and of course, I'd make them all play board games with me to my heart's content. *nods*
2. What two things would you bring to a desert island with you?
Totally impractical things - a box of pens and my story binder. I might starve to death, but I'll be entertained until I do!
3. First book you ever read?
That was so many hundreds of books ago I can't answer with complete certainty, but Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise was one of my childhood favorites, so I expect I read that myself pretty early on.
4. What's the best whole album you've ever bought/heard?
I'm pretty partial to Josh Groban's "Awake" ((bonus edition); I only skip 2 tracks out of 16. I can pretty much play Jewel's "This Way" on loop too.
5. Least favorite Jordin moment from AI this past season?
Oh, dear...I'm going to have to go with her attempt to look "rockstar" for Bon Jovi week. That was a pretty cringe-inducing image.

1. If you could have anyone play you in a movie of your life who would it be and why?
Ack, this is always a hard one. I don't know who I look like...I guess Amber Tamblyn; she's good at playing more innocent types of teenage girls.
2. Favourite sitcom?
Currently on air, "How I Met Your Mother." It never fails to make me laugh, Lily and Marshall are adorable, and it's very detail oriented in the way it slips in references to past episodes. Of all time, however, I'm going with "Seinfeld." No matter how many times I've seen an episode, and over the years I've seen them all several times, it's always fresh and funny, and I'll happily stop and watch whenever someone turns it on.
3. Best piece of fanfiction you've read?
That was a dangerous question. We could be here all day discussing the two dozen stories that just jumped to mind, all fighting with equal merit for the title of "best." But let me see if I can force myself to keep it at under half a dozen. Not too much explanation, because I've recced them all before (tags are your friends, especially tags that say "fic recs")

Novel-length: All Fall Down (by Wintertime) is the most riveting, most frightening, most thrilling CSI story ever written. I am so much in love with this mystery that it's printed out in book format, lovingly handsewn together, and only waiting for a set of covers until it's actually sitting on my shelf.

One Easy Payment - Temet Nosce (NCIS *gargles incoherently* Word art. Prettiness overload; I'm not even kidding.)
Shatter - Puckk (CSI: Miami, and I frequently gaze at this and make little noises of jealousy that I didn't write it. I have great chunks of it memorized)
The Ten-Cent Adventure/The Only Living Boy in New York - Stellaluna (CSI: NY - I am nothing short of astounded by her ability to detail Mac and Stella's friendship, not only in the present, but in pre-show era, starting even before they met. It's clear as day, good as canon as far as I'm concerned, and if you watch the show but haven't yet read this, do so. You will suddenly see a whole new spectrum of colors.)
Ten Nonlinear Moves - Sequitur (NCIS - I can't help doing two for this fandom; this one is too good. Like the above, it's as good as canon for the interim between seasons 3 and 4, of how Tony evolved into the role of team leader, and like the show has both somber and totally hysterical moments.)
Whelp - AliciA (Pirates of the Caribbean - I cannot think of a way to improve this brief missing-scene from the first movie)

4. Scariest movie?
Well, when I was 10 I saw part of a made-for-TV movie based on Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery." Watching the townspeople stone the mother to death traumatized me for life; to this day I squirm thinking about it. But if we're talking real movies, the two that most freaked me out the first time I saw them were "The Haunting" and "Ghost Ship."
5. Best holiday you've ever been on? Why was it the best?'s a tie between two:
1) My weeklong family road trip through South Dakota in 2000, where I got to see the Badlands and the Black Hills (including hiking up to some great viewpoints in parks), visit Wall Drug and see the 1880 Town - buildings and props (and the horse!) from "Dances With Wolves," stop in a cool old thrift store, and stay at a campground with horses, meaning I got to go trail riding twice. I think this is where my dream of eventually taking my own road trip was planted.

2) My 2004 band trip to New Orleans. 4 days spent with my favorite people in the world, the band kids, which included a lot of wandering on our own in the French Quarter, in between our scheduled events like Preservation Hall, visiting a plantation, a ghost walk, and of course our arguable reason behind the trip - performances at two local high schools and a nursing home. I've never had so much fun in my life, even if my best friend and I were a pair of goody two-shoes and actually followed the rule about "no being out of your own hotel room after 10 PM" and thus had to cut our card-playing fun with Chris and Josh short every night.

Also, from mouseykins1 is the idea that I don't feel I post enough (despite the calendar showing that I'm pretty good about daily entries, and sometimes twice-dailies), so..."give me a topic - fannish, political, religious, whatever - and I'll post about it. Maybe a sentence, maybe a paragraph, maybe a multi-part post"

Voice: Is "the most recent episode of Standoff" a topic option?
RS: No. And I get the hint, thank you. I'm working on it.
Tags: harry potter, memes, voice chats

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