Being a Harry Potter fan (of the books) for the last 7 years and sitting through the not so great movie adaptations, it was with some trepidation that I went to see Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince. Fortunately for me, and scores of Harry Potter fans, the movie is a vast improvement over the previous
installments.

Director David Yates had an uphill task bringing the 5th book – at 800+ pages, the most “flabby” of the series – to the big screen in about 2 and  a half hours. Not so with this one. Yates does an excellent job of retaining the essence of the 6th book even while discarding some portions which would not work or fit in the screenplay. The focus has shifted to story telling instead of following one CGI trick with another. Yates keeps the SFX to a bare minimum and brings them out only when required and always keeps the story moving forward. This is the first movie in the series which comes close to the excellence of the books.

Now in his sixth year at Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry is being trained by his headmaster and old friend, Albus Dumbledore, to bring about the downfall of Lord Voldemort, the greatest dark wizard of all time. Much to Harry’s surprise, this does not involve great feats of magic or difficult incantations. To defeat Voldemort, Harry must learn his weaknesses which can only be gleaned from the past. For this purpose, Dumbledore has managed to obtain and store “thoughts” from various people who knew Voldemort before he was all powerful, which can be viewed at leisure in a Pensieve – a wondrous object which lets you browse around a person’s thoughts and study their behavior. One very important thought needs to be obtained from Horace Slughorn, ex teacher of Hogwarts, who had considered Voldemort – then known simply as Tom Riddle – amongst his favorite students and may have given information which eventually helped him to to rise to power. Dumbledore convinces Slughorn to come back to Hogwarts and puts Harry up to the task of obtaining this memory from him. Meanwhile, Draco Malfoy – Harry’s arch enemy at school – is working on a task entrusted to him by Voldemort himself to break into Hogwarts.

Without giving away any more of the story, this is an excellent adaptation of the book, fans of HP will lap this one up.That is not to say that newbies will be unable to follow the storyline. However, it would help if one has a basic knowledge of the HP universe. Watching the 6th part of a planned 8 movie series may need some back story to follow certain parts of the movie.

David Yates will return as the director for the last book which is being adapted as a 2 part movie.  Here’s hoping that he raises the Harry Potter series from a money spinner to a true cinematic tour de force which it truly deserves to be.

Contributed by Runil Motwani

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20 Comments

  1. Piyush

    July 18, 2009 at 4:04 pm

    I like theflim harry potter every edition

  2. praveen trivedi

    July 19, 2009 at 9:53 am

    movie is good , but dont go to imax wadala,mumbai to watch it. believe me its not worth at all , they are charging 350 and 500 Rs for it but forget that you will atch movie on that imax doom screen. they’ll show the movie on a flat screen which is slightly bigger than the other multiplex screens(ticket worth rs. 100-200).Even the movie is not 3D as it is publicised. Only 7 mins. of movie in the starting is 3D, rest is normal. So mumbai people Please dont be fooled by the Imax advertisements!!

  3. deepesh

    July 19, 2009 at 10:19 am

    movie is good , but dont go to imax wadala,mumbai to watch it. believe me its not worth at all , they are charging

    350 and 500 Rs for it but forget that you will watch movie on that imax doom screen. they’ll show the movie on a

    flat screen which is slightly bigger than the other multiplex screens(ticket worth rs. 100-200).Even the movie is

    not 3D as it is publicised. Only 7 mins. of movie in the starting is 3D, rest is normal. So mumbai people Please

    dont be fooled by the Imax advertisements!!

  4. B Purnachandra Rao

    July 20, 2009 at 11:53 am

    Hi guys….. anybody planning to watch this movie….. drop your plans and spend the money to have a good meal with your friends… don’t ruin your day watching this absolutely worthless useless movie…. actual rating of this movie is may be 4/10 not 4/5 as given by most reviewers…. all the best if you are going to watch this movie

  5. 123potterfan

    July 21, 2009 at 2:23 pm

    B Purnachandra Rao : You apparantly are one of the ignorant ones who have never read a word of the books and went straight for the 6th adaptation.. DUH!! People LIKE YOU should not watch the movie..its an insult to the harry potter phenomenon.
    The movie is brilliant and very close to the book,. Loved it!

  6. B Purnachandra Rao

    July 22, 2009 at 1:14 am

    123potterfan : Even if this movie makes any sense of the book… i would love keeping it as a book…… I am not too sure why do u have to make a disaster of a movie when the book is as good as it gets… anyway….. my final comment… All the best for movie goers out there.

  7. Sathya

    July 24, 2009 at 11:28 am

    This movies SUCKS.
    Enjoy the movie by sleeping.

  8. pavan

    July 24, 2009 at 1:57 pm

    one of the worst n stupid movies i have ever seen in my life,,,,u ill endup with a big headache after watching this,,instead of spending money on this movie use the same for a delicious hyderabadi biryani,,,this movie will get a hell out of u,,,watch this movie if u have any plans of suicide,,

  9. Jim

    July 24, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    Bakwaas Movie , pls guys avoid this movie.

  10. vicky

    July 24, 2009 at 5:55 pm

    This movies SUCKS.
    Enjoy the movie by sleeping.

  11. ab

    July 26, 2009 at 8:31 am

    \all of you guys who dont like this fantabulous movie either dont understand it or you havent read the books

    why dont you accept that this is the best franchise ever!!!!!

  12. Pooja

    July 26, 2009 at 9:35 am

    I liked the book but the movie was not even half as interesting as the book. The movie has done everything but justify the creativity and effects of the book. The death of Dumbledore-which is one of the significant parts of the book was so carelessly portrayed.

    The only good thing Yates did was to remove the unimportant parts carefully without losing the essence of the book.

    Watch it if you are harry potter fan or if you are watching harry potter for the first time but do not expect to much it is neither entertaining nor has the wow effect for a magic movie

  13. Proshonjit

    July 26, 2009 at 12:36 pm

    Harry Potter & The Half Blood Prince is an excellent adaptation of the book.
    Though there are a few scenes which arent there in the book it advances the story & simply enhances the chemistry of the lead characters gradually. Far better adaptation than the previous one though…it seems like people arent liking it as much…to those who ask for more action scenes…c’mon at least this movie doesnt exaggerate the books……
    for those who haven’t read the top class book & still criticise the movie…..

  14. RK

    July 27, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    one of the worst n stupid movies i have ever seen in my life,,,,u ill endup with a big headache after watching this,,instead of spending money on this movie use the same for a delicious hyderabadi biryani,,,this movie will get a hell out of u,,,watch this movie if u have any plans of suicide,

  15. Shethin

    July 28, 2009 at 6:56 pm

    I love harry potter series…
    It was the best yet in SFX AND VFX..
    It turns a bit mushy on the love side…
    After reading the book my expectations of the Movie had gone really high and after the trailer i thot dis movie wud b d best yet.. But, on d first day first show, i came 2 kno hw much i was wrong.. Story ws good, but lots of parts were missing..
    The one wid Hepzibah Smith n lotz more are cut…
    The story ws average(3 out of 5)
    The VFX and SFX(5 out of 5)
    The justice to the book (2.5 out of 5)
    Presentation (3 out of 5)
    Overall 3 out of 5…

    PS: Harry potter’s first 2 parts did more justice to the books…

  16. tathagat

    August 1, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    harry potter 6 was the best film among the series , it was exiting and adventrous ,best for people who have read the book , i have read he novel and i found that large essential parts were cut out ,more emphasis has been laid on teen cult ,never mind but warner bros could have extended the film for at least 3 hrs so that people could look at voldemort past
    as per the previous review justice to the book is very low
    my ratings
    action and drama :3/5
    sfx and vfx :4.5/5
    book justice :2/5
    novel reader review :2/5
    total popularity :5/5
    presentation and clearing :4/5
    overall:2.5/5

  17. monikca

    August 9, 2009 at 11:47 pm

    i was jumping in my seat when got the tickets after 10 days of prebooking to see hp & hbp but all my exsitement went of after seeing the incomplet movie. There was no magic. What should be shown was not there only.
    compared to last movie this 6 hp had a dam climax. The book was 100 times better than movie.
    Instead of k— they could have put a proper fight in the climax as per the book.
    My rating not so nice.

  18. default

    March 3, 2010 at 11:19 am

    hey “praveen trivedi”. you’re right, person. they’ve replaced the dome with the silly small flat screen which is slightly bigger than the multiplex screen

  19. guamekemTearl

    March 7, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    Interesting article and one which should be more widely known about in my view. Your level of detail is good and the clarity of writing is excellent. I have bookmarked it for you so that others will be able to see what you have to say.

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  20. Binoanten

    January 19, 2012 at 4:53 pm

    Nice post… Informative.. subscribing in support of more….

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