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Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Movie Review
By: Devina (The Charmed One)

    I simply could not resist!!! I just had to review the movie!!! Well, for starters, let me just tell you how much I loved it!!! Another bit of advice to everyone, when you're watching the movie, try and forget the book. Try and see the movie for what it is and stop blaming people for not following the books word for word, because that's just impossible. And if you think you can do a better job, then well, you should be the director shouldn't you?

    Before I go on with my thoughts on the movie, let me just list out in which parts of the movie did the audience clap and cheer (in no particular order): " When Hermione punched Draco (I must say I cheered rather loudly here although it pained me to see Tom Felton being punched!!!) " When Hermione blew open Sirius's door to free him " When Hermione and Ron held hands and then awkwardly let go " When Harry rode Buckbeak for the first time (Buckbeak is so damn cute!) " When Harry went, "EXPECTO PATRONUM!" (Ooooh, very sexy voice!) " When Harry rode the Firebolt for the first time " When Sirius escaped on Buckbeak " When Harry, Ron and Hermione did the group hug thing (I wonder whether the majority of the clappers were Harry-Hermione shippers or Ron-Hermione shippers…anyways, no matter) " When the Knight Bus squeezed through the double deckers (I think this was because it looked so cool)

    Apart from that, there were aaaahhhhs and ooooohhhhhs and wooooooos along with the clapping during these scenes and a good deal of these sounds when Lupin started the music in class. Also to be noted is the increased amount of laughter especially at Ron's lines, my favourites being, "How did she get here?" and "I don't want to tap-dance with the spiders" and Harry replying, "You tell them Ron!"

    Most of the HP fans had great doubts about whether Alfonso Cuaron would be able to handle the task of directing Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban because well, he was a new guy! And of course, PoA is widely viewed as the most favourite HP book, and its movie had to be as magnificent. Now, all of you who did doubt him should be sorry! He is an excellent director and I found his handling of various scenes impeccable.

    Another thing, which was also looked upon with anger, was the removal of Sean Biggerstaff from the movie by his many fans. I must admit I was also one of the many thousands that signed the "Wood is Good" petition. However (sorry Sean Biggerstaff), after viewing the movie, I felt this to be a just decision. Not much time has been spent over Quidditch and only the match with Harry's fall was included and to call him back just to show his face for a scene (in which nothing can be seen clearly anyway) was definitely ridiculous. Another complaint by many fans was the exclusion of more Quidditch scenes. I love Quidditch as well and I think it's a great part of the book, but as I said before, FORGET THE BOOK! We didn't need Cho Chang as such, as she wasn't even connected to the main plot. So everyone…chill.

    Now for the plot lines. I agree that a few changes have been made here and there. But that is only to be expected considering it's a bigger book than the first two and it needs to be somehow squeezed into one movie. Some fans felt that the movie felt too rushed. Again, that's simply because they relied too much on the book. The essential spirit and theme of the story was kept intact.

    And in a recent article, and I quote J.K. Rowling, "I really got goose bumps when I saw a couple of those things, and I thought, people are going to look back on the film and think that those were put in deliberately as clues." Basically, what she's saying is that some scenes in the movie are clues to what's going to happen in the next two books. Well, I was thinking about this while watching the movie and well, I got so caught up in it that I completely forgot to look for clues. But, there is this line that Sirius says while looking upon Hogwarts, near the Whomping Willow, which goes something like this, "I will be glad to walk the halls of Hogwarts once again as a free man" or something along those lines. Well honestly, that leads me to believe that he will. I promise, when I buy the DVD, I shall scour every scene and every line for more clues. Oh, and another thing, I won't be surprised if Buckbeak kills Draco Malfoy one of these days. The way he was eating ferrets throughout the movie just made me think of Draco as a 'bouncing ferret'!

    Of course, there were a few things that needed to be showed. One of course being how exactly Lupin knew how to work the Marauder's Map. I mean, how does he know how to work the map? Why does Harry's Patronus take that particular shape? Stuff like that needed to be mentioned, even if briefly. Another being Pigwidgeon sent to Ron. Along with the Firebolt, we could have had a small owl fluttering about as well. And why did Snape hate Sirius? The message that came across to the non-book readers was that he hated him just because he was a killer. Nada. There was the underlying reason, which definitely needed to be stressed upon.

    Hehe, and although this next part technically has nothing to do with the movie's critique, I just have to mention it. DANIEL RADCLIFFE AND TOM FELTON!!! AAAAHHHHH!!!

    Ahem, ok, now that's out of the way. Ok, seriously speaking, aside from their drop-dead gorgeous looks (which had my mouth hanging open for a while) the actors have really matured and they look so much more comfortable with their parts. Rupert Grint's comic timing is practically flawless. I was laughing so much whenever he gave his punch lines. Honestly, for the past 2 movies, although I have loved Daniel Radcliffe, I always felt he was a bit wooden sometimes. In this movie, I was amazed by how he slips into the character and his emotions so well. Kudos to all of them.

    Well, so basically, I loved the movie and I cannot wait until the DVD comes out coz I'll devour it with happiness.

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