More Half-Blood Prince Reviews: Guardian Three Stars out of Five, More


Jul 04, 2009

Posted by SueTLC

Over the past few weeks, screenings for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Place for the press have taken place world wide. A few more early reviews are beginning to trickle online, with articles from the Guardian and UK tabloid the Sun now online.

The Sun gives glowing, while sometimes vague remarks in their article, praising the use of comedy and romance (Hogwarts is Snogwarts!) and giving kudos to Bonnie Wright as Ginny, and Hero Fiennes-Tiffin (Young Voldemort). The piece summarizes “Rather than giving us a series of computer-generated action sequences (yawn
again), Yates has gone for careful character development, building to a
dramatic crescendo. And that is the biggest surprise of all – The Half-Blood
Prince is masterful.”

While still generally postive, a more subdued review can be found in the Guardian which gave the film three stars out of five. The bottom line reads: “Putatively winsome all this [romance] may be, but what it actually does is throw
the series’ biggest weakness into sharp relief: film-making can (and
does) control pretty much everything ’ except how the cute juvenile
leads grow up. Still, director David Yates knows how to play all the
cards. Although a touch ungainly, his film is solidly constructed, with
lots of fine effects. If, as Potter approaches his final confrontation
with Voldemort, the wizardly battles begin to resemble Lord of the
Rings, it’s hardly a handicap; this is tried and tested cinematic
language, and does all it needs.

46 Responses to More Half-Blood Prince Reviews: Guardian Three Stars out of Five, More

Avatar ImageRachezee says: The problem with most reviews is that they are written by people who have never read the books, or really watch the movies for anything other than the purpose of reviewing them. They have never paid attention to either in the books or movies the subtle messages in them. They see the surface only, which results in missing the point- which is that everything is about love.Avatar ImageRosalie says: That's your opinion, starlesswinter, because I loved the romances in the novels, and I have a feeling I'm going to love them in the movie. Most reviews I've read have said the movie is awesome and produces a great balance of comedy and darkness.Avatar Imageaval says: SNOGWAORTS !LOLAvatar ImageFereverto says: That Guardian review was not well written as I did not quite understand what the heck the author was trying to convey. I'd call it a muddled muggle mess of a review.Avatar Imagestarlesswinter says: Many movie critics do not judge based on personal opinion, though. There is an element to reviewing that involves the technical side of the film, as well, and that's what many critics actually review. A writer doesn't just pick random words when he or she writes, do they? No, and it's the same with a filmmaker, just with a camera and composition, etc. Many fans of the Harry Potter books absolutely love the story but can see many faults in the actual writing of the series. A reviewer often critiques the latter aspect (the execution of the story) as opposed to whether or not he likes the story. Fans of the books are different in their responses to film, however. New audiences watch with a blank slate; they have no preconceived emotions about characters and plotlines, whereas book-fans do. That definitely affects their emotional responses to what's on the screen. A fan of book-Sirius might have balled their eyes out during Sirius's death scene, whereas a casual moviegoer might have asked what the big deal was because he or she found the scene to be executed poorly. It's not right to say that these viewers don't understand what they're watching.Avatar Imagestarlesswinter says: The reason I say that Harry/Ginny was awful in the books is because we were never shown WHY they loved each other. All they did was snog and flirt. There is nothing wrong with basing a relationship on this teenage lust (they happen all the time), just as long as I'm not supposed to accept that it's true love and that the two people are soulmates when they are clearly never shown to be. You can't just TELL me that and expect me to believe it.Avatar ImagePetra says: First, yeah!!!! Wow, it's pretty rough article in The Sun. I like more the one in the Guardian. Btw, I can't wait for HBP....Avatar ImageaaTmaHira says: 2nd! I wanna buy the game!!!!!!!!!Avatar ImageGreat Uncle Algie says: god the sun...Avatar ImageGreat Uncle Algie says: god the sun...Avatar Imageabandonedboyjon says: i wonder when they're going to get a decent copywriter over at the sun. good reviews for hbp except one, so far, by my count. I get how reviewers see advanced screenings, but why Jonathan Ross? why not me?! Eleven Days. Avatar ImageLiderc says: Being a student of writing, I'm a bit ashamed to see such poorly written reviews. You'd think the writers would take a bit more care in what they write, as they're given an enormous privilege of seeing the film in advance.Avatar Imagegryffindor1991 says: It should be 5 out of 5 stars. Avatar Imagekamidee says: A review is just a persons opinion, just because they 'may' have knowledge about the industry it doesn't mean that their opinion is universal. I trust Yates to convey Jo's work to film, even if I'm not happy about the screenwriter who shall not be named. Avatar ImageLiderc says: Being a student of writing, I'm a bit ashamed to see such poorly written reviews. You'd think the writers would take a bit more care in what they write, as they're given an enormous privilege of seeing the film in advance.Avatar Imageluna.quibbler says: ok whatever the Guardian always give crap reviews- in fact for the guardian 3 out of 5 is pretty good!Avatar ImageMatea says: I do not agree with Guardian. why would love-the essence of Harry Potter be the weakest point of the film? its not all in darkness,pain and cool special effects. Avatar Imageprettygypsy2007 says: 3 out of 5 isnt bad....Avatar ImageMoose_Starr says: A movie review is just one person's opinion. There was a *really* interesting report at Yahoo a couple days ago, about movie reviews and reviewers, and about how reviewers have lost sight of their purpose. Instead of writing a review they go into their personal angst and stuff, or focus on one aspect and make that the major point of their review. This all came about as a result of Transformers getting really bad reviews but within days going on to being one of the biggest blockbuster movies ever, & reaching the however-many-$billion within like four days or something. So yeah ... grain, salt, take :DAvatar Imagefreakinwinky says: I know. Film critiques are known for being generally snobbish but the guardian is notorious for this, more than any other paper in Great Britain and, perhaps, the world at large. The truth is the Guardian isn't going to truly love any Harry Potter movie, no matter how good, because they see them as "main stream". They like to belittle anything that is popular as much as they possibly can. While this disappoints me, I can't say that I'm surprised. Avatar Imagemollywobble says: I've seen quite a few "critics" posting on their blogs and twitters that they really like the film, and that some even agree with what Dergarabedian said a few days ago about it being Oscar worthy. After reading the entire Gaurdian article, I'm not even exactly sure why he's giving it a 3 out 5 stars. However, it's still a pretty positive review. If that's the worst review we've seen so far, then we're doing well. Avatar Imagehermyone08 says: you can tell that these people who have reviewed do not understand HP at all and probably haven't even seen the other movies or anything.Avatar ImageRosalie says: The reviewer of the Sun really liked the movie and gave props to the more warm-hearted nature of the film, and The Guardian found it lukewarm, and going by what you have all said when it comes to how the Guardian reviews films, I think that means the film will be pretty good. I've read other small reviews from other fans who've seen it and they all thought it was brilliant and did a great mix. I keep hearing it's the best character driven of all the films. In response to starless again, I thought H/G was sweet in the books. She made him laugh, she comforted him when Dumbledore died, she comforted him after he saw his father in Snape's worst memory, she told him he wasn't possessed, which in turn made him feel better. She's also one of the only ones who can deal with his crankier attitude. She provided him simple comfort of everyday life and made him feel normal. That's all Harry wanted. Since the series isn't a romance novel, this was portrayed fine. Avatar ImageLivelaughlovepotter says: Hermyone's probably right. I agree... it's just sooo vague!Avatar ImageFloridianFlounder95 says: I really do think they might be making me a bit more excited than I should be, the more they praise, the more I want to watch it to prove to my family that Harry Potter is a good film franchise. I don't want to be dissapointed, so my hopes remain at a low level.Avatar Imagestarlesswinter says: You should definitely NOT have to read a book to understand what a film is about...if you can't understand the themes of the film, the filmmakers haven't done their job. And the lust of movie six is most certainly not love. In fact, none of the romances of this series (save moments of Ron and Hermione) have ever been believable. Harry/Ginny was awful, and I actually liked the idea of them getting together.Avatar ImageMarine says: A review is always biased. Anyway, from what I saw, the film is the best of the 6 that have been made. I'm really looking forward to seeing it as I didn't especially like the 5th one.Avatar ImageCandyCane2304 says: Don't care what the critics say, I'm going to see it regardless. I have enjoyed all the movie, though i'm upset with some of the cut's in the movie I understand them. As much as I love Harry Potter, I don't a 4 hr movie.Avatar Imagehereward says: I'm not sure the person from The Sun actually saw the film.Avatar ImageWON_TWO says: Hacks...Avatar Imagemollywobble says: By the way, I checked Pulver's review history for the Guardian, and he never gives more than 3 stars. So it's really hard to judge what he considers to be a 4 or 5 star film. Avatar ImageFresca says: The Guardian is like our local paper. If the reviews are awful, the film or play is usually really good. if the reviewer loves it, it is usually pretty awful!Avatar ImageLucia Meadows says: As Moose_Starr said, a movie reviewer simply expresses his/her individual opinion. In the case of Transformers, the audience has the last word on whether a film is "good", by spending money to see it in the theaters. We, the fans, have a closer connection to this movie than the average movie-goer, so we may feel slighted when reviews aren't wholly positive of it, but we'll still see it.Avatar ImageAsi says: From the moment I became HP fan , I made myself not to believe to everything that's written in the press!! Journalists some time write their own opinione and even don't think about the feelings of people who would read their article!!! Yeah, from the first moment I have read HBP I gessed that alot of ,,not so understanding,, people will say that it had spoiled,some of people won't be able understand what is going on and that there wounld be a lot of "WHYs?" I have prepared myself to everything and I know exactly one thing for me IT DOESN"T PLAIES ANY SENSE WHAT PEOPLE SAY ABOUT HP BOOKS< FILMS< ACTORS I LIKE IT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Avatar Imagemollywobble says: Starlesswinter, I understand what you're saying about relationships in the series. However, I'm trying to remember where in the books Harry says he loves Ginny or that they were soulmates. He obviously cared for her, and their time together meant a lot to him and his happiness. Was it love at the time? Probably not, but it still meant enough that her face was the last thing he saw before he "died." JK. Rowling isn't Stephanie Meyer. Harry and Ginny never called each other soulmates after a week of dating. Their lust probably developed into love long after the war was over. Isn't that how most relationships start? As for critics (I'm not commenting towards any one poster now), their words do have merit. The success of the second Transformer movie only proves that people wanted to see it, not whether they enjoyed it. In fact, it's possible that the new Ice Age movie could actually beat it this weekend, so obviously not everyone wanted to see it a second time. So HBP's initial success will not be based on what critics think, but it's long term success could. Word of mouth is important if you want to stay number 1 for more than a week. Avatar ImageNot Slytherin says: Snogwarts ... heh heh.Avatar ImageAccioAmanda says: Still laughing about "Snogwarts" ... Hehe. This movie is going to be amazing! 8-)Avatar Imagecallicott3 says: I always reserve my true feelings, until I see the are "personal opinions" matter how well written or "unbiased" they wish to be.... I'll make up my own mind. But I have to say, things are looking pretty good! 10 more days....YAHOO!Avatar Imagekiwimci says: These reviews were pretty fair enough I've no idea why people are suddenly getting up in arms about them. They seemed pretty on the mark when you look at them objectively. I think were still on course for a very good movie. Can't wait for Total Film's review, it's the one I usually count onAvatar Imagetheshiznit says: Hi Potter fans. I've posted a fairly positive review of Half-Blood Prince on my website, thought you might like to read it: Apologies if you think this is spam, but it's hard to try and compete with the big names like The Guardian and The Sun! Plus I go into much more detail than they do! Hope you enjoy the review, and the film! Thanks, Imagemollywobble says: Sorry kid, but the fact that you call yourself and your blog the "shiznit" pretty much guarantees that I won't take your opinion seriously. Avatar ImageDanielleD says: snogwarts lol.Avatar ImageMidnightSun321 says: it should be getting 5/5. film critics often hate *big* movies. and they luv there character developmentAvatar ImageDolemite says: I'll probably agree about the 3 out of 5 once I see the movie I fear.Avatar Imagestarlesswinter says: So now character development is a bad thing? What is the world coming to?Avatar ImageKC Nox says: snogwarts.....5 stars definitely.....

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