A handful of trailers and other filmic appetizers have come out for the holiday weekend, hoping to grab their share of movie-goers' attention some time between the third round of hotdogs and passing out on the sofa. You could hoist yourself up and head out to see a new release in the theater, during which you might see some of these new trailers, but sit back and relax. I've got them right here, within easy reach of your antacids and favorite pillow.
Can you believe it's been two years since the last Harry Potter film came out? ...You can? Yeah, it does feel like a long time, doesn't it. Well, it's time to refresh your memory about what happened last time, and who everybody is, so you can go into the new film and know what the hell's going on. Because there are a lot of characters in these films. Between the students and the teachers and the parents and the Death-Eaters, nobody gets more than five minutes of screentime, and it's hard to keep their stories straight. Luckily, we've created a handy-dandy Harry Potter Character Guide with pictures of all of the old characters and a few new ones, plus info on what happened last time and what their status is at the start of this one. It's non-spoilery, so don't worry about us giving away the extremely shocking ending of the movie which everyone already knows about anyway. Still, if you don't want to know how it ends, you should probably leave the Internet.
After two years of waiting, I have finally seen the latest installment in the Harry Potter series, and it is good. I mean, really good. I laughed, I cried, I was on the edge of my seat. And considering that it was only rated PG, rather than PG-13 like the last two, there was still plenty of gore and violence and scary stuff. There's also a lot of snogging (British for making out), because, in case you weren't aware, this chapter of the Potter saga is all about sex.
While the latest Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is the first installment in a while to be rated PG, that doesn't mean it's any less messed-up. Sure, there's less blood (even though it's the first to put the word "blood" right in the title), but Harry still receives a nasty beating, there are teen make-out parties galore and at least one person gets murdered. Oh, and there are also zombies. Fricking zombies! In celebration of the scariest PG film we've seen in a while, we thought we'd run down the most effed-up moments in the franchise's first five films. No spoilers for Half-Blood, unless you count us mentioning zombies earlier. Too late!
Perhaps the folks at Entertainment Weekly should read Movies Without Pity more often. As reported here, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince has been moved from November 2008 to July 2009. Usually when this happens (see Valkyrie -- if you can find out when it'll be released), it means the movie is in deep trouble. No such fate befalls Harry, which will be an enormous hit no matter when it's released. EW's "mistake" was putting Harry on their fall movie preview cover, which my mailman balled up and shoved into my mailbox while I was away on business. Looks like the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing over at Time Warner! (To be fair, Empire magazine did the same thing, but they're British -- they'd put Harry Potter on the cover of every issue if they didn't have to worry about selling copies to us Yanks, as well.)
Harry Potter fans, rejoice, because more versions of HP's movies come out than you can shake a wand at. Accio multi-disc gift set!