Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Harry Potter Spell

I am jealous of J.K.Rowling....everyone of us has at some point thought about magic, witches on broom sticks, vases hanging in mid-air and food appearing out of spite of all these thoughts, she was the only one to see the potential in them, give them shape and finally make truck loads of money to become one of the top 15 rich people in the UK.

When I saw the first Harry Potter movie of the series, I had not read the books. To this day, it somehow remains my favorite since like Harry, it was amazing for me to see how far the world of magic has been pushed to - a complete country with its government, school, hospital and of course, people...umm...actually, witches (no, am not swearing !) and wizards. It was really interesting to see the buying of a wand, the first broom stick lesson, the first quidditch match and many other firsts.

Sequels are generally very critically reviewed because of the expectations generated by the predecessor(s) and when one promises in advance that there would be 6 more sequels, there are more expectations accompanied with a few suspense-robbing assumptions like the bad guy will obviously die only in the last one and consequently the hero should be kept alive until then !

The second part was decent, nothing to complain about. I thoroughly enjoyed the 3rd book- writing a story about traveling back in time is very difficult; keeping track of time, characters and plot and all at the same time...was brilliant. I enjoyed the movie equally well. The fourth part had the excitement of a 20-20 match, fast, gripping and having a magical tournament was again another brain wave from Rowling.

Die hard Harry Potter fans or fanatics (like my sister-in-law, who cajoled me into reading these books in the first place) might disagree or might even get offended by what I am going to say but I will stand by my statement - The charm is lost from the 5th book onwards and no wonder many thought Harry Potter 5 and 6 movies were not good. I actually wanted to leave halfway while watching 5, the movie was a joke although it was supposed to be scary since Lord Voldemort (the bad guy) had returned with his full power at the end of part 4.

I read the seventh and final book this saturday, 600 pages (oh...God..) and I consider it a wasted saturday. All I learnt from and enjoyed in the book was English, British English. I think Rowling has made enough money out of it and is busy with other activities now that she just put together something while watching her kids do homework.

All said and done, Harry Potter and his gang have definitely entertained me in the last few years. If you argue saying its childish, well, yes, but so is Tom and Jerry and that makes me laugh any day. And if you argue saying its pointless, well, yes, but so is ice cream :D ! If you have a few hours to spare, watching movies 1-4 might be a good idea but if you are just getting into the habit of reading books, you might want to stay away from the 500-600 page drivel.
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