Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
J. K. Rowling
Pub. Date: July 21, 2007
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books
Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix
Michael Goldenberg (screenplay)
J.K. Rowling (novel)
Directed by David Yates
Release: 10 August 2007
There are no spoilers in this blog. Feel safe to read this even if you have not finished the book or watched the movie.
A generation grew up with Harry Potter since Sorcerer's Stone published 9 years ago. And the series ended this summer. The publishing industry will eagerly wait for the next J.K. Rowling, or her next endeaver.
Good thing that the movie series will keep everyone hooked for a few more years.
I did not dress up as one of the characters to wait for the clock to strike mid-night. Instead, we drove to Costco at 9am, July 21st, and got a copy with no wait. I woke up at 7am the next morning and took the book from the bedside of my younger daughter and started reading. I knew that she finished. The older daughter woke up few hours later, walked up to me without a word, and I surrendered the book without protest. We understood the faster reader get it first. By the afternoon of July 23rd, Monday, she handed it back to me. Then work got in the way. I attended all-day meetings from July 24th to 27th, Friday. Wife did not protest about my absence during the weekend. By Sunday morning (really early), I put down the book, sighed, and went to sleep. It ended.
Structurally, this may be J.K. Rowling's best. The main line kept its focus the sub-plots are natural. Her socio-political points are obvious and the human tragedies are just enough for older readers to understand and younger ones to feel the gravity.
Harry Potter books gave me this 9-year journey with my kids. They grew up with Harry Potter and I participated. They really have out-grown the magics and sometime the patience for J.K. Rowling's compusion became thin. The last few books are honestly obligatory readings — few days of light works in exchange of keeping up with the story line and the buzz. This finale, slightly anticlimactical, is refreshing as well as a relief.
The movie high-lighted one of my senior moments — I have forgotten what the book was about. And I remembered the cute little kid Daniel Radcliff was. How much Harry, Hermione, and Ron have grown! Maybe a 18-year-old (he was born in 1989) actor can still play the 15-year old Harry. It will be unrealistic for the next 3 movies.
This book turned mature in the series with a cold-blooded murder and the beginning of teenage romance. The movie faithfully reflected that changee. Magic is no longer the attraction; complex characters and intensive struggles are. I watched all those small kids in the theater and wondered how much they enjoyed it. They clearly did. The new director seemed to have find a good balance between keeping the little kids excited and older ones entertained too.
Soon, my senility will win and I won't remember exactly what happened in which book. It is pretty certain that there will be a box edition of all Harry Potter movies in few years. I probably will add them to my collection, together with God Father, Indiana Jones, Matrix, Lord of the Rings, etc. Nope, although I did watched them all, I do not intend to add Rocky and RoboCop to my collection.
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