HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF BLOOD PRINCE
|Trouble with deatheaters is only half the problems facing an increasingly girl-concious Harry Potter boy wizard.
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1 (unwatchable) to 5 (unmissable)
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Daniel Radcliffe, Michael Gambon, Rupert Grint, Jim Broadbent, Alan Rickman
US / UK
Rating / Running Time
M / 153 minutes
(c) moviereview 2006-2009
ABN 72 775 390 361
truth in the assertion that this sixth installment is long on
chit-chat, short on action and devotes inordinate amounts of time to
character without really ever getting anywhere. But they’d be made by
people whose idea of a good time is the kind of audio-visual pummeling
of, say, Transformers.
Director David Yates gets straight down to business in a murky gloom of Deatheaters afoot, evil intent on ending the world and, worst of all, teenagers in lust! For The Half-Blood Prince is, as much as anything, about unrequited adolescent love distracted by more pressing matters, like, well, the end of the world.
Consequently, Yates has, appropriately, taken much of the childish fun out of Harry. Hogwarts’ frivolity has been replaced by deserted, gothic gloom circled by a miserable past and terrifying future. As Harry fights those loyal to the villainous Voldemort (whose onscreen absence is unfortunate), The Half-Blood Prince arrives true to source as the darkest film of all.
Superior production helps overcome minor concerns like a tangible villain, underwritten roles (Snape) and wobbly performance (clenching a jaw is not acting). But these are small beans - from the opening to a throw-forward close, Yates held audiences spellbound.
And what more could you want from a magical extravaganza?
// COLIN FRASER