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John Crichton

Potterdom Film/Score Series Thread

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People can't grow into Star Wars, Harry Potter or any other fantasy/sci-fi text? Harry Potter is a young adult text, but the themes and stories are multi-generational.

Why is discussing/debating Harry Potter or YA texts in general seen as an infantile endeavor by you, when in today's social circles, people can openly discuss and share their enthusiasm for Game of Thrones, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars like it's anything else? I think being able to discuss these geeky topics as if their any other form of literature is something to feel positive about that we can finally get over asinine remarks like these:

11 minutes ago, Cherry Pie That'll Kill Ya said:

 

In other words, you grew out of it?

 

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I can understand what you mean from that perspective, I went through a similar phase with the Marvel/DC Superhero films, I loved them when they were just Spider-Man and the X-Men and Batman and Superman, but fell out of touch with what I liked about them recently.

 

I grew up with the Harry Potter books and the films came out at a developmental age all the way through high school for me. I've grown out of certain fascinations with the series I once held, but I still remain a fairly committed fan.

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2 hours ago, Arpy said:

To me, as someone who adores the books and the films, it didn't seem like a mistake when for instance, in Half-Blood Prince the Death Eaters set fire to the Burrow...because it didn't impact the story

 

 

That's why I don't like it. It's inconsequential. The Burrow burns up and you think "Wow that's kinda bold! What's gonna happen n-- oh, they're already back at Hogwarts." Something traumatic suddenly happens to your cast of characters, you wanna see the morning after. Now that this has happened, how do they deal with it? But we're not supposed to care what happens to the Weasleys because this unexpected and seemingly major event is actually just a tangent. Especially when you factor in Deathly Hallows: Part 1 where the house is back looking just fine. You could pluck the whole thing right out and it wouldn't make any difference.

 

I don't even agree that it lends extra menace to the Death Eaters. Nobody was inside! It's an empty threat to the narrative. Bellatrix shows up, sneers at the kids, runs away, hides in the bushes, doesn't attack. Greyback shows up, sneers at the kids, Harry attacks him and he flies away. Then once everyone's out of the house they blow it up and run away and it doesn't end up affecting much of anything. Reminds me of how the Death Eaters blow up a bridge in the book and it's mentioned that it killed a bunch of people but in the movie it's pretty clear nobody's on there when it falls. Or I love when Voldemort ties Harry up during their battle in Deathly Hallows: Part 2, wrapping him up and lifting him off the ground and then just...lets him go....it's a lot of action "stuff" without anything of consequence happening.

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3 hours ago, Cherry Pie That'll Kill Ya said:

In other words, you grew out of it?

 

I know I did. I can watch some of my favorites out of the series (Prisoner of Azkaban and Order of the Phoenix, mostly) but I don't feel much of a need to revisit the others.

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2 hours ago, mrbellamy said:

 

That's why I don't like it. It's inconsequential. The Burrow burns up and you think "Wow that's kinda bold! What's gonna happen n-- oh, they're already back at Hogwarts." Something traumatic suddenly happens to your cast of characters, you wanna see the morning after. Now that this has happened, how do they deal with it? But we're not supposed to care what happens to the Weasleys because this unexpected and seemingly major event is actually just a tangent. Especially when you factor in Deathly Hallows: Part 1 where the house is back looking just fine. You could pluck the whole thing right out and it wouldn't make any difference.

 

I don't even agree that it lends extra menace to the Death Eaters. Nobody was inside! It's an empty threat to the narrative. Bellatrix shows up, sneers at the kids, runs away, hides in the bushes, doesn't attack. Greyback shows up, sneers at the kids, Harry attacks him and he flies away. Then once everyone's out of the house they blow it up and run away and it doesn't end up affecting much of anything. Reminds me of how the Death Eaters blow up a bridge in the book and it's mentioned that it killed a bunch of people but in the movie it's pretty clear nobody's on there when it falls. Or I love when Voldemort ties Harry up during their battle in Deathly Hallows: Part 2, wrapping him up and lifting him off the ground and then just...lets him go....it's a lot of action "stuff" without anything of consequence happening.

Oh, it's all inconsequential, but I'm not the one who can't live with the fact those instances exist.

 

 

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Oh fuck off, the Burrow attack serves no goddamn purpose even if you ignore the books. Does anyone get hurt physically or emotionally? No. Does it make the threat real? No, because the house is 100% fine and dandy a few months later in 7. Does it add anything to the characters? No, nobody ever mentions it again and we see no reaction except for looking in the distance, which is somehow substitute for acting these days.

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Was that in movie 6 or 7?  I don't remember it bothering me at the time, but maybe if I gave it a second watch I'd care more.

 

From the sound of the complaints though, it sounds just as pointless as, say, the Wicked Witch cackling and stirring things up with the ol' apple-throwing trees while everyone else is on their way to Emerald City.  It's an event that doesn't really have any significant bearing on the theme, characters, or overall plot, and sometimes things just happen in movies.

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Mine is exactly the same case: I can't recall specifics, but I don't remember being bothered by that part of the film.

 

As for elements that aren't driving the story forward: that depends. If its an entire sequence than I can understand complaints; but yeah, sometimes filmmakers just throw in a small vignette of-sorts into a slow section of the film to keep it interesting.

 

Sometimes, those kinds of vignettes serve a section of the film in the same way that a "James Bond opening" serves a film as a whole. i.e. after a slower section of the film, the filmmakers throw-in a a bit of action as a sign of "okay, now we're getting to the point!"

 

All are valid narrative devices.

 

Besides, I find the idea that a single bad beat or setpiece can undo an entire film utterly abusrd. For me to write a film off, it has to have something wrong with it throughout, and no, "not like the book" doesn't count.

 

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Sort of to echo another thread, will there be one film from this series that will be viewed as a "classic" in years to come? I guess some could say the whole series could be considered a classic, since nothing has never been done like it before and likely never will again (using the same core cast from childhood to adulthood over an entire series of films for so long). However, if I had to bet, most people will remember this series from either the first film or the third, sort of forgetting the rest. What do you think?

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I really think that this question is kind of unfair when it comes to films in large franchises, because those individual films will endure by virtue of being part of that franchise, even if they're not that good.

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22 minutes ago, scallenger said:

Sort of to echo another thread, will there be one film from this series that will be viewed as a "classic" in years to come? I guess some could say the whole series could be considered a classic, since nothing has never been done like it before and likely never will again (using the same core cast from childhood to adulthood over an entire series of films for so long). However, if I had to bet, most people will remember this series from either the first film or the third, sort of forgetting the rest. What do you think?

 

I have students who still check out the books...practically none of them have seen the movies, and are barely cognizant of their existence.

 

*addressing Harry Potter film series  about the books*: "They will be found! You won't!"

 

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2 hours ago, Bilbo said:

Cursed Child seems to be just as popular as ever. 

 

http://www.mugglenet.com/2018/11/cursed-child-has-the-best-week-ever-and-so-can-you/

 

Hoping to see it in the Spring in London. 

The fansites continue to rave about COG as well... Doesn't make it any less horrible.

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On ‎11‎/‎27‎/‎2018 at 1:53 PM, Bilbo said:

Cursed Child seems to be just as popular as ever. 

 

http://www.mugglenet.com/2018/11/cursed-child-has-the-best-week-ever-and-so-can-you/

 

Hoping to see it in the Spring in London. 

 

Haven't seen the play, nor read it, but the music sucks.

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Intersting that Holko stated in the top 5 john williams list thread that HP was not episodic but interconnected.

 

I disagree but did not want to argue it there. However Harry Potter is told through an episodic narrative over the course of almost 8 years with an epilogue sent 19 years after. Each book is "loosely" connected however the over story is intricately connected. 

 

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I specifically brought up Indy as the counterexample of episodic but not interconnected to explain this.

 

HP tells the story of Harry Potter going to Hogwarts and fighting Voldemort, through 7 (or 8) more or less standalone episodes with their own structure.

LotR tells one single story from beginning to end.

Indy tells 4 (soon 5?) pretty much completely separate stories about the same character.

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I doubt HP would be as beloved here if not for John involvement.  

 

As for the books. I find Rowling superior to Tolkien who is just not my taste at all. 

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14 minutes ago, Jay said:

The reason some people consider Shore's LOTR trilogy to be one long score, but not Williams' Potter trilogy, is due to the completely different production schedules.

 

All the LOTR movies were written together, had pre-production together, and were shot together, and Shore composed all the themes he'd need for the entire before writing individual FOTR cues once post-production on FOTR started.


For Potter, each film was written, then shot, then had post with Williams writing the score to just that film - without even know if there'd be a sequel or if he'd score it - at the time.

 

So that's why there's a difference.

 

Sadly Williams has never really had the opportunity to write a multi film work in the way Shore did, twice.

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I honestly don't think scores like Empire Strikes Back or Last Jedi would have turned out THAT differently if he read the scripts to either before composing the first score

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17 minutes ago, Stefancos said:

 

Sadly Williams has never really had the opportunity to write a multi film work in the way Shore did, twice.

And yet Williams has so many scores superior to Lotr

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59 minutes ago, Holko said:

HP tells the story of Harry Potter going to Hogwarts and fighting Voldemort, through 7 (or 8) more or less standalone episodes with their own structure.

LotR tells one single story from beginning to end.

Indy tells 4 (soon 5?) pretty much completely separate stories about the same character.

 

Right.

 

The Lord of the Rings is a cycle. Indiana Jones is an anthology. Harry Potter is in the middle, but I should think it leans more into the former. It does have one unified central conflict (Harry versus Voldemort) and the films kind of have an overriding three-act structure. The overriding structure and some plot points (The Horcruxes) really are a credit to Rowling's storytelling foresight.

 

47 minutes ago, Stefancos said:

Sadly Williams has never really had the opportunity to write a multi film work in the way Shore did, twice.

 

In terms of scoring, regardless of how the individual films interweave or how the production is handled, Williams just doesn't work like that: he rarely foreshadows the events of a next entry in his score: he scores the films as standalone pieces. If we look at Shore, the Gondor material really has no reason to be in The Fellowship of the Ring (or in One of the Dunedain, for that matter) and yet there it is, as a promise of what's to come. The rarities go to show that it was originally even more prominent.

 

Williams, instead, would have probably written a Boromir theme (maybe) and called it a day. The closest he ever went to this sort of clairvoyant type of scoring, was when he composed Across the Stars in a tragic mode.

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1 hour ago, Chen G. said:

The Lord of the Rings is a cycle. Indiana Jones is an anthology. Harry Potter is in the middle, but I should think it leans more into the former. It does have one unified central conflict (Harry versus Voldemort) and the films kind of have an overriding three-act structure. The overriding structure and some plot points (The Horcruxes) really are a credit to Rowling's storytelling foresight.

Oh, I'd definetly say Harry Potter is more so a cycle than an anthology, but it does end up somewhere in middle, yes. I'd say that Voldemort is a major connecting point, as his return to physical form and full strength is set up, fulfilled, and carried through over the course of the series, from the wraps of Quirrel's turban to his eventual demise. Other characters return, but aren't defined by such a wide arch as this.

 

While I'm not a big fan of the series, I've always admired it's abilty to seemlessly weave through the character arch of Harry Potter and the eventual rise of Voldemort through 8 films. Of course, this credit goes solely to Rowling, as she had the liberty of not being limited by big movie budgets, but rather by books, and her creative abilities allowed to her write multiple bestsellers in a series that is very effective in storytelling over a grand stretch of material, whether it be film or books. 

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Oddly enough, when I lined-up the plot points against a three-act diagram, it came out wonkier than I anticipated, with the end of act I (that being, Voldemort's corporeal return) being about halfway through the running time of the entire series.

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