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HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2



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  #401  
Old January 30th, 2008, 5:25 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

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Originally Posted by Richard_Gambon View Post
Very good chapter. However, HATED the wooden acting from Dan (which thankfully is seldom) on "Hm, I dunno, maybe, Lord Voldemort."
That line should have been delivered far stronger. Otherwise as said, it sounds wooden. He didn't sound confident in his conviction which is what Harry was in the book.

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Intro with the flying paper bird and the class' interaction with it was good. Nice transition from the fun and happy scene to *poof* Umbridge's appearance. Flight dynamics of the bird was a bit weird, but did not detract from the scene.
Yes I agree. The contrast show between 'before Umbridge' and 'after Umbridge' was done very well. Especially her 'poof'


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  #402  
Old January 30th, 2008, 6:45 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

This scene is really well done. I like how Rdcliffe delivers his lines because it shows how the character initially wants to attempt to sound smart and sarcastic, but when realising he is alone in his opinions his tone weakens halfway through his sentences to show us a lack of self esteem. Even Hermione and Ron aren't fully willing to back him up. This example of peer pressure wonderfully illustrates Harry's isolation at it's full extent. I think this works much better than how it was in the books. It's like that Simpsons episode where Homer and others go to the cult and are told they're free to leave at any time during the presentation. Otto gets up to leave and then a huge spotlight shines on him and some guy on a speaker is like "Uhm, you're-free-to-leave-whenever-you-like, buuuuut do-you-mind-just-telling-us WHYYYYYYYYY?" Otto sits back down.

I don't like the bird flying bit only in that it is too obvious an homage to Cuaron--and Yates has filled this movie up with too many homages to all three previous directors--perhaps something a bit more original that would have some later resonance with Umbridge's decrees might have worked better. Staunton does a wonderful job with the character here.

Her Umbridge is sly enough to sympathise with the overall tension of the students and CONNECT with them by showing that she feels just as worried by Harry's comments (or perhaps she's truly delusional enough that she is scared) as the rest of the class. Also clever is the choice to turn her back on the class--and the camera--whenever she lets out her more strict side so as not to expose herself when she loses control of her temper. We only get to hear her raise her voice but we don't get to see her. Finally when she does lose control of her temper, she emmediately follows up with a more gentle reiteration to show how the character has her own technique of self-anger management:

"ENOUGH! enough".

She is a person who does want to be good, and who does want to be the voice of reason. Unlike a classic villain, she is not determined to ruin Harry Potter, she is determined to not let Harry Potter ruin her...and her efforts to remain a model citizen and nurturing disciplinarian; or at least whatever her idea of those two is. It's these choices that help make the character of Umbridge so unique and original against the palette of hundreds of other characters that have bee used for similar plot devices in older kids' films.



Last edited by underscore; January 30th, 2008 at 9:39 am.
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  #403  
Old January 30th, 2008, 9:58 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

Imelda Staunton absolutely carries this scene. She plays Umbridge with the perfect amount of plausible empathy with the students, but still has an air of menace, and her reassuring smile turning to a sneer as Harry says "it's not a lie!" is probably my favourite Umbridge moment. The other actors are OK, Radcliffe seems a bit naff, something about his delivery of a few lines feels like a table read rather than an actual performance, but other actors in the background do a decent job. There's a good sense of the clowning around that goes on before the teacher arrives, which I liked, we don't really see that much in the movies (I suppose there was a bit of it in Hagrid's class in POA).

Acting aside, I think the scene is lacking. The paper bird looks decent, but it's just too blatant an homage to POA, something more individual would have been better, the effect of Umbridge writing on the board looks off, as do the floating books. They have that typical CGI sheen compared to the props, they look like they weigh nothing, and they move far too smoothly. Simple magic like that looked better in POA, where movement would have a slight wobble, a certain plausibility. The scene looks nice though, no really obvious blue filter use, and the simple, stark set decoration makes sense here.


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  #404  
Old January 30th, 2008, 10:37 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

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Originally Posted by Magi View Post
Imelda Staunton's "Now let me make this quite plain" to "this... is... a... lie" was far too theatrical. She was supposed to be a confident senior Ministry representative, imposing her rhetoric on her students. Instead she came off looking and sounding frightened and insecure. I'd have preferred a more assertive delivery.
I thought she was doing her usual thing of imposing her authority through her revolting sickly-sweet charm.

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Daniel Radcliffe's "Hmm, I don't know, maybe... Lord Voldemort?!" and "I saw him! I fought him!" were too wooden. Lack of sarcasm for the former, and lack of heat in the latter.
I thought Dan's delivery was fine in both instances. Any more emphasis, and I think he might have been over-acting.

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Originally Posted by underscore View Post
This scene is really well done. I like how Rdcliffe delivers his lines because it shows how the character initially wants to attempt to sound smart and sarcastic, but when realising he is alone in his opinions his tone weakens halfway through his sentences to show us a lack of self esteem. Even Hermione and Ron aren't fully willing to back him up. This example of peer pressure wonderfully illustrates Harry's isolation at it's full extent.
Exactly.

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She is a person who does want to be good, and who does want to be the voice of reason. Unlike a classic villain, she is not determined to ruin Harry Potter, she is determined to not let Harry Potter ruin her...and her efforts to remain a model citizen and nurturing disciplinarian; or at least whatever her idea of those two is. It's these choices that help make the character of Umbridge so unique and original against the palette of hundreds of other characters that have bee used for similar plot devices in older kids' films.
Yep.

Those who say that the flying paper bird was too obvious a homage to PoA ... that never occurred to me.


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  #405  
Old January 30th, 2008, 4:25 pm
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

I haven't got too much to add about this scene. I liked it, it was quite close to the book and I though both Imelda and Dan were great here.

(On a sidenote - it baffles me that any HP-fan can find any scene from a HP movie boring. To me it's interesting by default because it's HP )


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  #406  
Old January 30th, 2008, 11:37 pm
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

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Originally Posted by DarwinMayflower View Post

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Chapter 10: Professor Umbridge's Class

Stauton basically steals this scene and frightens me. You can see how pandering she is to the students; which looks completely odd considering how much older looking the students are. The books themselves are hilarious and reminds me of a youth dictionary that had in grade 1. It's nice to think that the infinite loop of the children looking at the cover not only equates the readers/students being treated as children, but also how we are going in circles about DADA.
Oh, Merlin, she's perfect, isn't she? Her insanely perfect Umbridge voice makes me cringe, but fills me with such joy all at once! I never had a clear voice or face for Umbridge, but now Imelda Stauton is the one I picture, just like Alan Rickman is the one I picture for Snape. Godric, I can't say it enough: Stauton deserves a cape because she saved the scene.

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Showing a clear bias towards Potter, seeing her face trying to keep composure in the face of this mounting insubordination and especially trying to keep up her image by turning her back while sternly warning people of their behaviour. All in all it's by no means a great achievement in cinema, but a great study of character.
The scene itself, or any of the actors, didn't leave an impact on me. Stauton did... she's probably the only reason I can think of for keeping Umbridge in the DH film. Her presence as Umbridge, no matter how superfluous the scene, could never hurt the film, ever.

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Originally Posted by CrazyMuggle View Post
I especially love how she's smiling all the while as she casually rights O--W--L--S! "More commonly known as oooowwls!" Take a look around at the students and their expressions are perfectly baffled. Who IS this woman?
The Wth? expressions are certainly something that tried to stand out to me. I should add that I actually would've enjoyed her writing on the bored with chalk if the nonreaders would've realized that it was out of the ordinary... Of course, it was supposed to be subtle, so I still liked it

Quote:
Harry's shouting match with her was just like the book and I really liked Radcliffe's acting here. The interrupting "ENOUGH!" was quite good as well and was the first "dark" moment for Umbridge (before the infamous detention of course.) All in all, I liked what I saw here because it began to show off Dolores' true self while she tried her best to conceal it with her fake smile/calm voice.
She's, by far, my favorite depiction in the movie... Bellatrix is a close second.

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Originally Posted by Magi View Post
Imelda Staunton's "Now let me make this quite plain" to "this... is... a... lie" was far too theatrical.
Really? I thought it was very in Umbridge's character. She's trying to keep her cool while enforcing and imposing her opinion on the entire class. I thought that the sugary sweet emphasis and drawn out quality was brilliant.


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  #407  
Old February 1st, 2008, 9:47 pm
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

Previous Chapter Posts
OoTP Chp 1: Dudley Demented
OoTP Chp 2: The Advance Guard
OoTP Chp 3: Number 12 Grimmauld Place
OoTP Chp 4: The Order Of the Phoenix

OoTP Chp 5: The Ministry of Magic
OoTP Chp 6: The Hearing
OoTP Chp 7: The Originals
OoTP Chp 8: Luna Lovegood
OoTP Chp 9: Preserve, Perfect and Prune
OoTP Chp 10: Professor Umbridge's Class


Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Chapter 11: Detention with Delores

We continue on with even greater acting from Stauton as Umbridge as we glimpse into the lengths she'll go to maintain order. I do particularly love that shot of her deep breath of anticipation when she's facing away from Harry doing lines. A clever little detail to see considering that in the previous scene she turns away from the class to hide her real personality whereas in this scene we have a full front view of her "real" personality. Greatest thing though is that it's amazing how much you end up hating her by the end of the scene. Harry deserves to be punished because he knows it? Horrible. The interesting thing is that you can think about that line from another angle, from the angle that perhaps she does have a point considering Harry himself feels this anger within him, does he feel guilty about feeling this anger? Does he feel guilty for pushing away everyone he holds to be dear?

What really takes away from this scene is the editing, particularly the sound editing. Harry grunting in pain...okay...you don't actually SEE him do it, you just hear it when you see his hand, which makes it sound more like a disembodied voice or a TERRIBLE TV production.

So we come back to the common room. Great shot of the Weasley's business venture; see...no one really needed to know how they got the money to start it, people just accepted they can do it. In fact it seems that the Weasleys perpetual low income earnings has been erased since the last film which only got indirect mention (by costume association) at the QWC in GoF.

Then we have Watson...acting as natural as any Golden Globe actress in the world (because let's face it, she's not Oscar Calibur yet). But holy cow, they way she carried herself, her eyebrows so relaxed, it's almost like they took a morphine IV drip before going for the shot, she acted perfectly. A sweet moment between Ron and Hermione in muggle clothing before she switches into exsaperated mode when dealing with Harry in the every so visually isolating school robes (this winter fashion season). It's great that Harry got to chew out both of his friends as opposed to laying it all unto Ron.

Surprisingly, this is one of the very few if not the ONLY Gryffindor common room Crowd shot that doesn't make me cringe. Full of life, lots of people hanging around, beautifully shot and most of all DOESN'T FEEL CRAMP AT ALL! Every other film (including PoA) had a common room shot that just felt like you're either walking through it, FAR TOO SET UP for the convenience of a camera shot or just plain cramp or busy for it's own good. The only other common room that I actually loved was not even Griffindor's. It's SLYTHERIN'S from CoS Chp 21: Harry and Ron Transformed.

All in all a pretty good chapter if only due to great character building.

Things of Note


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  #408  
Old February 1st, 2008, 10:12 pm
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

I like this scene...I remember it felt like the whole audience was holding their breathe the first time I saw it.

I love the cat plates lol. It's just so funny all this horrific business is going on but in the background are these nice little innocent cats meowing (And I love Harry's look when he walks in)

Stauton's performance here was amazing. She would do anything she can to obtain order and the writing on the back of the hand is intense. Dan did a good job acting this out...like while he's writing his thumb moving back and forth was great. I also liked how Umbridge kind of turned her back on Harry in the beginning and seemed to be waiting in anticipation as he began to torture himself. The whole 'Because you know deep down, you deserve this punishment' hits hard because we all know Harry is innocent and you're right Darwin..by the end of this very scene i think everyone hates this woman.

The following scene...man..I love Emma's acting here. It was so natural as Hermione and Ron do a little flirting as he asks her to do a little of his homework. It's funny because once she notices Harry's hand she goes back to overacting mode for a second lol. I like Harry's frustration in this scene aswell. He's not up to explain anything to them and would much rather be by himself than have his friends there.


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  #409  
Old February 1st, 2008, 10:19 pm
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

Ok, loved the scene, but i didn't like the way they portrayed it on his hand. I always expected it to be on the hand that he was writing with and i thought that he didn't make a sound. He made a lot of sound in the movie. I didn't like that. I loved Stauton's performance though. She is a great Umbridge.

I loved the common room scene and i quite agree with everything said above. Watson carried herself very well and she pulled of the change of emotions amazingly.


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  #410  
Old February 2nd, 2008, 12:55 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

Sorry for being late, but I just wanted to mention, with Umbridge's intro, if anyone else laughed at the pun at Harry's line "She works for Fudge." Get it? GET IT?!?! :P

Anyhoo...

Loved the post-torture acting from the trio. Possibly my favorite scene from the movie. I won't elaborate, because everyone else already has said what I wanted, and I agree with their insight fully and absolutely. I will add one thing. Now that Emma has had some non-Potter experience, I am hoping we will see more of this kind of performance.


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  #411  
Old February 2nd, 2008, 4:15 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

The detention scene is just an uncomfortable scene to watch (sort of like reading that part in the book.) Every time I watch this movie with my GF she turns away during this. This is also the first time we see the evil side of Dolores and I agree with everyone on the line "Because you know, deep down that you deserve to be punished..." Such great delivery As for the common room scene, it's simply great. The Weasley's candies, the sweet dialogue between Hermione and Ron and the slightly heated moment between H/Hr. I agree with Darwin that it's probably the best common room scene we've seen yet (and finally there's mention of some HW!)


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  #412  
Old February 2nd, 2008, 7:13 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

Very nice chapter.

Radcliffe and Staunton were excellent. Umbridge's room was fantastically made... the kittens would have been cute, but they were wonderfully revolting.

Nice common room scene with the Weasleys' testing their wares. Good little dialogue between Ron and Hermione. Their acting was solid.

Watson did well except "What happened to your hand?!" was too gaspy to be natural. She's usually bad at "concerned" and "fearful" scenes, but she did relatively well in this one.


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  #413  
Old February 2nd, 2008, 10:59 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

Wonderful scene. The line about deserving punishment made me hate her more than any other person in the series. I actually feel sick watching it - which just testifies how great the books and the actress is.

The Common Room scene was sheer brilliance. This was, like I mentioned earlier, one of the reasons why I like this movie so much; all the unnecessary, yet canony, details. We haven't had any discussions scenes between the trio in the common room since CoS, and all the dialogue between the trio is a great part of the books. So it made it much more Harry Pottery to me, when some of that was included in this movie, along with the twins.


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  #414  
Old February 3rd, 2008, 8:28 pm
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

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Originally Posted by CrazyMuggle View Post
The detention scene is just an uncomfortable scene to watch (sort of like reading that part in the book.) Every time I watch this movie with my GF she turns away during this. This is also the first time we see the evil side of Dolores and I agree with everyone on the line "Because you know, deep down that you deserve to be punished..." Such great delivery As for the common room scene, it's simply great. The Weasley's candies, the sweet dialogue between Hermione and Ron and the slightly heated moment between H/Hr. I agree with Darwin that it's probably the best common room scene we've seen yet (and finally there's mention of some HW!)
I can't add anything. It was pretty durn brilliant, and I agree with all of the above.


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  #415  
Old February 3rd, 2008, 11:13 pm
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

I disagree with the following refering to Umbridge

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Originally Posted by underscore View Post
She is a person who does want to be good, and who does want to be the voice of reason. Unlike a classic villain, she is not determined to ruin Harry Potter, she is determined to not let Harry Potter ruin her...and her efforts to remain a model citizen and nurturing disciplinarian; or at least whatever her idea of those two is. It's these choices that help make the character of Umbridge so unique and original against the palette of hundreds of other characters that have been used for similar plot devices in older kids' films.
This is the lady who sent two dementors to Harry and his cousin, for which he had to go to a hearing for rightfully using a patronus to defend himself and Dudley. If he hadn't been able to use a patronus, he would have had his soul sucked out. How can you say she doesn't want to ruin him? This is the absolute abuse of power, in my book.

In detention, with her "you know you deserve it..." she made me nauseated to watch it. She is a sadistic and very sick woman.

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  #416  
Old February 4th, 2008, 12:15 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

Okay, does anyone else see pink dots when they blink after this scene starts?

In my opinion, this is Imelda Staunton's best scene in the film (and a close second for Daniel Radcliffe). If Umbridge just rubbed you the wrong way before now, by the end of this chapter, you do indeed despise her. It's a perfectly translated view at Umbridge's cruel, sadistic, domineering nature, a scene rich with detail; the way Umbridge very slightly adjusts the pencil on her desk, for instance, or the inhale of anticipation before Harry feels the words cutting into his hand, or that sincere, pleading, incredibly disturbing (as is the whole thing, of course) look in her eyes as she tells Harry he deserves to be punished. She really did a great job embodying this vile creature. And Dan does some pretty compelling work here himself, not just in reacting to this woman's cruelty but in taking this in, realizing just who he's dealing with. The look on his face after he just says "Nothing", I think it's his best reaction shot of the series so far.

Okay, so here's the part where I get especially angry that Stuart Craig and Stephanie McMillan weren't nominated for the Art Direction-Set Decoration Oscar. Again, we all know they did extraordinary work in this film, but when I look at a perfect set like this one, I just don't get it. Some strange, rather unsettling detail in Umbridge's office but it was done really well. The chapter creeps me out even before Harry comes in because of those damn cats.

Oh, and about the sound editing, Darwin, I don't really see that as the problem. In my view, what's wrong here is that it's blatantly obvious that Dan's grunts of pain were done in ADR; it takes me out of the moment ever so briefly.

I too think this is the best stuff we've gotten in the Gryffindor common room so far. Love the intro to Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes (fingers crossed for a visit in HBP). And while I enjoyed the bit of Ron/Hermione flirting we get here, I think Rupert and Emma could've done better, or Yates should've used another take. When Ron says "...and if I'm ever rude to you again...", it just feels like he's setting her up, not like she's interrupting him, you know? But I don't have any problem with the moment when Harry storms off; I think the three of them just did great work there.

As part of that was on my "Top 10 moments" list, I hope I didn't repeat myself there. It's rare for my favorite book scene to become my favorite film scene, but this is one of those times.

(I don't really see pink spots, by the way. That'd be a problem.)


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  #417  
Old February 4th, 2008, 2:15 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

The detention scene was brilliantly done...it's disturbing to watch, no matter how many times I've seen it.

Every detail, from the annoying cat plates on the wall, the unsettling pink decor, to Umbridge's 3 spoons of sugar in her tea, the ever so tiny realignment of her pen set, all amplify the underlying evil of her persona. I think both actors did a great job in the scene. Dan's initial tone of resentful compliance, and look of disbelief/shock when Umbridge comes back to the front of his desk, were perfectly played. And Umbridge waiting with nervous anticipation of the quill cutting into Harry's hand -- scarily right on by Ms. Staunton.


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  #418  
Old February 4th, 2008, 2:32 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

I agree with all the above posts on this. It defines the phrase "sickly sweet" And I think the cats are in cahoots with Umbridge. They seem to hiss at the good guys or run away when they come in and purr during her creepiness.

I do have one small annoyance with it though. I was distracted by the position of Harry's left hand just sitting on the table next to the paper. It was very unnatural looking. Who does that? It looked like he was getting ready to show us a scar that was about to show up.


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  #419  
Old February 4th, 2008, 10:06 am
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

A great scene. Fine acting from both Staunton and Radcliffe, sensible use of close-up, a well decorated set, and a decent bit of VFX on the writing on Harry's hand. I agree that Harry's grunting sounds a bit too obviously added in post, but it's a small thing. I like the little touch of Umbridge straightening the pencils before Harry enters, a nice little hint as to her desire for absolute order.

The common room scene is good. I'm not sure I love it as much as everyone else, but it did feel natural and there was a nice subtle visual with everyone save Harry being in casual clothes. This is probably the only time in the movie where I felt like this story was happening in a boarding school.


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  #420  
Old February 4th, 2008, 3:46 pm
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Re: HP Movie "Chapter-a-Day" DVD Discussion V2

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Originally Posted by gillikitty2000 View Post
Ok, loved the scene, but i didn't like the way they portrayed it on his hand. I always expected it to be on the hand that he was writing with and i thought that he didn't make a sound. He made a lot of sound in the movie. I didn't like that.
Of course he made a lot of sound in the movie, the words were being carved into his skin. If I was in Harry's position, I'd make a lot of sound too because it would be quite painful.


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