Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix: Special Edition

DVD Reviews | Dec 8th, 2007

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Starring Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Gary Oldman, Ralph Fiennes, Brendan Gleeson, David Thewlis, Michael Gambon, Imelda Staunton, Evanna Lynch, Alan Rickman, Helena Bonham Carter
Written By: Michael Goldenberg, J.K. Rowling
Directed By: David Yates
Studio: Warner Brothers
Buy on Amazon.com link

After seeing Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix in theaters, I was generally pissed off. I’m a big fan of the HP books and just think David Yates & co. missed the mark with this movie. After seeing the film a second time, my hatred of this film isn’t as bad and I liked the film a lot more. While it has a lot of important things missing from this movie, it’s still quite enjoyable.

When we last left Harry Potter, he just faced off with Lord Voldemort again, and his fellow Hogwarts student Cedric Diggory got murdered. The Ministry of Magic is still keeping things under wraps and hiding the truth from the Wizarding World. The Ministry stretches out their power and appoints Dolores Umbridge the new Defense against the Dark Arts teacher at Hogwarts. Meanwhile, Harry Potter gets almost killed near his London home by Dementors. After that, things are just downhill for Harry Potter this year at Hogwarts. Umbridge becomes the thorn in the school’s side and the students revolt against her & the Ministry. Harry leads a small group called “Dumbledore’s Army” to help practice defense against the dark arts and other spells. The only way to learn something is to do it right? While all this happening, the Order of the Phoenix and DA are wondering when Voldemort is going to strike next. Harry keeps having visions of a mysterious room in the Ministry of Magic, and tries to figure out how that room plays into everything.

I still remember reading the fifth book and just getting…mad. Mad that Dolores Umbridge was such a twat and mad that Black ends up dying in such a wussy way. Just when you start to like Sirius Black, Rowling kills him off. I still think she did that so it was one less person to write about. As far as the movie is concerned, this movie felt like the cliff notes version of the book. It goes from one scene to another, without any flow to it. It definitely gets choppy after awhile, especially in the beginning of the movie. I also think Yates left out a lot of important things in the movie, mainly the house elf Kreacher. He was the one that betrayed Black and everyone, and the stupid elf only gets a cameo. He also plays an important factor in the next 2 books as well so not sure how they will address that. I would have liked to have seen a lot more scenes with Snape, because Alan Rickman is fantastic as him. Well I guess he’ll shine in the next movie since his character plays a big part. Another thing that should have been included was the interactions between Snape and Sirius at the Black household. They also missed the mark at the end when Harry and Dumbledore have a discussion. The conversation those two had was important and in the movie it was merely 30 seconds long. One thing I really wanted to see was the Order of the Phoenix threaten the Dursleys at the train station and stick up for Harry. Would have been a nice end to the movie and would have been better than some lame “at least we got each other” moment.

What I thought they did do a good job was with Umbridge, Luna Lovegood, Dumbledore’s Army, the twins leaving, and the battle at the Ministry of Magic. Imelda Staunton played her so well that I wanted to jump into the screen and beat the living crap out of her. She did the role perfectly. The girl that played Luna did a good job with her character as well. Just the stuff Luna Lovegood said makes you want to roll your eyes and wonder if she’s been in the looney bin. A good majority of the movie is about Dumbledore’s Army and Yates handled that well. It was funny to watch Filch trying to catch the kids in the act. I thought the twins leaving the school scene was great, and just how I imagined it. The battle of the Ministry was really freakin cool but it was extremely short. That scene at the end could have easily been 20 minutes longer. It sucks that the audience has to wait that long to see some wizards and witches kicking ass. I hope they don’t mess up the next two books with the battles and make them a little longer.

The bonus features were okay, nothing really that special. I wanted to check out the deleted scenes mostly because I just felt a lot was left on the cutting room floor. What was represented in the deleted scenes section wasn’t that spectacular. There were a few scenes that should have been put back into the movie or expanded on, but then there were scenes that were just not necessary. For example, there’s a scene that is roughly around 2 minutes of Emma Thompson’ Trelawney trying to have dinner & listen to Umbridge’s speech. I’m not sure what the point of that scene was but it just wasn’t really funny. Other features include a set tour by Tonks, stuff on editing (which I thought sucked in this movie), a featurette about clues & mystery of Harry’s destiny and more! Plus the DVD comes with a digital copy of the movie, which I think is a cool thing that movie studios are doing now.

Overall, I liked Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix a lot better the second time around. I knew what to expect from the movie and could just sit back and enjoy it a lot more. I’m such a big fan of the books that I guess I’ll always be pissed off with these movies the first time around. But I think I’m also upset on the way the movie was adapted and edited. It just seemed the movie was of scenes with no continuity at all. Plus I think Yates left out a lot of important factors that will play a big part in the future movies. I know what those things are since I read the books, but for someone who didn’t; they might be confused or lost. My suggestion is to read the books first before seeing these movies because there is so much more to them to the movies are. I’m not sure what to think about TOOTP just yet, but I don’t think it’s the best one. There are some good qualities to it (I love how it gets darker and darker), but as a whole, the movie is not that strong as some say…but its still entertaining.

Additional Scenes
The Hidden Series Of Harry Potter – Explore All the Movies in the Series for Clues to the Mystery of Harry’s True Destiny
Trailing Tonks: Natalia Tena (aka Nymphadora Tonks) Leads a Very Personal Film Set Tour
Harry Potter: The Magic of Editing – Director David Yates and Editor Mark Day Show What a Difference a Good Edit Makes
DVD-ROM Enhanced Features
Bonus Digital Copy of the Film Included

ENGLISH: Dolby Digital 5.1 CC
SPANISH: Dolby Digital 5.1
FRENCH: Dolby Digital 5.1

Widescreen 2.35:1 Color (Anamorphic)

English, Spanish, French

Favorite Scenes: Dumbledore’s Army, Battle at the Ministry of Magic, Dementors attacking Harry & Dudley, scenes with Luna Lovegood, The Twins leaving Hogwarts
Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 139 minutes
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