Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: review

In a spoiler-filled review, Lucy gives us her views on the new Harry Potter film, and ponders the state of Neville Longbottom's balls...

I could actually write one word for this review and it would sum everything up nicely. Wow. But I’m not lazy like that so I’ll write a proper review.

I’m a self-confessed Harry Potter fan (more of the books than the films it has to be said) and despite the fact I knew exactly what was going to happen, I still booked to see the film on the night of release and was excited all day long. Like a kid before the summer holidays.

Anyway, the Minstrels were open and the lights went down. I was on the edge of my seat already. This film had been tipped as being the ‘darkest’ one yet, and I had tissues at the ready. It started excellently, with a really spooky scene with Harry in a playground which leads into a scene with the horrible Dementors. I was munching Minstrels like they were going out of fashion.

The scene was set. My eyes were glued to the screen from start to finish. I can’t comment too much on the storyline because obviously that had already been done. However, the special effects were fantastic, the Ministry of Magic and the Headquarters for the Order of the Phoenix in particular were really well done. I was truly transported into Potter land.

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There were several emotional moments, i.e. Harry’s first kiss, conversations with Godfather Sirius, and then his tragic death (yes, I still cried!). It’s a real rollercoaster of emotions. One minute I was hiding behind my bag of sweets, the next, wiping my nose on my sleeve.

The characters really came into their own too. The main characters are growing up, and the others are showing their true colours. I’m loving the fact that Neville Longbottom has finally grown some balls!Luna Lovegood isn’t quite what I was expecting from descriptions in the book, I was expecting her to look more like Professor Trelawney. But she’s an ace character and I’m hoping she has more of a role to play in the final book.

The evil characters just get eviller (is that a word?!). Dolores Umbridge was even more annoying in the film that I could ever imagine. Despite the fact I love pink myself, she wore far too much, and that annoying little giggle and the sardonic smile, grr! It just made her all the more horrible, particularly the smarmy look when our hero was writing lines using his own blood.

Voldemort has a real omnipresence throughout, in Harry’s visions and nightmares, and the strange happenings which are gradually making people believe that he is back. Incredibly spooky stuff, it’s these moments that make me glad I don’t have small children pestering me to take them to watch it. Because I’d have to say no. I think really little children would be scared by some of the events, especially the big battle between the Death Eaters and Dumbledore’s Army, and finally the Order.

I really want to see Bellatrix Lestrange get her comeuppance too. And I desperately want Neville to be the one to do it. She’s truly a character you love to hate. Her unhinged laugh and her nasty taunts are enough to have us Muggle types waving large pencils in the hope…

Overall, it was wizard-tastic! Just one thing though. In the book Nymphadora Tonks has short purple hair. In the film it’s shoulder-length. Duh.

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It’s simple really. If you like Harry Potter, it’s a must-see. You might even like it if you’re not usually a fan…