Sunday, November 11, 2018


Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is directed by David Yates who would continue to direct the remaining movies. It's very clear as this film opens that it is going to be a different vision than we had previously experienced.  There is something about the way this film opens that felt almost dreamlike even though we were watching events that were happening. A lot of Order of the Phoenix is about dreams and visions and prophecies, but this opening actually captured that feeling. This was also the first time we got to see Dudley with his gang after they pick on Harry for a while Dementors come and Harry has to defend Dudley against this Dementor.  Since Harry used a spell outside school he gets a letter saying that he is expelled from Hogwarts for this. This is just the first hint of what Dolores Umbridge will do.    If you thought the Dursleys and Draco were bad. They are nothing compared to how horrible Umbridge is. In this movie, Dolores Umbridge takes over Hogwarts and she makes all these ridiculous rules. She stops the kids from learning how to defend themselves and she tries to use the Ministry of Magic to make everything at Hogwarts change. Harry Potter is the only person trying to tell everyone that Voldemort is back and no one wants to believe him.    When Harry is facing expulsion from Hogwarts Alastor Moody returns to rescue him and takes him to meet The Order of the Phoenix. A secret group of people who are trying to do some good and Sirius Black is involved with this as well.  Since he used magic outside school Harry is put on trial and Dumbledore defends him excellently, but this is our first encounter with Umbridge who I already mentioned is a total bitch.  Thankfully Harry is cleared of the charges and we get to go to Hogwarts with him.   Pressure is mounting on Harry so much because kids are reading headlines about him, people think perhaps Harry's crazy for saying that Voldemort is back and Cedric Diggory's memory is not being honored properly because people are making up lies about how he died.  Harry tries to be the one to stand up and tell the truth about what happened and once the kids start to believe him, Harry, Ron, and Hermione form a secret society of kids and start training each other to defend themselves against an oncoming war that Harry is sure is coming.    This is great because we finally get to see Harry step into the role of a teacher and it is really inspiring.  We also finally learned a little bit more about Snape's past and it was actually haunting. We got inside Snape's memory when he is trying to train Harry to discipline his mind and Harry uses that spell right back on Snape and learns that his father used to bully Snape.    The kids eventually concoct a plot using a giant that is Hagrid's half-brother to get Umbridge out of this school and eventually the Centaurs come and take her away because the Ministry of Magic is restricting their space as well.  The kids fly to London and a gigantic showdown takes place and this is our first real look at magic war and holy shit it was awesome.  David Yates did such a great job directing these sequences.   Voldemort appears Dumbledore Sirius everyone is out there using magic and it is extremely exciting.  Harry experiences more loss when Bellatrix appears and kills Sirius this scene is always hard to watch. I read that they muted Harry's scream because it was so agonizing they felt it was too intense.  Harry is so consumed with rage that he goes after Bellatrix, but he withstands the temptation from Voldemort to kill her.  Order of the Phoenix managed to be darkly intense, supremely exciting and powerfully heartfelt all at once and that is difficult to do.  5 out of 5 stars for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. I hope you enjoyed my review.

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