Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix ★★★★★

As much as I love the first four, this is where things really start to resonate with me big time on a story and character level. The main criticism I see for this film is that it waters down and cuts out a lot of what is the longest book in the franchise. That may be true but, as somebody who hasn’t read the book, I adore this movie so much. It’s my favorite of the first 5 and easily one of my favorite movies.

The main storylines of isolation, like the whole world is against you, the rebellion forming both in and out of Hogwarts, and Harry terrified of the darkness inside of him and his connection to Voldemort are simply my kind of stories. I’m in a dark period in my life and empathized so much with the emotions Harry is having in this and those personal moments reverberated so deeply in me.

A big part of that is Radcliffe’s performance. This is the first movie where Radcliffe really impressed me with his acting. I always thought he was charming as Harry but his acting was serviceable to sometimes stiff, but in this one I think he took a big step and really nailed it.

More Quick Thoughts:
-Some of my favorite characters are introduced in Luna, Bellateix and Umbridge. All brought something so unique and powerful that fit like perfect puzzle pieces to this franchise.
-random observation but i just love the looks of the students. They look and feel like real normal people you’d find in high school, as opposed to every single one being a good looking actor.
- I like how quick Sirius went out. In a battle setting things happen quick and it’s so blind-siding and you feel the pit in your stomach when you realize what it means for Harry.
- I think some of the best magic and action sequences in the entire series. The battle in the beautifully shot set of the Department of Mysteries, capped off with Dumbledore vs Voldemort which I still think is the best one on one battle. I wish more of the battles were like that creatively instead of just two beams locking or a bunch of wand waving and deflections.
- The score by Nicholas Hooper is my second favorite so far next to the first.

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