This week’s Film Friday is a little different; it’s about an entire series of movies. I love this series, and I want to keep them all together. I’ll post them over two weeks; so four movies each. I won’t do this for every movie series, HP is just really special. There are links to the movie trailers in each movie poster. Now be prepared, because this may be a long one.
There definitely be spoilers ahead!
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (2001). Beginning the tale of Harry Potter, the Boy Who Lived, this movie sets the scene for the Wizarding World and introduces most of the main characters. This film focuses on Harry’s first year at the magical school, Hogwarts, and his second confrontation with the evil wizard Lord Voldemort (but shh don’t say it out loud).
As nearly all the movies do, it stars Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter, Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley, Emma Watson as Hermione Granger, Maggie Smith as Professor McGonagall, Robbie Coltrane as Hagrid, Alan Rickman as Severus Snape, Matthew Lewis as Neville Longbottom, and Tom Felton as Draco Malfoy.
This movie is such a great fantasy movie. I love me some magic. And cute little kids getting into trouble with said magic. It’s also the movie in the series which best follows it’s book. There are things which are left out, but I can understand why most of them were. They were making a movie after all.
My older sister and I can both quote this movie word for word, with accents. We watched it so many times when it first came out. But we can’t do that for the rest of the movies. If I ever have to put on an Irish accent I mimic Seamus Finnigan. Love that kid.
Draco Malfoy: Think my name’s funny, do you? No need to ask yours. Red hair… and a hand-me-down robe. You must be a Weasley.
Seamus Finnigan: I’m half and half. Me dad’s a muggle; Mam’s a witch. Bit of a nasty shock for him when he found out.
George Weasley: Our job is to make sure that you don’t get bloodied up too bad. Can’t make any promises, of course. Rough game, Quidditch.
Fred Weasley: Brutal, but no one’s died in years. Someone will vanish occasionally, but they’ll turn up in a month or two!
Hermione: Now if you two don’t mind, I’m going to bed before either of you come up with another clever idea to get us killed – or worse, expelled.
Ron: She needs to sort out her priorities!
Dumbledore: What happened down in the dungeon between you and Professor Quirrell is a complete secret. So, naturally, the whole school knows.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002). Harry’s second year sees Hogwarts in danger from a hidden beast – the basilisk. He and his friends work to unravel the mystery of the Chamber of Secrets; once again coming up against Lord Voldemort.
As with most of the movies it has Julie Walters as Mrs Weasley, Mark Williams as Mr Weasley, James Phelps as Fred Weasley, Oliver Phelps as George Weasley, Bonnie Wright as Ginny Weasley, and Chris Rankin as Percy Weasley.
It is unfortunately Richard Harris’ last performance as Dumbledore, as he passed away in late 2002.
This is probably my least favourite HP film (and book), and I think it largely has to do with the fact it’s full of giant spiders and giant snakes. Ew. The basilisk just freaks me out. I remember seeing the movie in the theatre with my Year 3 class, and when the basilisk burst out of the water in the Chamber, I jumped nearly a metre in the air. And I’d already seen it.
Arthur Weasley: Now, Harry you must know all about Muggles, tell me, what exactly is the function of a rubber duck?
Oliver Wood: We play our game, Hufflepuff doesn’t stand a chance. We’re stronger, quicker and smarter.
Fred Weasley: And not to mention they’re dead scared that Harry’ll petrify them if they fly anywhere near him.
Oliver Wood: Well, that too.
Draco Malfoy: [to Harry, disguised as Goyle] Why are you wearing glasses?
Goyle: Oh, uh… reading.
Draco Malfoy: Reading? I didn’t know you could read.
Ron: Why spiders? Why couldn’t it be “follow the butterflies”?
Tom Marvolo Riddle: How is it that a baby with no extraordinary magical talent was able to defeat the greatest wizard of all time? How did you escape with nothing but a scar, while Lord Voldemort’s powers were destroyed?
Harry: Why do you care how I escaped? Voldemort was after your time!
Tom Marvolo Riddle: Voldemort is my past, present, and future.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004). The third story follows Harry’s third year at Hogwarts, during which a notorious inmate of the island prison, Azkaban, escapes. He is thought to be after the one and only Harry Potter.
As with most of the movies it has Richard Griffiths as Uncle Vernon, Fiona Shaw as Aunt Petunia, Harry Melling as Dudley Dursley, Devon Murray as Seamus Finnigan, Alfred Enoch as Dean Thomas, Warwick Davis as Professor Flitwick, and David Bradley as Filch.
It introduces Gary Oldman as Sirius Black, David Thewlis as Remus Lupin, Timothy Spall as Peter Pettigrew, Robert Hardy as Cornelius Fudge, Michael Gambon as Professor Dumbledore, and Emma Thompson as Professor Trelawney.
Friendships are really tested in this film, as Hermione and Ron fight over their pets. I like this, because it’s realistic. Friendships aren’t easy, and they don’t just magically work out (see what I did there?). Anyway, my point is I love how it depicts the trio’s friendships, which always seem to be changing.
This one is by far my favourite. Again, I’m not really sure why, it just is. I think it might have something to do with the Marauders. I love the Marauders. We get to meet Sirius and Remus, and we learn a bit about Harry’s parents (though more in the books). It was also the first HP book I read all on my own.
Professor Trelawney: Look at the cup, tell me what you see!
Ron: Oh yeah… well, Harry’s got a sort of wonky cross… that’s trials and suffering. And, uh, that there could be the sun, and that’s happiness, so… you’re gonna suffer… but you’re gonna be happy about it…
Ron: [sitting bolt upright in bed] Spiders… the spiders… they want me to tap-dance. And I don’t want to tap-dance!
Harry: You tell those spiders, Ron.
Malfoy: Ah, come to see the show?
Hermione: [shouts] You! You foul, loathsome, evil little cockroach!
Sirius Black: I did my waiting! Twelve years of it! In Azkaban!
Sirius Black: I expect you’re tired of hearing this, but you look so like your father. Except your eyes. You have…
Harry: My mother’s eyes.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005). During Harry’s fourth year at Hogwarts, amid a rise in Death Eater activity, the school hosts a dangerous tournament. Two other wizarding schools, Durmstrang and Beauxbatons, arrive at Hogwarts to compete.
It introduces Brendan Gleeson as Madeye Moody, Katie Leung as Cho Chang, Robert Pattinson as Cedric Diggory, Stanislav Ianevski as Viktor Krum, Clémence Poésy as Fleur Delacour, Miranda Richarson as Rita Skeeter, and Ralph Fiennes as Lord Voldemort.
The Weasley twins are hilarious in this movie. I love their scene where they try to trick the Goblet of Fire into thinking they’re older; particularly how they interact with Hermione. Speaking of whom, I love Hermione in this movie. She’s really grown into herself. And she really sticks it to Ron when he acts like a jerk.
This movie, I would say, is the real turning point in the series in regards to violent and dark themes; not that in the others you aren’t worrying for Harry. But in this movie you suddenly get the feeling that shit is about to go down. Things get truly hairy with the physical return of Lord Voldemort and the murder of Cedric Diggory.
Ron: Do you think we’ll ever just have a quiet year at Hogwarts?
Hermione, Harry: No.
Ron: Yeah, didn’t think so. Oh well, what’s life without a few dragons?
Rita Skeeter: This is cozy.
Harry: It’s a broom cupboard.
Rita Skeeter: Well you should feel right at home, then.
Ron: [referring to Professor Moody] Brilliant, isn’t he? Completely demented, of course. Terrifying to be in the same room with him. But he’s really been there, you know? He’s looked evil in the eye!
Voldemort: Don’t you turn your back on me, Harry Potter! I want you to look at me when I kill you! I want to see the light leave your eyes!
Dumbledore: [to Harry] I never liked these curtains. I set them on fire in my fourth year. By accident, of course.
Fred: We knew you wouldn’t die, Harry!
George: Might lose a leg.
Fred: Or an arm.
George: But pack it in all together?
Fred, George: Never!
There you have it. The first four Harry Potter films. Next Friday I’ll wrap it up with the last four (I thought it would be a bit much to have all 8 in one post). On Sunday I’ll be gushing about the book series, so stay tuned!