Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix was released in 2007. (same year The Simpsons Movie came out) It received positive reviews from critics, fans and movie goers alike. Besides good reception, it also made enough money at the box office. Despite labeled as a decent movie, fans of the both the book and film series felt divisive over the book/film’s darker tone. Warner Brow was going through a phase of edgy content since “Batman Begins,” “V For Vendetta,” “Sin City” & “A History Of Violence” paved a wave of darker and edgier movies. Batman Begins is a notable example as the cause of every movie studio attempting to replicate the same success of rebooting a franchise. Some were a hit or miss. “Casino Royale” is a hit, while “Terminator: Salvation” is a miss.
The final chapter of the series, The Deathly Hallows was published in 2007.
Fantastic Beasts 3 is slated for a 2021 release date. Twenty years after The Sorcerer’s Stone started it all. To prepare for the future, I’d like to share what’s good or about the fifth installment of the Harry Potter series.
Today’s review doesn’t contain no crucial SPOILERS whatsoever. If you’ve never read the books or have yet to see every film, feel free to read my non-spoiler article. I’ll have you know some SPOILERS are light. Is it a hit or miss? Time to find out.
Believable & Unbelievable Aspects
Believable: Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint & Emma Watson reprise their roles. They all did a fantastic job for their respective performances.
Several Cast Members including Alan Rickman, Robbie Coltrane, Maggie Smith, Tom Felton, Ralph Fiennes, David Thewlis, Brendan Gleeson, Gary Oldman, Emma Thompson, Jason Isaacs & Warwick Davis reprise their roles. They all did a great job for their respective performances.
Robert Pattinson reprises his role as Cedric Diggory via flashbacks.
Newcomers to the series such as Helena Bonham Carter, Evana Lynch & Imelda Staunton all did a good job for their respective performances.
David Yates did a good job directing the fifth chapter.
The tone is much darker than the last five films. For example, Dementors are scary as heck resembling Scarecrow’s monsters from his fear gas. Warner Bros was going into an emo phase since Batman Begins. That’s what happens when you hire Christopher Nolan as an uncredited script doctor.
Cinematography was shot carefully lacking technical flaws.
Some of the Special Effects felt real while Practical Effects were used for certain scenes.
I noticed there are some hidden pop culture references. Bear with me folks, some are just coincidental.
The titular group fly in their broomsticks in a city. Similar to Prince Charming in “Shrek The Third” flying his way to Far Far Away Land.
Luna Lovegood reminded me of Lisa Simpson. She’s blonde and an animal lover.
The Ministry Of Magic’s headquarters looks like something of off Terry Gilliam’s “Brazil,” which is Doug Walker/Nostalgia Critic’s favorite movie of all time.
Harry sees Voldemort wearing a dark suit. An homage to “Halloween” when Laurie Strode sees Michael Myers far away. Voldemort wearing a dark suit, has pale skin, tall and has no hair like Slender Man.
A huge coincidence involving Dumbledore’s Army’s formation matches two organizations banding together. Pirates joining forces from “Pirates Of The Caribbean: At World’s End.” Princesses working together from “Shrek The Third.” One more thing, thirteen people band together in “Ocean’s 13.”
Harry learning to resist Voldemort’s mind invasion was partially inspired by Darren Aronofsky’s quick cut montage. As in “Requiem For A Dream.”
A globe involving a prophecy is sorta the equivalent of The Allspark from “Transformers.”
I think Voldemort’s voice is based on Hal 9000 from “2001: A Space Odyssey.” Maybe Ralph Fiennes watched Stanley Kubrick’s films to prepare for his role as Voldemort. I would assume he also channel Malcom McDowell & Jack Nicholson’s roles in “A Clockwork Orange” & “The Shining.”
The fifth film/book reflects real world elements. Voldemort is a wanted man like Osama Bin Laden & The Zodiac Killer. The birth of Dumbledore’s Army is a reflection of The U.S. Military training before they head out to Iraq & Afghanistan. Order Of The Phoenix was published in 2003. Which explains why the book mirrors our reality.
According to Emma Watson, the political and social aspects of the film reflects the aftermath of July 7 2005 London Bombings, the post-911 atmosphere such as The Patriot Act & The Invasion Of Iraq.
A Death Eater wears a cloak and mask like Dr. Doom or Tom Cruise in “Eyes Wide Shut.”
Somebody in court is a serious version of “Bee Movie” & “I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry.” Both movies have a courtroom scene.
Umbridge’s personality parallels Russ Cargill from “The Simpsons Movie.” They have political power to influence a school or town. Umbridge is based on Hillary Clinton & Nurse Ratched from “One Flew Over The Cukoo’s Nest.”
A character is branded as a traitor. Does it mirror The Sopranos’ Season 2 finale involving a betrayal. That’s Warner Bros for ya. HBO is tied with WB.
Somebody fights the evil within. An homage to Spider-Man fighting Venom from within. Y’all remember the 90’s animated series when Spidey fought Venom? He also went mono e mono with him in “Spider-Man 3.”
David Yates did a decent job directed the fifth entry. Thank goodness Alfonzo Cuarón never came back to direct. I didn’t like “The Prisoner Of Azkaban.”
The Climatic Battle was pretty cool.
The Ending sets up the next chapter, The Half-Blood Prince.
Unbelievable: Despite the fifth film/book going into darker territory, it tries so hard to be darker and edgier. Some characters act like they belong in Frank Miller’s “Batman & Robin All Star.” James Potter, who’s Harry’s dad is actually a jerk. In the book, his character development was fleshed out. WB is trying too hard to be dark and gritty over the success of Batman Begins, A History Of Violence and V For Vendetta. If you’re gonna make a darker chapter, don’t make a single character make a wrong decision. Be sure a motivation is clear to reflect his/her transformation.
I know it’s a small nitpick, but nobody addresses Hermione’s hair turned blonde between the fourth and fifth movies. In the books and previous films, she’s a brunette. Maggie Gyllenhaal replacing Katie Holmes in “The Dark Knight” made perfect sense, because Katie’s ex-husband jumped on Oprah’s couch. You know who I’m talking about.
Umbridge is a complete moron who is oblivious to Voldemort’s return. At least Russ Cargill was written as a proper villain. He wasn’t that jerkstore (Seinfeld please don’t sue) Umbridge.
Hagrid’s brother looks fake like Eric Bana’s Hulk. I’m baffled over the fact Optimus Prime is very realistic than Hagrid’s fugly lookin’ brother.
The Final Verdict: B-
As a fan of Harry Potter, the fifth film/book is an average chapter. It’s not a bonafide entry nor a flop. I actually enjoyed it. I’m glad it didn’t felt like Prisoner Of Azkaban all over again. Thank god Daniel Radcliffe didn’t channel Hayden Christensen’s acting abilities. If you’re a fan of Harry Potter, go ahead and give this one a watch.