A viewing of HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS Part One the other night allowed a viewing of the big trailers for 2011. Although they’ve all been linked online, there’s nothing like seeing them on the big screen.
YOGI BEAR. You watch this and then you walk to the window and look out at the starlings sitting on the telephone wire, and the kids riding their bikes in the alley and the grey sky lowering with storm clouds and wonder where it all went wrong, and why you even bother trying anymore. Isn’t all human endeavor a futile pretense at holding back the darkness? And then you shoot the people who made this trailer, and everything is much better.
GREEN HORNET — this played pretty well now that we know it’s a follow-up to PINEAPPLE EXPRESS. The crowd (the theater was absolutely PACKED for POTTER) seemed not to hate this, but that wasn’t a really positive endorsement either.
COWBOYS AND ALIENS — this is an excellent trailer and it definitely made me want to see this movie. Jon Favreau is a fine entertainer. BTW, you all know Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford are in this, but apparently there is a girl character, too.
GREEN LANTERN. Hm. When they got to the part about “It chose you! To become one of us! To become…a Green Lantern!” a teenage girl sitting next to me exclaimed “A Green Lantern? What?”** You can buy that whole ‘You were chosen to save the galaxy” part just fine but then it’s called..Green Lantern…and it loses something. Also, the costume looked stupid at the end. Really stupid. Given Ryan Reynold’s new Sexiest Man Alive status, it’s best to keep harping on that. Please note, Warners has a lot riding on this movie, and I’m sure future trailers will be more impressive.
As for HARRY POTTER 7 — I’m not a fan of David Yates’ direction but it worked here pretty well. The action scenes were still badly directed — when a major character dies about 5 minutes in someone has to announce it because you don’t actually see it happen even though it’s onscreen — but the character stuff, which is mostly what this film is, worked very well, especially the Harry-Hermione-and-Ron wandering around the woods for months part. Everyone always says this part is boring in the book but I’m like how are you supposed to show how miserable and hopeless things are without writing a long, miserable hopeless section of the book? At any rate, the age of the stars — now 20 instead of 10 — really worked to show the gravity and darkening of the general mood. I’m really looking forward to the big finale!
BTW this chapter should really have been called HERMIONE GRANGER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS, because without her, everyone would be toast and they know it.
**Although I’ve quoted her here, this girl and her date were soon my unfriends because they talked loudly during the movie — not just the odd comment but loud CONVERSATIONS about what was happening — something which doesn’t happen that much at my theater. I actually shushed them twice, and after that they started whispering, after acting like I was being the rude one. Like all civilized people I detest talking during movies, except for the odd funny comments. When another major character dies towards the end, a woman loudly proclaimed “—– died??? That’s fucked up!” and THAT was funny.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.