Sunday, January 16, 2011

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone


The movie opens with Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Hagrid delivering Harry to the Dursley's after the death of his parents.  Here we first see use of the deluminator (important in the last movie), McGonagall as animagus, and Hagrid's flying motorcycle.  Then just before Harry's 11th birthday we see one instance of him unwittingly using magic when his cousin Dudley made him angry.  We also see his ability to communicate with snakes.  The owls begin trying to deliver his invitation to attend Hogwart's and Harry eventually discovering upon Hagrid's arrival that he, Harry, is a wizard.

On the train ride to Hogwart's he meets his future best friends and partners in crime.  Harry and Ron become fast friends and it is through persistent noseyness that Hermione also becomes best friends with the two boys.  We see the three of them fight off a troll, uncover the riddle and secret of the Philosopher's Stone, and how to get to it.  We are introduced to each of the mnor character's that play such an important role in the lives of the three through their time at Hogwart's.  These include Seamus, Dean Thomas, Nevil, Firenze, Malfoy, and so many more.  Fast forward to the final adventure.  Each challenge in the end on the adventure to the stone utilizes a strength of each of the three friends: Hermione's  thirst for knowledge and retention of what seems like completly random facts help them escape the Devil's Snare, Harry's innate ability to fly on the broom and his skill as seeker to get the key  and avoid the flying keys, and then Ron's ability with Wizard's Chess that allows Harry to enter the final room and find the stone.  It is here that he finds Quirrel/Voldemort.  It is the love of Harry's mother that allowed him to survive as an infant and it is again her love that allows him to defeat Quirrel/Voldemort. 


You can tell this is the first acting experience for our three main character's.  They are young and green, but still do a decent, believable job at creating their characters.  Hogwart's is fantasy-like and welcoming with a hint at mystery and danger, full of hopes and promises of both great and dark things to come.  Of course my opinions today are skewed by having read all the novels and seen all the movies.  However, this extra knowledge really allows me to see how events from the first movie set up important facts/characters/events for the future. 


I was first introduced to the Harry Potter phenomenon with the first movie when it was titled "Harry Potter and the Socerer's Stone".  I loved the movie so much I decided I must read the book to see how true to the story the movie was.  I was amazed at how close the movie followed the book and I loved them both.  I was determined from that point forward to read the books prior to seeing the next movie. 

For Christmas 2010 my wonderful husband got me a boxed set of all the movies released to date on blue ray with extended scenes and lots of other added features.  This included all movies from "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone"  the original title of the first book/movie to "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince".  He also started this blog for me and introduced me to the Harry Potter Challenge 2011 by  Oh yah, and for little Christmas (January 6, 2011) he gave each of us our own wands from Olivanders.  What a cool gift. 

So from this point forward I will have one blog per month reviewing the movies and other periodic blogs on my thoughts and meanderings through Harry Potter's world.  If anyone knows a great website or book or anything else with cool information, post a response.  I love to explore and learn all I can.  Some sites I have begun to explore include and JK Rowlings site  I also have been looking into history to correspond real events with the history in the books.  Some cool stuff!    Anyway, enjoy!