Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Film Review by Juliet Buchan | 15 Jul 2009
Film title: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Director: David Yates
Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Michael Gambon, Jim Broadbent.
Release date: 15 July
Certificate: 12A

As Oscar Wilde once offered: "Education is an admirable thing, but nothing that is worth knowing can be taught". In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, the penultimate school year for the young wizards, David Yates seems to direct this sentiment.

Replacing a literal account of Harry’s mourning for Sirius, our protagonists resigned grief is implied via an early snapshot of the murderous incident and murky dreamlike visuals throughout, leaving more room for the thick, darkening plot. Aided this year by the comical Slughorn, brilliantly characterised by Jim Broadbent, Harry movingly delves alongside Dumbledore (past some disappointing Inferi) into the murky past of Tom Riddle to dig to the root of how to finally destroy Voldemort.

Despite the gloom, Rowling’s humour, camaraderie and RADA-like teenage love sickness are sweetly dispersed without detracting from the looming sense of something bigger, with the ever-endearing Ron and Hermione again proving pivotal contributors. Although be warned, for those of a delicate disposition viewing the exhilarating opening sequence in IMAX 3D, it may be wise to take a couple of anti ‘puking pastilles’ prior.