Sunday, April 5, 2009

FotM: Summer's Coming!

For me the love of movies doesn’t stem from a specific film, but the entire pantheon of films themselves. While I may like some films a lot more than others there is nothing like sitting in a darkened theatre and watching a movie flash before your eyes. The summer may not hold the movies that I consider the technically best of the year, but it traditionally holds the most entertaining movies of the year – the kinds of movies that drew me to the theatre before I knew how to define a film from Bergman, Coppola or Altman – the movies that the average moviegoer rearranges their weekend to see and tops the box office charts with astronomical numbers.

When I look at the summer charts it is really hard for me to narrow down to one film that I am excited about seeing more than the others; May in particular is a huge month this year with Wolverine, Star Trek and Terminator: Salvation crammed into the first official summer month. Still, I think that I have to say more than anything else I want to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in July.

Harry Potter gets my final vote not because I am more excited for it than any of the other films I have mentioned, but because by the time July rolls around the film will be eight months overdue! The Half-Blood Prince was slated to come out in November, as the fall is typically when the Harry Potter films are released (with the exception of Order of the Phoenix) but in July of 2008, right after director David Yates announced that editing was completed Warner Brothers announced that due to the WGA strike and the lack of a July tent-pole The Half-Blood Prince would be moved into the same 2009 weekend that The Dark Knight occupied in 2008.

The problem with this little announcement is in the second argument.

Harry Potter wasn’t moved because of the writers strike and a hole in the summer schedule, it was moved because in July of this past year The Dark Knight creamed any and all box office competition and continued to break box office records until its release on DVD. Warner’s thinks that The Half-Blood Prince will make more money in the summer than the fall. I’ve already written an entry about what I think of the box office shifts this past year, but I still hold that this is one of the most absurd.

My grievances with Warner’s decision aside I must say that I am looking forward to part six of the Potter installment because not only is it a game-changer, but it is by far one of the most emotional and gut-wrenching books of the entire J.K. Rowling series. I also think that after cycling through three other directors Columbus and his producers finally found the perfect performer in David Yates. Yates began his work on the series with Order of the Phoenix and will continue through the end of the franchise; he is a powerful, competent director who has finally brought the books to the screen almost exactly as I saw them in my head.

I hope that this summer will be a great time to escape into movies that will excite my imagination, and maybe a few that will stimulate my intellect. Right now I am incredibly excited that I get to see The Soloist this month – another fall movie that got pushed onto the 2009 calendar…but April 24th doesn’t quite count as a summer film.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is one of the better books in the series which is a good sign since I found the last film lacking.

I don't get the move either, theaters are losing money like crazy thanks to such wise decisions such as this one and in any other profession they'd be out in the streets for offering such advice. Its not to different than how the music industry reacted to the rise of share ware sites not to long ago. Its almost comical how much money they have to lose to piracy before they wise up to common sense.