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Harry Potter and the prisoner of Azkaban Movie Review (9/10)

Posted on September 15th, 2004 filed in Movie Reviews    |   

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Unable to contain his anger, Harry performs magic outside Hogwarts- which is strictly forbidden- and blows up his viscous aunt Marge like a balloon into the open sky. He runs away from the Dursleys, and spooky things start occurring to him even before reaching Hogwarts to start his third Year. At Hogwarts a dark atmosphere of fear is reigning. The notorious Sirius Black, one of Voldemort’s most feared followers, who is also believed to have been the cause of death of Harry’s parents, has escaped the dreadful prison of Azkaban and is searching for Harry to kill him! Dementors, the terrifying prison guards that suck all hope and happiness, are roaming the school grounds to supposedly protect the students, but Harry faints whenever he is in their proximity. Harry’s life is once again in great danger and the trio set off to solve the new mystery and get a step closer to the truth.


This movie is undoubtedly the best of the three movies so far. The plot of the novel itself is very elaborate and interesting and this is transmitted through the movie. It is much darker, and it gives us a deeper understanding of Harry’s past and the death of his Parents. With the introduction of some new characters, specially the Godfather, Harry’s future looks brighter and it leaves us with a hopeful note.

Alfonso Cuaron is the new director (directed Y tu Mama Tambien) and he does an excellent job. The scenes are fast and filled with details, the entire movie is somehow more magical and definitely scarier. Every scene is a masterpiece, from the first scene at the Dursleys’ to bus ride to the werewolf fight. I especially loved their adaptation of the dementors. Dementors are these creepy creatures that literally suck you soul and all the joy out of this world. I wasn’t sure they could manage to meet the fine, imaginative description of JK Rowling but I was pleased with the result.

Again, it is lovely to watch the young actors growing up with their roles. Emma Watson has matured into a pretty young girl as has Hermione. Emma Thompson is truly sublime, her make up, glasses, mannerism; she fully captures the role of the new Divination Professor Trelawney who is constantly misreading the signs and warning Harry of a close and terrible death.

Unfortunately, Richard Harris who plays the wise and charismatic Albus Dumbledore passed away in 2002 and the new Dumbledore played by Micheal Gabon is not nearly as magical nor genuine, he simply does not have the same screen presence as the old one…

The movie is of acceptable length (2 hrs and 21 minutes), however a lot of the novel details have been omitted and this compromises the audience’s understanding of the character’s interrelationship…This will frustrate you if you are a huge Harry Potter fan but it will also give you the upper hand into filling in the blanks.

This movie may be a tad too scary for young children, but other than that it is an excellent movie on all levels. It is full of magical special effects, the plot is fast and smart, the actors mastered their roles, the soundtrack is excellent. An absolute must see

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One Response to “Harry Potter and the prisoner of Azkaban Movie Review (9/10)”

  1. Julian Says:

    I am a total Harry Potter fan…I started reading his books at a young age and even today I am still an ardent Fanatic of Harry Potter and his friends… I tend to agree with you about ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azcaban’ book. When I read it, I thought it was my favorite book too among the first three, it shows another side of Harry and his friends; they are older, the events are darker, the magic is advanced…the Dementors are amazing, the description of how they suck the life out of you and you feel that you will never be happy again is absolutely terrifying…I had a hard time imagining how they could translate such a book into a movie but I was not disappointed…Of course the book is always better but the movie exceeded my expectations by far!

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