Contact theSOPAbout theSOPSupport theSOPWritersEditorsManaging Editors
theSOP logo
Published:July 19th, 2011 22:01 EST
Harry Potter, Movie Thrills and the Religious Right

Harry Potter, Movie Thrills and the Religious Right

By Donna Cavanagh

I am a sucker for movie sequels. I have seen every Jaws flick and at least two of the three Scream movies which I pretty much regret, and of course, Both of the Sex and the City installments.  But few films have inspired that "must see" feeling inside me like the Harry Potter films.  My daughter and I love both the books and the movies. We see these films on the first weekend of their release so that we can participate in the frenzy that goes along with the premiere hype. 

I will admit that not on our list of movie sequels to see are the Twilight films. Why? Because the books suck.  I tried to read the first Twilight novel but by page five I realized the author could not write herself out of a paper bag.  I have to admit that I am jealous that she as an agent with such great marketing vision, but that still does not hide the fact that the books stink which led me to believe the movies would stink as well.    

This is not the case with Harry Potter.  JK Rowling spews talent. She is an amazing storyteller who makes us want to see her words transformed into films, and we have not been disappointed for the most part.  Hoping that the last Harry Potter film would live up to our expectations, my daughter and I headed to the IMAX theater to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2. 

When we walked into the theater they handed us the obligatory 3-D sunglasses which I have to admit were sort of stylish with their boxy, black frames. We had to sit almost near the front of the theater, but we didn`t care.  We also opted to not buy snacks for two reasons:  The first being that I still have to do food shopping for the week and one round of snacks at the theater would eat up my entire grocery budget.  Secondly, I knew that if I spent the $7.50 for a small soda, it wouldn`t stay with me for the entire movie, and that at exactly one hour and 22 minutes into the film, I would have to leave for the ladies room.

This would piss off other movie goers because I would have to climb over them, and I would be ticked at myself because a bathroom trip would force me to miss crucial movie scenes.  It`s not good to miss any part of a Harry Potter movie. You miss one minute, you might as well miss the entire picture, and no one in the theater is going to take the time to explain what happened while you were in the bathroom until after the movie is over which at that point, you don`t really care. People are very judgmental about theater patrons who can`t hold their pee until the end of the Potter pictures.  

Okay, maybe I am too devoted a fan of the Harry Potter franchise, and I know that just writing about Harry Potter is beyond sinful to some religious groups.  And to those people who might think I am being disrespectful to your beliefs, let me say this as politely as I can: Get a freaking life!  I am so tired of the black magic, Satan propaganda that starts to circulate each time a film is released.  I am not a bible expert, but I don`t remember anywhere in that entire book reading a passage that forbade  Harry Potter. And to be honest,  I have a tough time picturing the Almighty saying,  

"In the future, I forbid you to see movies about wizards, or witches or anything magical in the plot. You can see movies with boobs and bad language, but movies with wizards are out. While I`m laying down the censorship rules,  movies that challenge traditional religious viewpoints are also out. Why? We can`t have people making up their own minds about religion. People can have free will but not free thought."

Okay, I have come down off my soapbox now, so back to the movie:  It was fantastic.  That is all I am going to say on the plot. I don`t want to ruin it for anyone.  With each Harry Potter film, I am taken aback by how grown up the main characters have become.  They were literally babies in the first movie, and now they are adults.  Call me sentimental, but I am proud of them in mommy kind of way. 

By now, you can guess that I give a "thumbs up" to this flick.  Go see it and let your imagination soar.  The acting is superb, the special effects are phenomenal " just a great film. I am sad that this is the last Harry Potter film, but I will deal.  I`m sure JK Rowling has other adventures up her imagination-rich sleeve, and I am sure that idea makes the conservative religious groups happy too because they will have something new to bash in the future.  If it wasn`t for writers like JK Rowling, what would they find to whine about? Oh wait, there is the whole Oprah is the pre-cursor to Satan thing.  Don`t believe me? Mike Bickle: Oprah Is a Forerunner Of The Antichrist