Year three at Hogwarts means new fun and challenges as Harry learns the delicate art of approaching a Hippogriff, transforming shape-shifting Boggarts into hilarity and even turning back time. But the term also brings danger: soul-sucking Dementors hover over the school, an ally of the accursed He-Who-Cannot-Be-Named lurks within the castle walls, and fearsome wizard Sirius Black escapes Azkaban. And Harry will confront them all.
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The Prisoner of Azkaban, the third installment from the Harry Potter series written by J.K Rowling and directed by Alfonso Cuarón, is the movie that introduced me to the world of Harry Potter. I had not watched or read any books in the series previous to stumbling upon the dvd for The Prisoner of Azkaban, and as the credits were rolling at the end of the movie, you could see the astonishment and longing in my eyes for more of Harry Potter's story. This movie is truly impeccable, from the special effects, to the actors, to the storyline itself; you could say this was the movie that changed my life as I knew it. The movie opens with a scene that did not stand out to me right away but after watching the entirety of the series once, I went back for a second, third, and fourth viewing and each time I noticed more and more themes and details. Here, I noticed Harry standing up to Dudley (his cousin and childhood bully) when he taunts him and insults his dead parents, rather than keeping silent and repressing his anger, which is what Harry had usually done to comments like that made by Dudley and his parents. This interaction stood out to me because his decision to stand up to Dudley this time, and so early in the storyline, meant that the pattern of Harry's passiveness was broken and he was finally going to defend himself. I don't want to spoil too much of the film for you but you'll notice throughout it that my theory is proven correct.Another reason I fell in love with this movie is the dynamic change in Harry and Hermione's friendship as they get closer. Throughout the whole movie I was hoping and rooting they would become a couple because they would be absolutely perfect for each other. They are complete opposites but their personalities complement each other: Harry is impulsive and very much emotion driven whereas Hermione tends to thoroughly think her decisions through using logic and facts. Let's talk about the production of the movie for a moment, the budget for this film was roughly between $100 and 250 million dollars, and that money was utilized amazingly. The effects in this particular film were a combination of CGI, or Computer Generated Imagery which just means the special effects are created using computer software rather than old fashioned stunts or practical effects-which is the other special effect used. There isn't a lot of CGI used in any of the Harry Potter films because the director Alfonso Cuarón preferred using stunts to add a more sense of realism to the films. In an interview for Harry Potter: Page to Screen, Alfonso is asked why he doesn't utilize CGI and he responds with, "Low tech has a certain charm, Because when you realize something was done practically instead of digitally. It makes it that much more real." And that is true, a lot of the film feels very real. For example, the dementors and the patronus that Harry casted looked very realistic, as well as the magical animals; the hippogriff, centaurs, goblins, etc. While we know magic does not exist in the real world, watching the wands light up across the screen, objects whizzing about, and seeing things made accessible by the flick of a wrist makes you feel as though it could be possible in the real world, that it should be possible in the real world. Whilst watching the film The Prisoner of Azkaban, I felt many different emotions but one thing was for sure: this movie would absolutely become a classic and one of my personal favorites. One of my favorite quotes from the film is said by Sirius towards the end, he is speaking to Harry and says, "The ones that love us never really leave us, and you can find them in here." As Sirius is saying "in here" he touches Harry's heart and it was such a beautiful moment. This film is captured beautifully and the director did not leave out anything key from the books, rather all your favorite details are included and showcased during the film. Overall, I give this film a standing ovation, and I hope it leaves you with the same heartwarming feeling it left me with.
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I'll keep this review short since the movie came out more than a decade ago and it has been universally viewed. 5 movies came after this one in the series and 2 movies came before, yet Prisoner of Azkaban still remains my favorite (and many peoples') Harry Potter movie. This movie is the one of the few in the franchise that tells and completes a story. It deals with Harry uncovering a truth about his past involving his parents' murder, and explores how he adjusts to this truth. Here's what makes that sentence special: was there any mention of Voldemort in that summary? You'd be hard pressed to find any mention of him either in the movie, except in a couple sentences. This movie can be seen as separate from the rest of the Harry Potter movies because it holds up as its own, without having to build up the universe or service the Voldemort storyline at all. It's also the first movie to feature the dark undertones that the first two implied but never fully explored. He must deal with his darkest fears while also dealing with the danger of a murderer seeking to kill him. This is more personal, but this movie ironically deals with time travel better than any sci fi movie I've seen about it because it portrays it in a way that time is immutable, which makes the most sense.TL;DR: Dark and original, Prisoner of Azkaban stands as its own movie without having to build up a universe, while also entertaining in its own right.
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Another amazing, action movie I liked. In this movie, Harry Potter finds out that a mass murderer, who escaped from Azkaban prison and also who is his father's best friend is his Godfather. He who is the godfather of Harry Potter is Sirius Black. Rumours have that Sirius Black told Lord Voldemort about the wanderings of James and Lily Potter (Harry Potter's parents) and their newborn son, and when Lord Voldemort got to know, he killed Harry's parents but Harry was protected. Watch the movie to know why?Sirius Black turned out to be a noble soul and didn't tell anything to Voldemort. Remus Lupin, again another best friend of James Potter, was the Defence Against the Dark Arts' teacher. He too plays a major role in this movie.Now if somebody has escaped from the Azkaban prison, must die. Sirius Black who had escaped to help Harry did a noble thing, but he had to get the Dementor's kiss, a kiss that will suck in your soul. So to prevent this again its the three best friends' adventure to save Sirius Black.