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I would have to say that this move was a pivotal movie not only in Harry Potter's life, but in JK Rowling's writing career as well.
For Harry, his past begins to reveal itself and danger comes ever closer to his reluctant sanctuary (ie-the Dursley's residence). For Rowling, her stories are no longer stand alone mysteries that share a common location, but are part of a larger story.
These changes are perfectly timed, as the 8th grade is a pivotal time. It is at this age that children are in between true childhood but not quite yet a young adult. We see changes in Harry, Hermione and Ron that indicate the change.
For one, Draco becomes less of an enemy and more like a pest-problems that they used to have no longer seem to matter, or at least not as much. The spells that Harry and his friends learn are likewise indicative of their maturity. Harry is learns to cast a protective patronus years ahead of his peers, which shows that he has matured beyond his peers. Harry takes his last, irrevocable step into adulthood when he choses to spare the life of his parent's betrayer so he can stand trial.
On the surface, Rowling does not "sanitize" the plot as much as she did with the other two, a trend that continues with the rest of the series. Some people say that Prisoner was the last "children's" book and that Goblet of Fire begins her "young adult" books. While I agree with that assessment, I also think that JK was having her books grow up as her children did. We not only see character development in our heros, but in the writing style as well.
But her level of writing maturity does not end there. Each of the first two books had a beginning, middle and end. Each book was self contained. You could read Chamber of Secrets before Sorcerer's Stone and not miss much. Not so anymore. If you read any of the other books out of order, you could follow the plot but all the richness of her literary devices will not make sense to you.
I think what truely sets JK Rowling as a master story teller is that this book does not suffer from the "middle book funk". Too many book writers and movie produces use this excuse to cover their own laziness (sadly, too many people accept this excuse and keep wasting hard earned money on trash).
JK is able to produce a good book by following the same success formula that Marvel and DC comics did-have complete endings for the sub-plots so the readers feel satisfied. Rowling gives us plenty of satisfaction: the innocent escape death, the betrayer's cover is blown, Harry earns the respect of the people needs to rely on in later books and preparations are being made, at least by some, for the storm that they now know will come.
The greatest weakness I found was her assigning value and meaning to items from the first two books. When they were first written, these items were only described so much as to provide ambience. By retro-actively assigning significance to them, she created a feeling of artificialality that comes with forcing a plot device. This was corrected in later books and a much smoother flow will take place.
In short, Prisoner of Azkaban is a wonderfully writen transition book that takes Harry from being a child into adulthood and takes JK Rowling from being a great entertainer into a master storyteller.
John Holland-author of Necklace of Terrersylvanous
We are a house of Harry Potter fans...right down to the toddler, who likes the fact that Harry 'talks like mommy' (the accent not the tone!!) and personally for us, this is the favorite of the series so far!
The Prisoner of Azkaban is perhaps the darkest of the series - albeit without the unsettling ending of Goblet of Fire; but the darkness is interlaced with humor and a good entertaining storyline!
We follow Harry, after a funny home based scene where he gets a tad carried away with some magic - with very funny consequences - back at school for his third year - and along with him, the regulars from the previous two episodes; his friends Ron and Hermione, along with new faces that take from a talented pool of actors - Gary Oldman, David Thewlis, to name but a few.
This time Harry is facing danger from a Prisoner that escaped from - and hence the movie's title - Azkaban; and with this, the school is surrounded by hideous creatures that seek the escapee - the Dementors!
We follow Harry through twists and turns, new magic tricks and new challenges, through an action packed two and a half hours, that remains entertaining through the whole duration!
I highly recommend this movie!
Entering his teens, Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) is back with the dreary Dursleys for his holidays when a vile visiting aunt provokes him into an act of magic, which is forbidden outside the magic world. Fearing retribution, he runs away, to be picked up by the Knight Bus and taken to the Leaky Cauldron pub, where he learns that the dangerous wizard who supposedly led Lord Voldemort to Harry's parents and was thus responsible for their deaths, Sirius Black (Gary Oldman) has escaped and is said to be after Harry himself. His third year at Hogwarts thus proves to be extra fraught, what with the soul sucking Dementors - Azkaban guards - and strange new creatures, amazing adventures and the looming confrontation with Black. Just what is Professor Snape (Alan Rickman) so eager to reveal and just what is the real link between Sirius Black and Harry Potter's past?
Enjoyable for all ages, Harry Potter And The Prisoner of Azkaban is a wizard of a tale, and chances are you will be humming John Williams' haunting theme for days to come.
When J.K. Rowling released these books and all the media were having a field day over Christians not wanting these in public school, my best friend wouldn't allow her kids to read the books or watch the movies.
I was working in a hair salon at the time and after a little shop the majority decided to read these books to see what the big deal was.
I feel the media actually helped the series "Harry Potter" and ended up getting a lot of Christians as well as others to read these books just to see for themselves.
What the Media did for the Harry Potter Movies!!!
I am a mother of 3, whom my oldest and I made it a contest to see who could finish reading them first. She loves to read because of these books, and now reads anything she can get her hands. My 13 year old loves the movies as well as dad, who hate reading. Had the media not stirred the gossip of this series I would have overlooked it as kids stuff and never read them for myself. I expect we would have watched the movies just b/c we are a movie family!!
This series is no more than what they show on TV, or perhaps a cartoon in some ways. I do not feel that anyone would really think of themselves as a wizard who can conjour magic, fly, or conduct spells on others.
What can I say. I think J. K. Rowling is a really imaginative author and I have read and listened to (audio books) all of the Harry Potter books several times. Although the movies don't do justice to the books, (they would have to be 8 hrs long to do that), this one is one of the best. The special effects are great as well as the lighting for the darker moods represented are really good. When the movies are shown on TV, they are shortened and cut which is a pity. I prefer to own mine so I can watch every moment with no interuptions and cuts.
This by far is the best Harry Potter movie yet. Prisoner of Azkaban was also my favorite book, so I'm glad that they did justice to the book.
The special effects in this movie were great. The Quidditch scene was very well done, I just wished we had seen more of it. The time changing scene was also very well done.
One disappointment was that it didn't explain the significance of the creators of the Marauder's Map. It should have been mentioned who Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs actually were. That's the only thing I didn't like.
If you're a fan of Harry Potter you'll love this movie!
I love the Harry Potter book series, and the movies are wonderful! Of course, it couldn't be completely true to the book without being four hours long, but it got close! The acting was great, and many of the characters were exactly as I imagined them! From Hermione's slightly superior tone, to Ron's hiliarious facial expressions, to beautiful Hogwarts, the movies are some of the best book adaptations I've seen!
I have researched long and hard to find a new DVD of this wonderful movie keeping in mind that I wanted it to be a new, unopened DVD in a full-screen format and for a price lower than other auctions were selling for. To my delight I achieved my goal. Not only is it all that I hoped for, it also arrived very quickly. Yeah! Now that's what I call a successful auction.
I love all the Harry Potter movies. It is interesting to see the book come alive in the movie. I purchased it because I am collecting the entire collection of movies. This is one that no family should be without. It is entertainment for the whole family.
My daughter got into Harry Potter a few years ago and the whole family enjoys watching all the movies with her. The acting is wonderful and the story keeps you on the edge of your seat. You will like this type of movie if you like Lord of the Rings and the Lightning Thief.