It’s been two years since boy wizard Harry Potter graced the silver screen, and he’s not so boyish anymore. Fact is, Potter and the now monumentally famous actor who portrays him, Daniel Radcliffe, have become strapping young men, which seems appropriate for a fantasy saga that has grown increasingly bold and dark.
“Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” draws from and builds on the gloom that’s been creeping into the franchise, but that’s no surprise to fans of the J.K. Rowling novels. The Potter faithful are well aware that “Half-Blood Prince” is packed with nasty dealings, all involving the revival of the evil wizard Voldemort. It’s important to mention the Potter faithful because this movie, more than any of the previous films, requires a primer.
Director David Yates, who also helmed 2007’s “The Order of the Phoenix,” assumes that his audience knows who the characters are, understands what they mean to each other and has at least basic knowledge of the evil stalking the title character. One needn’t read the books to get caught up, but a viewing of the five prior movies will help … a lot.
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