October 24, 2014

Films

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – 2004 | 136 mins | Fantasy, Adventure | Colour

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Plot Synopsis

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

The Harry Potter franchise continues with the eagerly-awaited third instalment and Mexican Alfonso Cuarón taking over direction duties from the much maligned Christopher Columbus. Most of the original cast reprise their previous roles, including virtually all of the child actors, Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid) Alan Rickman (Professor Snape) and Dame Maggie Smith (Professor McGonagall). Because of the unfortunate death of Richard Harris, Professor Dumbledore is now be played by Michael Gambon. Other considerable cameo additions include Gary Oldman as Sirius Black, David Thewlis as the enigmatic Professor Lupin and Emma Thompson as Professor Trelawney.

This latest Harry Potter instalment is far more visually striking, director Alfonso Cuarón has delivered a darker, faster paced and more accomplished Potter film than Columbus’ serviceable adaptations. Cuarón takes Harry into bleaker territory which marks a rites-of-passage for the 13-year-old; Young Mr Potter is no more and Harry must face life’s harsh realities. Screenwriter Steven Kloves struggles to adapt the longer novel’s three-term structure but has the advantage of working with the best story of the three books filmed thus far. This is the best Harry Potter film to date and will appeal more readily to older audiences than previous instalments.

Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) has once again spent the summer school holiday with his dreadful Uncle Vernon and Aunt Marge. Because of an unpleasant magical incident involving Uncle Vernon’s even more tedious sister, Harry flees the Dursleys in a London bus and ends up living at the Leaky Cauldron pub in magical Diagon Alley until the school year starts. He discovers that evil mass murderer Sirius Black (Gary Oldman) has escaped from the wizard prison of Azkaban and that there is reason to believe that Black might be headed Harry’s way. On the train ride back to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry and the rest of the Hogwarts Scooby Gang encounter a gang of Dementors – sinister looking Azkaban guard. When one of the Dementors gets a little too frisky with Harry, he gets a little help from Remus Lupin (David Thewlis), the new Defence against Dark Arts teacher. As the school year unfolds, Sirius Black continues to close in on Harry until we reach a climatic ending in which Harry learns more revelations about his parents and the circumstances surrounding their deaths.

Production Team

Alfonso Cuarón: Director
Alexandra Walker: Art Direction
Steven Lawrence: Art Direction
Gary Tomkins: Art Direction
Andrew Ackland-Snow: Art Direction
Michael Seresin: Cinematography
Jany Temime: Costume Design
Steven Weisberg: Editing
Waldo Mason: Makeup Department
Sharon Nicholas: Makeup Department
Tracey Wells: Makeup Department
Zoe Tahir: Makeup Department
Jane Royle: Makeup Department
Adrian Rigby: Makeup Department
Clare Le Vesconte: Makeup Department
Amanda Knight: Makeup Department
Betty Glasow: Makeup Department
Eithne Fennel: Makeup Department
Nick Dudman: Makeup Department
John Williams: Original Music
Mark Radcliffe: Producer
Chris Columbus: Producer
Stuart Craig: Production Design
Steven Kloves: Script
Kenneth Wannberg: Sound Department
Jon Olive: Sound Department
Andy Kennedy: Sound Department
Stefan Henrix: Sound Department
Phillip Mark Freudenfeld: Sound Department
David Evans: Sound Department
Richard Beggs: Sound Department

Cast

Daniel Radcliffe: Harry Potter
Rupert Grint: Ronald \’Ron\’ Weasley
Emma Watson: Hermione Granger
Pam Ferris: Aunt Marge
Robbie Coltrane: Hagrid
Fiona Shaw: Aunt Petunia
Richard Griffiths: Uncle Vernon Dursley
Harry Melling: Dudley Dursley
Adrian Rawlins: James Potter
Geraldine Somerville: Lily Potter
Alan Rickman: Professor Severus Snape
Lee Ingleby: Stan Shunpike
Maggie Smith: Professor Minerva McGonagall
Julie Walters: Mrs Molly Weasley
Lenny Henry: Shrunken Head
Gary Oldman: Sirius Black
David Thewlis: Professor Lupin
David Bradley: Argus Filch
Michael Gambon: Albus Dumbledore
Robert Hardy: Cornelius Fudge
Dawn French: Fat Lady in Painting
Mark Williams: Arthur Weasley
Paul Whitehouse: Sir Cadogan
Emma Thompson: Professor Sybil Trelawney
Julie Christie: Madame Rosmerta
Timothy Spall: Peter Pettigrew



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