Fan Focus: Rachel – August 21, 2011

17-year-old Rachel from the United States

First off, how did you become a Harry Potter fan?

I’ve been a Harry Potter fan for so long it’s hard to remember exactly how it happened. My dad had been constantly saying to me “you should read this book, you’ll like it” but he said that about a lot of books and I wasn’t a very big reader so I didn’t think much of it. I don’t remember whether or not I read the first book before the movie, but I remember that after the first movie I was completely obsessed and have been ever since.

Deathly Hallows Part Two!! Loved it? Hated it? Thoughts?

I LOVED Deathly Hallows Part 2!!! It was so good! I was a little bothered that during all the explanation scenes. Instead of figuring out that the Grey Lady was Helena Ravenclaw, or that the man in the Hogs Head was Aberforth and that he had sent Dobby, Harry just got straight to the point and said something like “you’re Helena Ravenclaw, aren’t you?” “you’re Aberforth aren’t you?” “Tom Riddle tricked you into giving him the location of the diadem, didn’t he?”. It was like he already knew everything and he was just trying to let the audience play catch up. However, the rest of the movie was so awesome that it made up for it.

What were your favorite scenes that were straight from the book?

I was SO glad that they did not mess with Molly killing Bellatrix. The line was straight from the book and it was awesome. Also I loved when in the Prince’s Tale when Dumbledore said “Severus, after all this time?” and Snape said “Always.” Alan Rickman’s performance was amazing and I was in tears.

What scenes that were changed did you like? Dislike?

I agree with the change of Snape’s death to the boathouse. It made sense the way David Yates explained it. I never pictured his death being so violent though, but it made it so much more moving. I have mixed feelings about the scene where Harry pulls Voldemort over the cliff. When I hear David Yates explain why he did it, I think to myself “Oh, that makes sense”. His artistic view of it and how it symbolizes there struggle makes sense. However, when I see the scene I just don’t like it. I agree with the decision to move the battle throughout the castle because it is the final confrontation and needs to go out with a bang, but I agree with Andrew that Harry and Voldemort just don’t touch. I also loved the scene at the end when Harry, Ron, and Hermione walked off holding hands. It was a special moment and it was even more special because I saw it with two of my friends who had come with me to both Deathly Hallows midnight premieres and we were sitting there in the back row of the theatre holding hands and crying our eyes out. It was like the ending of a movie in itself and the end of an era. Even though the ending was happy and perfect, I just broke down sobbing at the end. It was just so phenomenal.

The WB says they are pushing hard for DH:P2 at The Oscars this year! For what do you think Potter deserves to be nominated? What award do you hope it will win?

Harry Potter deserves so many Oscars. Alan Rickman definitely deserves an Oscar for his performance. It was so moving and he just did Snape so much justice. I feel like everyone worked so hard on the whole series and that everyone deserves some form of recognition for making such a wonderful series. I don’t understand how the series can break so many records and be one of the highest grossing films of all time and still not win any Oscars. I think because it was the last one, and because this one was more “Hollywood” that it will definitely win something, but I’m an optimist.

Now that all eight films are out, how do you feel about the movie series as a whole? Favorite? Least favorite?

The series as a whole is so amazing. Even though at times I get frustrated with the decisions to cut things, in the end I still love everything about it. I feel like the bigger the books got, the harder it was to please the fans. My favorite movie is either Deathly Hallows Part Two and Chamber of Secrets. Of course Philosopher’s Stone still has a special place in my heart. My least favorite is definitely Half-Blood Prince. I liked that they wanted to focus on teen love, but they took it a bit too far and sacrificed some of the crucial plot that was needed in Deathly Hallows. Anything that was wrong with Deathly Hallows was because of Half-Blood Prince.

Do you have anything else you’d like to add? Maybe a theory you still believe to be true, a shout-out, praise for yours truly?

My favorite character is Neville Longbottom because I can really relate to him. He isn’t the bravest character and everyone wonders why he is in Gryffindor, but really he just has a different kind of courage. Instead of being like Harry and being brave and doing dangerous, reckless things, he is absolutely terrified and shy and clumsy, but does it anyway. He really proves the saying that bravery isn’t the absence of fear, but rather the courage to be completely terrified and do it anyway. I try to live by that motto. I’m known as the coward of my group but I don’t think that is an accurate description because if I was truly afraid of something, I wouldn’t go through with it because I am quite stubborn. Watching Neville become this courageous hero inspired me to embrace my inner dork and to not be ashamed of not being the most popular. I really love Neville and I love how Matt Lewis portrays him. Also thank you MuggleNet for everything. Thanks for giving me all the latest updates to help full my love for Harry Potter, and for letting me know I’m not the only crazy one out there.