So I finally got around to writing out my critique of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. I've watched the movie twice so far: once at the midnight release, and the other a week later. It was pretty amazing both times, but as I'll talk about below, I have a few issues (but also a few praises).
First off, if you haven't seen this movie yet, your **SPOILER** alert is right now. Moving on...
The PG rating of Half-Blood Prince has always mystified me. I do not understand why Order of the Phoenix was rated PG-13 and Half-Blood Prince was not. Now, the rating scale could have changed somewhat over those two years, and maybe it did. But my problem is, why NOT make Half-Blood Prince a PG-13 movie? The books become darker and darker and yet it seems that much care is taken in preserving a PG rating.
My first issue (and this involves the rating, too) was the destruction of the Muggle bridge at the very beginning. I don't know if anyone else noticed, but every single Muggle made it off that wildly swinging and swaying and crumbling bridge safely. Now, obviously being on a bridge that is being destroyed by unknown methods is terrifying enough, granted. But seriously, how hard is it to have a few deaths to make it more realistic and to really bring to home the horrifying attacks the forces of Voldemort were making on the Muggle world? I think more could have been done with that scene to show the true terror of the Death Eaters.
The scene with finding Horace Slughorn was well done I thought. The repairing of the house was an awesome piece of special effects and Jim Broadbent did an excellent job as Professor Slughorn right from the very beginning when we find him in the chair (which was really cool!).
I had some issues with the Spinner's End scene. In the book, Bellatrix is trying to more or less stop her sister, Narcissa, from talking to Snape. But how it is portrayed in the movie, Bellatrix becomes more the instigator rather than protesting. She insists on the Unbreakable Vow when in the book, she is more shocked that Snape would agree to such a magical bond. The scene was well done for what it was, but I thought more could have been done to match the book.
I believe the whole issues between Ron, Lavender, and Hermione were well captured. Jessie Cave played Lavender really well. (Even I was annoyed by just watching her as Lavender!) Going along with the whole relationship issues in this movie, I think they were well covered without going too far overboard and straying from the book.
The cave scene was amazing! Enough said.
Overall, this movie was well done. I enjoyed the hilarity of Ron with the chocolates spiked with love potion, and Harry and Professor Slughorn's exchange at the greenhouse ("Harry!" "Sir!"). The scene with Harry facing down Snape wasn't as climactic as I had hoped, but it wasn't too bad. Also, there wasn't too much action in this movie. I was surprised, actually. The couple fights lasted only a short while and the Death Eaters entered and exited Hogwarts with no confrontation, which I was hoping for. I know that they are kind of saving for the huge battle in the Deathly Hallows movies, but still, it would've been nice to have some kind of small battle.
Anyway, those are my thoughts (at least the ones I can recall right now). Comment if you like!