First off, I want to say that I have read all of the books and seen every movie and enjoyed each and every one of them. In fact I think that the sixth book 'The Half Blood Prince' is definitely one of the best in the series. It is full of tension and is a real page turner. That is why I found this latest film of the book to be extremely disappointing.
I understand completely that the students of Hogwarts need to be shown to be developing as adults and that hormones may well be raging out of control. Indeed, the book does focus on this but it is ridiculously overdone in this movie and drains any tension and drama from the darker elements that exist. When I sat down to watch this I began to think that it was going to be just as good as the other movies in the franchise but after about an hour I found that it was boring and after nearly two hours it had become even worse. Far too much time is devoted to love struck teenagers and the very good original story becomes bogged down and almost ruined.
Although the book is called the Half Blood Prince this hardly gets a mention here which is a great shame as JK Rowling created a mystery that just had to be explored in the book. There are some moments that deliver but they are few and far between and the ending is very much an anti climax. The movie does look good and the acting is pretty effective with Jim Broadbent a welcome addition as Slughorn. But Helena Bonham-Carter is VERY annoying this time around as Bellatrix and overacts. It is hard to believe how boring they have made this given the excellence of the source material and this is the worst film in the franchise by a long way. It never really captures the drama of the book and evades much of the plot. This had the potential to be a cracking film but it misses out in a big way. If truth be told it is a bit of a mess and barely regognizable when compared to the original story.
As a package, the two disc set probably deserves three stars as there are some good extras but the film is such a major disappontment that I can only award it two stars which is painful to do but I genuinely believe that the makers have got it wrong big time here.