The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 vs. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2

November 16, 2012 Nicole Marchesani

If movies are like summer flings, movie franchises are more like long-term romances. We invest a lot of time and emotion in them; we feel really good while we’re involved; and after they’re all over, we wonder if we’ll ever experience anything else quite the same. I was thirteen years old when the first Harry Potter film was released in 2001 (the same age as Harry was). When the final film was premiering in theaters, I was 22. Essentially, Harry and I grew up together.

Similarly, Twilight hit theaters during my first year at college, and now, five years later, the final installment has arrived. Bella, the clumsy human turned empowered vampire, has graduated from high school and is forced to make some pretty adult, albeit bizarre, decisions. This feeling that we grow and mature and change alongside the characters is something we can’t ever get from just one film. We’ve formed meaningful attachments to these characters, and so, for the fans, it’s imperative that the endings be everything we hope for and more. […]

The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012) -vs- The Breakfast Club (1985)

September 20, 2012 Caroline Levich

Just in time for fall, we are reminded, thanks to Hollywood, of everything we loved and hated about high school. Twenty-seven years after The Breakfast Club, the coming-of-age story of five students locked together in high school detention, The Perks of Being a Wallflower introduces us to Charlie, a freshman boy in dire need of friends. Both films use humor to examine the pain of being a high school misfit, an immutable movie (and real-life) trope since before James Dean played chicken in Rebel Without a Cause.

Charlie’s group, like the various Breakfast Club miscreants before them, break through seemingly impossible barriers to get to know each other and themselves, without even having to worry so much about being dateless for prom or being given a “swirly” — having their heads shoved into a flushing toilet — by the school bully. What is this madness! […]

Goodbye, Harry Potter

July 11, 2011 R.L. Naquin

Thirteen years ago, J. K. Rowling captured lightning in a bottle and stamped it across Harry’s forehead as his signature scar.

The success of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was unexpected, came out of nowhere, and swept across the world in a feeding frenzy. Momentum gathered, and the first movie, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, was released three short years later. What followed was a phenomenon both the publishing and the film industries will be hard-pressed to duplicate.

This week’s release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 has been ten years in coming, and we’ve journeyed far with the characters. From the first movie to the last, change drove the franchise forward. There was nothing stagnant about the characters or the films. […]