The Golden Compass (2007) [rate 2]
A bit of a disappointment for me. Although I like the story – in the book – far better than the overly hyped Harry Potter, this movie doesn’t deliver as the Harry Potter movies did for the Potter fans. Apart from the usual gripes like not everything from the book being in the movie, I feel this movie goes wrong in some other ways that are far more detrimental.
The pacing of the movie is horrible. The scenario writers seem to have been unable to decide whether to put everything in, or cut half of it out. Maybe the movie was drastically shortened in a late phase of production, who knows? As a result, it feels like a jumble of scenes, with the characters telling the viewer (in dialogue) what is supposed to have happened just now, or what they’re up to next.
An even bigger problem is that the movie deviates from the original by changing a lot of the order of the storyline around. As a result, motivations of the characters seem to change, suspense is non-existent and the overall feel has changed from an exiting tale of adventure to some pre-digested child’s tale. You might say “well, it -is- a movie for kids”, but kids aren’t stupid. Hollywood seems to disagree and this movie is a sad example of what happens as a result. The only reason this movie gets points is for the visual delivery, which is good and for some of the acting and style, which I think is far more refreshing and original than Harry Potter will ever be.