Rewatched the whole Harry Potter series, which I haven’t done since the release of the final two films.
Cemented a lot of impressions I had last time around: Columbus is a hack who never really understood the source material, Azkaban is the best of the lot mainly thanks to Cuaron’s stylish direction, Half-Blood Prince is a lousy book adaptation but a good stand-alone film and is surprisingly funny considering how dark it gets, and Hallows 1 is dreadfully over-long, and they should have just bitten the bullet and made one three-hour movie instead of one terribly plodding affair and another really quite good action-packed finale.
I also found it fascinating how little recasting of the child actors went on. Even minor characters who have a fair bit to do in the books, but in the films only get a handful of lines each are kept constant across eight films. The producers got incredibly lucky in a lot of ways. For one, Radcliffe stayed smallish and Grint grew a lot taller than him, matching the Harry and Ron physical mismatch in the books. Matthew Lewis as Neville turning out to be unexpectedly gorgeous as he got older actually matched the character development nicely (though apparently they gave him padded costumes and fake oversized teeth and unflattering haircuts to stop him being TOO hot).
Most of all, how amazing is it that none of the main cast of child actors were ever involved in anything scandalous? You’d think one of them would have ended up in rehab, knowing how most child actors go, but from what I can see, they all grew up to be really grounded and sensible adult actors. Kind of amazing when you think about it…