Harry Potter

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Tue Mar 29, 2011 9:50 pm

I don't read Harry Potter for the intricate and internally consistent world, but that doesn't stop the books from being delightfully imaginative and a lot of fun to read. Very Happy
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Ringdrotten on Wed Mar 30, 2011 11:20 am

Eldorion wrote:I don't read Harry Potter for the intricate and internally consistent world, but that doesn't stop the books from being delightfully imaginative and a lot of fun to read. Very Happy

Agreed Wink

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Ringdrotten on Wed Apr 20, 2011 8:59 am

Watched the Deathly Hallows p1 today! Very Happy Had to wait for the DVD release, but was definitely worth the wait! Fantastic film, all I have ever asked for from a Harry Potter film. The mood was right, the changes made were fine and acceptable (some of them even improvements), the humour was still there (the other HP films nail the humour too, they deserve credit for that at least), the acting was great, the pacing was great - in short, an excellent adaptation Very Happy All thanks to doing the book justice by making it a two part film. The script was good too, with the exception of a few scenes. My favourite part was probably when Hermione read The Tale of the Three Brothers, that was close to perfection to me Very Happy

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Gandalf's Beard on Fri May 06, 2011 5:16 pm

The reason Voldemort didn't go to the Ministry himself, was because he was trying to keep a low profile and keep the MOM and the Wizarding Community at large from realizing he was back yet. By sending his minions, it might have been possible to still maintain the illusion that he wasn't back (remember, the Minister, Fudge, and the Ministry don't believe Harry and Dumbledore that Voldy was back, so this could have worked had things not gone wrong with the Penetration of the Ministry by the Death Eaters.

You can't apparate directly in and out of the Ministry. Ministry workers used the Floo network and visitors used the visitor entrance, though it's plausible that the Department heads may have been able to apparate directly in as the enchantment to prevent apparition could have a Recognition Function only allowing higher ups to do so. This could have probably been fooled by Wizards of extraordinary skill to allow them illegal entry.

And there were likely other Security Enchantments, but the Death Eaters and Voldy no doubt had the Power to overcome the enchantments. As to the Night Security Watch, Harry himself notes that their absence is an ominous sign. The Security Guards would have been stunned, obliviated, and moved out of sight. Obviously the Ministry has daytime work hours only.

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Squach on Mon May 30, 2011 3:55 pm



Laughing lol! lol! lol! Laughing Laughing Laughing

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Mon Jul 18, 2011 8:20 pm

I watched the first seven films over a period of about 10 films before seeing Deathly Hallows Part 2 at a midnight showing. Very Happy I was really tired but I had a blast and enjoyed the film, although some parts struck me as odd. I'm going to see it again tomorrow morning and then I'll try to find the time to post my thoughts on the now-completed film series as a whole. Smile
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Mon Jul 18, 2011 8:31 pm

As someone who has never seen more than 1 and a half and a few bits of the HP films I will be interested in your summing up Eldo. I have often thought of going back to the books to try them again on the basis that so many people love them there must be something I'm missing in there. And I feel much the same about the films- and theres an awful lot of them to start watching from the beginning- is it worth the time investment is the question? Hopefully your review will give me some clue.

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Tinuviel on Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:04 am

Well I just saw it and thought it was Great! I've never read the books, but I'm pretty HP knowledgeable. There were a couple of things that stook out to me though

*****SPOILERS***********
1) Snape's death was gruesome!!!! Is that how it happened in the book? Because that was just disturbing pale
2) How did Harry come back to life if he dropped the resurrection stone?
3)When did Voldemort capture Hagrid???
4) How did losing his wand KILL Voldemort????

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Tue Jul 19, 2011 2:49 am

Pettytyrant101 wrote:As someone who has never seen more than 1 and a half and a few bits of the HP films I will be interested in your summing up Eldo. I have often thought of going back to the books to try them again on the basis that so many people love them there must be something I'm missing in there. And I feel much the same about the films- and theres an awful lot of them to start watching from the beginning- is it worth the time investment is the question? Hopefully your review will give me some clue.

To be honest, th HP film series has been pretty hit-and-miss to me. The first film had its bright spots (notably Robbie Coltrane's Hagrid) and some genuinely emotional moments, but for the most part it was just crushingly dull. Chamber of Secrets did a lot of things better but it still felt more solid and adequate than moving and exceptional. I think the series hit its artistic peak with the third and fourth films (with the two best directors to work on the series, neither of whom, in a cruel twist, made more than one HP film). Both are imaginative and vivid films, despite the increasingly dark story, and have a lot of great performances, especially from the younger actors, who really grew up in the 18 month interim after the second film. I rate the third film above the fourth, mainly because the fourth deals with the cuts from the 800+ page manner in a rather sloppy manner, resulting in choppy pacing in a number of places.

The final four films were all directed by David Yates, and while he is able to avoid the terrible dullness of the first movie and some of the pacing issues with the fourth film in all of his entries (despite being based on some of the longest books in the series), I've always had a number of issues with his films. I never really liked the fifth film (Yates' first), and while the sixth was better, I think they just feel too much like a paint-by-numbers effort. He obviously tried to pare down the books to their essentials, but in the end it felt like he just hit checkpoint after a checkpoint on a list. The pacing is certainly better than the fourth film, but the end result is far less satisfying, both emotionally and mentally. The sixth film was, as mentioned, more enjoyable, but I think it suffered from "Twilight syndrome", focusing on the teenager love subplot from the book to the point where the main story is largely neglected. This meant that information crucial to the end of the story had to be shoe-horned into the final films in hasty exposition films, which really cheapened the whole effort.

I think that Yates managed to rally for the final two films (which were made as a single production, a la LOTR), but after re-watching the series I still rate them behind the third and fourth films. (This is why I want to watch the final film again though, to have a clearer opinion and memories!) There are many emotional moments and the main youthful cast has reached their pinnacle here, in my opinion, after their talent grew by fits and starts across the last seven films and 10 years. I think that the final two film's greatest accomplishment, however, is managing to tie up the story into a rousing and emotionally satisfying conclusion. My main complaint is that many characters showed up for cameos and then were disposed of (either literally, through death, or simply forgotten about by the story) offscreen. Deathly Hallows Part 2 was only two hours and 10 minutes, and I think they could have easily added scenes showing some of the minor characters whose actors they brought back without succumbing to the "Return of the King syndrome" of multiple endings that Yates tried to avoid. Also, I liked the epilogue scene in the film. Razz

Anyway, I might still try to write a lengthier review of each film after I see the final one tomorrow (I need to go to bed soon anyway), but maybe this will give you some insight. Wink I honestly felt during some parts that I was just slogging through the material so I could get to the end of the re-watch, but even in the lesser films there are some real gems. One of the coolest parts of the HP films is that you get a cross-section of A-list British actors, most (if not all) of whom turn in brilliant performances. If you can accept the childishness of the first two films I think that they are enjoyable films, even if they're only memorable because of the original books and the later sequels. The third and fourth films are works of legitimate cinematic beauty, in my opinion, and deserve a place in the top tier of fantasy films. Alfonso Cuaron in particular (the director of the third film) is a very talented director. As someone who disliked the SFX spectacle extravaganza (or whatever you call it Very Happy) of PJ's Lord of the Rings film, you might appreciate the smaller-scale and more character-driven stories of the middle Potter films.

The last four films are really a bunch of curate's eggs. The young actors have continued to improve and there are numerous older actors still turning in great performances, but the films drag in parts and often get caught up in presenting the minutiae of the plot rather than focusing on the overall story. Overall I think there were fairly few significant changes to plot or character motivation, but a lot of important plot details get taken for granted while the spotlight is given to little scenes and fan-favorites that are heaped on until the actual story is marginalized.

This actually leads me straight to my final point, and my main criticism of the series as a whole. I feel that most of the films (with the possible exception of the first two) are made with fans of the book in mind first and foremost. Whatever you may say about PJ's films and the plot-holes they have, they were made with the intent of standing on their own, alongside but separate from the books, and of telling their own story in their own way. The extent to which PJ succeeded is certainly up for debate in other threads, but PJ's story in his films is understandable without reading the books in most places. The opposite is true of the HP films. They often follow the Ralph Bakshi "greatest hits" model of adaptation, taking bits and pieces of the book story and putting them together but not bothering to explain the overall context or arc of the entire series. This is not always a problem within individual films, but when watching them all in a short time you realize that characters have recalling knowledge or memories not shown in previous films, or are breaking rules of the fictional world established in other films. This results in a lot of really egregious plot-holes and it makes it difficult at times to appreciate the film series as a coherent whole, rather than a group of films all based on the same book series. In my opinion, anyway.

Bottom line (since you probably aren't interested in reading my entire essay): the third, fourth, seventh, and eighth films are all absolutely worth watching. There is a serious dearth of good fantasy out there, but these films are enjoyable even by higher standards (again, my opinion). The seventh and eighth are really one film in two parts, similar to LOTR, and are most satisfying when viewed together. There is a rather jarring difference in tone between the two, with the result that the eighth film, when viewed alone, is essentially half an hour of set-up followed by an hour and a half of climax, with a few minutes of denouement thrown in at the end. The other films have their bright spots and will help fill in more of the story, but if you want to really get the big picture you need to read the books.

I hope that was at least vaguely interesting and not too rambly and incoherent. In my defense, it's very nearly 3am. Laughing
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Tue Jul 19, 2011 2:55 am

As for the books, I obviously think they're very good, but I admit that it's impossible for me to be objective about them since I have a major emotional investment in the characters and story as a result of growing up with them. However, I have met enough older/late-comer fans to the series that I think it has legitimate appeal outside of the "childhood classic" realm. That said, you have to accept that Rowling borrows heavily in constructing her setting and stories (although I think it is unfair to call her a plagiarist) and that she is not as talented a world-builder as Tolkien.

I think she's an immensely imaginative and creative author, and she crafts a fantasy "world" that is at turns charming and genuinely ominous (in that it mirrors many of the problems facing our own world) and is satisfying as both, but it has a lot more inconsistencies than I would like. Rowling attributes a lot of this to her distaste for math, since several of the more prominent inconsistencies relate to the population figures she has mentioned, but I think it might just be sloppiness. Still, so long as you are prepared to acknowledge that there are flaws, I think the rest of the books can be enjoyed on their own merits. I guess that's how I look at the books when I'm trying to be more objective: imaginative and fun but flawed.
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Tue Jul 19, 2011 3:07 am

SPOILERS AHOY FOR THE REST OF THIS POST

Tinuviel wrote:1) Snape's death was gruesome!!!! Is that how it happened in the book? Because that was just disturbing pale

The book is not particularly graphic in its description, but Snape's death was essentially the same. It occurred in the Shrieking Shack rather than a boathouse, but he was killed in the same manner. I think that the snake took only one bite in the book, but I might be misremembering.

2) How did Harry come back to life if he dropped the resurrection stone?

I wish I could remember the movie version of this scene better and the explanation that they gave. It's a major plot point in the book, but one the movie gave (IIRC) fairly little time. The Resurrection stone does not truly resurrect the dead, since they aren't meant to be in our world, so that was not what brought Harry back. He was not exactly dead, however: Harry had a piece of Voldemort's soul attached to his (making him an unintended Horcrux), because Voldemort's already unstable soul had fragmented further when the Killing Curse rebounded on him in Godric's Hollow ten years before the first book.

When he cast the Killing Curse on Harry, he destroyed that part of his soul, but Harry was still bound to the physical world because of his mother's protection. That protection, which was in his blood, was also in Voldemort's blood, since Voldemort had used Harry's blood in his resurrection ritual in the fourth book. I think the films left out this part, which is pretty crucial, but I know it doesn't make that much sense. In any event, the blood connection meant that while Voldemort was alive, Harry wouldn't die by Voldemort's hand. However, Voldemort's death wouldn't cause Harry to die, it would only remove the (now unnecessary) protection he had against Voldemort.

3) When did Voldemort capture Hagrid???

In the book, Hagrid was carried into the Forbidden Forest by a swarm of acromantulas (the giant spiders descended from Aragog) which he was trying to protect, despite them fighting on Voldemort's side. It's not clear what happened in the film since a lot of minor characters barely showed up, but several acromantulas were glimpsed during the battle, so it's possible to take away the implication that Hagrid was captured in the same manner, just offscreen.

4) How did losing his wand KILL Voldemort????

This was one of the changes that annoyed me most about the final film. In the book, Harry and Voldemort cast Expelliarmus and Avada Kedavra at each other at the same time (just like in the fourth book), but because the Elder Wand rightfully belonged to Harry, it wouldn't kill him. Therefore, the Elder Wand flew into Harry's hand (as per the usual effects of Expelliarmus) and Voldemort's Killing Curse rebounded on him. Because all of the Horcruxes had been destroyed by that point, Voldemort was mortal, and he died from his own curse. His body was later disposed of.

I am not at all clear about what happened in the film. They changed the sequence of events so that Harry and Voldemort were dueling while Neville was killing the snake (instead of the snake dying beforehand, as it did in the book). I didn't notice the Killing Curse rebound on Voldemort, so it did look like he only lost his wand. However, the implication I got was that he died from the final Horcrux being destroyed. This makes no sense in the context of what Horcruxes are, as explained in both the books and the sixth film, but there's another one of those inconsistencies I mentioned. I also have no idea why they had Voldemort explode into confetti instead of leaving a corpse. Rolling Eyes

Anyway, I hope these explanations help! Smile
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:31 pm

Thanks Eldo- I did manage to read your entire essay! And it was even coherent even for 3am. I did try to read the first book, first to my little brother as a bedtime read and then later on my own but I found it clunky and very dull. Perhaps I try to force myself through that early stage in the hope there are is something better to come after.

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Tue Jul 19, 2011 3:08 pm

I didn't find the first book dull, but it is more "juvenile" and simpler in many ways than the third book onwards. I think they're all worth a read, personally, but you knew that already. Razz If you do read them be sure to let me know what you thought of them! Smile

Also, I saw the final film again this morning and I actually liked it more this time. I'll try to post a full review of the entire series sometime soon (I'll probably review the films in pairs of two since I think they fit together like that) when I have the time to write it all out. Cool
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Saradoc on Tue Jul 19, 2011 3:38 pm

Well I, as most young fans of fantasy I suspect, LOVE Harry Potter. Though after talking about it on the internet for six years I rather lost intrest.



"In the book, Harry and Voldemort cast Expelliarmus and Avada Kedavra at each other at the same time (just like in the fourth book), but because the Elder Wand rightfully belonged to Harry, it wouldn't kill him."

One thing, which I missed from the films, was that irony that Harry destroyed him using such a weak spell- he was told off by Lupin if I recall for not using more aggressive spells! Extremely small thing there!

Love the final film too, though I think it is a bit too short! All those amazing actors with not enough lines! Mr Radcliffe (who I have always said cannot act) has improved. Hats off to Alan Rickman though! Very Happy


Fully agree on your last point, the 'destroy all the Horcruxes to destory Voldemort' approach is terribly inaccurate, I'm not sure about the end, I'm thinking that in the film he dies because the Elder Wand has changed allegiance causing the killing spell to backlash and kill Voldemort. Cause I didn't notice no rebound!! Which kinds of make sense I suppose because Voldemort can't die without all the horcruxes being destroyed?? Hmmm.

All a bit too complicated for me really. Smile

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Orwell on Tue Jul 19, 2011 6:38 pm

I liked the last movie but this one left me a bit unimpressed. I have Petty's problem --- found it hard to get into Potter. My daughter's a huge fan of books, not so much of movies. My son isn't a reader, but he likes the movies and liked the last instalment. The relationship between Ron and Hermione is about the only part of the movies I really liked, handled okay in the last movie, but hardly touched on in this. Shame, really. And, as my daughter suggested to me, the relationship between Harry and Ginny (? - hope that's right) was totally cold and lacking. My feeling is that Harry was pretty dull (mostly), both in book and movies, but Ron and Hermione gave the thing some warmth and also gave me characters to identify with and barrack for. I wonder if Harry Potter will be this popular in twenty years time?

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Tinuviel on Tue Jul 19, 2011 11:00 pm

Thanks Eldo! That clears things up! I feel as if in the movie, when the snake was killed, that Voldemort just died because it was the last horcrux, which I know isn't correct. I'm curious to learn what the director's intentions were...

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Wed Jul 20, 2011 6:39 pm

Tinuviel wrote:Thanks Eldo! That clears things up! I feel as if in the movie, when the snake was killed, that Voldemort just died because it was the last horcrux, which I know isn't correct. I'm curious to learn what the director's intentions were...

It would be interesting to find out more about their intentions. I haven't seen any of the Ultimate Editions yet (1-6 have been released, and DH1 and 2 will presumably be released in 2012) but from what I've heard they have a lot of commentaries and documentary features. One day I'll save up and buy them, though probably not for a while, until the price goes down. Laughing
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Ringdrotten on Thu Jul 21, 2011 7:30 pm

Eldorion wrote:

This actually leads me straight to my final point, and my main criticism of the series as a whole. I feel that most of the films (with the possible exception of the first two) are made with fans of the book in mind first and foremost. Whatever you may say about PJ's films and the plot-holes they have, they were made with the intent of standing on their own, alongside but separate from the books, and of telling their own story in their own way. The extent to which PJ succeeded is certainly up for debate in other threads, but PJ's story in his films is understandable without reading the books in most places. The opposite is true of the HP films. They often follow the Ralph Bakshi "greatest hits" model of adaptation, taking bits and pieces of the book story and putting them together but not bothering to explain the overall context or arc of the entire series. This is not always a problem within individual films, but when watching them all in a short time you realize that characters have recalling knowledge or memories not shown in previous films, or are breaking rules of the fictional world established in other films. This results in a lot of really egregious plot-holes and it makes it difficult at times to appreciate the film series as a coherent whole, rather than a group of films all based on the same book series. In my opinion, anyway.

I wouldn't say made for the fans of the books, but rather for people who have read them. The film makers assume we know what's happening and write the scripts accordingly, but the result is a series of lousy films (or that is my subjective opinion, at least Wink). The first two and the last two are the only HP films I've enjoyed watching. Which brings me to what I was about to say: I was at the movies for the first time in ages today and watched the final film Very Happy

It was nice to watch another Harry Potter film without sounding and looking like Petty during Peter Jackson's Two Towers cut. And like others have said before me, Alan Rickman's portrayal of Snape was perfect. After I finished with the last book he became my favourite character of the series by far, so I'm glad they picked such an excellent actor to play the part Smile Bit disappointed by the ending, though. Lots of good dialogue between Voldemort and Harry during their last duel was omitted. That dialogue could've been included if they'd made the film ten minutes longer, or better yet: not spent so much time on snake chasing and jumping from the walls. And the way Voldemort died was all wrong for me. The body shouldn't disappear, it should lay there as proof that he really is dead. But those are things I can live with, the film was great and I enjoyed it Very Happy

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Ringdrotten on Fri Jul 22, 2011 3:39 pm

PS: There was one more thing that annoyed me about the ending: What on earth made them think it was a good idea to use the same actors for the epilogue scene? Malfoy looked ridiculous and the rest still looked more or less 20-ish.

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:14 am

I remember Squach brought up the Potter Puppet Pals in another thread, and while I'm not really much a fan of them anymore, I did just rediscover this flash animation, which has the dual effect of (1) transporting me back to ~2005 and (2) making me giggle uncontrollably. Very Happy

http://www.potterpuppetpals.com/sexy.swf

NB The link is quite safe for work, unless your workplace has rules against cheesy '90s music. Cool
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Chubby Ron Weasley

Post by The Wobbit A Parody on Tue Jul 26, 2011 8:48 am

Ringdrotten wrote:PS: There was one more thing that annoyed me about the ending: What on earth made them think it was a good idea to use the same actors for the epilogue scene? Malfoy looked ridiculous and the rest still looked more or less 20-ish.

I kind of enjoyed seeing the "older" versions of the characters. And it was alarming to me personally that I have the same Van Dyke as the old Malfoy, and the same paunch as the old Ron. And when I say "old," I'm referring to characters that are years younger than me.

It was comforting to see a lack of exercise and a proper diet catching up with someone that can do magic.

-Paul
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Wed Jul 27, 2011 10:35 pm

Trailer for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince recut as a teen movie.



The truly sad and/or funny thing is that this really is what HBP was like. Laughing
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Ringdrotten on Mon Aug 01, 2011 11:16 pm

As promised I gave PoA a second chance. There are still so many minor things that annoy me about this movie, but more importantly, there's so much of the important stuff that's missing for me to be able to enjoy this film. What happened to the backstory of the Marauder's map? And how could they reduce the Shrieking Shack sequence to a few minutes of basically nothing? Did they read the book at all?

I realised one thing while watching PoA and also GoF the other day (and this goes for almost all the HP movies, to be honest): I think they're dull. I honestly can't see what people think is so good about these films. Most of the actors are 'meh' at best, the scripts are mostly awful and there's nothing in them that makes me feel anything like when I read the books. I'll be fair and say that DH1 was great, and DH2 was good too. But the rest are mostly a drag (I can sit through the first one without getting angry, but I suspect nostalgia plays a big part there). All this is of course my own subjective opinion, but it is how I feel about these movies - they're boring! I'd be OK with changes if the films were entertaining, like LotR (sorry, Petty Laughing ), but they're not! And that sucks, because I would have loved to like them.

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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Eldorion on Tue Aug 02, 2011 12:17 am

Well, at least you gave it another chance. Very Happy I can't really pretend that any of the HP movies are masterpieces, and nostalgia plays a major role in my enjoyment of them (same with the books, though I think the books are far superior so the nostalgia factor is perhaps not as pronounced). To each his own. Cool
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Re: Harry Potter

Post by Ringdrotten on Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:41 am

"To each his own"

I guess so Smile

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