Muggles at Midnight
Joining Potterheads for the end of an era
By Holly A. PhillipsPosted Jul 20, 2011
Curious about how the world of Potterheads would respond to the release of the – gulp – final Harry Potter movie, we sent our resident fan to the midnight showing of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II. Here is her story.
It’s where grown men wear capes, children have wand wars, and perfectly round glasses are in fashion – it’s the midnight premiere of Harry Potter.
Last Thursday night, I joined what seemed like half the city for the final chapter of Potter: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II.
I’m no Potterhead, but I will say I was giddy for this movie. I’ve never read the books, but as an avid Potter moviegoer, I had to find the answer to one question: will Harry Potter live or die?
I saw the first movie, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, out of sheer curiosity. I had to know what all the hype was about. But when I saw the magical world J.K. Rowling had created, I was hooked – the Bertie Botts’ Beans, the sorting hat, the way Draco Malfoy says, “Potter” – it was fantastic.
And yet, ten years later, Potter and his movies are still loved by all ages. The details, the special effects, and the elements of plot are exciting and relatable in many ways. However, with the way things are, it’s no wonder so many of us have latched onto a world where money and jobs barely exist.
Although I’ve been to several midnight premieres for Potter, this one was by far the most crowded I’ve ever witnessed. I was at the Rave on O’Neal – shame on me for not buying my ticket sooner.
There were two lines, one for 2D and one for 3D – each going in opposite directions around the building. When I bought my ticket, I jumped at the chance to catch this one in 3D. My midnight movie partner said he got a ticket for 2D.
Of course he did.
Lately, it seems like every movie has the 3D option, so it’s been getting a bad rap. Not all movies are necessary for 3D. This opinion was shared by several Potterheads at the premiere.
Well, I disagree. If there is one movie that’s perfect for 3D, it’s this one. I imagined “death eaters” swirling around the theatre, spells cast into the audience, and perhaps the stomach-churning sensation of flying on a Nimbus 2000.
I won’t ruin it for those who haven’t seen it, but I will just say, the extra $3 for 3D is worth it. And you know what? The 3D glasses were made to look like Harry’s. Added bonus.
While I waited in line, my eyes were peeled for costumes, and I didn’t have to look far. I saw the usual (capes, pointed hats) and the unusual (cat ears and tails, people walking barefoot). And I was happy to see my favorite of Potter fashion—scarves and ties in Gryffindor maroon and gold.
A coworker of mine was in the opposite line, and said the girl behind her had a very special wand – one with her birthstone in it. Naturally, someone snapped the wand in half. After a short bout of sadness, she reasoned with the idea that she could tape it together to resemble Ron Weasley’s wand.
If only every solution was so easy.
After an hour of waiting, the ushers began counting us by twos, ripped our tickets (smoothly, with one hand) and assigned us a theatre. I really did feel like cattle, shoulder-to-shoulder, following the pack into the right theater.
Once we were there, with our awesome glasses, we were told several times to leave “no gaps” in the seats. It was, as the usher said, a packed house. And then one new announcement right before the movie was to start:
“If you’re parked at Waffle House, you will get towed.”
As the movie started, I didn’t hear any cheers or applause. It was a level of quiet I’d never experienced at a Potter premiere.
As for the movie? Sorry. No spoilers.
Afterwards, however, I made my way to the parking lot gridlock, listening to everyone rehash the best parts. Although it took me an hour to leave the parking lot (putting me home at 4 a.m.), I even enjoyed Potter theme music, courtesy of a live trumpet player.
Some say the final movie marks the end of childhood. I’d like to think those of us who dream of magic, and care captivated by a decade of movies about the stuff, will always be children at heart.