Well, folks, I never thought that this weekend would come. The Harry Potter franchise is releasing its last movie, hoping that it is all grown up and will be able to fly.
Since this worldwide phenomenon has been going on for 14 years now, I thought I would offer a few words of wisdom on how to prepare for this final installment.
Here are five things that you should bring with you to that theater tonight…or tomorrow…or next week…or whenever you get around to seeing it.
Nothing is more annoying to me than someone in a movie theater who just won’t. stop. talking. Worse is when that person is incessantly jabbering because they have no idea what is going on. I understand that other people may not have read all seven books and seen the first seven movies multiple times, but for the love of all that is Harry, please know who the main characters are, who is dead already, and why Harry and Voldemort don’t get along.
If you go to the movies with the idea that you are going to be cute and ask a friend for clarification on every facet of the movie, be aware that you may not be so cute by the end…unless you somehow manage to pull off wearing popcorn.
2. A Good Attitude
Now, I have never been one to dress up for a movie, nor have I ever seen the midnight showing, but that doesn’t mean I don’t let myself get sucked into the energy that these books/movies elicit. I have on occasion (or for every movie) worn lightning bolt socks. Subtle, but fun :) You do not have to wear anything special, but don’t be one of those people who gets to the theater and cynically looks around for people to laugh it. Maybe you are a grumpy-poo, but a lot of people have been waiting a long time for this moment. If you are not into the magic and fun of the franchise, why did you just spend $15 on your IMAX 3D ticket. Loosen up and have some fun.
PS. And laugh when something funny happens. My favorite line of the series is coming up in this movie. It has to do with Mrs. Weasley and cursing (both with her wand and her language). Watch for it.
3. A friend
For many of us, this love of all things Harry Potter has been going for 14 years. I started reading the books in late 1997 when I was ten, almost eleven, just like Harry was. If you let me do the math, the Harry Potter series has been a part of my life for almost 2/3 of it. Wow.
Anyway, what made this series great was that it inspired people to interact with each other about it. My friends and I decided what house we would be in (Ravenclaw), who our favorite characters were (Hedwig and Hagrid), and who we would be if we went to Hogwarts (hopefully a less obnoxious Hermione). Around the book release dates, the books and their plots were topics of conversation as we ran laps for soccer practice and studied for tests. When the last books came out (I was in college at the point), my friends and I (all with our own copies) sat around reading and reacting to the book at the same time.
If at all possible, don’t go to this movie alone. Find someone who has shared your experience with this book and go with him. If these people are too far away or unable to come for whatever reason, at least bring them with you in spirit. That is the best way to honor this series.
Personally, movie theater popcorn and soda are not going to be good enough for this last movie. Considering that J.K. Rowling spend a lot of space in her books describing food, it only seems right to create and sneak in (I am a bad person) some Harry Potter food. Earlier this year, I perfected my own version of butterbeer. Good luck trying to bring that in.
For this most auspicious of occasions, I decided to create something that Harry tends to get on the train to Hogwarts and that has always intrigued me: Pumpkin Pasties.
Basically, they are little handheld pumpkin pies. I made some for fun. My taste-testers unanimously approved.
Pie dough: I used Simply Recipe’s Pate Brisee.
Inside: Mix together 1 cup of pumpkin puree, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1 tbsp each of cinnamon and nutmeg.
- Preheat your oven to 400F
- Roll out the pie dough to 1/8″ thick and using a saucer, cut it into 6″ circles.
- On each circle, place 2-3 tbsp of the pumpkin mixture.
- Wet the ends of the dough (where you are going to seal it) and fold the dough over on itself to enclose the pumpkin.
- Crimp with a fork to seal it.
- Put a few slits in the top so that it doesn’t explode.
- Bake for 15 minutes or until the crust is golden.
These travel really well, so once they cool, you can absolutely stash them in your purse/pocket and they will arrive safely at the movie.
Last, but certainly not least, I would recommend a box of tissues or, if you are trying to be environmentally-friendly, a hankie. I know that I am going to bawl like a little baby simply because this last movie feels like it is marking an end to my childhood. More than going away to college, living on my own, or getting my first “real” job, this last movie feels like a closure.
For those of you who do not have this personal connection, you may want to bawl because of what is going to happen in this movie. I won’t sugarcoat it (as I thought of doing with the pumpkin pastie), people are going to die. People you like are going to die. You may not be happy with how this ends.
That is why you should be safe and bring something to wipe the tears away, just in case.