- The Harry Potter Reunion will air on New Year’s Day
- The film celebrates it’s 20th anniversary this year
- The film is based on JK Rowling’s novels
If this were a Harry Potter film, Hedwig’s Theme would be playing in the backdrop. For a mere Muggle such as myself, I’d play the theme by John Williams on my phone. Thank God for technology. So the film version of Harry Potter And The Sorcerer’s Stone clocked 20 years and to quote Professor Albus Dumbledore, I too “believe that a change of decoration is in order” and rightly so. My Instagram timeline is flooded with memes and posts about the Boy Who Lived and his two best friends (who set unrealistic standards of companionship). Spoiler alert: No friend sacrifices themselves the way Ron Weasley did during the game of ‘Wizard’s Chess ‘in Harry Potter AndThe Sorcerer’s Stone. Try playing ludo, you’ll know. And of course, the Hermione Grangers of the world will beat you in every exam there is and that is just the adult me talking. 20 years later, my impression of the movie has changed for better or for worse. For Harry Potter And The Sorcerer’s Stone will always be my sole ticket to the ‘Ministry Of Magic.’
My memory of Harry Potter And The Sorcerer’s Stone is crystal clear. No, it wasn’t through the books. It was purely through the movies. Though JK Rowling is the mother of the magical world, folks like me were the target audience of the Warner Bros, and to say we did well as consumers would be an understatement. Also, this was way before you could argue to death on Twitter about books vs films. To say the least, the Harry Potter series of films painted a world for me that I feel free to revisit on every convenient occasion. However, the books too are on my list. Someday, when I am old enough to forget what the movies offered, I will switch to paper and soak in the words and wisdom of JK Rowling.
The film released sometime in 2001 and I was in junior school. I became aware of the existence of Harry Potter through the tours to the stationery shops that would sell fancy pencil boxes and pouches with a bespectacled boy with a wand in his hand. After insane word of mouth about the film (read recess talks), I heard about the DVDs being available in the market. It is interesting how, even at the age of 26, listening to the Hedwig’s Theme and the scratchy font at the beginning of the film gives me an impression that everything is going to be alright. If that is not the definition of magic, I don’t know what it.
My introduction to the Boy Who Lived was courtesy DVDs and CDs dubbed in Hindi, for they were more in demand. The echo of Draco Malfoy asking Harry, “Darr gaye kya Potter,” and him replying, “Darr aur tumse, still cracks me up every time. Also, there were summer vacations, when kids’ channels would telecast the Harry Potter movies all day and that was the only marathon I had the will or stamina to be a part of. Otherwise picky school teachers, would book tickets for Harry Potter movies without a hint of doubt. Not to mention, our parents who were also dragged to the watchparty and never complained about the so called ‘kids film.’ Also, I have absolutely no shame in admitting that I would “swish and flick” (hope I did it right, Hermoine) my ruler in the air and chant ‘Wingardium Leviosa’ with utmost conviction, hoping to levitate the feather. Or quickly switching on the lights and saying ‘Lumos.’ Never worked! I am a Muggle after all.
As I look back at my fascination for the Harry Potter movie series, I realise why I am still compelled to watch it on a sunny winter afternoon or when I am having trouble sleeping at night. For me, the magic of Harry Potter doesn’t lie in the flying broomsticks or the potions. It surely is not in the cauldron of spells, of the invisibility cloak, the resurrection stone or the master wand. It is about the journey of watching three friends navigate through life. It is about the trust that every creature had in Hagrid, who did make a few mistakes, yet had a tall claim by Dumbledore trusting him with his life.
It’s about thinking I was a Hermoine while growing up and feeling like a Ron on most days of my adult life. It’s about believing. I might be all grown up but some days I just wish of disappearing into Platform Nine and Three-Quarters every time I take a train.
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