Wednesday, 17 October 2007

Of giants and crockery

Is it my imagination, or is the relationship between Ron and Hermione easier to believe on the screen than it is on the page?

Exhibit A:[1] The three friends' meeting with Grawp, Hagrid's half-brother, in the film of Order of the Phoenix. (I finally saw this while on my return flight to Australia on Sunday night.[2]) Grawp picks Hermione up like a toy, à la King Kong, and H sternly tells him to put her down, using only the power of Voice (let the reader understand). Grawp is from this point onwards H's besotted twenty-foot[3] puppy --- the big daft lummox. "All he needed was a firm hand", Hermione comments. Ron looks on with a mixture of admiration and fear.

My two initial responses:

1. Oh my.

2. Well, you can see how it's going to be between them.

And whatever reservations Hermione's parents (say), or her friends might have about it all, "good luck to them".

Whereas, as I say, I don't really believe the relationship in the books. I understand that it's a given, and on that basis then sure, I suppose that there is going to be a certain amount of throwing-crockery-at-each-other once the two of them settle. But I don't see "it" happening apart from the sheer statement from JKR's plot that "it happens".[4]

I own only five of the seven books, not including this one, so I can't check if the scene is invented, or changed from the original, or close to it. Anyone want to help me out?

Oh and BTW what do Hermione's friends think of the relationship? She does have other friends, although we don't really see her with them. Isn't it a bit of a stretch to suppose that this subject, of all subjects, isn't regularly discussed? Aren't they, you know, girls?

[1] Exhibit B is the discussion between the friends of the million things going on in Cho's mind, re her relationship with Harry. (This is a scene I do partially remember from the book.) After an astonished Ron says that anyone dealing with the complexity of Cho's feelings (as H has described them) would simply explode, Hermione makes a despairing remark about him having the emotional range of a teaspoon, or some such. And then looks down, and laughs embarrassed at --- herself? Ron? their own relationship? the human condition? --- along with the boys. I can believe this too.

[2] I have commented elsewhere on the idea of Helena Bonham-Carter as Bellatrix Lestrange. Having now watched the film: girl gives good evil-crazy. Can I hope for a little nuance in the film of Deathly Hallows? The part is much bigger there.

[3] A quibble, sorry, film-makers: Grawp is supposed to be small for a giant; won't he be twenty feet tall at best? In the film he looks twice that.

[4] Just to make it clear that I am not a complete grouch: I cheered when I read The Kiss, and the remark that occasioned it, the same as everybody. But that's one kiss. Do I believe something lasting, on the basis of the rest of the books? Not so much.


Eb said...

As much as a hate the word, HP7 may bring some "closeure" here (satisfactory or otherwise).

Eb said...

Hmm. Must be late - 2 ytpos at least in that last comment.

Bruce Yabsley said...

Yes, not one of your better efforts ... although I tend to agree with the opinion. At the end of HP7 I will either be buying things like this, or my suspension of disbelief will have collapsed completely. Not sure which one it will be.

And if I ever do read the books again, it will be interesting to do so having also now seen the films ...