Sep 072012
 

Although the Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection is quite expensive ($345 on Amazon as of this writing), for fans of the series, it might be worth it. I know fans will have already owned it but there might be enough here to make it worth your while. As for the set itself, there’s an enormous amount of features including some new featurettes which expands on the behind-the-scenes world and how the franchise was made.

 

 

 


Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection (2001-2011)


REVIEW NAVIGATION

The Movie
| Special Features | Video Quality | Audio Quality | Overall

 

Genre(s): Fantasy, Adventure, Family
Warner Bros. | PG/PG13 – $499.99 | September 7, 2012

MOVIE INFO:
Directed by:
HP1-2: Chris Columbus, HP3: Alfonso Cuaron, HP4: Mike Newell, HP5-7: David Yates
Writer(s):
J.K. Rowling (novels); Steve Kloves, Michael Goldenberg (screenplay)
Cast:
Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Richard Harris, Michael Gambon, Ralph Fiennes, Alan Rickman, Maggie Smith, Robbie Coltrane

DISC INFO:
Features:
Audio Commentaries, Featurettes, Deleted Scenes, DVD Copies, UltraViolet
Number of Discs:
31

Audio: HP1/HP2 – English (DTS-HD MA 6.1), HP3-7A, 7B – English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), Various
Video:
1080p/Widescreen Various
Subtitles:
English SDH, French, Spanish, Various
Codec:
MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s):
A, B, C

THE REVIEW

Special Note: This is going to be an unusual review. As one might expect, we were not provided the full collection however, Warner was kind enough to send bonus discs containing new bonus material not in the previous releases. If you want a full rundown of those, I will provide links to each at the bottom of this page. I did not review the first two “Ultimate Editions” but I’m sure with some Google work, it’ll be easy enough to find them.

So without further ado, on with the… well… review.

About the Set:
The Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection is a limited edition set containing over 37 hours of special features, including all previously released special features for all eight Harry Potter films. Also included are nearly five hours of exciting, never-before-seen bonus features that offer fans an unprecedented behind-the-scenes look at the creation of the Harry Potter franchise. Wizards and witches everywhere will enjoy the all-new documentaries detailed below.

Eight pieces of movie memorabilia, designed exclusively for the Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection by the graphic designers from the films, give fans a unique chance to bring the artistic details of the world of Harry Potter into their own home. High-quality concept art prints and a colorful fabric map of Hogwarts and the areas surrounding it are perfect for framing. The hard-bound “Harry Potter Catalogue of Artifacts” and the artistic “Label Collection” offer fans a broad look at the intricate details of each film prop. Also included are a blueprint poster of Hogwarts castle, sketch prints from the production designer, a Horcrux locket prop replica and a certificate of authenticity.

Beautifully packaged in a stunning gift box measuring 12-3/4” x 10-9/16” x 11-1/4” and weighing 19 lbs, the Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection is the largest collection ever released by Warner Bros.

What’s included in this collection? Well, glad you asked:
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Theatrical and Extended Cut)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Theatrical and Extended Cut)
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2

Exclusive Premiums (i.e. trinkets):
– Label Collection: A collection of prop labels created by the production
– Harry Potter Catelogue of Artefacts: 48-page book featuring the favorite props of the film’s graphic designers
– Blueprint Poster of Hogwarts Castle
– Concept Art Prints
– Map of Hogwarts and Surrounding Area: Full color map printed on fabric
– Stuart Craig Sketch Prints
– Horcrux Locket: Wearable, high-quality prop replica created by Noble Collection
– Certificate of Authenticity

Each movie is on Blu-ray, DVD and an UltraViolet Digital Copy. The last two also include the 2D and 3D versions (which, IIRC, were previously Best Buy exclusives). Along with those, they also include the previously released special features which, as I mentioned before, you can check out in our other reviews.

 

SPECIAL FEATURES

All features are presented in high-definition unless otherwise noted.

 

Bonus Disc (Year 7, Part 1):
Creating the World of Harry Potter Part 7: Story (47:28)
– With this featurette, you get to hear the story of how J.K. Rowling and screenwriter Steve Kloves collaborated and developed a friendship based on trust and respect as they sit down for an intimate conversation. This is the big feature and continuation on an overall ‘making-of’ for the franchise.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1: Behind the Magic (44:09) – Discover how one of the most complex scenes as assembled and how the flying sequences were shot. Then hear stories of friendly competition among the stars and gain insight into life on the set.

The following are smaller featurettes which, to me, could have been put into another lengthy featurette like the previous two on this disc.

Harry Potter: On the Road (19:37) – Follow the film’s production all over England for on-location shoots that added exciting new backgrounds to the series.

The Return of the Order (5:35) – Join the turning members of the Order of the Phoenix as the actors discuss how they feel about being back on set.

Scabior and Greyback (4:10) – Learn about the creation of newly created character Scabior and the re-imagining of vicious werewolf Fenrir Greyback.

Dobby’s Farewell (4:28) – Interviews with David Yates, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and others discuss why Dobby’s death scene was so important and what made Dobby such a beloved character.

The Look of Bill Weasley (3:41) – Costume Designer Jany Temime explains the choices behind the clothes and accessories used to give Bill Weasley the rock-star look that defines his character.

The Weasleys (3:33) – Examine the importance of the Weasleys both as surrogate family to Harry Potter and as fighters in the war against Voldemort.

The State of Evil (9:58) – Explore the dark side of the great Wizarding War.

The New Guys (7:06) – Meet the new actors introduced in the film.

One Book, Two Movies (4:38) – Producers David Heyman and David Barron and Director David Yates discuss the decision to split the final book into two films.

The Wizarding Shop (5:28) – The prop maker displays some of the new props created for the film.

The following are available on the individual release: The Seven Harrys (5:29), On the Green with Rupert, Tom, Oliver and James (13:38), Dan, Rupert and Emma’s Running Competition (2:45), Godric’s Hollow/The Harry and Nagini Battle (6:00), The Frozen Lake (4:10) and some Deleted Scenes (10:54).

Also included is the Teaser Trailer (2:31) and the Theatrical Trailer (2:23) along with a couple promotional adverts.

 

Bonus Disc (Year 7, Part 2):
Creating the World of Harry Potter Part 8: Growing Up (49:19)
– Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson and other cast and crew reflect on the extraordinary experience they shared growing up on set, and the moments that helped shape who they are today. It’s a really melancholy view on the entire series and easily the best of the “Creating the World of Harry Potter” featurettes.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2: Behind the Magic (47:01) – Go behind the scenes to learn how CGI was used to create Hogwarts and see how the Great Hall was destroyed and rebuilt three times during filming.

Hogwarts Last Stand (Extended Version) (30:27) – Glean a sense of the enormous amount of energy and effort required by cast and crew to bring the final battle to the screen.

The Great Hall of Hogwarts (4:13) – Cast and crew share their thoughts on the iconic Great Hall and how they feel seeing it all demolished for the final battle.

Ron and Hermione’s Kiss (4:12) examines the budding romance between Ron and Hermione in a look back at their relationship throughout the series.

That’s a Wrap, Harry Potter (4:55) – The cast and crew share their feelings on reaching the finale of a decade-long relationship with the Harry Potter films.

Neville’s Battle Makeup (4:11) – Watch the elaborate task of bruising and bloodying the actors involved in the Battle of Hogwarts.

The Gringotts Disguises (4:07) – Helena Bonham Carter discusses the challenge of playing Hermione in disguise as Bellatrix.

Harry’s Death: The Courtyard Confrontation (10:14) – Join the cast and crew on set for the filming of the pivotal scene.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: The Quest (TRT 51:57) is a series of 16 mini-featurettes:
Emma Watson Gets a “Red Card” (2:02)
Daniel Radcliff Discusses His Mentors (4:27)
The Secrets of Flight (4:03)
Ralph Fiennes as Voldemort (4:05)
A Look Back at Severus Snape (3:18)
Exclusive Footage from the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 London Premiere (2:23)
The Love Life of Ron Weasley (2:56)
The Weasleys: A Look Back at Harry Potter’s Favorite Family (3:27)
Dumbeldore and Harry: A Look Back (3:23)
Favorite Lines with the Harry Potter Cast (3:44)
Favorite Props and Costumes with the Harry Potter Cast (3:31)
Riding Memory Lane (4:37)
Finding Luna: A Dream Come True (2:27)
A Tribute to Dobby: The Beloved House-Elf (2:43)
A Special Message to Fans of Harry Potter (2:25)
The Cast of Harry Potter Say Goodbye (2:26)

I’m sure all of those were previously released at some point but thought I’d just include them here. Much of the footage was used before and spliced in other featurettes.

And the rest of the featurettes were previously available on the individual release: A Conversation with J.K. Rowling (Extended Version) (1:03:20) which is about 10-minutes longer, The Women of Harry Potter (23:31), The Goblins of Gringotts (10:56),

 

Bonus Disc (Collection):
When Harry Left Hogwarts (Extended Version) (1:26:54)
– Hear candid and emotional stories about the final days on set in a behind-the-scenes featurette which is more or less kind of fly-on-the-wall with interviews by the cast and crew.

50 Greatest Harry Potter Moments (Definitive Version) (1:03:52) – Narrated by Robbie Coltrane, in this featurette they countdown 50 scenes from the movies alongside comments by the cast as they talk about said scenes. Not sure what the “Definitive Version” means but I assume it differs with what was aired or is on the Internet. Not nearly as engrossing as the previous documentary but it certainly will keep fans entertained.

Designing the World of Harry Potter (23:22) – Explore how production designer Stuart Craig and his creative team brought J.K. Rowling’s imagination to life on the screen and how the design evolved.

Secrets Revealed: Quidditch (10:50) – For the camera and special effects departments, the Qudditch scenes required special rigs and the design of hundreds of shots.

Secrets Revealed: Hagrid (11:18) – For the first time, see the camera tricks, towering stand-in and voluminous body suits behind the character meant to be twice as tall and three times as wide as the average man.

The Harry Potters You Never Met (10:31) – Meet the stunt doubles for Dan, Rupert and Emma as they demonstrate how they balanced major stunt work with seamlessly mimicking the actors they represent.

 


FINAL THOUGHTS

Although the Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection is quite expensive ($345 on Amazon as of this writing), for fans of the series, it might be worth it. I know fans will have already owned it but there might be enough here to make it worth your while. As for the set itself, there’s an enormous amount of features including some new featurettes which expands on the behind-the-scenes world and how the franchise was made.

As promised, here are the links to the reviews we do have:

 

Brian Oliver, The Movieman
Published:
09/07/2012

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