Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Serious Geek-out

      There are times when the twists my brain takes worry me :-) .  I was watching OotP today, and thinking about the difference between the way I see the characters in my head and the actors who portray them, especially Alan Rickman.  As I mentioned in an earlier post, vocally, he's perfect, but he's too old for this role - in fact is pretty wrong for it in just about every other way as well, though I really like him as an actor.  It has, in fact, been one of my pet peeves about this set of movies, that the 'parental generation' (for lack of a better term) is cast full of actors who are much older than they should be, and look it.  So I got to thinking, just how much older *is* the set of actors who play Snape's cohort?  So, after the movie, I went to work, and twenty minutes later, I had a spreadsheet, listing how old each character should be at the beginning (PS/SS), and how old they actually where when filming began.  Yes, I really am nuts.
      Rickman is definitely the most seriously off.  Snape is 31 in September of 1991, and Alan Rickman was 54 when they began filming in 2000.  Yes, he's supposed to look older than his years, but that's a *bit* too much, methinks.  Also seriously off is the actor who is playing Harry's father, who is 21 years older than the 21 year old who should be appearing in the Mirror.  The remaining Marauders are about 10 years too old, give or take.  Bellatrix, who is supposed to be 9 years older than Snape, is actually 6 years too young for her character (and Helena Bonham Carter is actually 20 years younger than Alan Rickman).  Only Lucius Malfoy is right on the money - Jason Issacs was 37 in 2000.
      Frankly, I think the wish for big name actors to play these roles got in the way.  They should have chosen less well-known actors closer in age to their roles, or, even better, animated the books.  Wouldn't you love to see what Marika or Makani or Vizen (three of my favorite HP fan artists) would do with that?  Okay, slinking off to bed now!


Apr. 16th, 2010 08:35 am (UTC)
Standard disclaimer: I love Alan Rickman. His voice is a thing of beauty, and he's a tremendously charismatic performer. However, he's not at all the Snape I envision when reading or writing, and that's true of 99% of the actors. Only Lucius, Filch, and to a certain extent Ron have come to match their film counterparts in my mind.

I've complained elsewhere that Rickman's age and his, for want of a better word, gravity conspire to tame Snape too much for my tastes. He lacks edginess and rage (although that's partly the fault of the scripts for excising some of canon!Snape's best scenes). There was also a deplorable trend midway through filming of reducing Snape to wordless comic relief. Rickman excels at line delivery, of course, and he does a great job at bringing out Snape's underlying sorrow, but it's weary rather than bitter or burning. Still, one of my favorite moments is the bit they cut from Half-Blood Prince, which gets something fundamentally right about Snape's impossible situation: the moment, while the choir sings over the rumble of the approaching storm, when the camera pans in and Snape lifts his eyes briefly to the dark clouds before lowering them again. Fantastic shadows and expression.

I could probably nitpick all night about how disappointing the movies are. I've been spoiled, I'm afraid, by the complexity of fan fiction and fan artistry.