‘Cursed Child’ script-book is almost ‘Harry Potter’ enough

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There is a moment in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – the new piece resuscitating Harry and his friends on stage in London, and published as a script book – when Harry and his former rival Draco Malfoy discuss their relationship with their respective sons.

“We’ve been so busy trying to rewrite our own pasts, we’ve wasted their present,” Harry Potter, 40, says gravely.

This is a phrase Harry could have said to his creator, JK Rowling, who designed the Cursed child story with writer Jack Thorne and director John Tiffany. The author has met her fair share of criticism for being stuck in the past, constantly tweaking and expanding the Potter universe she’s created, to the point that some fans and critics alike would. like Rowling forpass.

Cursed child is, in many ways, a straightforward response to that criticism, bringing readers back to the show’s highlights while pushing the Potterverse forward. By critiquing and potentially changing Harry’s past, the play justifies its own portrayal of his future.

And while reading the script (three out of four stars) is an incomplete experience – noticeably lacking in the richness that acting and directing would add to a directed production and the familiar Rowling prose that a novel would have. contained – it can capture just enough of the ancient Potter magic to appeal to even the most skeptical of fans.

The storyline follows Albus Severus Potter and Scorpius Malfoy, two young wizards trying to find their place at Hogwarts and the world like their fathers, Harry and Draco, did before them. A new villain, the resurrection of the time-reversal device, and several bad choices bring the boys back to Harry’s past, allowing Rowling to rewrite her own stories, which she seemed so eager to do from the seventh book. Deathly Hallows, was released in 2007. The Dead Return, if only temporarily. Past decisions are scrutinized. The established relationships are tested.

The curtain rises on “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child”

Corn Cursed child It’s less about rewriting the past than about how that past affects the future. He examines the bond of father and son, and what makes that bond more than superficial. With what kind of expectations did Harry beat poor Albus Severus Potter by giving him these three names?

As a script only, it takes a bit too long to Cursed child to attract the reader. The stage instructions, while cheeky and fun at times, are vague, leaving a lot to be desired in the descriptions of the sets and the action scenes. With no actors behind them, the unestablished characters feel flat and underdeveloped. The familiar rhythm of Potter’s seven novels – each of which took place in a single school year – has faded, replaced by a narrative that spans years and then lingers over a few days. At 356 pages, it’s a considerably faster read than most of the later Potter books.

Parts of the story, especially to a Potter enthusiast, may seem so perfect they read like fanfiction: alternate timelines that satisfy the curiosities of hungry fans, relationships too much like established “ships” and twists too strange to seem real. But Harry Potter is so ubiquitous in our culture, so universal in its praise, that any new detail or twist might have already been thought of.

Rowling, however, manages to include this apparent fan-service without making it cheap or hypocritical. Just like you, the play argues, she wonders what would have happened if Voldemort had won or if one character survived or another died. Very quickly, even just reading the script from Cursed child, you remember Rowling loves these stories and characters as much as you do, and it becomes easier and more enjoyable to read the script. After all, love, as Voldemort never understood, is the most powerful magic of all.


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