like it or not, ‘Harry Potter’ became a cultural landmark popwhether in terms of the novels written by J.K. Rowlingor in the film franchise that is still active today.
Originally released in 1997, ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’ came to become a watershed in the literary scene – despite criticism from literary experts. After all, it is undeniable that Rowling, allying herself with several high-ranking members of the cinematographic sphere (Chris Columbus, Alfonso Cuaron, David Yates and many others), designed a very involving universe, which was inspired by fantasy classics, such as ‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘The Chronicles of Narnia’. The narrative brought to life and immortalized the titular character, an eleven-year-old boy who, living with his infernal uncles and an insufferable cousin after his parents’ accident, discovered that he was a wizard of enormous potential and saw his world turned upside down at the same time. enter Hogwarts, a school of magic filled with spells, potions and constant problems.
Of course, at first, the plot does not seem to deviate much from the formulas seen in so many similar works – compiled in the guide ‘The Hero’s Journey’in Joseph Campbell. Harry materializes, like Odysseus, Frodo and the Pevensie brothers, the monomyth, a construction that starts from the simple and rises as a semblance of overcoming and adventure. Confined in the closet under the stairs, the “boy who lived” has no idea of the stories that precede his monotonous daily life and realizes that mandatory invisibility amidst cruel family members is only momentary. For those who don’t remember, Harry receives a visit from the half-giant Rubeus Hagrid in the middle of a rainy night, with a letter inviting him to attend classes at Hogwarts. Discovering that the anecdotes about his life as a baby were lies and hidden dark secrets, he crosses the threshold of the world he knew and plunges headlong into a whirlwind of novelty and danger.
The entire franchise starts from a remarkable premise that has been emulated hundreds of thousands of times. if JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis marked an epoch with her writings, Rowling would do the same decades later when translating to a contemporary society and to a young-adult target audience the ills that hide out there, showing that nothing is what it seems to be. Leaving behind the microcosm he admitted to be immutable, Harry finds his home alongside friends like Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley and matures in the face of the growing threat of the deadly Lord Voldemort – a dark wizard who tried to kill him when he was younger and who can come back at any time from a ghostly limbo to complete your elusive quest.
The truth is that the author, in several interviews, had commented on the subtexts hidden in the thousands of pages of the seven novels. Following in the footsteps of childhood, adolescence and a mandatory maturing in the face of so many traumas, it is remarkable how the theme of death accompanies each of the characters, with more or less weight. Harry deals with the death of parents he hasn’t even met; Voldemort, in turn, invests efforts in a psychotic desire for immortality, which is why he hides parts of his soul in evil objects (the so-called horcruxes). In opposition, reflections on racism and prejudice are celebrated, in which Voldemort, meeting with his followers, launches himself on a hunt for mixed-race wizards and witches and for muggles (non-magical people), clearing the world of an “inferior race” and allowing the purebloods to rise.
Just as previous titles helped in the formation of society, ‘Harry Potter’ was also responsible for rescuing paideutic elements such as the duality of the concepts of good x bad and right x wrong. The premises of intolerance, acceptance, oppression and tyranny, although not explored to the fullest and brushed with fabulous masks, helped to instill in younger readers small sparks of critical thinking – even though Rowling’s recent comments have put in check the ideological marks. printed in the saga. Now, if we stop to find the symbologies amid the paragraphs, there is even a certain flirtation with sociological issues of de-belonging and sociocultural stratification, as we see in the disparate personalities of Severus Snape and Minerva McGonagall, for example.
Also moved by the solidity of the Arthurian formula, Harry is helped by a mentor – Albus Dumbledore. The character’s ethereal presence is marked and premeditated from the first mention of the wizard and amalgamates many others that populated the popular imagination, from Merlin to Gandalf, in an exaltation of wisdom and guidance. It’s impossible to get rid of so many comparisons, but it also has to be said that Rowling has recovered a narrative manual that has not been seen for a long time – and that helped a new generation to trace the path back to the genesis of fantasy.
While the books have made an ongoing impact on the planet, mentioning the feature films is just reiterating that importance. In addition to boosting the careers of Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint and Tom Felton in film and television, they helped to (re)introduce to younger viewers legendary names in entertainment such as Michael Gambon, Richard Harris, Maggie Smith, Alan Rickman, Emma Thompson, Helena Bonham-Carter and so many others. As if that were not enough, they have become epitomes of blockbusters century, establishing a media process that would influence other franchises – including ‘Twilight’ and ‘Hunger Games’.
Credited for popularizing children’s and young-adult novels on the film scene, there is not a person who has never heard of the most famous little wizard in history – and rediscovering or revisiting these stories is always an unforgettable and surprising adventure.