Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)

During another summer with his Aunt Petunia (Fiona Shaw) and Uncle Vernon (Richard Griffiths), Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) is expelled from Hogwarts after he uses magic to save himself and Dudley Dursley (Harry Melling) from Dementors. Harry is whisked off by a group of wizards including Mad-Eye Moody (Brendan Gleeson), Remus Lupin (David Thewlis) and several new faces including Nymphadora Tonks (Natalia Tena) and Kingsley Shacklebolt (George Harris) to Number 12, Grimmauld Place, the home of his godfather Sirius Black (Gary Oldman). The building also serves as the headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix, a secret organisation founded by Albus Dumbledore (Michael Gambon) which informs Harry that the Ministry of Magic is refusing to believe Lord Voldemort’s (Ralph Fiennes) return. At the Order’s headquarters, Sirius mentions that Voldemort is after a special object he did not have during his previous attack.

Harry’s expulsion is reversed at a hearing of the Ministry of Magic and he returns to Hogwarts for his fifth year, where Minister of Magic Cornelius Fudge (Robert Hardy) has appointed a new Defence Against the Dark Arts professor: Dolores Umbridge (Imelda Staunton). Umbridge immediately clashes with Harry and punishes him for his “lies” about Voldemort by forcing him to write a message with a magic quill, scarring his hand. Despite the concern of his best friends Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) and Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint), Harry refuses to report Umbridge’s punishment to Dumbledore, who has mysteriously been ignoring Harry since the summer. As Umbridge’s control over the school increases, Harry, Hermione and Ron form a secret group to train students in defensive spells, calling themselves “Dumbledore’s Army”. Umbridge puts up a poster for students who want to help with exposing the group for extra credit, Draco Malfoy (Tom Felton) being one of them, calling it the “Inquisitorial Squad”. Meanwhile, Harry and Cho Chang (Katie Leung) develop romantic feelings for each other.

Harry has a vision involving an attack upon Arthur Weasley (Mark Williams), from the point of view of Arthur’s attacker. Concerned that Voldemort will exploit this connection to Harry, Dumbledore instructs Severus Snape (Alan Rickman) to give Harry Occlumency lessons to defend his mind from Voldemort’s influence. This causes Harry to further isolate himself from his friends. Meanwhile, Sirius’ deranged Death Eater cousin Bellatrix Estrange (Helena Bonham Carter) escapes from Azkaban along with nine other Death Eaters. At Hogwarts, Umbridge and her “Inquisitorial Squad” expose Dumbledore’s Army by forcing Cho to drink Veritaserum. Dumbledore escapes as Fudge orders his arrest and Umbridge becomes the new Headmistress.

Harry’s inability to forgive Cho causes their relationship to fall apart. The Occlumency lessons end after Harry discovers through Snape’s memories that Harry’s father, James, often ridiculed him. After seeing another vision where Sirius is tortured by Voldemort, Harry, Ron and Hermione rush to Umbridge’s fireplace to alert the Order via the Floo Network but are caught by her. Through cryptic language, Harry alerts Snape of the situation, who in turn alerts The Order. When Umbridge threatens to use the  Cruciatus Curse on Harry, Hermione tricks her into entering the Forbidden Forest in search of Dumbledore’s “secret weapon”. Hermione and Harry lead Umbridge to the hiding place of Rubeus Hagrid’s (Robbie Coltrane) giant half-brother Grawp (), only to be confronted by centaurs who kidnap Umbridge after she attacks and insults them.

Harry, Hermione, Ron, Ginny Weasley (Bonnie Wright), Luna Lovegood (Evanna Lynch), and Neville Longbottom  (Matthew Lewis) fly to the Ministry of Magic on Thestrals in an attempt to save Sirius. The six enter the Department of Mysteries and uncover a bottled prophecy, the object Voldemort was after. However, they are ambushed by Death Eaters led by Lucius Malfoy (Jason Issacs) and Bellatrix Lestrange. Lucius reveals that Harry only saw a dream of Sirius being tortured, which served as a ruse to lure Harry into the Death Eaters’ grasp. Harry refuses to give Lucius the prophecy, causing a fight between Dumbledore’s Army and the Death Eaters.

The Death Eaters capture Harry’s friends, threatening to kill them unless he surrenders the prophecy. As Harry obliges, the Order arrive and attack the Death Eaters. This causes Lucius to drop the prophecy, destroying it. Just as Sirius overpowers Lucius, he is killed by Bellatrix. Voldemort appears, but Dumbledore arrives through the Floo Network moments before he can kill Harry. A duel between Voldemort and Dumbledore ensues, during which Bellatrix escapes. At an impasse with Dumbledore, Voldemort possesses Harry to tempt Dumbledore into sacrificing him but Harry, thinking of his friends and Sirius, manages to block Voldemort from his body.

Ministry officials arrive right before Voldemort disapparates; Fudge admits Voldemort’s return and gets voted out of being Minister For Magic, Umbridge is removed from Hogwarts, and Dumbledore returns as headmaster. Dumbledore explains that he distanced himself from Harry throughout the year, hoping it would lessen the risk of Voldemort using their connection. Harry comes to terms with the prophecy: “Neither can live while the other survives.”

I love this movie of the series. It is a good foreshadowing for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 and Part 2. We really get more information and background on Sirius Black as well as which adults are a part off the Order of the Phoenix. We also see the students creating Dumbledore’s Army. Honestly this film is very much what it feels like in the last 4 years in the United States. Also the music is on point. Signing off with my favorite scene once again.

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