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Posts Tagged ‘harry potter’

Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

I can’t say that I’m a tremendously huge fan of Harry Potter. I’ve read two and a half books and haven’t seen any of the movies. But when I heard there was going to be a Harry Potter theme park opening in Universal Studios, I decided I would be more than excited to go.

The park, which will feature a virtual robotic ride over Hogwarts Castle, will open on June 18 in Orlando, Florida. It will be dubbed ‘The Wizarding World of Harry Potter’ and will leave plenty of room for every Harry Potter fan. It will take up 20 acres, after all. Besides the main ride, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, other rides will also be featured, like the Dragon Challenge, and the Flight of the Hippogriff.

Some of the more interesting aspects of the new theme park lie within its eating establishments. As all fans of the book know, there are some very unique foods that present themselves to characters in the stories. The main restaurant, called Three Broomsticks, will feature butterbeer, a drink that tastes like shortbread cookies and butterscotch.

MTV News reports that they will also serve Rotisserie-smoked chicken, chargrilled ribs and turkey legs, as well as British pub staples like fish and chips, shepherd’s pie and Cornish pasties. Of course, some other tasty treats include pumpkin juice, chocolate-y cauldron cakes, treacle fudge and a Scottish ale called Hog’s Head Brew.

For those of you who couldn’t get enough of the cool stores in the Harry Potter books, you will actually be able to visit them. Visitors will have shopping opportunities in stores like Dervish and Banges, Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods, Honeyduke’s Homemade Sweets, Ollivanders, Owl Post, and Zonkos.

Click here to see a slide show of pictures from the new theme park. Looks pretty nifty to me!

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

OK. So I think we can all agree that seeing movies in 3D is pretty cool. You get to sit in a dark theater with buddy holly glasses on and watch various objects pop out from the screen right to the tip of your nose. What a viewing experience. But how far are you willing to go to have this experience? Is it worth paying extra money for?

Today, theaters nationwide will be raising their prices for 3D shows and even regular movies, too. The main companies affected by the price increase are AMC Enertainment, Inc., Regal Entertainment Group, and Cinemark Holdings, Inc.

Prices will vary from theater to theater, but the Wall Street Journal reports that some ticket price sales will jump to as much as an extra $5 per ticket. You could be paying close to $19 to see a 3D movie!

And get this, theaters aren’t responsible for announcing the increase. So the next time you go to see a 3D movie, you might be in for a bit of a shock.

Of course, the newest trend is making every movie in 3D. In the next year, there are numerous films to be released that will fall into that category. Harry Potter, Phish 3D, and Toy Story are among those. Is it me, or is someone trying to steal your money here?

The last time I checked, the American economy wasn’t doing so well. I seriously doubt that raising the price to see a movie will help the situation. It is now up to the consumer to decide if they MUST SEE that new 3D movie in theaters or wait for it to come out on DVD. In some cases, it might be a decision between that and dinner.

I choose dinner.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

The Harry Potter series has been one of the most talked about and read series of our recent times. It not only appeals to a younger audience, but has also been known to attract an older age bracket as well. Author J.K. Rowling went from rags to riches when the first book was released, and the success of her novels has brought her much fame. But now, she is being accused of plagiarizing the familiar children’s novels.

J.K. Rowling poses with one of her Harry Potter books.

To get you up to speed, there is similar book entitled The Adventure of Willy the Wizard, which was written by Adrian Jacobs back in 1987. The author of this book is claiming that Rowling took many ideas and large chunks of the book and then included it as a part of her Harry Potter series.

The sections of the book that Jacobs is claiming were plagiarized are wizard contests and wizards traveling on trains. It is true that these things are also present in Harry Potter, but could Rowling really have taken them from Jacob’s book? It seems a little fishy.

According to Reuters, Rowling made the following statements about the accusations: 

“I am saddened that yet another claim has been made that I have taken material from another source to write Harry,” Rowling, 44, said in a statement.

“The fact is I had never heard of the author or the book before the first accusation by those connected to the author’s estate in 2004; I have certainly never read the book.”

“The claims that are made are not only unfounded but absurd and I am disappointed that I, and my UK publisher Bloomsbury, are put in a position to have to defend ourselves.”

“We will be applying to the court immediately for a ruling that the claim is without merit and should therefore be dismissed without delay.”

Whatever the outcome of this case, there is no denying that the Harry Potter series has brought much joy to its readers. Fans of the books have been standing up for the author since the claims were made.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

Perks of Being a Wallflower was banned for homosexuality. Photo from amazon.com.

Perks of Being a Wallflower was banned for homosexuality. Photo from amazon.com.

There’s nothing better than getting completely, lose-yourself  immersed in a good book. Avid readers alike will agree. Add a little controversy to that and you’ve got yourself a Banned Book Week.

Yesterday, September 26, marked the first day of the voracious reader’s favorite week. It is a celebration of our freedom of speech and our freedom to read what we want.

According to the American Library Association (ALA), “the books featured during Banned Book Week have been targets of attempted bannings.  Fortunately, while some books were banned or restricted, in a majority of cases the books were not banned, all thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, booksellers, and members of the community to retain the books in the library collections.”

As far as Banned Book Week 2009 is concerned, here is a select list of controversial books that were chosen:

  • And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell.   
  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
  • His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman
  • American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis  
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
  • The Koran

These are just a few titles. If you wanted to do a comprehensive search on the internet of all books that have ever been banned or attempted to ban, you’d find thousands.

Banned Book Week finishes up on October 3rd. Make sure you get out there and grab yourself one of those forbidden books before then!

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