Too Much "British" Makes Your Head Explode

In my daring attempt to catch up on all the Harry Potter movies before this summer's Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, I am facing a major stumbling block: I am bored out of my freaking mind! Before I sit through two more DVDs full of wizardly excess, could somebody tell me: Are there any Harry Potter movies that don't suck?!

I may be wrong, but it just seems to me that the filmmakers are so afraid of feeling the wrath of rabid, fanatical fans (read: nerds) that they have eschewed all editorial savvy on every level by throwing in everything—everything—in those books onto the screen. The books are supposed to be a blueprint, not the shooting script. People treat them like they're books of the Bible. Even the books of the Bible aren't treated like books of the Bible! Those Bible movies are relatively short compared to how long the goddamn Bible is!

I've been alternating back and forth between Harry Potter and the first Prime Suspect series, starring Helen Mirren. It takes her four episodes to catch a serial killer. At least on American television, they can do it in one—with commercials.

Look, I usually love all things British (my love of Mr. Bean can be considered disturbing), but they can be so damn leisurely when it comes to their mass entertainment. I'm American. I like explosions.

—Reporting From Glendale, California

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