Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix courtesy Warner Bros. Pictures Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix courtesy Warner Bros. Pictures

For reasons only Hollywood bean counters know, Tokyo hosted the world premiere of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and to hear the Times of London tell it, the franchise's fifth entry is somewhat burdened by its "crueller" subject matter. As the stage begins to be set for the ultimate loggerhead between good and evil and action-filled screen time gives way to mere intrigue, "Some will find that tedious," opines the Times. That said, the film properly paves the way for "an epic confrontation with real victims."

The Times review takes issue with the younger stars' chops - "[Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint] have 'angry' and 'determined' down pat... but struggle somewhat on the the more nuanced grimaces" - yet hails the cred lent by adult thesps Imelda Staunton and Helena Bonham Carter ("a shining but underused talent").

All told, the Times suspects that Potterphiles currently enduring the "unbearable" wait for the final book's printing may deem this "otherwise enjoyable film" to be "a chore to be got through before the main course."