Monday, 1 August 2011

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2


Dir: David Yates (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1)
Regular Cast: Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Ralph Fiennes
Additional Cast: Alan Rickman, Helena Bonham Carter, Matthew Lewis, Evanna Lynch, Tom Felton, Jason Issacs
UK/USA,, 2011

Seen: July 16, 2011 at Scotiabank in AVX
Reason to see: It's on my list of Most Anticipated Films of 2011 (#1)

Reviewing the final installment in the Harry Potter films is a challenging task, especially from a spoiler-free perspective. Is any background to the previous 7 films a spoiler? Are notations from books a spoiler? In my book the answer to both is yes. So what do I say?

I also find it extremely challenge to think of this particular series from a perspective other than knowledge of it and love for it. Personally, I've been a fan since the first film Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone and I re-read all the books in 2010 in anticipation for the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 and I re-watched and reviewed the first 6 films in a marathon for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. It's safe to say that the plot, themes, heck even colour stories of the films and fully ingrained in me and when I hear the names Harry, Hermonie & Ron I instantly see images of Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint throughout the years of portraying their characters who gradually learn magic at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft & Wizardly along with getting into (good & bad) trouble, facing formidable foes on top of going through the everyday coming of age challenges.

I can say that I am glad that they split the final book of J.K. Rowling series into two parts, and that I'm surprized that I think Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 will be my favourite of the final two installments with it's expansive and ominous pacing that gives an emotional weight and feeling of hopelessness. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is more traditional plot-focused storytelling that really does pull threads from all of the films and brings them together. That must be wild for people that haven't read the books and don't know what's coming. It's one of the darker films of the series (grime level is up there with Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban), which certainly seems to win people over. I like that we get to continue to see great storytelling and characters come to life in both the books and the films. The characters are truly at the heart of the story, and it's not just Harry who is of course important but this one really hones in on how the actions & decisions of each and every individual matter and make a difference. Along with the three of Harry, Hermoine & Ron we also get a lot of Snape (Alan Rickman) and a fair amount of Neville (Matthew Lewis) in this one which made it all the better as they are some of the most enjoyable & unique characters which made me love the film all the more.

I also loved that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 really honours all previous films in the series with various nods and notations from music cues to character references, this was a true treat for a die hard fan like myself. It's a series like no other, and although I'm sure studios will be chomping at the bit to find 'the next' series or story to magically win us over, but I'd recommend them to switch gears and look to other subjects or stories. This is a truly epic magical story with captivating characters and a lot of heart. Let's let them be the stars that they are, and shine brightly for just a little longer. I'm sad to see it end, but happy to see that it was followed through right until the very end.

Shannon's Overall View:
I loved it
I'll buy it
I highly recommend to fans and followers of the series

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Also see: Most Anticipated Films of 2011, 2011 Book to Film Adaptations and All Film Reviews

© Shannon Ridler, 2011

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