Reviews

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2

Warner Brothers

Mark Haddon

"From the sinister opening sequence – in which students are marched rank-and-file through a misty courtyard, surrounded by a horde of cloaked Dementors – to the monumental closing battle that reduces it to smouldering rubble, this certainly isn’t the warm, fuzzy home-from-home we’re used to."

Richard Jordan, TotalFilm.co.uk

'

 

So on Friday 15 July it finally arrived, the long awaited day: the final instalment of the Harry Potter series was released as a film.  About 4 years since the book had been released, a lot of people were chomping at the bit to see how it had been carried to the big screen, and I was one of them.  Only eight months ago, we were all left hanging from the edge of our seats as we saw Harry distraught with grief at the death of Dobby.  Then, just to whet our appetites further, there was the closing scene of He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Name (AKA Voldemort, AKA Ray Fiennes) opening up Dumbledore's tomb and retrieving the Elder wand.


The second film wastes no time re-capping, it jumps straight in at this point and carries on merrily with the story.  I have heard a few remarks criticising this, but quite frankly I appreciated it.  If you are going to see the 8th film in a 10 year long franchise, you have to expect to be confused and no 5-minute recap is going to help there.  With so much left to get through in this film, it was inevitable that certain parts were going to be omitted, but in my view, none of the best bits were sacrificed.  Unlike some of the previous films, this one ran at quite a pace and it was mainly the 'chit chat' that got culled.  All-in-all though, this added to the experience and to the feeling of pace in a similar way to how the 'tent bit' of the first half of 'The Deathly Hallows' was intended to make you understand the strain and slow progress the trio of Harry, Hermione and Ron were enduring.


The level of acting displayed by the cast was high and rightly so with so many big names.  The three main stars, Daniel Radcliff (Harry), Emma Watson (Hermione) and Rupert Grint (Ron) were probably at their best - by no means perfect, but much more improved than in some of the earlier films.  Some of the scenes were, as expected, quite emotional and this was brought to screen very well.  The visuals in the film were also excellent - the battle scenes were very realistic and it was easy to forget that it was mainly CGI.  When pre-booking for the film, only 3D showings were available where we would have preferred 2D.  The 3D effects were, I believe, added in post-production, so it didn't add much to the film in my view.  However, this is a reflection of the 3D capabilities and, moreover, the new found obsession with 3D, rather than of the film itself.  I suspect it would look as good in 2D, if not better.


A few small things had changed compared to the book which disappointed me slightly.  But, with so much detail, this was inevitable and the plot stayed, for the most part, true to what Rowling had written.  The combination of acting, effects and a fairly sound script made for a good quality film which was a fitting end to the tale of Harry and his friends.  The '19 years later' part did make me chuckle out loud a bit, but after such a heavy 2 hours, I suspect that was probably deliberate on the part of the film makers. With so many hopes riding on this film, I think the end product should have more than met most people's expectations.  I am most certainly pleased with what we have been given.

 

'

Reviewed on 17/07/2011 by Angela

 

Reviewed item details

Total Film review

IMDB (all images taken from IMDB)

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Comments

I saw the film in 2D which is exactly what I wanted to do.I thought the film was brilliant and thoroughly lived up to my expectations.
I cried when we saw Snape's memory of how he had never stopped loving Lily Potter, and how indeed he was the bravest of the brave.
I am sad to see the story end but felt that the film followed the book very closely. I shall miss them all.
Anna Watling

Anna on 20/07/2011


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