Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
Directed by: David Yates
Cast: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Ralph Fiennes, Alan Rickman
Running Time: 2 hrs 10 mins
Release Date: July 15, 2011
PLOT: Harry Potter (Radcliffe) must destroy the remaining horcruxes, while Voldermort (Fiennes) vows to kill everyone who stands in his way of defeating the boy who lived.
WHO’S IT FOR? All of you muggles. You’ve seen all the other films, read the books and now you’re ready to say goodbye. Keep in mind you should really see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 if you expect to keep up with this one.
EXPECTATIONS: Every Potter movie has been good, not great. I figured it would be more of the same. All the films have been a good reminder of how much fun the books were to read.
Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter: He’s owned this role for so long it’s great to watch him one last time. Even when things are dire, Radcliffe is able to deliver a line and make it OK. Harry is deadpan amusing this time around, like he’s finally become an action star. The film really does fall on his shoulders and he pulls it off.
Rupert Grint and Emma Watson as Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger: I’ve never scored these two together, but how can you not this time around? They’re inseparable and it’s about time! Once again Grint displays well-timed humorous disbelief. This time around so does Watson. Hermione watches her boyfriend Ron become a man. Not only has she fallen for him, she’s impressed. That isn’t something we’ve seen to this extent.
Ralph Fiennes as Lord Voldemort: Finally! I was wondering when we were going to get a good dose of Lord Voldemort, and it finally happened. Fienees is given enough screen time to truly showcase how evil he is as “he who shall not be named.” As the horcruxes are destroyed, Voldemort loses a little power. He’s worried and takes it out on any death eater who shows him sympathy. Just like an evil wizard should. Watching him hug is priceless.
Alan Rickman as Professor Severus Snape: Hmm… This is a tough one, because I love Rickman’s voice, and I love his portrayal as Snape. At first it seems he won’t have a chance for the screen time, but luckily some well-placed flashbacks help us out here. My only problem is that the present day Snape looks a little like a bloated drag queen. It’s distracting.
Rest of Cast: It appears some people were given their big moments in The Deathly Hallows: Part 1. This especially applies to Helena Bonham Carter as Bellatrix Lestrange. Draco Malfoy (Tom Felton) isn’t given much time here either, especially considering the role he plays in the entire saga. But guess who we do get tons of? Neville Longbottom (Matthew Lewis)! There’s a good chance the audience you see the film with will be openly applauding as he runs across an exploding bridge and gets the courage to talk with Luna.
TALKING: While this film definitely continues the dark, dire tone of Part 1, there’s enough humor sprinkled in from Neville, Harry and Ron. Some of the best dialogue comes when Harry talks about how pointless it is for this group to make plans. Most of the lines are delivered like great, classic action one-liners like “I suppose I’ll have to kill him before!”
SIGHTS: On one hand, it’s like these wands only deliver laser bolts, but man it’s beautiful to watch. The dragon escape, the room of requirement on fire, Ron and Hermione kiss, Snape’s flashback, the many battles at Hogwarts … they are all brilliant to look at. The 3D is not necessary. Don’t feel you need to spend the extra money. In fact, the flying Warner Bros. logo in the opening credits seemed to be the best 3D in the film. Remember, it’s a dark film, made darker by 3D glasses (specially designed to look like Harry’s glasses).
SOUNDS: The musical score is once again fantastic by Alexandre Desplat. During many of the action scenes things are slowed down visually, and accompanying those moments are tragically sad sounds making you realize what is at stake. The wands snap off spells to audio brilliance just like two lightsabers doing battle.
BEST SCENE: Snape’s flashback. This gives Harry a different perspective on his life and relationship with Snape.
ENDING: The final battle is great. Thank goodness. If you know the book, yes the epilogue is there. The makeup isn’t the best, but it’s still nice to see.
QUESTIONS: Why did Snape have to kill Dumbledore? Where was Hagrid the whole time? Did so many deaths need to occur off-screen? If you’ve only seen the movies, and never read the books you’ll still be excited, but you might not fully understand.
REWATCHABILITY: Yes. I would say goodbye again. Next time it will definitely be in 2D. I think I’ll save it until I can watch Part 1 and Part 2 back to back.
Eight movies and now it is over. I loved the books and liked the movies. I’ve had many agree with me on that thought. Each film is in that 6 to 8 out of 10 range (B- to B+). Do you know what this film has that the others don’t? It’s not wall to wall action. That’s what they said it would be and that’s what everyone assumed, one big battle. The action is actually spread out pretty well, and most of it is slow motion or style shows instead of just BAM BAM BAM fast-paced fun. What Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 has that the other movies don’t is the power of saying goodbye. It makes everything more. More tragic, more joy, more hope and more wonder. Potter has it’s problems, like the fact that it never seems to be about the person who knows the most spells. Here, the wands act more like G.I. Joe laser guns. That doesn’t mean it’s not brilliant to watch. Harry, Ron and Hermione are characters we have watched grown up on screen, and some of us have grown right with them. This film captures the spirit of the book. I’m sad.
It’s the last Harry Potter and because of that, it’s the best Harry Potter. That’s the power of goodbye.
FINAL SCORE: 9/10