Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 was a refugee’s story; Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 is a war story. The film picks-up directly where Part 1 left off, replaying Voldemort’s theft of the Elder Wand from Part 1 and continuing on to Hogwarts within the first half hour. The Final Battle takes up the majority of the movie.
Films in the series have been growing progressively darker and, although this film is not as dark as the reality of such a war would be, it continues the trend as the darkest yet. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 is a far cry from the wonderful world we were introduced to in Sorcerer’s Stone ten years ago. Some of the deaths are quite gruesome and this film is the bloodiest of the series.
While Director David Yates, Producer David Heyman, and the rest of the Potter team took quite a few “artistic liberties” with the material, they still produced an excellent film that includes all of the key aspects of the book. Screenwriter Steve Cloves produced a script that fit amusing quips into the background of war, giving us unforgettable lines (some of them his own, some favorites from the books) and all the information we need to follow Harry’s quest. To top it off, the trio continues to give stellar performances, as do the rest of the A-list cast.
The special effects were very well done and, combined with the work of Eduardo Serra (Director of Photography), allowed for beautiful and haunting images. Occasionally, however, I felt the movie became a bit too impressed with the skill of its special effects team taking away from the story for a short period of time.
My main criticism of the film would be the lack of Ginny Weasley (played by Bonnie Wright). While she has always been sidelined to a certain extent, this film cut her out even more. In the books she is Harry’s raison d’être. He is constantly thinking about her and remembering past memories. In this movie, Ginny is given only two real scenes to show how much she cares for Harry, while he appears almost unaffected by her presence.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is a well-written, well-acted, and well-put-together film that effectively sends off the Potter film series. Anyone familiar with the series will delight in this most recent escape into the magical world of Harry Potter.