SPOILER FREE – MOSTLY.
The day has finally come. The day we have all been waiting nearly ten years for: seeing how it all ends. Now I know that most of you have probably read the books and therefore know how it will end. I, however, took an approach early on in the series that I would only read the book after that corresponding movie had been seen. That way, I could watch each film with fresh eyes, free from judgement that they had left out a favorite part of mine.
Now, if you need a bit of a refresher, you honestly should have watched the previous films again. But generally, Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) Ron (Rupert Grint) and Hermoine (Emma Watson) are on the run from Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes) and hunting down the seven horcruxes that have part of Voldemort’s soul inside them. After they destroy each one, he becomes a bit weaker. The problem is trying to find the horcruxes. In Part One of the Deathly Hallows, the gang was able to locate and destroy one, bringing their total to three now destroyed horcruxes.
I was worried that Part Two would feel rushed seeing as they had to find and destroy four horcruxes all before they could defeat the Dark Lord. Well, I guess to be fair, it did seem a bit rushed, but the pacing was fantastic. Part One of the Deathly Hallows had such a nice, slow pace that let you sit back and really fall into the shoes of each of the main characters, but Part Two was full of action from start to finish.
David Yates did a fantastic job creating the somber environments and equally thrilling scenes. My heart raced in scenes such as the Gringotts Bank Vault heist. The gang needed to break into Bellatrix’s (Helena Bonham Carter) vault to find another horcrux, and we tagged along with them on a fast-paced roller coaster to get to the vault. Then they barely survived by escaping on the back of a tortured dragon kept in the dungeon of the bank as security.
One of the greatest moments for me in the 130 minute film was the very anticipated and much needed embrace and kiss of Ron and Hermoine. The scene was shot brilliantly. They had just escaped the wrath from destroying a horcrux and the only thing they were each thinking about was kissing each other. Another brilliant, yet somber scene was the redemption of Severus Snape (Alan Rickman) as we finally get to see what he went through his whole life and what his true motives were. He still has the best voice in show business and used his vocal talents to the very end.
The final battle was not just one scene, it consisted of nearly the entire second half of the film. The scenes were fantastic and the battles were on par with the battle scenes in Lord of the Rings. Between wands battling for life, was an occasional troll swinging huge objects around to wipe out as many enemies as possible. The battles were not without their deaths, both good and bad died. To be honest, I expected to be crying during these parts, and I wasn’t. It could have been due to the adrenaline pumping through my veins as I watched the fights, or it could have been due to the fact that with so much stuff to cover in the final book, certain deaths would not have their due on screen.
Redemption certainly had it’s place however. Neville Longbottom (Matthew Lewis), who for years was the butt of many jokes growing up in Hogwarts, finally gets his turn to shine. He was fantastic and with probably the most screen time in this film over any other one. His moment was honestly the only moment in the film that had me jumping out of my seat wanting to high-five my neighbors.
That’s not to say that the rest of the plot points were lackluster, just that I saw most of them coming a few years back. We have all grown up with Harry Potter and through the years have learned, as he did, that certain things must come to pass to get rid of evil. J.K. Rowling has done wonders with getting young people to start reading more and at the same time, teach us all so many lessons, most of all, humility.
Being donned the title The Chosen One doesn’t entitle you to be an ass. Your title and fame will outlast you if you choose to do the right things in life. Harry leads a fantastic example for others to imitate. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part Two wraps up the story we have all been waiting to hear for ten years now. The loose ends are gone, the endings are mostly happy and we are only left with a sense of familial continuation at Hogwarts. It was purely satisfying from the moments the opening titles said, “Part Two” until the last smiles on the screen in the final scenes.
I give Part Two 4.5 “let’s all go have some Butterbeer” out of 5
by Angela Davis