Just like any other fan, I was eagerly anticipating Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II and as the film begins, it proves to you what it has promised all along: it is going to be unlike any other of the Potter series to date.
Straight from the off you are shown how Voldermort has shaped the Wizarding World around him with the visuals of a militant Hogwarts reminiscent of any war. These children are thrown in to a situation many adults would shy away from and yet they have no other choice in the matter. Obviously this applies to, more than anyone else, our “Golden Trio” as they continue their search for the Horcruxes with some guerrilla-like techniques, but also a few less subtle methods (hinthint, one involves a dragon). Before long though, Harry, Hermione and Ron will finally return to Hogwarts where the final battle will commence. It is safe to the say though that you can expect romance, heartache, loss and suspense along the way before the film ends.
By this point in the series, the audience can expect the usual array of characters with a couple of new ones thrown in. Daniel Radcliffe once again shows his improvement since Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and creates a Harry whose desperation acts as a soundtrack for the entire movie. This is also emphasised by Alexandre Desplat’s score which is a consistent as a character as Harry Potter himself. Rupert Grint remains to be the strongest actor amongst the younger generation of actors but Emma Watson really has blossomed in the last two instalments of the series and has proven that she really is the Hermione that I (and needless to say Ron) had always hoped for.
A character that really became himself during the novel was the B.A.M.F, Neville Longbottom and it was always a wonder whether this would also be apparent during the film; I am relieved to say that even if Matthew Lewis’ performance was not perfect, it was true to the character. His continuing strength and bravery pushes him out from under Harry’s shadow whilst proving him to be a true Gryffindor. Daniel Radcliffe has been quoted many times as saying this is Alan Rickman’s best role to date, but I respectfully disagree. Alan Rickman is the perfect Snape and the Prince’s Tale is a beautiful piece of cinema, but still incomparable to Sheriff George of Nottingham, Hans Gruber of Die Hard and my personal favourite, Alexander Dane of Galaxy Quest. You cannot question the calibre of the film’s older actors, but my favourite scene (maybe of the entire series) contains Professor McGonagall as she defends Hogwarts and I am not ashamed to say it drew me to tears.
This film perhaps lacked the opportunities the first part did to show the impressive scenery and yet the cinematography is still the incredibly high standard that Eduardo Serra began in Part 1. This film, much like the others, was obviously going to depend upon special effects as the damage done to Hogwarts during the final battle is immense. The explosions, the flames and the spells together equate to a young boy’s fantasies whilst also combining to give the 3D version of the film, an even more vibrant appearance. Despite this, anyone with motion sickness should be warned with certain aspects and overall I do not feel the glasses added to my viewing pleasure in any real way.
I loved the film completely and feel it was a perfect end to the story but it is clear whilst watching the film that it is a half of a whole, and personally, I cannot wait to watch them back to back to do each the justice they deserve.