Film Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1
Well, we finally have a review for the new Potter flick, 2 reviews actually, the first one by Matthew West.
Harry Potter has always been a very nostalgic series in both the books and films; with its magical atmosphere, brilliantly quirky characters and an epic story to boot, it stands to reason that the stories of the boy wizard have become so popular. Soon however, the series is finally going to come to an end with the last entry into the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, with Part 1 of 2 released 2 weeks ago. I saw it only a mere 2 days after release and boy was it good. So without any more procrastinating , here’s my review. Keep in mind I will talk about some spoilerish topics someway through this review, but I’ll give a warning when I am about to discuss them.
Followers of the film and book series will know that Harry James Potter has finally discovered the key to defeating his arch nemesis Voldemort (or He Who Must Not Be Named); horcruxes. Ron and Hermione are aiding Harry in his quest to find and destory all of the horcruxes in order to finally destroy the evil dark wizard.
Right at the beginning of the film we are shown what is going on with the 3 lead characters as they prepare to leave their homes forever. Hermione leaving was definitely the saddest, as although it was only mentioned in the book, the film shows Hermione obliviating her own parents. You can really see the sadness in her eyes as she wipes all memory of her existence from her parents. Harry is left alone after the Dursley’s short and pretty disappointing exit; in the book Dudley thanks Harry for saving him from the Dementors and says “I don’t think you’re a waste of space”, followed by a very awkward hand shake. This was completely scrapped in the film, and I was expecting it to be shown due to the movie apparently squeezing in every detail because of the 2 parts. Nevertheless, it’s still a minor issue I had. The rest of the film plays out just like the book, with a few unnecessary story points left out. Nothing ever seems to drag on in the film, and I think that’s because a lot of the camping scenes were removed due to how long and boring they were in the book. There is so much to cover on the story is just isn’t possible to discuss everything, but I will say there is a good balance between comic relief and dramatic struggles between the 3 lead characters.
One story change that I think was quite good was that Hedwig’s death was more of a hero’s one which gave her a much better exit that in the book. Of course the death everyone wants to hear about is Dobby’s; it was sad, very much so, although I didn’t cry, but the burial I just laughed and I don’t know why. I’ll get back to you on that. I was a little irked that Wormtail’s death wasn’t acknowledged; in fact he didn’t die at all.
Now on to the music; it was bloody brilliant, as Ron would say. It felt a lot more emotionally powerful than the music in the other films, giving it a greater dramatic tone. There are definitely a lot of musical moments that fans will remember for quite some time. The usual Hedwig’s Theme wasn’t present in this film, however it really wasn’t needed and it’s absence actually helped sell the feeling that this wasn’t the cheerful Hogwarts movie.
The special effects were great; never overused, but just the right amount. Most of it was just light coming out of people’s wands, but the one highlight of the effects used was the Tale of the Three Brothers. This was narrated by Hermione in a very well done animation that should be up for an award and was definitely the strong point in the effects. The funniest sequence using these effects was the 7 Harrys scene, where 6 members of the Order of the Phoenix drink Polyjuice potion to become Harry. Daniel Radcliffe really outdid himself in this scene, and the transformation of the characters was quite a funny site.
To conclude, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 feels like the title suggests; only half of the overall epic story. It ends at a good point, even though some may wish it to continue, heck I’d watch a 5 hour Potter flick if it meant seeing the whole story in one go. Until July next year when Part 2 comes out, we’ll just have to wait. I rate the film 8/10.
Go onto Page 2 to see Matko’s Review!