By: Julio De Francisco (Two Beers) –
Warning: There are minor spoilers in this review.
Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) is coming of age. For now he has the trace, which means the Ministry of Magic will know he’s been doing magic while outside of Hogwarts. With Dumbledore gone, he’s more vulnerable to Voldemort, who wants nothing else but to be the one to kill Harry Potter. After an intense and harrowing rescue, Harry is ready to leave his companions so that no one else is hurt or killed. Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) and Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) join him on his quest to destroy the remaining Horcrux’s, artifacts sacred to Voldemort with parts of his soul. Together, they seek the remaining Horcrux’s and to destroy them all.
Now fugitives and staying clear of Death Eaters (Voldemort followers) without a clue of about what to do, they ponder for many months about what the hell the gifts Dumbledore left them that might lead them closer to completing their quest. Ron, left with a Deluminator; Hermione with a copy of Tales of Beedle the Bard (a children’s book for wizards); finally, Harry was gifted the first Snitch he ever caught. But what does this all mean and how does it get them closer to reaching their end goal? This question is pondered over and over again, leading to a very long and drawn out movie so that the folks at Warner Bros. could really milk the Harry Potter franchise. On the upside, this leads the film to explore the story in greater detail like fitting in this much text.
The intense rescue of Harry Potter from Number 4,Privet Driveat the start of the film is hands down the most exciting action sequence of all the Harry Potter films and for that I raise this first glass of beer. The gravitas of the situation is elevated merely by the number of Harry Potters involved, seven, thanks to Mad-Eye Moody’s polyjuice potion. Yes, seven Harry Potter’s were needed to fool those looking to kill him. The lives of his closest allies, Ron, Hermione, the Weasley twins, Bill (Ron’s eldest brother), his fiancé, and Auror’s (members of an elite unite from the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, a sort of Navy Seal Team 6 situation) to fly him out of there.
While everyone else was on either a broom or a magical creature, Harry Potter escaped along side Hagrid (half giant half wizard) in the sidecar of his enchanted motorcycle. When they get ambushed, Hagrid hits the rockets and gets out of there, but not without getting chased by six Death Eaters. Hagrid hit the streets ofLondonto try and shake them as Harry casts spells to protect them. This chase leads into a tunnel where Hagrid is hit by a spell and is knocked unconscious. Hedwig comes to the rescue when they are back in the air distracting a wizard but not before being killed and revealing that he’s the true Harry Potter. Voldemort comes out of nowhere and attempts to kill Harry Potter, but their wands come together in a Pre-Priori Incantatem lock. He escapes when he hits the rocket again for a last ditch effort leaving Voldemort hung up in power lines. This is exciting stuff, folks.
We’re wizards, we don’t need no damn helmets.
Also, I need to give praise to the animation sequence about the Deathly Hallows. It was brilliant. What I loved about it was the attention to detail and the narration of the story about the three brothers. I don’t think you’ll ever see The Three Little Pigs told like this, or have it be as interesting to listen to. We all know what happens when you try to tell a story and add some darkness; you end up with shit shows like Red Riding Hood (2011).
The movie is really long. There were a lot of cinematic scenes that could have been reduced by 80%, like when Harry Potter and Hermione are dancing, or when the trio are just hanging out doing nothing but thinking about what to do next. What I especially didn’t like about this movie were the 5 to 10 seconds needed to focus on the face of a sad Harry Potter amplified by an orchestra really laying the violin on thick. Also, did we really need all those fade to black, remain in black, and then fade from black transitions into the film? It didn’t really make me upset, it just made me wonder, “What happened?”
Yeah, like this, ‘cept not as bad.
Whether you dislike or love the Harry Potter books and movies, know that this movie is not for kids. I especially like this.
Bonus Drinking Game
Take a drink: anytime you hear the name Harry, Potter, Hermoine, or Ron.
Take a drink: anytime someone casts a spell verbally.
Take a shot: whenever you hear the word “Brilliant”
Take a shot: whenever Ron praises Hermione
Take a drink: whenever Harry Potter asks a question. (Careful, excessive drinking may cause blindness)