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Saturday, July 23, 2011

HARRY POTTER & THE DEATHLY HALLOWS PART 2 [O]

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Just saw Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows part 2 and whilst I gather my thoughts and emotions, I can safely say this director has tried his best in giving hogwarts its true look for the past 3 movies. I like the fact Neville and Snape were given their moments and especially Snape's which was very very touching with almost word for word adaptation. Also the deaths, the resurrection stone scene and surprisingly the epilogue worked better in the film than in the books where thankfully the writer decided to cut out a few children. What wasn't good was the mood; even after 19 years all three did not manage to find their humour again. Rather bland serious ending. What was missing which would have made this ending more bittersweet was Harry touching his scar. The dragon scene was amazing and the entire special effects was top notch. Everyone had their moment; from the teachers to even Mrs Weasley, finally! Was like a huge reunion show but I didn't notice Percy. Fans even got the Neville-Luna romance which was never in the books. I like that. I would have loved Harry marrying Luna; they seem to have far more conversation than Harry and Ginny. I also like how Narcissa just took Draco home, just like that they walked away from Voldemort.

As for what I didn't like was the entire Dumbledore/Aberforth/Grindewald/Ariana missing story. It was pivotal in casting a shadow of doubt on Dumbledore's character and how Harry struggled with trusting Dumbledore and explains why Dumbledore never accepted the position of Minister of Magic, his crooked nose, why he put on that Riddle ring that cursed him, why he said Harry was a brave boy, etc. It also has a connection with why Harry accepted his fated destiny; to die with dignity and casting a spell over the entire school with protection from his sacrifice, like his mother did for him. I would also love to see more of Snape and Lily backstory instead of just what was shown. The wit were all gone. Even at its most serious moment, the book still had some witty moments but the ones in the movie seems drained, gone. tired. I would have wanted the dialogue between Dumbledore and Harry at King's Cross to be more, a more lighthearted Dumbledore explaining to Harry everything he has failed to explain when he was alive instead of what was shown. It was pivotal moment; and yet so fleeting. I know there is a lack of time but story integrity can't be sacrificed. But the worst was the elder wand; the movie showed Harry snapped it into 2. If I remember correctly, Harry's wand was snapped into 2, couldn't be fixed, Harry was very upset, he lost his owl, his broom, his friends and now his wand which he was very fond of. He used Draco's wand throughout and in the end in what I felt was the book's proper ending was him using the elder wand to fix his own wand, and he will later put the elder wand back with Dumbledore and make sure no one will defeat him in future so as to possess the elder wand. The stone was left in the forest, lost forever. He only retained the cloak. But the movie seems to suggest you can just break the wand by hand, seems so flimsy, so careless, when wand should have its own magic, not so easy to break. I didn't like the movie's ending at all and would have wished for the original which was the ending I really loved from the book before the amateurish epilogue.

Why the stories had to be changed I didn't understand. I did understand why Voldemort's death had to be so dramatic even if in the book it was mundane which was how I liked it. I would have loved Harry exposing Snape as the actual good guy in front of everyone from the school when he was having a duel with Voldemort instead of what was shown in the movie. The movie was entertaining, dramatic, at times good and the director did what he could with the amazing materials, making Hogwarts seem so real, so huge, but again the story as in the book, the core story about the hocruxes, the elder wand, the deathly hallows were all fleeting, sacrificed for dramatics. The last book has a good story and I especially love the whole deathly hallows and its significance, the master of death and how both Voldemort and Harry sees the idea of death. Voldemort sees a master of death as someone who is immortal and so he did many terrible things to achieve just that but Harry, through Dumbledore and the many secrets he had to find out on his own realised Master of Death is someone who accepts death, has no fear of death. That was no conveyed in the movie properly and to me that is the entire 8 movies' failure; to capture the essence of what makes Harry Potter such an amazing series of books and why JK Rowling is deservingly a billionaire.

If you are confused, just read the book. If you have never read any of the books, try the 1st book and read in sequence to understand the story, the plot points, the connections. Believe me, the 7 books may not be the best books you have ever read but they will definitely make you a fan and make you read and read again. If they don't, I can only say you're a literature snob with very little taste in what makes a good book.


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