The Deathly Hallows, Part Two: Movie Review

The End of the Harry Potter Movie Series

At this point, most Harry Potter fans have seen all of the movies in the series, including the final chapter, "The Deathly Hallows, Part II." Then, there may be some who like myself and husband, wait for the DVD release, to avoid the high theater prices, and the overpriced snacks.

Now, I have never read any of the original Harry Potter books, so I cannot address how well the movies, any of them, followed the books. That is not my purpose here.

We have seen all of the movies in the series, however, and most of them were quite good, leaving the audience wanting more. That is the mark of good story-telling.

Read on with no fear, for there are no spoilers about the plot details in this review. I don't like reading reviews with spoilers, so in case there are others who have yet to see this movie, I've avoided them myself.

The Plot

"What plot?" might be a legitimate question. What plot there is seems by turns awkward and contrived, or so transparent and predictable that a 5-year-old could guess 'what happens next.'

The storyline is disjointed and jumpy; alternately in the present, in flashbacks or inside someone's head, without any smooth transition between. It leaves the viewer feeling confused, and is a distraction as we have to pull ourselves out of being engaged in the action to figure out what has just happened.

Special Effects

These are probably the best part of the entire movie. Between stuntmen, fantastic scenes generated solely within the brain of a computer, and model sets, there are some pretty good bits to enjoy.

Mind you, these special effects pale in comparison to movies like The Matrix or Inception. However, within their own context in this movie, they are quite good; some are almost breathtaking.

Production Values

This is another area where this movie falls apart. I'll agree that the plot, such as it is, deals with mystery, impending doom, and all sorts of other dark side possibilities. (And that's not a spoiler--as much is revealed or hinted at in Part I.) However, I do not appreciate struggling to even see the action because half the movie is shot in virtual darkness.

The scenes are dark, the costumes are dark, the backgrounds are dark, and the lighting is dismal. It is as if they were trying to shoot the film by candlelight. When the entire screen goes black, and all you can see are bits of black or dark gray shadows moving within that background blackness, it is not enjoyable--it is both hard on the eyes and it is frustrating. It makes the subsequent bits of action harder to place into the full sequence of events, because you couldn't really see what was going on.

Perhaps it is more visible in a theater setting, but that's really no excuse. These days, movies are made with the fore-knowledge that they will be later released to DVD's for home audiences. They should be just as visible in that medium as in the theater.

(And no, it's not our TV, which is quite new, and a big widescreen. We watch with most of the lights out--just like the theater--only enough low level light so as not to trip over one of the cats on a snack break.)

Movie Trailer--Possible Spoiler Alert

Harry Potter Paperback Box Set (Books 1-7)
Harry Potter Paperback Box Set (Books 1-7)

Boxed gift set of Harry Potter books

 

They Should Have Left it Alone...

Instead of trying to drag the series out for one more go, they should have added what few actual bits of action mattered into the "Part I" film, and ended it there. The finale, as produced, left much to be desired, was anti-climactic in the extreme, and left a bad taste in the mouth.

That's not how you want to end such a highly successful series. Even at that, the final scenes again hinted at the possibility for yet more sequels....I do hope not. They already went too far trying to wring more audience money out of the existing set.

I do not recommend this movie, but if you do want to see it, don't spend any more than rental price on it. It just isn't worth buying.

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Comments 7 comments

Christine B. profile image

Christine B. 5 years ago from Medina, Ohio

Hi Lizzy~

Well, I'm sorry to say, that I disagree with you on this one. I loved the last movie, especially the last 15 minutes of it when all of our beloved characters were all grown up (and I won't say any more not to spoil.) I was disappointed with Deathly Hallows Part I because I thought it was totally boring and believe they should have just gone straight to Part II because it had so much more action. The most disappointing thing about Part I was that there are almost no scenes from Hogwarts and with very few of my favorite characters there in this part of the movie series. I am a huge Harry Potter fan and have not only seen all of the movies, but also own nearly all of them. I loved watching the characters grow and wanted so much to physically join them at Hogwarts Academy. I will purchase Part II for sure, but will pass on Part I. I do agree that Part II was dark--in the lighting sense, as most of the scenes took place at night. They should have shot more daylight scenes. I think it might have had a different effect on the big screen as it would on at TV, though. I can see your point that it would be really dark on a TV.

Thanks for your input, though.... And I'm sure we're both sorry to see the series end... It's been a part of our lives for over ten years, after all. :o)


DzyMsLizzy profile image

DzyMsLizzy 5 years ago from Oakley, CA Author

Hi, Christine--

Yes, we are all different. Hubby and I thought Part I was better--we were both bored and nearly dozed off during Part II.

And yes, as it ended, and came back to the menu screen shot of Harry, hubby commented, "We've watched that boy grow up on film."

This was my take--everyone is entitled to their own opinion/feelings on the matter. That's why I always caution people not to take even professional movie critics seriously. It's totally subjective, and everyone's opinion is going to be different. 90% of the time, we find that if the critics pan a movie, we enjoy it; and vice-versa.

In part, we base any pre-judgements upon how long a given movie stayed in the theaters. A short run and rapid release to DVD usually bodes ill for the quality. That was the case with this one.

Cheers, and thanks for stopping by and reading! Hub Hugs!


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 5 years ago from Bend, Oregon

Really love the Harry Potter movies and you've done a great review of the last and final movie. My kids liked Part 1 better than Part 2, also. Rated up - awesome hub!


DzyMsLizzy profile image

DzyMsLizzy 5 years ago from Oakley, CA Author

Hi, stephhicks...

Thanks so very much for your praise! Yours is the opposite point of view from the first commenter.. Hee hee... just goes to show ... 'different strokes for different folks.' ;)

Thanks for the vote!


stayingalivemoma profile image

stayingalivemoma 5 years ago from Tempe, Arizona

I love Harry Potter movies and books. But I've always said the movies don't do the books justice.


Cobra-01 5 years ago

It is sad to say, but the last chapter in the Harry Potter movies, was a flop ! The black hole that over half the movie was filmed, just about put me to sleep.You could hear that something was going on, but what, your guess is as good as mine........ A sad finish to a other wise great set of movies.....


DzyMsLizzy profile image

DzyMsLizzy 5 years ago from Oakley, CA Author

@ stayingalivemoma--

Thanks so very much for stopping by and leaving your insight. I agree with you..that is so true of so many movies made from books. Hollywood is so arrogant as to think they can do a better job with the story than the original author! BAH!

@Cobra-01

Yes, indeed--we, too, had to fight to keep from dozing off, and struggling to see the invisible action. Thanks much for stopping by.

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