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The Harry Potter Series - Books, Films and More, Part 3

Updated on February 26, 2014

Hogsmead Village

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An Introduction to the Deathly Hallows

While almost all of the movies that go along with the novels vary, the differences are excusable due to time constraints. The differences between the films and the books, however, is never more notable than in the final installment of the films. They vary greatly from the 7th book, although they were split into two films rather than cut over half of the material necessary to squeeze them into a single movie to round out the series. While the expansion is understandable and enjoyable, I find that the book's true nature is somewhat muddied by the alterations. While some are minor, the more distinct ones take some important aspects explored in the books out completely in order to make a more enjoyable 3D movie experience for movie-goers. For those fans who have only seen the movies, it is unnoticeable. For fans of the book, however, the differences are vast. The movies are wonderful and beautiful representations, but they do not carry what I consider to be key aspects of the novels and their aftermath.

Key Points, Year 7

New Characters: Aberforth Dumbledore, Griphook, Xenophilius Lovegood

Defense Against the Dark Arts Teacher: Amycus Carrow

Book and Film 7

Although the final installment of the Harry Potter series encompasses one book with two films, I will be splitting the overview the way that it is in the films for continuity's sake.

Book seven opens with Harry Potter preparing to leave his family's house for good. At the moment he comes of age (17 in the wizarding world), the protective enchantments placed on the home by his mother's sacrifice will break, and both Harry and his relatives will be a target of Voldemort and the Death Eaters. The book goes into greater detail of the Dursley's leave, and it's touching, considering the way that they've been portrayed thus far in the series.

Harry is to be moved a week before his 17th birthday, so as to hopefully get a jump on the Death Eaters and catch them off-guard. The plan is for Harry to turn into 7 different Harry's - not with Horcruxes like Voldemort (and the symmetry is flawless here) but with polyjuice potion, with six other Harry's and seven protectors. Unfortunately, the plan is met with almost instant disaster, as all of the Harry's and their protectors are met with Death Eaters. A battle over the skies of London commences, and several lives are lost within the first pages of the book, and in the film's portrayal.

Harry, Ron and Hermione make it safely to the Burrow, and Harry feels an immense sense of guilt over the lives that were lost on his behalf - as well as the danger that he is posing to his closest friends by his mere presence. Harry, Ron and Hermione still plan on going off on their own to find the Horcruxes and not returning to school, and the plan is to leave as soon as Bill Weasley and Fleur Delecour's wedding. The wedding preparation leaves very little time, but it does bring an unexpected visit from the Minister of Magic, bequeathing upon Harry, Ron and Hermione items left them by Dumbledore in his will. While these items seem trivial in the early stages of the book, they do pose great importance later in the film. The wedding itself brings some unwelcome guests, as the party receives news that the Ministry of Magic has fallen to the Death Eaters - and they are on their way. Harry, Ron and Hermione manage to escape, fight a new battle in London and wind up at Sirius' old house - 12 Grimmauld Place. They discover a key piece to the puzzle while in the house, and seek to invade the Ministry of Magic itself.

After a narrow escape, they wind up in the woods, and are on the run from that point forward. Unable to go back to their safe house, they are forced to put up enchantments and protection spells everywhere they go, and have to move frequently. They were able to recover the Locket Horcrux that Dumbledore died to obtain, but have no means of destroying it, so they take turns wearing it around their necks. The trip is not a pleasant one for any of them, and they have few leads on where to go next.

Ultimately, Ron has a fight with Harry, and leaves. Harry and Hermione continue alone, and travel to Godric's Hollow where Harry was born and defeated Voldemort as an infant, and they encounter Bathilda Bagshot who is, in fact, possessed by Nagini - Voldemort's massive snake. They make a narrow escape, but Harry's wand is destroyed in the process. While at Bagshot's home, Harry and Hermione find a biography of Dumbledore. While the biography is a scathing piece written by Rita Skeeter, Harry and Hermione gain some valuable insights into Dumbledore's early life.

One night while Harry and Hermione have set up camp, Harry sees and follows a silver doe patronus, leading him to a deep pool with the sword of Gryffindor bequeathed to him by Dumbledore but kept away by the Minister of Magic. Harry dives in, but fails to realize that he still has the locket horcrux around his neck, and it tries to drown him. Ron, materializing near him, jumps in and saves him and recovers the sword. The sword, wielded by Ron, destroys the horcrux locket for good.

The three friends go to visit Luna Lovegood's father to learn about the mysterious Deathly Hallows. Xenophilius Lovegood betrays the friends to save his daughter, who was being held captive, and the trio barely escapes - only to be caught by trackers and taken to Malfoy manor.

Hermione is tortured by Bellatrix Lestrange while Harry and Ron are held captive in the basement. Harry, owed a favor by Peter Pettigrew, managers to trick the makeshift warden, and rushes upstairs to rescue Hermione from the Malfoys before Voldemort can be summoned. Trapped, with nowhere to run, the friends seem to be facing the end - but Dobby the house-elf appears and takes them all to safety at Bill and Fleur's home on the sea. The movie ends with the death of Dobby, who took a thrown dagger in order to save Harry Potter.



The Deathly Hallows, Part 1 Trailer

Watch the First Installment of the Finale

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Film 8, the Finale

The final film opens where the first installment left off. Harry insists on burying Dobby himself, with his own hands. Luna, also rescued from Malfoy manor with the three friends and a goblin named Griphook are all at Bill and Fleur's home with Harry, Ron and Hermione. The three of them hatch a plan with Griphook to break into Gringot's wizarding bank and get another horcrux from the Lestrange vault where Voldemort left it for safekeeping. Hermione, polyjuiced to resemble Bellatrix, Harry, Ron and the goblin Griphook all manage to get into the vault. The goblin agrees to help them in exchange for the sword of griffyndor, but betrays them once inside. The friends escape on the back of a blind, captive dragon held deep within the bowels of the wizard bank.

Harry's scar hurts worse than ever as he experiences Voldemort's rage as the Dark Lord finally realizes what Harry and his companions are up to. Harry is convinced that the last Horcrux is hidden away in Hogwart's castle, and convinces his friends to travel with him to Hogwarts via Hogsmead. In Hogsmead, Harry, Ron and Hermione encounter Dumbledore's brother Aberforth, who confirms a lot of the stories told in Rita Skeeter's book - much to Harry's shock. Aberforth protects them from patrolling death eaters in his bar, and opens a secret passage linking his bar to Hogwarts. Once inside the castle, Harry encounters Neville and a bunch of familiar faces, who all agree to help him.

Missing from the movies is a touching scene between Harry and Professor Mcgonagall that I wish could have been included. While the books start to veer off from the movies here, I will focus my attention on the canon of the book itself. While the Hogwarts teachers and students prepare to battle Voldemort to the death, Professor Snape flees and is killed by Voldemort in order to obtain his wand - the powerful Hallow Elder Wand that once belonged to Dumbledore. Before succumbing to death, Snape gives Harry a vial of memories, and Harry finds his way to Dumbledore's office to view them. Only then does he truly understand the implications, and the behavior of Professor Snape throughout the series.

Realizing that there is no other way, Harry decides to submit himself to Voldemort's ultimatum, journeying into the woods to find him, while imploring that Ron and Hermione find a way to destroy the second to the last horcrux, and admonishing them to find a way to kill the snake - another horcrux.

Harry faces Voldemort in the woods, and survives another killing curse, helped by a terrified Narcissa Malfoy, whose son is still trapped somewhere in the castle. The snake is killed, and Voldemort is left with no defenses, forced to face Harry man to man. Harry's final speech to Voldemort is epic, and cannot be repeated here. It has a perfect amount of twists that many of the readers NEVER saw coming, and the only curse word in the entire series is uttered by Mrs. Weasley while battling - and defeating - Bellatrix Lestrange.

The Deathly Hallows part 2 Trailer

Watch and Enjoy the Series Finale

The Sorting Hat

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Wrapping Up the Series, and Final Thoughts

The last chapter of the Deathly Hallows is a flash forward, 20 years in the future. We catch just a glimpse of what the remaining years of the life of Harry Potter is like, and what became of his family and friends. It's a touching reminder that, although the books are complete, there is still more to the story - and it's left to the imagination of the fans to complete for themselves.

This series is one of the most touching ones I've ever encountered. Yes, they're designed for adolescents and young adults, but as a person in the mid thirties, it still speaks to me in ways that few other series have been able. It touches on many emotional soft spots, and really draws you into these beloved characters lives, thoughts and emotions. Completing the series is like having to say goodbye to faithful, devoted friends - and each time I read it, I feel a sense of loss. Then I remind myself that there is always room for a Harry Potter movie marathon, and the books are always at my disposal.

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    • BernietheMovieGuy profile image

      Bernie Ment 3 years ago from Syracuse, NY

      Again, well done. You have turned a bautiful series of films and books into a well summarized three minute read, which is tough for anyone to do. Thank you again for this hub. Look forward to reading more of your work. Again, voted up!

    • JMcFarland profile image
      Author

      Julie McFarland 3 years ago from The US of A, but I'm Open to Suggestions

      Thanks, Jonny :-) this was a fun series of hubs for me to write.

    • jonnycomelately profile image

      Alan 3 years ago from Tasmania

      Excellent review Julie, thanks. I am a fan of Harry Potter too.