Before you read this, know that I am rookie Potter fan and that I will never intentionally spoil any part of any movie for anyone. That being said, there may be spoilers here.
As someone who had almost no previous Potter experience, I went into Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 fairly blind. I have seen only one Harry Potter film and that was years ago. I haven’t read the books. So why would I go see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 in the theater? A story with such intricate detail is not one that you can just drop in on. It would be like showing someone Lord of the Rings: Return of the King with no prior knowledge of hobbits, wizards, or ents. Harry Potter possesses a lot of the same alluring qualities that Lord of the Rings does. Like a moth to a flame, nerds around the world always have something to talk about with one another thanks to these movies.
My jilted mind has become so fixated on real life that when Harry Potter speaks his first line in Deathly Hallows Part 2 I had to hold back a chuckle. A bespectacled Potter begins this final film with the line that was something along the lines of “I need to talk to the goblin.” What has become of the fantasy loving girl in me? The one who wishes to move to Middle Earth and hang out in the shire. The one who wishes everyone had hobbit feet so I wouldn’t feel so silly in flip-flops. There was a time when I was perfectly happy to accept the idea that these fantastic characters could have existed somehow.
A baby-faced Daniel Radcliffe and his equally young-looking co-stars Emma Watson and Rupert Grint pointed their wands right into my movie-loving heart and brought back that person.
This movie is a confusing one if you haven’t seen the others or read the books. Several moments in the film soared right over my head but had the rest of the audience laughing. Uproariously at times. It has been my experience that films like these often have extreme fans. Lord of the Rings. Star Trek. Star Wars. These films have the most intense fans as far as I am concerned. I think that Harry Potter might have the strongest fan base of all. These Harry Potter lovers have been through all of the books and the movies. They have become emotionally invested in the people who live in the whimsical world of Harry Potter. The saga must have some addictive properties because the fans keep coming back for more.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 broke opening day box office records and officially has the highest grossing opening weekend in history at $168.6 million. I am hearing rumors that before all is said and done, this will be the first film in history to earn a billion dollars. To quote Orlando Bloom in Elizabethtown, “That’s a lotta million.”
So what makes Harry Potter so damn special? The characters have such depth. They bring something to the cinema that is a bit magical. The costumes and make up are other worldly. I know it’s really early, but I am willing to bet that come Oscar time Harry Potter will not go unnoticed.
Back to me almost laughing out loud in the beginning of the film. It was a brief moment of “Oh, this is silly,” that quickly faded into a deep admiration for what David Yates, Steve Kloves, and J.K. Rowling were trying to accomplish. (Director, screenplay, novel)
This is the type of project that requires everyone involved to pour their collective heart and soul into it. It is difficult to summarize this part of the film series due to a couple of things. For one, I haven’t seen any of the other films. Okay, I saw one. But I can’t even remember which one. Two, this is the end, my friends.
What I can tell you is that Ralph Fiennes as Lord Voldemort is simply outstanding. This character needs to be evil. As in sinister. As in he’ll kick your puppy and then kick you for crying about it. The similarities to LotR are abundant. Cloaks, old men with long white beards, short people, very tall people, nasty villains, and incredibly heroic underdogs who we always knew had it in them all along.
A very good friend of mine – she knows who she is – has told me that reading the books is a good idea because they are even better than the movies. I know that reading The Hobbit and the LotR books absolutely enhanced the experience of seeing it all on-screen. So much so that I cried in each movie. Not just a couple of rogue tears. I’m talking weepy. And the strange thing is that I didn’t even know what was going on in HPatDH2, but I found myself having a deep understanding of why this film is so moving for so many people. This film reminds me of why the movies are so special. A room full of strangers would be instant friends if they all had Harry Potter in common. It is a special breed of person that makes a Harry Potter fan.
I always jump on the bandwagon for these things after the rest of the world has experienced them, but I don’t care. I plan to watch every single Harry Potter film and read the books. Movies like this one take so much hard work and honest effort to put together in a convincing way.
Record breaking, fun, exciting, visually stunning, fantastic performances, both funny and sad… this movie has it all. It may be the end for the series, but the story of Harry Potter will live on through the fans. I am excited to become one of those fans.