INCLUDE_DATA

Last “Harry Potter” movie skillfully brings a franchise to a close

Posted on August 11th, 2011
Posted on August 11th, 2011

by: Coop Cooper

I have a vested interest in the “Harry Potter” films – not only because “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” was one of my first movie reviews – but because I’ve read every book and seen every film since. Throughout all those years I anticipated the end of the wildly successful franchise, and now the moment has arrived. This film marks the conclusion of Harry Potter and the end of a worldwide phenomenon.

As Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) mourns the loss of his fallen friends, Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes) celebrates his acquisition of the Elder Wand, the most powerful and deadly wand in the world. In order to stop him, Harry and his travelling companions return to Hogwarts in an attempt to destroy the last of the magical “horcruxes,” items that give Voldemort his power. At Hogwarts, Voldemort’s Death Eaters prepare to lay siege to the school, forcing Harry and his allies into a final showdown that will lead Harry to his ultimate destiny.

Given the successful track record of the books and movie adaptations of the Harry Potter franchise the quality of this film was assured. My only fear was that it might not pull off those memorable moments the book expressed so well. Only the most nitpicky Potter fans might take issue with how some characters seemed left out of the wrap-up or how the ending did not strike the same tone as the book. While it didn’t get every nuance perfectly right, I thought it concluded well enough to satisfy the majority of Potter aficionados.

The film the suffered primarily from the one problem that vexed all “Harry Potter” films… there wasn’t enough time to tie up all the loose ends. Many of the characters who received so much focus in the other films got lost in the editing process or were quickly dismissed. Some of the deaths happen so fast, the audience doesn’t have a chance to register the loss. Of all the secondary characters, only Severus Snape and Neville Longbottom are allowed satisfying and lengthy character arcs by the film’s conclusion.

Additionally, the camera could have lingered on a few of the character’s faces in the “19 years later” ending of the film. I’m sure the audience would have appreciated a few extra moments to soak in the future lives of the aged survivors. In terms of tone, the ending also had more of a bittersweet flavor than the book. It didn’t feel exactly like the extended payoff given to the dedicated readers but it was powerful none the less.

Emotional punch is where the film finds its greatest strength. The intense moments in the story build quietly and deliberately to give the audience time to measure the weight of what is coming. It slows the pace and takes screen time away from secondary character development, but it works. The actors carry the finality of each scene on their faces, almost as if they are anticipating the end of it all and are already mourning it. That is something special in cinema you don’t see too often.

The film has a somber feel to it, even in jubilant moments. I’m sure many Potter fans will feel the same sense of loss I did as the final credits rolled. I do hope J.K. Rowling has something new up her sleeve and I hope she reveals it soon. Harry Potter or not, it would be a shame if she let her talent stagnate while so many eager fans await the arrival of her next book series.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Bookmark and Share
No Comments •

Comments

Leave a Comment...

Search
Search Form
Trailer for the award-winning short PRISMA…


A corporate promotional VHS tape from 1984 conceals a brain-altering signal which is said to grant increased health, longevity and psychic powers to those who watch it. View at your own risk...

WINNER: SPECIAL JURY PRIZE, 2017 Oxford Film Festival
SEMI-FINALIST: 2017 NanoCon International Science-Fiction Film Festival

OFFICIAL SELECTION:
2017 Crossroads Film Festival
2017 Clarksdale Film Festival
2017 Twisted Dreams Film Festival
2017 Tupelo Film Festival
2017 FantaSci Short Film Festival

Trailer for the lost short GOD MAKER…


Northern Mississippi 1932:
In a cabin in the woods, a blind blues guitarist will discover his destiny from a lovesick goddess who seeks to corrupt his soul.

GOD MAKER remains unfinished and in limbo for now, but the trailer expresses the mood and imagery intended for the project...

Coop’s award-winning 48 hour short film trailer for REGRESS…


Told in reverse, this experimental made-in-48-hours film begins with a shocking murder then backtracks (like a viewer rewinding a VHS tape) to reveal the chilling origins of this tragedy.

WINNER: BEST SHORT FILM at the 2013 Clarksdale Film Festival...
NOMINATED: BEST DIRECTING by the 2012 48hr. Guerrilla Film Challenge (international contest)...
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2013 Crossroads Film Festival

Watch Coop’s award-winning short film THE BEST DAY…


WINNER: 2012 MAGNOLIA FILM FESTIVAL "Best Homegrown Film"
WINNER: 2012 SEATTLE TRUE INDEPENDENT FILM FESTIVAL "Best Scream"

OFFICIAL SELECTION:
2012 OXFORD FILM FESTIVAL
2012 CLARKSDALE FILM FESTIVAL
2012 CROSSROADS FILM FESTIVAL
2012 NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI FILM FESTIVAL
2012 ATLANTA INDIE HORROR FILM FESTIVAL
2012 OTHERFEST
2012 MISSISSIPPI INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
2012 SUN AND SAND FILM FESTIVAL

Morgan Freeman asks Coop a question at THE BEST DAY premiere! Video below…


My short film THE BEST DAY premiered in October 2011 at the Delta Cinema in Clarksdale, Mississippi.

Little did I know I had a special guest in the audience who was about to ask me a question during the Q&A. Yep, I got a little flustered when I saw who it was.

The Small Town Critic’s SCREENWRITING SERVICES
Follow Coop on Twitter...
    follow me on twitter
    Follow smalltowncritic on Twitter
    Archives
    Subscribe via Email!

    Enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

    Subscribe via RSS feed!