Almost 10 years ago the multi-million selling book series was transformed for the big screen, It was an instant global phenomenon and grossed close to 1 billion dollars world wide. Yesterday, the eighth and final film in this behemoth of a franchise brought the series to a close. Is it possible for the filmmakers to create a film which not only does the book justice but also pleases the legions of fans, the critics and the shareholders? I can honestly say that it will.
Fans who have been desperate for an unabridged adaption shouldn’t be too disappointed with everything included from the book. Critics will be impressed by the slick action, the humorous and occasionally touching dialogue (even though there are a few hilariously cheesy exchanges). The Shareholders will be happy that it made a third of its budget back on the midnight release alone and will almost certainly go on to gross almost a billion dollars worldwide.
The latest film sees Harry and co attempting to destroy the last of Lord Voldemort’s Horcruxes (segments of Voldemort’s soul hidden in objects in order to keep him immortal) and then the final battle between the forces of good and Voldemort’s evil. The film picks up seconds after the first part finished, which may be disorientating for some viewers who may not have seen the previous film for almost six months but you are swept into the world of goblins, horcruxes, magical wands and strange potions so quickly it is almost as if you’d never left. It really is a testament to the film makers (or perhaps more to JK Rowling’s wonderful world) at just how easily you invest in the characters and situations without even a shred of disbelief.
Surprisingly the acting in this final part was one of the stronger elements, the trio have finally matured as actors, their charisma is tangible and their ability to embody their characters to the fullest is impressive. The supporting cast is as perfect as ever, Maggie Smith as Prof. McGonnagal and Alan Rickman as Snape truly standout.
The weaknesses lie only in the writing and the 3d conversion.
Turning Jk Rowling’s witty and beautifully descriptive prose into a script has proven very hard over the course of the films, some succeeded in capturing it others haven’t. This one hasn’t. There are fair few cheesy lines revolving around the Trio’s love lives which i won’t go into.More importantly though, some of the more complex narrative strands weren’t explained properly. For instance, the Deathly Hallows (three mythological items which when combined would allow the owner to “conquer death”) which give the title of the film were mostly forgotten about. It seems that the film shouldn’t really have been named after them if they were only included very late on.
The only true problem was the 3D conversion. Other than having the stupid glasses latched to your face for the entire film, you are put through sequences which were intended to be exciting and quick but what are instead disorientating and irritating. For the dramatic sequences you are put through eye-bending sequences where you struggle to focus on anything other than one character; and to top things off, an already dark film is made even shadier through the sunglasses you wear. The film makers said that they wanted to turn the first part into 3d but couldn’t do it justice in the time they had. Unfortunately, they didn’t do the final film justice with this conversion. I would recommend the film would please please see it in 2d if you can. The only use of 3d which was any good at all was floating ash, and considering you pay a good £2 extra that is hardly worth it.