20 July 2011

Filmbook: "Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 2" Open Thread

I do kind of want to talk about this movie because I am feeling All Alone In My Thoughts about it, so I'm going to go ahead and spoiler-comment a little about My Feelings. I sense that most of you who wanted to see this movie have already seen it, but just in case.

Come join me in the comments if you either have seen the movie, or don't care about its details being revealed to you.


Ellen said...

Hermione in the Bellatrix LeStrange costume FTMFW!


...Okay, I was completely underwhelmed by this movie even though I shed a few tears in the Deathly Hallows and overall I can't think of a way to improve it exactly. ("Unhelpful to Hollywood" is my middle name.) I had no idea what was going on as the movie opened, I couldn't remember the sequence of events so to me it was a blend of FIGHTING!!! and flashbacks that were actually meaningful/sad (aw, Snape!) And the fighting scenes, while not as chaotic as other action movies of the day, did feel fairly disorganized. It had a "Return of the King" feeling and you never want that.

Okay, maybe I do have a solution. I think they shouldn't have separated both halves of ...DEATHLY HALLOWS in the first place, instead opting for the massive three-hour-plus extravaganza that would make nobody happy, leave a lot of stuff out from the book... but preserve the emotional impact that this movie DIDN'T have on me. I feel like this movie needed its first half, the wanderings, being forced to leave, in order to make the ending more powerful. On the other bright side it would allow John Williams to write intermission music which would be lovely.

But as I said, I'm not sure anyone shares my opinion. Tell me I'm wrong!

Also, obligatory Matthew Lewis Is Hot Now mention.

Elizabeth said...

I completely astonished myself by shedding a few tears when Harry used the Resurrection Stone. I mean, I never really liked any of those characters (with the only exception of Remus Lupin, who wasn't really prominently featured in that scene (and, reinforcing my dislike for Harry Potter, the ingrate didn't even feature Severus Snape as one of his loved ones to bring back from the dead, because he never did learn that actions speak louder than words)), so I guess it must have been a sort of abstract reminder that everyone I know and love will die someday.

Snape's flashback was my favorite part of the movie: Alan Rickman has more talent than the rest of the cast put together (including a very disappointing performance from Maggie Smith: I really expected better from her. "I've always wanted to do that!" should have been hilarious, but it fell flat.)

I don't think the epilogue should have been included in the film. It was pretty dumb in the book and so easily could have been elided. Then the audience could at least imagine that Harry grew up and did something meaningful or interesting with his life. Instead, he's like the kid who was the captain of the high school football team for whom that was the high point of his life. The only glimmer of ambition he has is that his kid, too, can go on to be great in high school.

(I really liked the way THE MAGICIANS addressed that problem: what exactly do you do for a living when you graduate from wizard boarding school?)

An entr'acte by John Williams would indeed be lovely, but I'm not sure he would have done it: he wrote the music for only the first three films, and hasn't composed any new music for the HARRY POTTER franchise since then (although they did get his permission to reuse the music he already wrote). But we can always hope.

Ellen said...

It seems like everyone is split on the epilogue. I feel conflicted about it; on one hand it would be nice to get a glimpse of what they actually DO other than drop their kids off at Hogwarts, and also I found the false-ageing about as creepy as I expected to. (Ron's gut. Yeesh.) And in a larger sense, what is the state of the wizarding world at that point? Were they all fighting just to keep things as they were with no improvements, so that a You-Know-Who would never be able to take power again?

But I think a lot of people were hoping to see it judging by the reaction in my theatre.

And good intentions aside, Albus Severus Potter is going to get beat up a lot.

I think your high school football analogy was apt; before the movie we were talking about whether wizards go on to college or if Hogwarts is a complete education in itself. What about the professionalization of the wizarding world?!!? (My thought was maybe they would do their college-level work abroad at the other wizarding schools. But then, why doesn't Hogwarts have a university component!?)

As far as big lines, I was pretty much on tenterhooks the whole time for "Not my daughter, you bitch!"