From the get go, HP7 Part 2 has it’s foot firmly on the plot accelerator. Daniel Radcliffe suggested that one of the reasons The Deathly Hallows was split into two films was because the book itself has no subplots or side quests. Everything builds the singular story to it’s climax.
It’s great to see everything come together; minor characters, horcruxes, hallows, Ron and Hermione’s snog.
The highlight for me was Snape’s flashback where everything about his past is revealed. It was probably the most moving moment in the whole series. My heart was beating and I had a lump in my throat the entire time. I was honestly sickened and devastated when it was done.
Sadly however, everything feels a little rushed. This is the shortest of all the films, so it’s not as if they didn’t have the time to allow some breathing room amidst the action and narrative. Ron and Hermione are very much supporting players, Mrs. Weasley’s big moment is brief and just doesn’t have enough build up, and it would have been emotionally beneficial to see more of Fred and George.
The only other criticism I can bring, is perhaps a bit picky. I just feel that as spectacular as The Battle of Hogwarts is, director David Yates failed to truly capture the visceral sense of combat and dread that Jackson did so well with The Battle of Helm’s Deep. It was simply not gritty enough for mo, but perhaps in the context of the Potter franchise, it was what was required.
The truth is, this is Harry’s show, and it does need to be. It’s Radcliffe’s hour to shine, and shine he does, bringing to the fore, every emotion and every conflict he has been wrestling with over the previous seven films. Radcliffe has always enjoyed, and been more comfortable with the darker, more brooding elements of the role, so sit back and just watch him go.
Looking back over the Potter films, one thing is clear:- These are eight movies with very intriguing and well told stories, and a host of colourful characters you really care for. The suspension of disbelief is phenomenal and you are truly caught up in another world for the entire film, never disengaging to comment on the effects or hunt for plot holes. You are too caught up in the adventure to look around and judge, something the Transformers of this world will never achieve.