First Review of the Final Harry Potter Film: "Better than the Book"

Slate's Culture Blog
July 6 2011 11:01 AM

First Review of the Final Harry Potter Film: "Better than the Book"

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Speculation about Pottermore, J. K. Rowling's new website, may have sated Harry Potter fans for a few minutes, but the real excitement comes next Friday, when the final installment of the film franchise hits theaters. Tears will be shed, no doubt—but will there be tears of disapointment, too? According to the first review of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II, everyone can rest easy: The movie's good.

Here's the money quote from Philip Womack's write-up in The Telegraph:

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This is monumental cinema, awash with gorgeous tones, and carrying an ultimate message that will resonate with every viewer, young or old: there is darkness in all of us, but we can overcome it.

Rowling devotees, though, are bound to be making like the Shrieking Shack over this diss:

Perhaps the greatest triumph of this final film is its ability to overcome the deficiencies of J K Rowling’s writing. In the last Harry Potter volume, she failed singularly to muster the epic feel needed; as a result, on the page, the concluding battle at Hogwarts was a damp squib.

But Yates here transmutes it into a genuinely terrifying spectacle, as bloodied students fight desperately against a horde of screaming black-robed Death Eaters.

Womack notes that HPDH:2 includes what is "surely the most beautiful and important moment in the whole series," a scene in which young Snape makes a flower bloom for Lily Evans, the future Lily Potter. Cue tears!

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