|Image: Fohnjang Ghebdinga/Fohnhouse|
After 7 films, in which we’ve watched the infamous Potter grow from a boy to man, and 10 years of not-so-bewitching hocus-pocus, the time has finally come for Harry to face-off against his arch-nemesis, Lord Voldemort, and bring an end to the war of the wizards and this much-loved, billion-dollar franchise. Now, we here at Fohnhouse admit we’ve not been the biggest supporters of the boy wonder and his famous friends: the previous outings with Harry and co. were rather long and overall lacked the magic ingredient needed to make us believe that the specs-wearing wizard warranted all the fuss. However, while we’re still not entirely convinced, it has to be said that the franchise bows out in spectacular fashion, with a movie good enough to make us forgive and forgot previous sins.
Picking up from where Part 1 left off, the gang are still on the hunt for the remaining Horcruxes (having already disposed of one), which they must find and destroy in order to defeat Voldemort. With the existence of wizard and muggle-kind on the line, Harry soon realises he's the one who may have to make the ultimate sacrifice to save the wizard and Muggle worlds.
After a quick recap, the film immediately gets going and it’s not long before we’re treated to everything the previous films failed to deliver enough of: dragons, snakes, wand-offs, stone soldiers, rollercoasters, excitement, adventure, Death Eaters in abundance, and pretty much every trick in the Hogwarts magic book.
Having helmed some of the more watchable films from the series, director David Yates does an excellent job tying up all the loose ends, and has created a fitting finale for fanatics who have read the books and been with Harry ever step of the way.
While the screenwriters haven’t necessarily given the three main protagonists (Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint) the material needed to make audiences remember them for their acting ability (the dialogue is unchallenging and they never really say or do anything worthy of any prestigious accolades), they've dedicated years of their lives to playing these characters and have ably brought them to life for fans worldwide, so for that they will always be remembered.
But, like with most of the films, it's the fantastic ensemble cast (including Maggie Smith, Julie Walters, Alan Rickman and Helena Bonham Carter) that ultimately makes The Deathly Hallows: Part 2 a worthwhile watch. Though screen time for each individual is limited, the sheer calibre of talent involved and the time restraints make you forgive what can often only be described as cameo appearances.
As leader of the Death Eaters, Lord Voldemort a.k.a. Ralph Fiennes has ample screen time and Fiennes is devilishly superb in his role; along with his deathly clan, he brings the large dose of evil that's necessary to make us understand and see why they're all at war. And it’s this equal balance of good and evil that creates the tension and sense of urgency that we haven't previously seen and that propels Part 2 past its predecessors to new heights.
Barring one or two niggles, the Harry Potter team has, without a doubt, saved the best for last. Packed full of action and stunning effects, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 will leave hardcore fans satisfied and maybe even with tears in their eyes. For all other folk, it’s solid entertainment and redeems an otherwise weak (but profitable) franchise. And remarkably, for all of you who haven’t even seen one Potter movie, just by watching this one you’ll be able to understand everything that has happened in the past 10 years without having to watch any of the previous films. It doesn't get much better than that!