Running Time: 146 minutes
The final chapter in the Harry Potter series has finally reached our screens but the agonised wait is not over as it will not reach its conclusion until part 2 is released in July 2011. This film is quite sinister and may not be appropriate for the very young Potter fans, with the rating M saying it all. Unfortunately as these characters mature in age they certainly haven’t developed in personality. Thats where the problem lies and hence why JK Rowling may have hung up her writing quill as Potter (Daneile Radcliffe) fails to excite as a character and remains one dimensional, even though the plot typical revolves around him as the annointed one. Instead the supporting character of Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) becomes far more interesting and becomes a force to be reckoned with, making Potter just look a bit insipid. Hermione actually has a personality and almost becomes the focal point of the film and the way she relates to the other two, particularly Ron (Rupert Grint). The other usual suspects are there rounding out the cast list.
For those not familiar with all the books or the previous films will be confused by this as it can’t be viewed as a stand alone film. There is no explanation of any back story, with prior intimate knowledge just assumed. Early in the film there is a wedding but it fails to explain whose wedding it is. Then there is a silly scene where Potter kisses a random girl, probably just to assert his masculinity and debunk any gay rumours and then she disappears for the rest of the film with no further mention. Purely out of context with the film.
Unfortunately the decision to make the final book into two parts was based purely on commercial reasons rather than artistic which is amply demonstrated in this overdrawn, overlong and multiple battle scenes. Knowing that the movie will not reach a conclusion only heightens the feeling of when will we be put out of our misery. Sure the special effects are great and can’t be faulted and dont we love the magic involved but they should just have stuck to the single feature.
Harry Potter fans probably won’t care and will still see it in their droves but will their enthusiasm be sustained long enough to wait for part 2 next year. Time will tell.