Three Horcruxes down. Three to go.
Even then, Harry Potter must find a way of defeating Voldemort, who not only has the Elder Wand but a vast army to call upon.
Harry (Daniel Radcliffe), Ron (Rupert Grint) and Hermione (Emma Watson) continue their search for remaining Horcruxes with just enough information to push forward.
Indeed there ‘hint’ for the next is just a hunch that Bellatrix (Helena Bonhem Carter) may be protecting a Horcrux for Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes).
Now they need to perform another raid, with the aid of Griphook (Warwick Davis) an their old friend Polyjuice Potion.
A raid on Gringotts Bank itself!
The finale of the series is a one action packed adventure as the eponymous hero tries to tie up all the remaining Horcruxes and the story finally makes complete sense.
The above description is deliberately vague but below you may find some spoilers that you’d rather not read.
Whet we get here is an endless, led by the hand adventure. It keeps up the tension throughout and sends the actors into a more action packed lifestyle than before in their short but eventful lives.
The special effects are again a wonder and it is good to see and compare how the industry has been able to move on in the intervening 10 years. Some highlights are Neville (Matthew Lewis) defending the bridge entrance to Hogwart’s, Harry’s (Daniel Radcliffe) conversation with Dumbledore (Michael Gambon) and of course the whole slew of events in the final battle(s).
The acting is sublime at times – though the sometimes nearly maniacal flow of the movie makes this a difficult movie to find proper “actors” scenes. The best of those is probably – again – the scene with Dumbledore.
Matthew Lewis as Neville Longbottom finally gets his chance to shine. A character that should have had more screen time anyway.
All the leads and support do very well. Particularly Jason Isaacs, Tom Felton and Helen McCrory as the Malfoy’s – still trapped in their disastrous choice to support Voldemort. And of course Narcissa’s sister Bellatrix Lestrange (Helena Bonham Carter) and Snape (Alan Rickman).
The biggest let down is the lack of history on Tom Riddle/Voldemort or the Horcruxes. This seriously impacts on this movie – to the extent that one is only found through the new mechanism of Harry “guessing” where on of them might be. The one exception is the time spent with the Ghost of Ravenclaw, the Grey Lady, Helena Ravenclaw – played by Kelly Macdonald. Still no real history in any of this but it’s the only wink to the original story that the Horcruxes really get.
I am aware that it’s a lot to fit in and the previous movie moved the characters forward a long way but an extra 30 minutes wouldn’t have killed the movie. Instead they went for pace and action. This does work if you ignore the whole left in its wake.
A suitably engaging finale to the series that satisfies the viewer that he has certainly got his movies worth.
Things to look out for: Raid on Gringott’s Bank, “I’ve always wanted to use that spell!“, rescue a dragon, “Does it hurt to die?“, secret passage, “I know.“, more memories, “We never left.“, many dead friends, “Only I can live forever.“, talking with long lost friends and family, the final battles over Hogwart’s, “Harry Potter – you will listen to me right now!“, the reveal, “Behold, Nagini – our work is done.“, that long awaited epilogue
Cast: Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Ralph Fiennes, Robbie Coltrane, Maggie Smith, Tom Felton, Alan Rickman, Michael Gambon, John Hurt, Helena Bonham Carter, Kelly Macdonald, Jason Isaacs, Helen McCrory, Ciarán Hinds, Matthew Lewis, Bonnie Wright, Jim Broadbent, Emma Thompson, Timothy Spall, Julie Walters
Rating: Excellent – if flawed finale, highly recommended
Part of “Harry Potter, The Complete 8-Film Collection”