Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II Review

In this review of the second and last part of the finale of the series, Harry Potter, I’d like to express my views on the not only this part, but the first part and the series of films in general. I’d first like to take this opportunity to say that I have never read the books. This puts me in the rare position to actually judge these films with out a bias love for these generational books. This is all to say that I for one do not find the Harry Potter films very good.

Its been told to me on many occasions that I can’t judge these films with out reading the books as if to say that I need to read the books to find the good filmmaking in the films. Its a comment like that, that only furthers my arguments against these films. It doesn’t matter what the film is based off, any film should be judged based on how well it was made, the ideas it trys to establish, how it entertains you, etc. If a film has to rely on a separate art form to prevail than it shouldn’t have been made in the first place.

This is not to say that I absolutely hate the Harry Potter films because I don’t. They are just not very good movies. Some of the story lines are compelling, others aren’t and others could’ve been but were executed horribly. Some characters are very interesting while others are annoying. Oh and some of the performances are phenomenal (particularly the adult cast; especially Ralph Fiennes), while others certainly are not (particularly the main characters).

Either way let’s get into Deathly Hallows. In part one of this final film you could find everything that makes for a bad Harry Potter film; the unbelievable melodrama, the failed attempts at humor due to writing and awful delivery, but most of all the exploration of characters that just aren’t interesting. Rarely was I ever enjoying what was occurring in Part I and I understood why it was being told, but for the most part I just wasn’t entertained with what was being told. And there was no art in the film to outweigh that fact.

Where as Part I might just be the worst Harry Potter film I’ve seen, Part II of Deathly Hallows was the best Harry Potter film I’ve seen. It was in no way an amazing movie, I could sit here all day and express my problems with this series and even this specific film, but I will say that I was never more entertained by Harry Potter film than when I watched Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II.

The greatest pro of this series is in its awesome villain and to finally see his rise and expected fall was very compelling especially when he’s played by one of the greatest actors working today (Ralph Fiennes). I’ve also been a big fan of Snape and Alan Rickman’s portrayal. He has a much larger part in this one and it worked well. There are other positive remarks I could talk about and there were definitely negatives I could go into and even some story aspects that I hated (mainly that our hero whom I’m supposed to be rooting for wins on a technicality), but I will say that no I do not like the Harry Potter movies, but this last one was kind of cool.

Grade: B- (Part II)

Part I Grade: D

Deathly Hallows Grade: C

The Book of Eli Review

The Book of Eli is the perfect example that even some of the best actors out there performing admittedly pretty great can’t always save a movie from falling flat. I’m not gonna lie I think both Washington and Oldman gave pretty great performances, but I did not like the movie as a whole at all. Post-apocalyptic movies always have that same gritty and deserted style as does The Book of Eli and it works, but even that couldn’t save this corny story.

This was new territory for Denzel, he was still that tough kind of character that we’ve seen him in many times before, but it was played so differently hear. He played the role as if every action was necessary and at the same time morally straining. When it comes to Gary Oldman, I always love his work. He is so fantastically versatile and you know you have an ace in the hole when you put him in the role of the villain. Arguably his greatest screen presence is seen in The Professional as Norman Stansfield, which is another movie I’m not a huge fan of, but I absolutely love him in.

The movie as a whole was weighed down by a pretty awful script, an even worse supporting cast, and worse of all, effects that tried so desperately hard to be intriguing, but failed miserably. The Book of Eli is just another waste of time concerned more with its fight scenes and the money it will bring in than the actual art behind the tale they could be telling.

It’s always sad to see some of your favorite actors in a movie you don’t enjoy, but it doesn’t make me question them because they were still able to give good performances. Obviously it was their attached names that drew me to this film. They weren’t enough to save this project obviously. I don’t doubt for a second that they will be acting in masterpieces again soon.

Grade: C-