Bravo, David Yates. You have done it once again.
For those who haven’t read the books or watched the previous 6 films, don’t even bother. You’ll be lost and confused the entire way. But for those familiar with Harry Potter, I dare say you’ll be pleased with the faithful adaptation presented to us. It’s an entertaining ride from start to finish and despite having a runtime of 146 minutes, there wasn’t a moment I felt it too long.
Touching on technicalities, it is undoubtedly a superbly filmed piece. And since the majority of the film is set in the Muggle (“real”) world, it provides a new and refreshing experience with beautiful scenery that isn’t Hogwarts, all a backdrop for the wizarding characters and their exciting ventures.
And the acting is just brilliant. It’s weird to think 9 years ago, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and (the ever beautiful) Emma Watson were just little kids thrown into the world of what was to be one of the greatest film series ever. Being roughly the same age as them, I can say I’ve travelled with them, grown with them, matured with them. That is exactly what they deliver, an extremely mature performance that shows their undeniable talent; and of course, the supporting characters, all veteran performers who just add to the brilliancy.
The pacing was criticised, and justifiably so. If you’re looking for a concise and action packed-to-the-brim film, similar to the previous films, you won’t find it here. But you will find a dark and emotional work that draws you in if you’re willing. Bear in mind, it is only the first half of the epic finale. Oh, and the much talked about ‘dance scene’ that immediately divided audiences and critics alike? I didn’t have a huge problem with it, but it certainly felt disjointed and out of place; not necessary, but I have to say, it was sweet.
Was it the best in the entire series? Some may argue yes, but I personally felt Half-Blood Prince to be superior, though this is a close second. Part 1 is a perfect setup for the resounding finale waiting in store for us next year. This was thrilling as it is; I can’t imagine how electrifying Part 2 will be.
Personal Highlights: Other than all Emma Watson scenes (she can truly act), do watch out for a particular animated sequence in the middle of the film that is creative and innovative. Also, Harry and Hermione’s visit to snow-covered Godric’s Hollow is one of the most beautifully shot scenes in the entire film.
On that note, I do hereby declare my genuine love for Miss Emma Watson. ❤