The highly anticipated final chapter of this Harry Potter series, part one, opens this weekend and director David Yates gives us a dark, character driven, adventure, with the usual special effects skill. This time the acting takes center stage, with fine performances by Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and virtually every working British film star. The three young stars of the series really get a chance to show their acting growth, though I will say their diction (Ron Weasley’s thick accent) is a bit of a challenge at times. The story is about the evil Voldemort solidifying his power base for a final eradication of Harry, who, with a lot of help from his friends, is trying to destroy the Horcruxes, the secret to Voldemort’s immortality. The film is basically a long chase sequence with Hogwart’s shut down and our heroes on the run, transporting themselves from one dark, but scenic, safe place to another, just one step ahead of Voldemort and his minions. One highlight is the tragic-comic presence of the loyal Dobby the Elf ( voiced by Toby Jones) who does his best to protect Harry. Those who have not read the books or seen the previous films will be challenged by the intricate plot, but will be entertained nonetheless. I’ve seen the earlier Potter films and liked this one the best, but it takes a while to compute the complexity of J.K. Rowling’s story unless you have a constant reminder of the book/film (children/DVDs). Finally, at two hours and thirty minutes long, the movie might have you checking your watch from time to time, but over all I’d say it’s a solid beginning to the end. Part 2 of “Deathly Hallows” will wrap things up July 15th, next summer. I’m not sure how the 10 and under will appreciate all the darkness, so pay attention to the PG 13 Rating.
My rating is a 3.5 GPA