Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows : A Muggle’s Review

I’m not a fanboy of the Harry Potter persuasion because I’m not a young adult that grew up with the books, a female fantasy fan nor a poser trying to lure a fangirl out of her Hogwart’s uniform. I am a certified fantasy nerd and will not reveal any spoilers for those that are too cool to read the novels, but Harry wins in the end as you should expect. Read a book.

I’ve read none of the books, but I have seen all the Potter movies to see what the fuss was about. Overall, they were decent but not moving. Owing to being a series for kids, I forgave them for not having balls – which for most of the characters hadn’t dropped yet. All the while, I’m waiting for Harry to come into his own and stop being a Harry Sue character – constantly protected from heroic sacrifice by magical creatures, competent adults and ugly red-headed sidekicks written as less important.

Run, Ron! RUN!

I watched Deathly Hallows part two directly after watching part one, I’m a vet of the Lord of the Rings Extended version – yes, my life is that empty.

Part one established a dark high stakes tone in the beginning with so many supporting characters deaths, then it winds down to a magical hide and seek scavenger hunt around the world with Hermione doing research. The cutaways to show the effects of the Death Eater take over where good, but too far in between. It has a slightly more dreadful feel than when the Republicans took the House.

Finally, there’s some magical intervention that gets things moving when they can finally start destroying horcruxes (horcruxi? whores’ crotches? Is that where Bellatrix was hiding them? That’s Lastrange.)

We learn what the Deathly Hollows are, but not why they aren’t the “Deadly Hallows”. These are English speakers, right? The story arch peaks with the death of the cutest character to date, more sadness then a tonal shift to “AW SHITTLEBERRIES! Now, it’s personal!”

Yeah ... c'mon ... *wimper*

Part 2 had the much more quicker pace that a finale should. Action, tension, action, tension – you know, like a movie. Voldemort is made gradually weaker with each destroyed horcrux with the backdrop being a magical war I’ve been much anticipating. Harry and Snapes’ relationship is fully revealed, which satisfyingly transforms our view of the headmaster. Our “hero” fated to save everyone is going to actually have to take one for the team, team being the world – about time.

Potter goes forth to die and is merely knocked out by a loophole in wand etiquette. This bothered me. Voldemort’s entire goal is to kill Harry, yet he doesn’t check the apparent body himself? He could feel whenever a horcrux was destroyed, but not this most important one in the series? That’s as dumb as a Jedi Chosen One taking a Sith Lord at his word.

Dumbledore’s ghost tells Potter he can stay in Heaven’s subway or go back and make sure all those deaths for his sake were’nt in vain. What kind of asshole would stay, especially when there’s a Weasley wet for him?

Harry survives. Neville Longbottom comes through amazingly, then Potter shows Voldemort how to kill an enemy.  Flash forward: Harry knocks up Ginny and Ron does the same to Hermione, kids go to Hogwarts, the Circle of Life plays in your heart and the end.

A Real Hero

So, again, somebody else makes it possible for Harry to  succeed. Neville fills his shoes to destroy the last horcrux with Hermione and Ron serving their usual role as bait. As soon as Voldemort is mortal, it’s a done deal? Wasn’t he a badass before all this?  There’s a likely stated reason for this that I missed in previous exposition, the point is I didn’t find Harry’s victory all the heroic, but I guess its par for the course.

These are a good pair of movies, and I’m sure emotional investment in the series will make it awesome, but for me it was worth the price of admission: $5 bootleg.


About Loyd Digg

Bold Blogger of LaughingatThem.com , Critical Comic, Freelance Word Composer, Samurai of the Insightful Edge, Tomato-phile.

Posted on July 21, 2011, in Nerdery, Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. This column seems to have the feel of a lengthy rhetorical shrug and lacks energy. Still there are some valid points here:

    Last minute fetch quest
    Harry never comes into his own.
    awkward structuring of the climax.

    Two things: 1.Ron and Neville were being given scenes to shine in since they would just be ignoreable otherwise, also Neville figured prominently in the prophecy predicting Voldemort’s doom. 2. I gotta call you out on this point: If the entire supporting cast is carrying the wight for the central character, the central character isn’t a Marry Sue, by definition; hes just…pampered, or something.

    The movies biggest problem was the one it couldn’t help, that they were largely fateful adaptations of unwieldy text. Yes, there was a great deal that the books explain that cause the movies to make more sense than they would otherwise, but the overarching structure reads like it was ran through a Cuisinart because these were the first books Rowling ever wrote and her immaturity in the craft really comes through. Toward the end, her works weren’t even being edited that much, they were just getting rolled through so folks could start getting their paychecks.

    So, yeah. I guess I’d only feel “good for what it was” would be the highest compliment I could muster for this also.

    After all this, there’s not much to look forward to.

    …Except maybe a prequel to Equus, where Emma Watson plays Catherine the Great.

  2. A shrug is exactly the feeling I was trying to convey, so score.

    I’m glad I didnt know Neville’s destiny. It was a nice surprise for me in the movie.

    Harry’s not a Mary Sue, he’s a Harry Sue as I defined above. A similar example would be Elora Danan from Willow – the baby. He does have some Canon Sue traits though special abilities gleaned from being part Voldemort. I hadn’t considered Rowling’s writing but its a valid reason.

    Equus Part Zero: Riding would be interested indeed.

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