A glorious finale
COMETH the hour, cometh the man with the wand.
Yes, after 10 extraordinary years, here is the screen swansong of Harry Potter.
No longer the boy with so much to learn of the ways of wizardry, our last long look at Harry sees him all grown up with just one place to go: a thrilling showdown with his ( im) mortal enemy, Lord Voldemort.
The great thing about Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 is that in spite of a massive, guaranteed, captive audience, this impressive 3D production never rests on its laurels. This is no mere victory lap for the most winning movie franchise of the modern era.
As the final screen instalment of the J. K. Rowling saga races towards its tumultuous finale, there simply isn’t time to sit back and wistfully reflect about how far we have all come.
The moment has arrived for actions to speak louder than words, and Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is first and foremost an action movie. A great action movie. It hits the ground running, rejoining the marathon odyssey of Harry ( Daniel Radcliffe), Hermione ( Emma Watson) and Ron ( Rupert Grint) to hunt down the four remaining horcruxes that are key to the everintensifying power of Voldemort ( Ralph Fiennes).
After a stunning sequence, where the heroic trio escape the vault of Bellatrix Lestrange on the back of a dragon, a familiar setting becomes the backdrop for a powerful end to the tale.
The famous Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry becomes a war-torn battleground as opposing forces of good and evil square off in spectacular fashion.
Finally, as it should, everything comes down to an unforgettable duel to the death ( and possibly beyond) between the determined Harry and the deranged Voldemort.
The closing act – which also provides many beloved characters from past Potter adventures with the opportunity to make one lasting contribution to the tale – is gripping, stirring and moving.
Fans who know the Potter books inside-out will particularly appreciate the skilful work of director David Yates and screenwriter Steve Kloves.
The pair have far more to do than just tie-up all loose ends. There are several shock twists and surprising about-turns fused into the DNA of Deathly Hallows Part 2. Each is revealed at exactly the right time. It is only when you take a step back and look at the movie series as a whole that you realise how well the master plan of the Potter producers has been implemented.
The same amount of plaudits must go to the entire cast, especially those who have been in it for the long haul. Radcliffe, Watson and Grint have had their awkward stretches as performers, but are first-class throughout the final instalment. Not bad at all for three kids plucked from obscurity to play roles destined to be cherished for several generations to come.
Though it does indeed hurt to say goodbye, almost all Potter fans will agree this farewell could not have been handled any better. A fitting end to a decade that had the whole world believing in magic.