Those of you who know me know that I wasn't in favour of them chopping up the last Harry Potter movie into 2. People defended the decision, saying the book was too massive to make one movie and it was fitting that Harry's "last" (as I heard J.K. Rowling is saying she's going to write more) would play out in two films. Nope, it was for the money and this movie confirmed it.
I remember stating that Deathly Hallows Part 1 dragged too much. Well, this portion felt rushed. I know that's a lot to say, as there are still slower parts in this film, but it just felt really, really rushed. We didn't see much of the big battle at Hogwarts. The end battle between Harry and Voldemort felt really short, as well. They were just trying to tie up as many of the loose ends remaining as possible and I guess they kind of succeeded...but I now, more than ever, question why they had to break this movie into two.
As a whole, the Harry Potter series has been pretty good. I would rate the entire series somewhere between a 4 and a 4.5 rating. I can't give a 5 after the Deathly Hallows movie(s) and let me tell you, I was lost at some points...because I didn't go back and watch DH Part 1. I will give kudos for the series though, in the sense that you go the same actors back every movie (unless they unfortunately passed away between flicks, such as Richard Harris), they were all British, the movies were pretty faithful to the source material and they had all sorts of neat, magical moments. I think they became a little too serious and a little too grave at the end for their own good and lost some of the wonder and fun in the series, but overall, it was solid and monumental if you contemplate that this is the only 7 (or 8, sorry) movies in a series that have had everyone come back and reprise their roles.
That being said, I think the Harry Potter phenomenon is slightly overblown and I've read and enjoyed all the books. I think J.K. Rowling is a pretty good writer, but one of the best of all time? That's pretty heady stuff and until she proves she can write something other than Harry Potter (Stephen King had the Dark Towers...but he also had The Stand, It and Misery to name a few), I would reserve that title. I think she's very good for what she does and I think that she hit on something pretty good when the time was ripe for something like that to be written. I don't know if she's as good as everyone says she is though and the movies are a good representation of this opinion. Good? Undeniably? One of the best stories ever told? Errr...with all the good stories that have been told...let's not get crazy.
So, here's the closing chapter (for now) on Harry Potter. Kudos to the studio for giving the fans (mostly) what they wanted, which was a faithful adaptation of the books and kudos to all the actors for sticking it out and becoming part of film history. We probably won't see a series of films like this again for a long, long time.
Rating of Deathly Hallows, Part 2: 3.5 out of 5
Rating of Harry Potter series: between 4 and 4.5