Tuesday, July 19, 2011

On the edge of my seat

All right, I confess, I played hooky this afternoon for two hours at dinnertime to see Harry Potter: The Deathly Hallows Part II. It - was - brilliant.

True, it was filmed for a much younger audience, the generations that now expect loud, sudden, explosive noises and dizzying panning shots that leave the viewer feeling off balance, and, having been filmed for 3-D (I went to the 2-D version) those effects were even more chaotic. At the same time, I'm not sure it wasn't the right thing to do, since this last part of the saga is the armageddon-or-second-coming sequence - end of the world destruction on a huge scale.

The acting was perfect. I think I shall have to see it again on Friday just to see the adult support actors casting the spells that will buy Harry time to find the diadem of Ravencroft.

I surprised myself, too. Halfway through the death of Snape, I realized I was crying. Alan Rickman did such a wonderful job that I didn't realize I was seeing it as something real. And, from that point, there were more such crying events, some for sadness, some for relief, some for joy.

I am not going to even stoop to allegorize or get teachy about the story. I'll save that for Sunday. I didn't go to see the movie for that purpose. I went to see a story that still captivates me acted out on the big screen, and I was not disappointed. If you see nothing else of the movie, the sudden freedom given a dragon, chained underground for decades to guard a vault, all color washed out of it, even its eyes, the first glimpse of light far above, towards which it climbs, not even knowing or caring that three escaping heroes are hitching a ride, its breaking through the glassed cupola of Gringots bank, its stumbling first attempts at flight, and its final soaring to freedom leaving the London "ferris wheel" Thameside far below were alone worth the price of admission for me.

A fitting end to a wonderful series of books.

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