University High School, Normal, IL

Harry Potter film casts its spell

The first film in the two part series Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 came out in theaters on Friday, November 19th and was able to cover all of the information and action in the book accurately and not skip over important parts because it was broken into two parts.

The film starts out with aurors and friends of Harry helping to transport him to a safe house before his 17th birthday. Their attempt was interrupted by Death Eaters who knew of the time of the transportation and tried to get Harry right there. Luckily, Harry makes it to the safe house without any harm. A few days later during Bill and Fleur’s wedding, the Ministry of Magic fell and Death Eaters crashed the wedding. Harry, Ron, and Hermione fled for safety right as the Death Eaters appeared.

Harry must find and destroy all of Voldemort’s horcruxes, which are objects that contain parts of Voldemort’s soul. This mission leads to  the trio taking some polyjuice potion to get into the Ministry of Magic and steal a horcrux in the form of a locket that is currently in the possession of  Dolores Umbridge. After they successfully steal the locket, they go into hiding. Then Harry and Ron get in a quarrel and Ron runs away.

When Ron returns, Harry is able to acquire the sword of Gryffindor and Ron destroys the horcrux in the locket. Then, the trio pays a visit to Luna’s father Xenophilius Lovegood. Xenophilius calls the Death Eaters to tell them that he’s got Harry Potter but luckily our heroes escape. After they escape, they are captured by snatchers and taken to the Malfoy mansion. They are tortured for a while but eventually escape with the help of Dobby the house elf.

The film followed the book very closely, which is something that makes a great book into a great movie. There was one difference between the book and the movie, however, and that was when Harry and Hermione went to Godric’s Hollow they were suppose to use polyjuice potion and become a middle aged couple. Instead, they went to Godric’s Hollow as themselves because Harry was born there, his parents lived there, Dumbledore lived there, and that is where Voldemort lost all of his power. For all of these reasons, Harry said, “I’m not going back as someone else.” This change made that part of the film better than if Harry and Hermione went back as someone else because it made it more personal.

The film also did a good job in using only important scenes that added to the plot of the film instead of just using filler. In the book, the vast majority of the middle of the book is the trio, and at times just Harry and Hermione, in the woods and pondering where to go next and what to do. I appreciated the absence of scenes that were in the book but did not give information prevalent to the rest of the film. The film chose only the most important scenes and showed them with stunning accuracy.

The film’s director David Yates did an excellent job in bringing very important scenes from the book and making them just as important in the film. An example of this is the ending scene in the film. This scene in the book was very sad and very powerful and it was portrayed the same way in the film.

Overall, I consider the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 very good and I highly recommend that you see it. This movie is rated PG-13 and has a running time of 2 hours and 27 minutes.