Let's be clear about one thing before this goes any further: I'm a pretty big Harry Potter fan.
I'm not the kind of fan who owns anything and everything Harry Potter. I'm also not the kind of fan who was the first in line when the Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened at Universal Studios in Orlando. While I'm not those types of fans, I am the type that has read every HP book and seen every HP movie (the last couple at midnight showings, while wearing one of my HP shirts).
"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2" is the culmination to almost 10 years and four different director's work, and I think fans and those who just like to see a darn good movie will be quite satisfied.
The film starts up right where "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" ends and it's a nonstop roller coaster of excitement, action, tears, kisses and battles from that point on. We follow Harry, Ron and Hermione as they attempt to finish their quest of finding and destroying the last of Lord Voldemort's Horcruxes. The journey, as we can guess, is a difficult one and it only makes things more interesting when the mystery of the three parts to the Deathly Hallows is revealed.
Although, having already read the book version of this movie, I was on the edge of my seat the entire time. My heart was racing, my palms were sweating – I guess you could say I was emotionally invested in each choice these characters took and how that would affect later events. That shows the ability of director David Yates, who has directed the last four Harry Potter, movies as well as the actors. Rupert Grint (Ron), Emma Watson (Hermione) and especially Daniel Radcliffe (Harry) have shown how their acting abilities have matured along with their age and I believe we'll be seeing much more from them in the future. (Here's hoping for more theatrical work from Radcliffe after his huge success in "Equus" and "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying").
The movie is very well paced at a runtime of just over two hours and I, for one, felt like the time flew by as though it were riding on a Nimbus 2000 broomstick. There was little in the way of down time between battles or quests. That doesn't mean, though, that the entire movie is action, action, action with nothing else to offer. Be ready for some tears and some laughs (there are some great lines out of Professor McGonagall and Mrs. Molly Weasley herself).
I'm not a person to normally tout 3-D versions of movies over 2-D, but this is an exception I'll make. The 3-D version was the way to go while watching this movie. First off, the Harry Potter fans will love the type of viewing glasses handing out for this one (hint, hint, wink, wink). Secondly, I think all those involved in creating this final installment in the HP series, really took some time to think about how 3-D could bulk up an already wonderful movie. Rather than using the 3-D aspect as a crutch for a mediocre movie, these guys and gals were able to think in a way that completely improved the viewing experience. Ashen particles falling from the sky seem to delicately float down around you and a smoke-filled room is made more realistic by the hazy cloudiness you feel enclosing you.
The one thing I will recommend to those who see "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2" is to watch Part 1 once before heading out to see this or do a little web surfing to remind yourself what happened leading up to this final installment. If you've seen a few or zero previous HP movies, I'd highly recommend talking to a friend with background on the plots or just giving in and watching them for yourself. This movie will not take the time explain background that had previously been referenced nor does it re-introduce us to characters.
I left the theatre full of excitement at a satisfying final piece to a long-running series but I was also sad to see it end. I hope everyone else who makes it out to see "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2" has a similar experience.