It was just made official last week that the final film of the Potter franchise, confusingly titled Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, will be made into 2 separate movies. It will simply be known as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II. The former will be released in November 2010 and the latter in May 2011.
Now, is this good, or is it a disaster in the making?
Unlike most devotees of the book, who loathed the past five movies due to its inaccuracies and the constant chopping of key integral parts of the books, I just love the movies (yes, I am a big fan of the books too). Mainly because of the great ensemble cast, consisting of Britain’s bests; Gary Oldman, Ralph Fiennes, Helena Bonham Carter, Emma Thompson, Maggie Smith, Kenneth Branagh, Richard Harris, Timothy Small, Alan Rickman and the recently announced Jim Broadbent just to name a few. Most of them are my personal favorites (Oldman and Fiennes especially) and it’s great to see them acting out some of the finest literary characters that I’ve come to love. So, the moment I heard that I will be getting a double dose of Deathly Hallows, with all the vital parts intact, I got pretty excited. However, splitting a great book (which I can’t recalled if its been done before) could prove to be a challenging task for the filmmakers because they have to ensure that the book does not lose its integrity.
The most important thing to do would be to decide when to end the first part. Should the movie have a cliffhanger ending or should the movie end with a more pleasant note? If could be made correctly, I would prefer it to end with a cliffhanger because after all, its one story and we wouldn’t want the two films to be secluded from each other by thinking that each is a story on its own. With that sort of ending, the audience will surely make a point to watch the second due to their thirst for solving the ultimate mystery. This is what the filmmakers have to ensure because I would hate to know that some people only saw half of Deathly Hallows. Even with a cliffhanger ending in mind, the filmmakers still has to decide where exactly to end it.
I feel that the best way to end it is by giving the book its own climatic battle. Though smaller in scale as compared to that of the last battle at Hogwarts, the scene at the Malfoy Manor might just be the climatic scene we’re looking for. This is where our heroes are trapped in a dungeon, where Hermione got tortured by the estranged Bellatrix Lestrange, the death of a certain house elf and not to mention the mini-battle that ensues. Battles and deaths, aren’t those the perfect ending? With that sort of climax, the audience would feel overwhelmed with the movie, though would still bear in mind that the story is only half-told. Another scene some are suggesting is the scene at the forest when Ron reappeared after a brief absence. Personally, I don’t think this is the best way to end it seeing that there are no interesting events leading to that scene. Therefore, most audiences would not be prepared for the movie to end there. I can already imagine the comments they’ll make if the movie is to end that way. The key is to let the audience know when the movie is going to conclude (battles would normally do the trick) and at the same time to let them know that it’s not over.
Now this is a treat for us Potter fans to have 2 movies from 1 book. Its something we’ve been asking for since Goblet of Fire (which we nearly got). So pretty please, with sugar on top, I beg you (Warner Bros, David Heyman, David Yates etc), do not screw it up.
Fazil likes it with cherry on top of the sugar.