Monday, November 29, 2010

Directed by David Yates
Starring Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Ralph Fiennes, Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Jason Isaacs, Tom Felton, Bill Nighy, Imelda Staunton, Alan Rickman, Julie Walters, David Thewlis, Michael Gambon, John Hurt, Brendan Gleeson, Evanna Lynch, Rhys Ifans, Bonnie Wright, Peter Mullan, Fiona Shaw, Richard Griffiths, David O'Hara, Timothy Spall

Geez, look at that cast list.. like the who's who of legendary actors and actresses. I'd also like to start by pointing out that once again I haven't read the original novels in which these movies are based on, so in my humble opinion that puts me in a very good position to rate these movies as stand alone pieces and not adaptations.

Harry Potter (Radcliffe) with his closest friends Hermione and Ron (Watson and Grint) are mourning the loss of Professor Dumbledore (Gambon) and preparing for the ultimate showdown against Potter's sworn enemy and the murderer of his parents, Dark Lord Voldemort (Fiennes). As the stakes get higher, the trio must also stay true to their friendship which is straining under the pressure.

Personally, I hated the first Potter movies The Sorcerer's Stone (2001) and The Chamber Of Secrets (2002) mainly because director Chris Columbus (Mrs. Doubtfire, Home Alone) made them out to be cheesy family movies with clichéd lessons towards the end, but now that the saga has advanced to it's 7th outing things are looking way up because Harry Potter isn't the simple fare it used to be. There are real, important themes at hand and the tone is dark, very dark. In fact, it might be a stretch to call these family movies at all since there are real scares which almost cross the line over to real horror. When the film adaptations of J.K. Rowling's books kicked off, I was pissed because somehow they had managed to collect the cream of British acting community under this childish lable but even that doesn't bother me anymore. The tone is very mature and these great legendary screen icons get to shine like they didn't before in the earlier installments (though I'll still take Hans Gruber and the Sheriff of Nottingham over Severus Snape any day of the week). The Deathly Hallows: Part 1 has been criticized for having a slow pace and being without action. Two arguments which are both completely without merit. There's constantly something happening and the screenplay by Steve Kloves (Wonder Boys, The Fabulous Baker Boys) moves along nicely. That's more like it!

Harry Potter ja Kuoleman Varjelukset, Osa 1 on loistava leffa saagassa, jota on ainakin ensimmäisissä elokuvissa painaneet raskaasti perhe-elokuvien kliseet ja mauttomat, rautalangasta väännetyt opetukset yms, mutta mitä pidemmälle tarinassa ollaan päästy ja nyt kun pääosatkin ovat varttuneet, on tarinankerronnalle ja elokuvien sävylle onneksi käynyt samoin. Potter-filmit ovat alusta asti olleet kyllästettyjä näyttelijän ammatin kermalla ainakin mitä sivuosiin on ollut katsomista, mutta toisin kuin sarjan alussa, nyt nuo legendat pääsevät ihan oikeasti näyttelemäänkin sen sijaan että olisivat vain tylsiä marionetteja taustalla kukkakepit kourassa. Tätä leffaa on moitittu tylsäksi ja vain aiempia tapahtumia kertaavaksi, mutta omasta mielestäni kumpikaan ei pitänyt paikkaansa. Kuoleman Varjelukset, Osa 1 on vauhdikas ja itsenäinen elokuva, jota voi suositella nimenomaan perheen varttuneemmille.

Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 1 at IMDb

The following trailer is in fact a combination of Parts 1 and 2: