As I mentioned (HERE) in my review for HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS: PART 1, I have not read any of the Harry Potter books but have been an avid fan of the film franchise. So this review will not be full of pouting and complaining about how this movie differs from the books. They are two separate entities if you ask me and I’m sure they are both wonderful in their own way. Instead, what I will do is review a movie that has been building up for 10 years now and finally brings the story of Harry Potter and his friends to a fitting and awe inspiring end.

HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS: PART 2 is the 8th movie in the Harry Potter film series and is once again directed by David Yates who is returning for his 4th and final Potter adventure. The final chapter of the saga begins has Harry, Ron and Hermione continue their quest to find and destroy the last of the Horcruxes in order to destroy the evil Lord Voldemort’s magical ability of immortality. What ensues is by far the most mature and action packed Potter film to date. The story here is fantastic, the characters are all in top form, and the action and special effects are top notch for the series. What we have here is a wonderful send off to a series that should be seen and adored by all.

HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS: PART 2 picks up directly after the events of Part 1. The first installment was full of more intense character development and plot, while this sequel focused more on action and the main battle between Harry and Lord Voldemort. Put together you have one hell of a movie that has something for everyone. The darker more desperate tone of this film is set right off the bat and the action rarely lets up due to its lightening fast pacing. I was captivated from the minute this movie started until the credits rolled. I am not willing to spoil anything about the story, but what I can tell you is that it is told marvelously here and I was often on the edge of my seat while learning about all the secrets these characters have kept. Put simply, the story was fantastic and had me fully engaged the whole time.

One of my favorite aspects of the Harry Potter movies is the wonderful cast of characters that I have come to love. Daniel Radcliffe is in top form here as he struggles with the truth about his destiny and is a joy to watch. The intensity Radcliffe gives here is outstanding and I believe Radcliffe is an amazing talent who will continue to shine as an actor for years to come. Rupert Grint as Ron and Emma Watson as Hermoine do as fantastic as ever and watching their characters interact here is a big payoff for fans. All in all, our three main heroes create a trio of wonderful talent and maturity that was so fun to watch.

The supporting cast besides our three main wizards shine like never before. By far my favorite performance is by Alan Rickman (DIE HARD) as Professor Snape who has recently taken over Hogwarts after killing Professor Dumbledore thus resorting Hogwarts to a dark and gloomy school that seems more like a prison. His stoic performance and pitch perfect delivery reminds us how awesome this character is and how amazing a talent Rickman is as an actor. Another awesome performance is done by Ralph Fiennes (IN BRUGES) as the evil Lord Voldemort in a much more prominent role than previous installments. It is such a treat to finally have Voldemort as a main character/villain instead of hiding in the shadows. The chemistry and hatred between Harry and Voldemort is extremely epic here and I could not be more pleased with the battle between the two in this film. Then there is also a slew of side characters that each have their moment in the spotlight including, but not limited to, Helena Bonham Carter (FIGHT CLUB) as the nasty Bellatrix Lestrange, Matthew Lewis (HARRY POTTER Series) as the bumbling yet heroic Neville Longbottom, Michael Gambon (SLEEPY HOLLOW) as Dumbledore, and the surprisingly bad ass Maggie Smith (HARRY POTTER Series) as Professor Minerva McGonagall! While there are many more characters I could delve into, I will just say that they all do a fantastic job creating a solid, fun, and entertaining cast of characters that help make these movies what they are.

Besides the thrilling story and the amazing characters, I come to Harry Potter movies to be whisked away to a fun filled fantasy world full of cool special effects, creatures, and action. HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS: PART 2 has the best action and effects by far! Hogwarts is reduced to an absolutely insane battle ground where pretty much every hero and villain come together for a complete war. It is really a sight to behold and my jaw dropped to the ground seeing this spectacle take place in front of my eyes. I really enjoyed watching all the teachers finally kick some ass. My favorite moments in this film are the battle scenes at Hogwarts where the camera is just sweeping through the battle quickly passing by all of these characters we have been seeing all these years who are in full battle mode. The teachers are bad ass, the villains are ruthless, the creatures are dangerous, and the students are all put to the test in one big bloody battle. This movie is truly a spectacle and feels more like a summer blockbuster than any Potter film to date. I cannot stress enough how superior the special effects in this finale are compared to the rest of the Potter films. Awesome stuff!

When the credits finally did roll, I was left with an overwhelming sense of closure and satisfaction for the series as a whole. This movie is a tremendous payoff for fans and is arguably my favorite movie in the series. The overall story was captivating throughout, the characters all shine their brightest, and the nonstop action was both fun and intense. I had a complete blast with this final installment and simply cannot believe it is all over. Now that the films are over, I cannot wait to finally read the books and inevitably purchase the complete saga on Blu-ray when it is released in order to watch it all over again. HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS: PART 2 is a fun action filled finale that is sure to please fans of the movie series. Highly Recommended!

Final Score: 8.5 out of 10