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Movie Reviews
by Todd Pearage

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (7/15/2011)


Rated PG-13 for some sequences of intense action violence and frightening images.

Starring Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint

Directed by David Yates (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix)


Todd's Rating: Theatre Worthy

I’m not a fan of the Potter films...but this one was pretty entertaining.

The final adventure in the Harry Potter film series follows Harry (Daniel Radcliffe), Ron (Rupert Grint), and Hermione (Emma Watson) as they prepare for a final battle with Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes), who is determined to destroy Harry once and for all. In order to defeat the powerful wizard, they must find and destroy Voldemort's last and most elusive Horcrux -- that is, the enchanted piece of soul allowing him to remain immortal -- before his nefarious plans come to fruition. David Yates directs.

So many good films come to bad ends, but the final episode of Harry's epic journey, part 2 of The Deathly Hallows, is the best possible ending for the series that began a decade ago. Yeah, a decade ago! In contrast to part 1, which was all about setting the final stage, this film, is all action.

Keeping the audience so closely connected with Harry is a remarkable achievement...people are still waiting in ridiculous lines and dressing up like wizards. And it seems likely that although the Harry Potter films are coming to an end, Warner Bros. will somehow keep the magic alive.

As a failed Harry Potter scholar, I’m sure I missed countless intricacies of the complicated plot. In fact I felt lost most of the time. But it was still an enjoyable couple of hours at the movies, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part Two ends the franchise in a manner befitting both fan enthusiasm and box-office might. This is the way the Harry Potter saga was meant to end, with everything in its proper place, ensuring the spirit of Harry Potter will live on.

I almost can’t believe it, but I’m giving it a Theater Worthy...go check it out.

SHOULD KIDS SEE IT?
That’s the question right? Is Harry Potter appropriate for children and teenagers. I’ve heard it all from there is nothing wrong or evil about the films to there is nothing good about them either. Some believe they can be a gateway to real magic and real evil, and honestly that is a legitimate danger. So if you find your child obsessing over the films and becoming increasingly curious about witchcraft, you need to intervene. As far as this movie goes, there are some pretty scary and disturbing images. There is also a scene where Harry and Hermione are kissing and embracing while being naked. It is a dream sequence and the characters appear to be more like ghosts, but I still felt it crossed the line.


Conversation Starter
Three Simple Questions (with Answers You May Be Looking for):

Q: What’s the message/theme of this movie?

A: The obvious answer here is witchcraft and sorcery. So let’s talk about that. Why do you think people get upset about the message and themes in the Harry Potter films?

Q: How do you suppose we—as serious Christ-followers—should react to this movie?
A: I think the best answer to that question is, very carefully.

For those who would say, “The Bible tells us to completely avoid witchcraft.” (Deuteronomy 18:10 and Galatians 5:20) I would agree with you. But I make a distinction between real or realistic witchcraft and “witchcraft” that is part of a fictional story.

On the other hand there are those who say, “It’s no big deal, it’s just a book or movie.” And again I would agree, I thoroughly enjoy films like The Chronicles of Narnia, The Lord of the Rings and even the classics like Star Wars...and I think you can enjoy them too. The problem here is when curiosity is left uncheck and leads into dabbling with witchcraft – and that can be very dangerous.

So no matter where you stand, please be careful.

Q: How can we move from healthy, Bible-based opinions about this movie to actually living out those opinions?
A: Like all media we need to use discernment and we need to be mindful of how our children/students are responding to the message in the media.

So ask them, what did you think of the “witchcraft” in the movie?

Ask them to read Deuteronomy 18:10, “Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft.” (NIV)

Then ask them if they believe there is a difference between the magic in that verse and the magic in the movie. Spend some time talking about those differences.

Close by talking about how magic is a very real thing, and God wants us to stay away from it.



Todd Pearage Todd Pearage is a movie buff at heart, but he's not your traditional film critic. Todd is a blue collar film geek, from his job years ago at Blockbuster to his heartfelt online movie reviews. But Todd isn't just a film geek. He has worked with middle and high school students since 1991 as a youth pastor and is currently on staff at Calvary Church in Souderton, PA. Todd and his wife Lynda have three children, Brianna, Caleb and Addyson.



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