9 years ago, the world unwittingly gave one small-time English author and one large American movie company the right to play with their emotions and rule their Winter schedules for the next 10 years... yep, 20
01 saw the first year exploits of a young Harry Potter enter into the world of wonder, witchcraft and wizardy with "The Philospher's Stone."
And now, finally it's the beginning of the end as we, along with most of the world, see Harry, Hermonie and Ron make the last stand against "He Who Must Not Be Named" - Lord Voldermort in an 147 minute cliff hanger that won't be resolved until Summer next year. So, if the "smack your forehead in frustration" endings of "The Empire Strikes Back" and "The Fellowship Of The Ring" did your head in then be prepared because this one is a doozy!
Starting off without a recap (true fans shouldn't dare look for a "previously on Harry Potter...) Director David Yates continues on his quest to bring the franchise trembling into the world of darker terrority and, with the help of the depressingly-somber source material, he pulls it off effortlessly. What starts out full of humour and nice references to the under currents of love and lust between the hormonal Harry, Ron, Ginny and Hermonie turns into a protracted chase movie with the 3 characters forced to leave Hogworts and take to the open road to stay alive by avoiding the cream of English baddie actors.
And the good news is that those who have grown up with the exploits are rewarded with the delight that the "child" actors have risen to the ranks of their adult counterparts. Yes, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and especially Rupert Grint can stand proud next to the regular delights of Maggie Smith and Alan Rickman, which is necessary as most of the movie hangs on their shoulders as they fight amongst themselves in various depressing English landscapes trying to locate Voldermort's horcruxes.
Finally, for our loyality over the last decade, the effects, the acting and the necessary but still none-the-less painful omissions from the books have culminated in a worthy beginning of the final bow to the boy that lived. Exciting, elequant and energetic - Harry's coming home!
UK release date: 19/11/10