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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows (spoilers for entire series)


Squallor

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So, after noticing a comment in the announcements, and in the event of the last movie having just been released, I was kind of curious what other people's opinions of the Harry Potter series were. I had been putting off reading it for the longest time since it always seemed childish to me from all the hype it received, but a friend of mine who is big into fantasy told me it was worth one read through.

That being said, I have to say I actually enjoyed reading the books more than I expected, though I wasn't completely enamored with them like most HP fans I've met. That was, until Deathly Hallows.

Is it just me, or did anyone else feel that the ending was unimaginative, and seemed just like a forced "I need to finish the series" kind of ending. The part that killed it for me, was that in the final book we actually get to interact with Voldemort in a lot more scenes, seeing what he is actually capable of, and then he completely failed to deliver. For a character with the reputation of being not only absolutely brilliant, but also the most powerful wizard in modern history, good or bad, he just kind of seemed unimpressive. His only dangerous spells were the three unforgivable curses, which are known widely by the entire wizarding community. Little else he does shows his knowledge of long forgotten spells, or any of his dangerous magics collected from the far reaches of Scandinavia or where ever.

As for his defeat at the end, I know the reasoning behind Harry winning had to do with the Elder Wand and Harry being the master of death, but that just seemed like a mechanism thought of in the last book just to beat the whole prophesy thing back in book 5. And why would the most powerful wizard in the world hang out in the middle of a room of 100 or so wizards/witches ready to fight him, and only focus on just harry potter, why wouldn't all these other people try and help out in any way, given the fact that all of Voldemort's team was captured or dead.

Anyway, this kind of finishes my rant. I don't get how anyone can be disappointed in the second movie for not being true to the book, when it ended just as lackadaisically as the book did. They were the same endings in different rooms.

What were other people's opinions on the books? I figured people here might have a bit more of an opinion given the fact it is a Sanderson forum.

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well, i've never read the books, so i can't comment on them. But for the harry potter series, i've always found the movies at least to be filled with plot holes and shameless use of deus ex machina to save the day.

That being said, though, i still kinda enjoy them.

However, I have to agree on the point on voldemort at least. In the final movie, he just kinda showed up places and never really did anything that evil. In fact, at times even seemed like he might not be such a bad guy (pulling back his attack on the people who are fighting against them to avoid bloodshed, and offering to spare their lives if they give up the person attempting to murder him comes immediately to mind). Though his desire to erradicate all non-wizards does kinda put him in the "bad guy" area.

And in regards to that, I've never understood WHY he wanted to destroy all non-wizards and half-bloods. It's not like they're going to revolt and defeat them, and they aren't exactly directly in his way to anything. in fact, they're off seperated in their own world sort of thing. It's like desiring the erradication of all kittens, despite the fact that where you live doesn't even have kittens, and the kittens only have their natural abilities to fight you and you have a tank.

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He doesn't want to kill the non-magic people, he wants to rule them. And his people kill muggles for sport.

As someone who has read the books, I can assure that the majority of the plot holes and deus ex machina in the movies can be attributed to lack of vital details from the books.

Voldemort, in the last book, was breaking down. Everything he's done has come to nothing, and he's been soundly deceived in every way, all because of his own refusal to acknowledge those things he deems below him, like love, that has such incredible power.

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It's been so long since I've read the books, and I read them so quickly that I don't remember them very well. Perhaps for that reason, I enjoyed the movies. I thought the sixth movie could have been stronger on the revelation of the Half-Blood Prince, because that was a fantastic twist in the book felt lame in the movies. But really, when it comes down to it, the movies were fun.

Let's face it, Harry Potter was never the pinnacle of logical plotting. The books could have been foreshadowed better. And now that you mention it, Squallor, Voldemort should have been more awesome. I suppose the Horcruxes were fairly evil, but when you get right down to it, he doesn't seem to have any extraordinary abilities above a normal Death Eater. Until he gets the Elder Wand, it seems that wouldn't be so hard to beat.

I actually had an extensive discussion with Will about that final face-off between Harry and Voldemort in the books. I remember that in the book, it was a total letdown. It could have been far more epic. (Plus, I thought the whole "Let's circle each other! In the Great Hall! With everyone watching!" blocking was cheesy and stupid, just as you did.) I haven't heard anyone say they were disappointed with the ending of the last movie. The fight felt more epic on film. It showed the duel in the cinematic way that it should have felt in the book. Because, obviously, this was cinema :P

I really ought to reread the books and see if they hold up to my eyes now.

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Yeah, the foreshadowing is really bad. It lends a lot of credence to the idea that she didn't actually think of the horcruxes or hallows until a couple of books beforehand.

The real strength of Harry Potter is the characters, though. You latch onto them, you really care about them.

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It's not so much that I hated the entire series, mostly just the ending. I knew going into the series I wasn't going to get WoT/aSIaF level plotting and the like, after all it is a kids series. I also agree that the characters are easy to relate to and root for. I can look past the lack of foreshadowing and some of the deus ex machina resolutions to some of the plot cycles.

My only real complaint is just how she had this very mature beginning to the capstone book, so I was expecting a lot of the ending. Then halfway through, it just spiraled down hill. I feel like she just gave everyone the happy ending they wanted.

Oh well, such is life. I am sure I will watch the movies again when I have kids and enjoy them, but I don't think I will ever stop getting into arguments with every person who tells me that HP was the best fantasy series since LotR.

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I agree the ending was quite awful - and in the last book especially, there's some seriously unpleasant Deus Ex Machina plot twists. Like, early Terry Brooks style Deus ex Machina. Generally, though, the series is marvelous, and it has a special place in my heart. It's really what turned me on to fantasy in the first place.

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  • 1 month later...

I think the ending was pretty good for a kids book. I didn't look into plot holes a lot when I was reading it mostly because I was too focused on the awesome characters.

What I don't understand is why people suddenly disappear into puffs of smoke when they die in the last movie. Nobody did that in the other movies.

I really don't like it when directors aren't consistent <_<

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, the last book had a problem with the ending, indeed. I started to read it and was pleasantly surprised to see that Rowling's style had improved and that the rhythm was not as fast-paced as in other books (nor she was filling a hundred pages with virtually nothing, as she did in book five). In comparison to her other books, that is. Then, as I reached the first two-thirds of the book, I look at how much was left, thought about all the loose end that were yet to be solved, and realized she wouldn't be able to keep it and, eventually, it would become somewhat of a blur of solution-after-solution and all-happy-and-well (will deaths, of course. There had to be deaths).

It happened.

I mean, you can't just forge a character (probably the only character who went through all the books without stereotyping himself) to make everyone wonder about his motives and allegiances (Snape, that is), and then solve it through a "memory" that is told in a couple of pages. I mean, it is not that the memory is bad it itself, it's just that... that's the only explanation that is given, and not the final one. It's cheap.

Another thing... Is that, honestly, even if you want to make a fuss about love and peace, making the main character win the final battle because of love... especially that way... seems forced.

But I still think Rowling made a major plot mistake in not making Voldemort drink some Felix Felicis elixir before confronting Harry ;)

That potion is the most deus-ex-machina thing there is in the entire series. Especially because only the good ones ever think of using it.

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  • 2 years later...

I know this thread is all-but-dead, but I wanted to share a cool idea that a friend had re: tDH.

 

She said that JKR missed a huge opportunity at the very end.

 

Along with the Potter, Weasley, and Malfoy families & their kids, someone else should have shown up - looking terrified - with his wife & child: Dudley Dursley. He was Petunia's son, after all, so the potential could have been there.

 

There were other missed opportunities, but I would've really liked to have seen this plot twist in the book.

Edited by old aggie
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