Harry Potter finale signals end of an era

Taking summer classes and having a summer job have made me a little late to this party, but only by a few weeks or so. Better late than never right?

With the release of the final Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, a small part of my childhood is over. I, like so many others, grew up with Daniel Radcliffe as Harry. We’ve encountered the same problems as Harry did, maybe not dealing with an evil wizard who wants to kill you, or overnight celebrity status…but you get the idea. As plain ole Muggles we’ve done none of those things, but we have all had to meet new friends at a new school, had a fight with a friend, dealt with a bully or had trouble with the opposite sex at one time or another. Wizards are people too.

The Harry Potter films gave a new generation their own franchise to follow. While each film cut a great deal from the books they still captured the, dare I say, magic that was within the pages.

The first two Potter films tried to follow the books as closely as possible, but something happened. When Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban hit theaters fans were greeted with a darker, more mature film. That trend continued through to the Deathly Hallows. That could be contributed to a number of factors. Audiences were growing more mature as well. The seriousness of each film and book grew, culminating in the deadly final battle between Harry and Voldemort.

Since we are on the subject of the final film, I guess this would be a good time to mention some of my favorite scenes.

The Snape sequence after he was murdered stands out; it was one of the most powerful sequences in the film, if not the whole series. Now, many might hate the character of Snape but he had his defining moment in the final installment. The sequence with Snape and Lily Potter was powerful, heart wrenching and shocking—looking at it from the point of view of someone who hadn’t read the last two books.

There are other scenes worth mentioning, but one in particular holds more weight than the entire series itself. The final scene packs an emotional kick to the gut. Sitting through the final film I feel like I have to grow up. I know that kid inside of me will still be there but stepping out into the scary place known as the world is huge.

With this final Potter film everything is different. There isn’t anything to look forward to, unless Rowling takes the road of George Lucas and gives us some strange computer generated horror shows referred to as films—let’s hope that doesn’t happen. I guess what I’m getting at is that the magic truly is gone. Sure, reading the books and watching the films again will give some sort of nostalgia but nothing that could match reading the first page of the Sorcerer’s Stone and instantly being sucked into the fantastical world of wizardry.