Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1

Rated 4.0

There’s just too much magical goodness to reasonably fit into the standard two-hour timeframe. Deathly Hallows: Part 1 takes time to closely develop the plot lines from the first half of the story, and saves the rest for later (summer 2011 to be exact). Following the traditional hero’s journey, young Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) treks across the magical world with besties Ron (Rupert Grint) and Hermione (Emma Watson) in their latest attempts to save wizard-kind from the evil ways of the Dark Lord, Voldermort (Ralph Fiennes). This time they’re on the hunt to destroy the invaluable Horcruxes, the immortalizing magical objects that retain pieces of Voldermort’s soul. Much to its success, the film doesn’t rely solely on action/adventure conventions to move the plot along. Added to the mix are appropriate moments of coming-of-age romantic frustrations: Will Ron ever make a move on Hermione? Is Harry getting in the way? Can they all stop looking at each other longingly and just go for it? And after seven books and films chronicling their lives, these moments of personal vulnerability are necessary to validate the characters’ development. Magic and spells are cool, but it’s refreshing to have subplots we muggles can relate to. Cinemark 14, Feather River Cinemas, and Paradise Cinema 7. Rated PG-13