So the other night my friend Michael, his neighbours and myself went off to the local cinema to go and see the new Harry Potter film – Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1. The book of this is a real step away in the tone of the series – a much darker and possibly disturbing read certainly when compared to the earlier books of the series and a deep foreboding tone running throughout the film. I really enjoyed it as it does seem to be aiming at a more adult audience – I believe the idea is that the audience is supposed to have grown with the characters as they grow in the story, but this is still a big step away from the chocolate frogs and quidditch that we saw in the earlier films. I can imagine this being a very hard book to adapt – it’s a big story with a lot happening in it, and the film makers have made the very sensible suggestion of really cutting anything from the book. This has lead to the much discussed decision to release the film in 2 parts – both around 2 and half hours each and hopefully the second half is going to live up to the promise shown in this first film. Without wishing to go into spoiler territory the film does end at a sensible point, and is enough of a cliff hanger to leave you waiting for the next part. The cast all perform really well – the adult cast being a collection of fantastic British actors – I did find myself spending scenes trying to recognise each actor as they appeared, and the central three characters (and other actors in more minor roles) have all grown from the annoying kids of the first film to inhabit their roles and all give natural performances. If you’ve read the book you’ll know how much of this film rests on their shoulders and they appear to be able to take the weight of this – it will be interesting to see how their careers develop post Harry Potter. The film-makers have also put in some fantastic touches throughout the film – such as a gorgeous animated sequence explaining the origins of the titular Deathly Hallows which looks like it’s been lifted from a Guillermo del Toro film, the use of different locations around the British Isles just showing off the natural beauty, little details within the scenes such as a patronus playing in the background of one scene, or (one of my favourites) the characters stopping off at a coffee shop and Wizard born Ron having no idea how to order or what to have. I think it’s thought the little details like this that show how the world has grown and that really give the films that extra strength of feeling like a they take place within reality, rather than a made up special effects zone which is one of my biggest flaws with the first two films. So all in all, a good cast, a good story and good effects this certainly gives you your monies worth – its going to be interesting to see what they do with the last part of the film, closing off this series which has been showing for around 10 years now.