Tag Archives: David Bradley

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, part 2

Snape

The wait was shorter than it seemed. We went for the first local screening of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, part 2 to get in before school ended for the day and especially to avoid the end of term.

The cinema had actually been screening the other Harry Potter films in the days leading up to The Day, which is good for people needing reminding, or even for the unlikely person who has never bothered but who has suddenly seen the light and wants to join in, however belatedly. I could have done with it myself as far as part 1 was concerned. Barely remembered how far we’d got or what had happened.

Hermione, Ron, Harry and Ollivander

It didn’t even feel too much as if we began in the middle, for a film that began in the middle. Dobby is dead and Harry is sad. And determined to get going with the remaining Horcruxes. More Polyjuice to get into Gringotts, and Hermione as a polite Bellatrix was a sight to see. Not so sure about Harry’s face-dive into Snapes’s memories, but it was necessary for the plot.

Neville

Harry and Ron and Hermione do a good enough job, but the winner of both book and film has to be Neville Longbottom. Who’d have thought he’d turn out so well? Maggie Smith as McGonagall is also a sight for sore eyes, along with her comfortable Scottish accent. I know I shouldn’t make too much of a relatively small part, but I’m just so grateful she survived. Maggie Smith, I mean. After the first film I had this sudden witchy premonition that someone wasn’t going to make it, and the faces that flashed before me were hers and Richard Harris’s.

It’s actually a major feat that they could make so many films with child actors and have them ‘all’ there at the end. I know one or two have fallen by the wayside, but other than that it’s worked well. Thought Crabbe had had a colour change, but he appears to have been written out.

Ginny and Mr Weasley

I was surprisingly touched by the deaths, which is more remarkable for them not really happening on screen. We see everyone dead afterwards. I’d almost go so far as to say that not enough is made of those deaths. Could be they want to skirt the issue in order not to upset young viewers, but you could easily miss quite how many dear ones perish.

But I suspect that’s not why the Retired Children’s Librarian had read in her paper that ‘people will be sad’. I think they meant ‘what will we all do now that Harry Potter is over?’ Yes, what will we do? This kind of thing is never coming back.

(Photos © Warner Brothers Entertainment Inc)

Another Year

I could have wrung that bloody saintly woman’s neck. And quite early on in the film, too. Smug, smug, smug. I never liked counsellors anyway, but Gerri takes the biscuit. Her husband Tom is somewhat nicer in an ordinary way, but the overwhelming happiness of these two middle class people is sickening.

Ruth Sheen and Jim Broadbent in Another Year

Whereas it’s hard to totally like Mary – Gerri’s ‘friend’ from work – she is more of a real person than the two she hopes to be ‘saved’ by. Lesley Manville does a great job as Mary, and the fact that I’m getting so worked up about the whole film proves that it’s very well done indeed. Just not terribly uplifting. I don’t want to be Mary, and I’m no Gerri.

Every single person around them has a hard time, and Tom and Gerri (yes, really) sail straight through, with their allotment and their happiness.

Fantastic cameo by Imelda Staunton, being patronised by a know-it-all, young doctor.

David Bradley and Lesley Manville in Another Year

David Bradley as Tom’s brother is better than ever. It’s a pity that they had to film ‘up north’ as though it’s always a poor and drab place; somewhere the sun doesn’t shine. I know it fits in with the plot, but it was just that little bit too much North and South.

This is an extremely good film. And awfully depressing.

(At Cornerhouse from Friday.)