Today some lucky lucky people got the chance to attend the very first showing of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I at a test screening in Chicago. Warner Bros. President Alan Horn and director David Yates were in attendance, most likely to see how the audience reacted to the movie (which apparently still had green screen in places and a temporary score).
The following reviews contain spoilers:
Kyle’s review from Mugglenet;
First off, this is the most perfect Harry Potter film ever. The movie on a whole is amazing and dark. Everyone was on top of their game. Everything was perfect. Dobby’s death was done perfectly. You could see the emotion in Harry and the gang. We saw green screens of course (because the film’s digital effects were not yet complete), but it didn’t affect me at all. The audience LOVED Dobby. Everyone was clapping when we saw him.
The Ron and Harry fight was so well done. The score sadly was not real – that’s the only thing I hated really. Voldemort was in the movie a LOT, but I didn’t care – that’s what made it so real for me. Him and Snape on screen together was amazing. This IS the movie we have been waiting for.
The Seven Potters scene was so well done. The part I loved the most was the Ministry of Magic scenes. This film will get a hard PG13 rating by far. The Horcrux scene was so well done. All the performances were so well done. I can’t wait to see Part Two. Everyone put their heart into this. There is one scene I particularly liked when Harry tried to cheer Hermione up. So cute.
One last thing: The wedding was so great. Kingsley’s message was so dark and powerful that you knew things were about to go down.
Here is a rundown of what was seen from The Leaky Couldron:
- Director David Yates, and Producers David Heyman and David Barron were in attendance at the screening.
- The current running time for this rough cut was about two and a half hours.
- Some select graphics and CGI enhancements were not fully complete in this screening. Some moments were only rendering.
- Green screens, cranes, and other movie props appeared in places.
- The film contained a temporary soundtrack; the full soundtrack is still being composed and recorded.
- A unique and innovative animation tells the story of the Deathly Hallows.
- David Barron confirmed that the final split for the film will indeed be when Lord Voldemort takes the Elder Wand from Dumbledore’s grave.
- The crew has not yet finalize their choice of composer for the second part of “Deathly Hallows.”
- The Seven Potter sequence features Mr. Radcliffe changing, character by character, as the camera pans around the room. He is left in the original clothes of the character, and with their voice.
- The film opens on the Minister of Magic speaking to the press, promising the wizarding public safety and protection of their liberties.
- This leads into the Dursley’s leaving their home, and Harry being left in the empty Privet Drive house with Hedwig.
- Hedwig does die, returning to the chase sequence to defend Harry from Voldemort.
- The title card did not contain and “Part One” distinction.
- Both Kreacher and Dobby do make an appearance in the film.
- The Death Eater meeting is featured, an unshaven Lucius Malfoy shakes below Voldemort’s gaze.
- A series of flashbacks and memories are used to tell both the select back story of the Hallows and Horcruxes. Dumbledore, Slughorn, and more were featured in this telling.
- The Death Eater chase ranges from highway action with other cars, featuring Hagrid and Harry on the motorbike doing a loop around the ceiling of a tunnel.
- Hermione is shown to obliviate her parents, and make out her way out of the house. When she casts the spell, family photos on the wall are magically wiped of Hermione’s presence.
- Hermione is tortured by Bellatrix at Malfoy Manor, after they are captured by the Snatchers. Quite graphic and jarring.
- Umbridge returns. Part of the new Death Eater Ministry which takes over.
- Death Eaters crash the wedding.
- A new stone statue in the Ministry is created, wizards behind held up by a twisted jumble of muggles.
- Madam Maxine is featured at the wedding as well.
- Ron’s turn against Harry and Hermione builds throughout the first half, his leaving is very dramatic.
- Ministry of Magic is turned into a propaganda factory, with posters, pamphlets, and other anti-Muggle propaganda.
- Harry and Hermione dance to Nick Cave’s “The Children.”
- Dobby makes a fun, funny, and heartwarming return. Humorous interaction with Kreacher.
- The Trio are found by the Death Eaters when Xeno says “Voldemort,” a tabooed word.
- When Ron is destroying the Horcrux, Harry and Hermione appear as silver porcelain figures, taunting Ron. The engage in a very sensual kiss, which ignites Ron into destroying the Horcrux.
- Dementors float above the courtroom where Umbrdige interviews.
- The enchantments Hermione puts around the test when Snatchers come up to their camp.
- The memorial to the Potters does not appear when Harry and Hermione go to Godric’s Hollow.
- Nagini comes from the mouth of Bagshot. The fight crashes into the children’s room of the house next door.
- In the Silver Doe scene, Harry breaks his way though the ice to retrieve the sword. When he gets close, the locket around his neck chokes him and drags him under the ice.
- When Harry opens the locket, a Voldemort Horcrux tornado appears from the locket, speaking to Ron, and unleashing spiders onto the ground before Ron.
- Wormtail lives after Dobby stuns him to free Ron and Harry from the cellar of Malfoy Manor.
- The film ends with Voldemort going to a small island where Dumbledore’s tomb is set; he cracks open the white marble, stares into the blank face of Dumbledore, and takes his wand.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I will be released in Novemeber so we will be able to see it for ourselves then! A new trailer is also expected over the upcoming weeks.