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"Deathly Hallows: Part 1" Screening Today in Chicago, Leaky's Full Report Forthcoming

DH Film
Posted by: Edward
August 21, 2010, 07:20 PM

A test screening for the upcoming "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" film was held today in Chicago.  This editor was lucky enough to attend the screening, and got a full preview at the first installment of the final film.  A full report on the screening is due shortly, but please enjoy this quick preview rundown for now.


If you are ready, please continue below for full details!




Here we go:

  • 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.

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“It’s impossible for people who have not read the books to make any sense out of these films. Everything is left hanging in the air, unanswered and unexplained. It’s just ridiculous. I hope they make A LOT of changes, because this sounds even worse than I thought. I suppose there’s no point in reminding that demented script writer (and also the previewer) that there is a character called Snape who is rather important…? Does he appear at all in these last two films or is Alan Rickman’s (surely excellent) work lying in the cutting-room floor? They seem to have wasted a lot of money on his salary, but worst of all, wasted his time and effort.”


I understood the films perfectly from years 1-5 without reading any of the books.

Posted by YodatheHobbit on August 22, 2010, 03:50 PM report to moderator
1921 Points

The film sounds pretty terrific to me. Except: it would have taken about 6 seconds to show Wormtail’s death here; Kreacher’s Tale is so important (and a part I particularly loved in DH), I mean RAB was referred to at the end of HBP movie; the reprise of the death of Harry’s parents was awesome in the book and needs to be here; is there no discussion bet Harry and Griphook and Olivander? all of that, esp Olivander, is so crucial to the whole wand thing (Draco’s wand I mean) and are they going to show Harry wresting it from him at Malfoy Manor? if not, then the end of DH2 will be meaningless, at least to anyone who hasn’t read the books. I know the movies aren’t the books, but still….

I do like that Hedwig has a more heroic death than in the book, sort of like when Fawke’s saved Dumbledore at the Ministry in OotP (in the book not movie).

And I do hope they don’t have Hooper return for part 2; it needs a more epic composer, like P Doyle or J Williams, esp for the battle scenes and The Forest Again scene.

Posted by izziewitch on August 22, 2010, 04:15 PM report to moderator

Detailed spoiler-ridden description of the whole film on Mugglenet by YuraGamer. All questions on the movie answered if you don’t mind being super-spoiled.

May the Whinge-Fest continue: “Oh to be young and to feel the love of literalism’s keen sting.” Except if it’s fanfic of course, then one can butcher anything to one’s heart’s content. Ah, to be young again, and escape the discomfort of mind-numbing contradictions.

Their repeating they have not chosen a composer for Part II means they, or the studio, want Williams back. Big big mistake. Part II will sound like a cross between Jurassic-Jaws-Jones and maddening muzak from a Disney Theme Park.

Unless of course, Yates and Heyman have the guts to rein him in. But then, if that’s the case, why use him? Come on Yates, let’s see some Lancashire steel and stick with Hooper, Desplat, or Doyle, or any number of gifted European or Asian composers. Why drown out all the good work on HPII in a worn-out, predictable, Hollywood soundtrack? HP deserves so much better, and so do all true fans of film. Keep breaking new ground, please don’t ruin it by turning the clock back.

Posted by rotfang07 on August 22, 2010, 04:18 PM report to moderator
10268 Points

Be honest, Yoda: Were you truly able to deduce from what happened onscreen in ‘Goblet of Fire’ what had gone down with the two Barty Crouches and how they had been involved in Voldemort’s comeback? I sure wasn’t – even after having read the novel multiple times by the time I saw the movie. Several times during GoF I was left saying, “What just happened?” (especially at the point where Harry finds Barty Sr.‘s corpse, then runs off to do the Third Task apparently without even mentioning it to anyone), and that was true in many other instances throughout the film series. Gloria’s complaint about plot points “left hanging in the air, unanswered and unexplained” is very well-founded.

Posted by WeenyOwl {The Human Deluminator} on August 22, 2010, 04:20 PM report to moderator
67 Points

The details are fine for Potter fanatics, but Joe and Jane Public wants a story. Does the film tell any story? If not, then nobody is coming back for pt. II. More to the point, does it tell Rowling’s story about the Greater Good?

Posted by Wimsey on August 22, 2010, 05:00 PM report to moderator
2408 Points

words. can’t. explain… how… excited… WOW!!

Posted by KiwiMcI on August 22, 2010, 05:05 PM report to moderator
67 Points

Rotfang: I agree entirely about the composers. A random remix of “A New World’s Symphony” gives you most of John Williams’ scores. A more subtle tone-poem by one of the composers you list (I’d add Shore to your list, btw.) is what these films need.

Posted by Wimsey on August 22, 2010, 05:05 PM report to moderator
1921 Points

I bet they’ll open DH2 with Harry talking to Olivander, that would tie the two films together.

Posted by izziewitch on August 22, 2010, 05:33 PM report to moderator
1921 Points

And Wimsey, yes you need subtlety — for the Forest Scene — but certainly not for the Battle for Hogwarts. And IMHO, Hooper isn’t subtle, just boring and rather unimaginative. But that’s just me! :)

Posted by izziewitch on August 22, 2010, 05:35 PM report to moderator
124 Points

Oh my fricking god! AHHHHHHH im so excited! Im abit miffed that Wormtail survives but his death is abit graphic so perhaps they did it so its more kid friendly? I want more info!

Posted by Traceymmm on August 22, 2010, 05:41 PM report to moderator
67 Points

Subtlety is needed throughout. Shore’s score was extremely subtle, but that did not preclude it from including sections of raw bombast. The trick is to be bombastic when appropriate: the “blasts” need to be very properly timed, rather than constant. The Battle of Hogwarts definitely needs subtlety: it probably will be way too long on screen, anyway, and non-stop 4th movement of Beethoven’s 5th will make it seem even more interminable to Joe and Jane Public. (Remember, they are buying the vast majority of the tickets: we HP fans are only a small fraction of the people seeing these films.)

Posted by Wimsey on August 22, 2010, 05:49 PM report to moderator
27 Points

it sounds really bad but I’m just glad Hedwig dies!

Posted by Whitty on August 22, 2010, 05:57 PM report to moderator
2579 Points

Merlin’s Beard! I’m so excited! It sounds great!

Posted by Wendelin the Weird on August 22, 2010, 05:59 PM report to moderator
30 Points

sounds really awesome….but harry’s supposed to say the tabooed word when they’re caught…

Posted by demonicxaura on August 22, 2010, 06:22 PM report to moderator
606 Points

Wormtail lives? Thats not right. Harry is supposed to say the taboo’d word, not Xeno. but maybe that cuts some time, joining when the DE come to the Lovegoods & when the Snatchers get them afterward…Not Potter Memorial, thats a bummer. Would have only taken a moment of screen time. I wonder if the island Dumbledore’s tomb is on is at Hogwarts? He is supposed to be buried on the grounds. Well, I knew there would be some changes, but overall sounds fantastic!

Posted by Dawna on August 22, 2010, 06:28 PM report to moderator
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