July 15, 2011, - 6:22 pm

Wknd Box Office: Harry Potter & Deathly Hallows 2; A Better Life

By Debbie Schlussel

I did not see “Winnie the Pooh.”  But here’s what I saw new at theaters, today:

*  “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2“: I saw this in 3D, and it’s a nice summing up and ending to all the Harry Potter movies.  I didn’t read any of the books, but I’m told it’s pretty faithful to the written page.  If you didn’t see Part 1 (read my review) of this mini-series within a series, you will be very confused and not know what’s going on.  I saw Part 1, and forgot what happened in it.  Thus, I was a little unsure of what was going on.  When I remembered what happened, I was still a little confused.  You really have to be a Potter-phile and have read the books.

Continuing from Part 1, Harry and his small gang of fellow wizards are trying to find a number of “horcruxes” they must destroy in order to get defeat the evil Lord Voldemort.  But apparently Harry himself is a horcrux, so he must be destroyed?  And there’s a scene in which suddenly a whole bunch of rioters led by a guy that looks like Adam Ant appears and starts running on a bridge to kill everyone at the wizardry school.  Adam Ant made a comeback?  Like I said, it’s confusing.  And I thought it was weird that a giant snake is named “Negini” (sp?).  Who names a snake that?  A billionairess, I guess (J.K. Rowling).

Does Harry survive or must he die to save everyone else from Voldemort and the snake?  Does the wizard school survive?  As I noted, it has a nice and tidy ending, that tells you what becomes of the wizards years from now.  I was a little surprised that in a movie aimed at kids, a female professor at the wizardry school screams, “BITCH!” at one of the evil female characters.  But that’s the time we live in, and I guess that like the cast and characters of Harry Potter, most original Potter fans are now adults or, at least, in their mid-to-late-teens.

Lots of action and not boring, but make sure you’ve seen the first part or read the book before seeing this.  Or you’ll be lost. (And–jihad alert!–don’t forget that Alan Rickman a/k/a Severus Snape, is anti-Israel and anti-Semitic.)

Is it the end of Harry Potter?  For fans and cast, apparently so.

TWO REAGANS
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Watch the trailer . . .

*  “A Better Life“:  It’s no surprise that most movie critics (a/k/a liberals) are gushing over this movie.  It’s pure open borders propaganda.  Illegal alien porn.  Sadly, it’s very well done illegal alien propaganda, and most people who see it will buy what they’re selling here.  Extremely manipulative, cloying, and maudlin, the movie sucks you in and makes you feel for the illegal alien father, Carlos (Demian Bichir, who played Fidel Castro in the Che movie), who is a gardener in East L.A.  A single father, he struggles to survive and put food on the table for his unappreciative, gangsta-wannabe, American-born, anchor baby son.  We see Carlos work so hard to make money and live the American dream.  He’s an honest, decent, good guy who does backbreaking work in order to afford to buy a used truck and start a business.

Reality check:  many illegal aliens are not like Carlos.  Many are criminals, terrorists, and other low-lifes who come here to take advantage of a system that rewards them with a panoply of entitlements.  And for those who are honest, decent men like Carlos that just want a good life, there are many far more honest decent people who applied to come here legally and are waiting in line for a long time.  They have my sympathy more than the Carloses of the world.

But the movie doesn’t touch on those points, not even vaguely.  Instead, it shows us how “mean” American life is to Carlos, even though he “did the right things” (though, how “right” is it to come here illegally?).   Carlos meets tragedy after tragedy, some of which is visited upon him by fellow illegal aliens.  Some of the “hardship” is visited upon Carlos by the big, bad mean Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which in real life, wouldn’t even detain him, these days, as they only detain aliens with violent criminal records.  The movie doesn’t even get the agency’s name right, calling it “Eye-Cee-Eee.”  It’s ICE, as in the hard, frozen water you put in drinks.

As I said, this is a well done movie, in that it gets people’s sympathy, where there shouldn’t be any.  It’s the same old illegal alien sob story you’ve seen and heard a million times before.  I won’t hold my breath waiting for liberal Hollywood to make an honest movie showing us the real story about the hardened criminals and terrorists who come here through the same desert we see Carlos using.  I won’t hold my breath waiting for liberal Hollywood to show us how those aliens repeatedly game the system and remain on our soil through immigration fraud, marriage fraud, and phony asylum claims, like that of DSK’s false rape accuser.

If I held my breath for those, I’d already be dead.  And sadly, many victims of illegal aliens in our midst are just as dead, or their jobs and dreams are dead, stolen by illegal aliens.  That’s the real story.  But they never show you that on the big screen.

The tagline on posters for this movie says, “Every father wants more for his son.”  But the thing is, many American citizen fathers want more for their sons and can’t provide it because illegal alien dads like the one in this movie have stolen their opportunities to do so.

THREE-AND-A-HALF MARXES
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Watch the trailer . . .

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22 Responses

Thanks for the reviews. Never saw the Harry Potter ones. Prolly won’t either. So glad to know you know enough to cut through the BS propaganda and tell it like it is. You know when you’re being snowed. In an America where sociopathic killers like Casey Anthony are set free by 12 moronic Americans, it’s nice to know you’re not being zoomed.

Yep, too right on the illegals, too. When I hear so-called Conservatives telling me most illegals from Mexico (and I am half Mexican) and other south-of-the-border countries are very religious and Conservative…my head wants to explode. I mostly see lots of dysfunctional ones with drugs and alcohol issues and out-of-wedlock births a’ plenty. They think they are zooming me, but I have eyes. Latino women can be very skanky if you ask me. Regular Americans are catching up with them thou’ in 2011.

(Oh and you were so right about “Horrible Bosses”. I saw it for free this week and it sucked eggs. Of course the dopes in the audience loved it. No thanks. I enjoy your movie reviews because I know you know a good movie and so far the ones I have seen that you have liked have been spot on. And being that I am a movie snob (love art and foreign films more than American ones) that is amazing. Thanks!)

Skunky on July 15, 2011 at 6:43 pm

Harry Potter is symptomatic of what’s wrong with today’s youth. The belief they are born special and destined for greatness. That evil is embodied by a creepy white guy.

Perry Hotter on July 15, 2011 at 7:51 pm

    @Perry Hotter, I have been a lifelong fan of the Harry Potter saga (I am a 27 year old mother of 2 now, happily married and happily registered conservative) and you have it all wrong. The only characters in the book that feel they are destined for greatness at birth are villians (the pure blooded wizards that subscribe to Voldemort’s beliefs) and the fact that the bad guy happens to be white doesn’t mean anything. In case you haven’t noticed, the heroes and most of the heroes mentors are white. The only dialogue about race in the books is between humans and magical creatures, but other than that skin color has nothing to do with the story. The books place a high value on family (nuclear families even!!), bravery, friendship, and doing what is right even when it is terribly hard and even looked down upon at times. That is the exact opposite of everything wrong with today’s youth.

    Ashley on July 15, 2011 at 8:22 pm

Nagini is actually a Sanskrit name for a female entity that takes the shape of a snake, so it’s a perfectly apt name for Voldemort’s “familiar”.

I’m a huge fan of the Harry Potter series – although I really wouldn’t consider the later books (especially the last two) to be children’s books at all. The use of the term “Bitch”, given the context in the film and book is more than believable and I don’t feel is used in any way gratuitously.

Other than the above, I fully subscribe to what Ashley said before me. There’s been a considerable amount of grumbling about the series from one angle or another, but I think it’s been a wonderful series from beginning to end – books AND films, although the books are, naturally, far superior since they haven’t been subject to the time constraints.

I for one am sorry they’ve now come to an end. Hogwarts forever! :D

Alison on July 15, 2011 at 8:36 pm

Since you’re not a Potter-phile Debbie, let me unpack a lot of stuff behind that “Bitch” moment, which is such a powerful and important moment for the character, that anything else would have been unthinkable.

-The woman in question is not a professor, but a mother. She is Mrs. Weasley, mother of Harry’s best friend Ron, and she is active in the anti-Voldemort movement. When Voldemort was powerful the first time (during the 70s to 1981), her brothers, Gideon and Fabian Prewett*, fought and died like heroes battling against Voldemort and his Death Eaters.

-There is a shape-shifting creature called a Boggart that becomes whatever its victim fears most. When Mrs. Weasley sees a Boggart, it becomes the dead bodies of loved ones (her husband, her sons, Harry), which causes her to weep uncontrollably. It is her greatest fear because she lost two brothers in such a violently horrible way, and with the rise of Voldemort again, she lives in an ongoing state of fear and anxiety for her family.

-Also underlining her constant anxiety for her family’s well-being: she has a special family heirloom- a magical clock with all members of the family listed, with dials indicating their status/location. That clock eventually lists every member of her family as being in “Mortal Peril”, and she takes that clock with her EVERYWHERE while at home.

-So speeding up back to that moment in the movie- The villainess Bellatrix Lestrange is actually fighting Mrs. Weasley’s daughter ( I haven’t had a chance to see it yet, but I know what’s going on), and in that moment, Mrs. Weasley charging in yelling “Not my daughter, you BITCH”, throwing herself in danger’s way is such a powerfully cathartic moment, as she is not only defending her youngest child and only daughter, but avenging the death of her brothers.

This is such a beautiful moment in defending family and carrying the torch of fallen warriors that it remains one of my favorites, and makes Mrs. Weasley one of the best characters in the series. She is a consummate mother and matriarch; in Spanish, she would be “la mujer abnegada”- one who would give her last breath fighting for the well-being of her family.

*To casual Potter-philes wondering where that connection came from, the supporting data from the books: (careful- here be spoilers)

1. In Book 5, Mad-Eye Moody pulls out a picture of the original Order, and mentions that Gideon and Fabian Prewett died like heroes fighting 5 Death Eaters.
2. In the same book, in the Daily Prophet article covering the Death Eaters’ escape from Azkaban, it mentions that Antonin Dolohov was convicted in the brutal killing of the Prewett brothers.
3. In Book 7, Mrs. Weasley gives Harry her brother Fabian’s old watch; that she held onto it for so long shows how dear it was to her, and how Harry has come to be just as much her family as her brothers were.
4. In the epilogue, that watch is mentioned explicitly as belonging to Fabian Prewett.

It’s never mentioned in the seven books that Molly’s maiden name is Prewett, but that’s one of JK Rowling’s strengths as an author- laying about such minor details across books that become much more important in the future, or help explain an action like the one explained above. Remember how she introduces the Vanishing cabinets or the locket at Grimmauld Place, or the seemingly unimportant Grey Lady?

If you pick up Harry Potter and only expect a children’s story, that’s all you’re going to get. But if you really sink your teeth in to the text like it’s genuine literature, that’s what you’ll discover.

Robert on July 16, 2011 at 3:08 am

    Thank you Robert. I really enjoyed your well written post and could see you have passion for the Potter genre.

    And it made me feel as if I were missing out on something great. Well done!

    Skunky on July 16, 2011 at 12:12 pm

“And–jihad alert!–don’t forget that Alan Rickman a/k/a Severus Snape, is an anti-Israel, anti-Semitic Jew”

Alan Rickman is not Jewish in the least.

Although Daniel Radcliffe, who plays Harry Potter, has a Jewish mother and self-ids as Jewish, and Jason Isaacs, who plays Lucius Malfoy, is Jewish (interesting that Mel Gibson cast him as a mass-murdering British soldier in the Patriot… lol).

dee on July 16, 2011 at 3:45 am

I really am glad that the director didn’t take a page from Peter Jackson’s LOTR finale and bring out some long drawn out gay themed dialogue defficient ending with Frodo just waiting for Samwise to slip him the tongue. Sort of corny lack of make up effort at the end (hey guys let’s throw a wig on these kids and a little hairdue changes & they’ll look 19 years older). The movie went at a nice fluid pace and it really complemented the book and did justice to the series. An enjoyable send off thanks to Neville Longbottom and if I had to put up one complaint was that I wish I could’ve heard more laughter from Beatrice Lestrange.

Fred on July 16, 2011 at 5:43 am

Harry who?

nir lieu on July 16, 2011 at 11:36 am

    A Better Life?
    …there’s no “F” in lie…!
    someone made a big boo-boo

    theShadow on July 17, 2011 at 2:10 am

Ashley, Alison, and Robert: Get a functional husband, wife, girlfriend, boyfriend, etc., and you won’t to waste you time over-analyzing Harry Potter movies.

Harry Potter is popular with the uber-geeks, because for them it is their ultimate fantasy: No one has to work, you get everything for free, nobody has to worry about keeping in shape and you can eat as much snack foods as you want without gaining weight (you just cast a spell if you want to lose weight), if you want something, you just wave your magic wand, even the ugly people get a hook-up, and the biggest losers save the day.

Ashley, Alison, and Robert: Get off Facebook, Bebo, World of Warcraft, etc., get out and enjoy life!

King David on July 16, 2011 at 12:51 pm

    @King David,
    My husband is a Green Beret, and therefore more functional than you will ever be. Where do you get the idea that nobody in the the series works? The adults in the books all have jobs and are contributing members of society, unlike you, someone who trolls comments and is probably playing WoW as we speak.

    Also, I would hardly say it’s only popular with “uber geeks”…..the number of people that have read the books and seen the movies proves otherwise. I have so many good memories of reading the books, when I was a girl and later as a young wife while my husband was deployed. I can’t wait to read them to my sons. I feel sorry for your children…you must not read to them because you spend so much time trolling.

    Ashley on July 16, 2011 at 11:00 pm

    @King David.

    I am a widow who, by necessity, was left with the job of raising my two children alone – albeit I shall always be grateful for the help I was given by my family. It’s because of my children that I “discovered” Harry Potter – I care about what they read, after all, especially when they were younger. My husband was an abusive alcoholic, but he was still my husband. When he died my children were my only priority – any further relationships were out of the question since it would only detract from my prime function of raising them.

    You throw out ad hominem attacks with no knowledge of anyone’s background – and none of us had said anything abusive towards Debbie. I am sorry for you that you have such issues with people who have what is a harmless interest. I also have interests in diverse other fields (as, I am sure, do Ashley and Robert) but this seems to be a concept that is beyond you. Oh, and I have no Bebo and I have never played World of Warcraft. Live Journal and Insane Journal yes. And Facebook, of course. I keep in touch with many of my old Primary School friends on there – and when I say “old”, I pretty much mean it.

    Alison on July 17, 2011 at 6:39 pm

King David-

It’s rather kind of you to volunteer to be my functional husband, but as gay marriage is not legal where I live, we’ll just have to be very close friends with benefits.

Robert on July 16, 2011 at 3:40 pm

-King David:

What you may call “over-analyzing” may simply just be reading the books with appreciation. In a culture and era where reading books is nearly unheard of, it’s nice that the Harry Potter series has influenced so many to partake in reading with the tiniest modicum of reverence for literature. You know, other than just watch TV or go to the movies or do just about any other activity that pertains to entertaining oneself.

And the “overweight geeks” with no lives and no girlfriends that you imply make up the bulk of Potter fans? I don’t know where you live, but in the screening I went to, most everyone went with their significant other or with their family, and believe it or not, not one fat person was in sight. And just FYI, the “reasons” you listed in your second paragraph, none of them are in the Harry Potter franchise. Those may be the fantasies YOU have, but trust me, you’ll need more than a wand to get rid of that beer belly.

Huh? on July 16, 2011 at 6:12 pm

I cannot help but laugh at you guys bashing the Harry Potter series. It is a clear case of having no idea what you are talking about.

Ken Blazek on July 16, 2011 at 11:47 pm

Thank you for the reviews, Debbie.

Re: “A Better Life”

As Debbie showed in her review of the movie, each one of us will have a better life in terms of saving $10.00 and 98 minutes of our time by skipping this pro-illegal immigration propaganda movie.

JeffE on July 17, 2011 at 12:40 am

I have two questions:
Does Harry Potter’s nemesis ‘Old Moldy Wart’ ever grow a nose?
… and,
what about the better life that me and my father worked so hard for to give to my kids?
I’m sure none of my kids will get a free college education like barack h. obama did.
wait…
Did I say education? I meant degree, no education involved.

theShadow on July 17, 2011 at 1:47 am

Hmm, sounds like JK ripped off an episode of Dr. Who.

Federale on July 18, 2011 at 2:39 pm

JK Rowling ripped off literary archetypes, as does Dr. Who. They’re both plagiarizing ancient myths.

That doesn’t mean the writing is bad. In fact, use of those archetypes works well, because they speak to us, as human beings.

Orphan hero? Classic
Villain who murdered his own father? Classic
Old mentor who dies before hero can complete his quest? Classic.

Heck, these aren’t even spoilers. Look at the old folk tales, and you’ll find them all.

Michelle on July 18, 2011 at 3:00 pm

I saw “Winnie The Pooh.” I liked it. You would too.

Ghostwriter on July 18, 2011 at 5:38 pm

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