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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1: movie review

Part 1 of the final installment, 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,' is another scrupulous adaptation of J.K Rowling's books.

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From left, Bill Nighy, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint and Daniel Radcliffe are shown in a scene from 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.'

Jaap Buitendijk/Warner Bros. Pictures/AP

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Reportedly the biggest grossing movie franchise in history (take 007), the Harry Potter movies are not exactly coasting to the finish line. "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" will be followed in July by the finale – in 3-D.

Part 1 is in plain old 2-D, which is fine with me. I'm getting tired of putting on those bulky glasses and having things waft up to my eyelashes. The current installment does it the old-fashioned way – through imaginative effects that bring you into the movie rather than mimicking an amusement park thrill ride.

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Not that the imagination on display here is up to the level of the J.K. Rowling books (which remain more vividly cinematic than all but Alfonso Cuaron's "Prisoner of Azkaban"). But there's a good, solid, workmanlike integrity to what director David Yates does here. Yates has directed every Potter movie beginning with the fifth. The screenwriter, Steve Kloves, who does his usual scrupulously intelligent job, has adapted all but the fifth.

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