Well, my friends, it's time. The final trailer for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is out. (Yes, there will be spoilers in this article, so if you haven't read the books or you just don't want to know what's there, stop reading now. This article is a reaction to the trailer, so I'm going to talk about all of it. You've been warned.)
It's funny how many people have chosen not to watch, including some of my fellow journalists. Not that I don't understand. First of all, it's difficult to see sets that have been used in seven films up in flames. I'm not sure why the image of the Quidditch court burning hit me the way it did. I'll be honest. Quidditch was my least favorite part of both the books and the film. But there is something about seeing it whole and then broken that grabbed my heart and squeezed.
And that is the brilliance of the trailer. We get glimpses of the past. We see young Harry. We watch moments where the danger was far less than it is now. Then we see the destruction. Violent, flaming destruction. There are so many moments that make you go ''argh!'' Dumbledore returns... and we watch him die again at the hands of Severus Snape. (Ah, Severus.) We see Molly Weasley with an anguished face. We watch the three young wizards riding a dragon, and the most upsetting moment: Watching a certain couple reach out their hands to each other.
What film franchise has meant this much to so many people? So much that a mere trailer can produce tears? I still speak to people who said they actually waited for an owl from Hogwarts on their 11th birthday. I think part of why the series is so beloved is that, unlike a lot of American children's fiction, no punches are pulled. Harry was allowed to grow up, and the danger was real. There was no sweet little lesson at the end of each book like the last line of a She-Ra cartoon. People die in these books. No one is safe. I actually remember the moments before the release of the final book and the debates I had with friends about whether or not Harry or Hermione or Ron would die. Even the lead characters aren't safe in J.K. Rowling's world.
I mentioned this on Twitter earlier today, but I've never cried at a film. And this is the last time I'll be able to say that. I know it's coming and the tissues are already in my purse. I actually called in sick to work the morning after I read the final book. My eyes were far too puffy to go out in public. I've said it a zillion times, in every article about each of the posters and trailers that came out, but I'm going to miss this series like no other.
Share your final thoughts on the series below or send me a tweet at @jennabusch. We can sob together.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 will hit theaters on July 15, 2011.
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