I've known that the second half will focus on the final battle ever since hearing about the film coming out in 2 parts, and that said focus will demand sacrifices from details and other subplots that I may have found significant when reading the book. Knowing that for years, however, still didn't quite prepare me for watching this movie.
I just can't bring myself to agree with decisions that were made on what to cut out and what to leave in or add. The first 30 minutes rushed through content like it was nobody's bussiness. It's as if someone was screaming at the characters: "MOVE YOUR ASSES! GET TO THE CASTLE! WE DON'T WANT TO SEE THIS, IT'S BORING!" A key part of Dumbledore's backstory was completely left out, namely everything regarding his sister and how that affected his realtionship with Grindelwald. Was it really that hard to squeeze in an extra minute for a flashback? The scene where Harry stepped out of the crowd in front of Snape instead of trying to remain undetected while searching for the horcrux is probably going to end up in the CMoA
page but, to me, it just screamed Narm
. The movie was just trying too hard to FORCE awesomeness into scenes that didn't have them in the book or just plain didn't exist. Sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't. It often felt like a scene either ended abruptly or came out of nowhere.
The battle itself recieved all of the attention from the writers and directors, and it shows. It was very visually impressive and awesome. Crowning moments gallore for everybody, as it should be. Unfortunately, the movie focused way too hard on the "awesome" part and forgot about the horrors of war that were so tangible in the book. The Anyone Can Die
nature of the conflict was addressed in a throwaway scene where the camera panned over some sad faces and familiar dead bodies. In the book, Fred's death was described in excruciating detail that conveyed a tangible sense of loss, in the movie, his corpse recieved a second or two of screentime.
I know I'm focusing on the negative here and I would like to add that, overall, I did enjoy the movie but not as much as I had hoped I would. It just didn't feel like it does justice to the source material. All the emotions that the book gave when reading it just stomp the movie into the ground by comparison.