Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
By Musarrat Rahman
What's that? Pottermania has come to an end, you say? NEVER! Through us, the Potterheads, Ron, Hermione and Harry will always live on. The movie franchise, along with our childhoods might have come to an end amidst hysterical sobbing, but The Boy Who Lived will forever live on in our hearts.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 was a tremendous conclusion to a decade of pure magic. No movie could have been better. Of course, for some of us, the movies never quite lived up to the books, but let's not get into that right now.
As it happens at the journey's end, hearts stutter and upper lips tremble. We humans have serious problems letting go. And Harry Potter has been a pillar for many people growing up. So it was no surprise that there were a few teary eyes in the crowd as the movie theatre filled up. The grief was palpable as the now-familiar theme music began playing; a sob or two may have escaped yours truly as well.
The movie picks up right where the last one, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, ended - with Harry reminiscing near Dobby the House Elf's grave at Shell Cottage belonging to Bill and Fleur Weasley. Most of the horcruxes have already been found and destroyed in the previous two movies, so this movie is more about the great battle at Hogwarts than the search and destroy mission that was left to the trio by Dumbledore.
Since the first part tended to drag just ever so slightly, we thought this one would also be a long-winded movie with plenty of time for us to properly say goodbye, but the movie seemed to zip by in two hours which felt more like the blink of an eye. There will be no spoilers - except the fact that Neville Longbottom has become DELICIOUS - in this review, as this epic finale is something you must experience first-hand.
To some, especially those muggles who love to over-analyse and pick holes in every little thing that makes simple-minded people like me happy, this movie won't be all that great. You'll probably read this, watch the film and be like 'what the heck was she on?' but please keep it to yourselves and let us mourn this great loss in peace.
It was a wonderful way to say goodbye to our best friends Harry, Ron and Hermione and we couldn't have asked for better. So now, we sit here, in our PJ's with ice cream (after iftar, of course) and have Harry Potter movie/book marathons as a tribute to the three greatest wizards ever. We miss you already Harry.
No matter how good a movie is, without a kick-ass soundtrack it feels empty. And though half the time we don't consciously notice the music, once in a while the sheer awesomeness of the composition makes us want to look up the name in Wikipedia or head over to Youtube. And more often than not, the names of Hans Zimmer and Clint Mansell pop up.
Movies like Gladiator, Sherlock Holmes, Inception, The Last Samurai and The Dark Knight have one thing in common. They all have very good soundtracks. Hans Zimmer, when he wrote the score for the Rain Man, was not a name everyone knew. But today he is undoubtedly the most well known film score composer out there. He is good at what he does and anyone still unfamiliar with him should remember the music from the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy.
He started his career writing advertisement jingles. His big break was composing the score for Rain Man and since then his career has sky rocketed. Classics such as the Lion King, The Prince of Egypt and Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron all feature music composed by him. Even gamers should be familiar with his work - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and Crysis 2 have music written by him. He also composed the music for Christopher Nolan's Batman series and is currently working on the score for The Dark Knight Rises - something we all eagerly await.
For all the awesome soundtracks he has composed, Hans Zimmer has a big award collection to boast of. Till now he has won one Academy Award, four Grammys and two Golden Globe awards.
Gladiator's Now We Are Free, The Last Samurai's Spectres in the Fog and Leave No Man Behind from Black Hawk Down are highly recommended if you are not yet familiar with his work.
Another big name in film score composition is Clint Mansell. Anyone who has seen Requiem for a Dream can never forget its haunting, beautiful soundtrack at the end. It gives you goosebumps listening to it and you know the guy who wrote it is a genius. Unlike Hans Zimmer, Clint Mansell started his musical career with his band Pop Will Eat Itself. After disbanding he wrote his first score for Pi. But to date his most famous composition has to be Lux Æterna ("the eternal light") which is the main composition for the Requiem for a Dream. It received so much popularity that since then it has been used in numerous movie trailers. A modified version of it, titled the Requiem for a Tower was also used for the Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers official trailer.
His other famous compositions include Death is the Road to Awe from The Fountain. Clint Mansell has also written the scores for Rain, Smokin' Aces and the Black Swan.
Recommended tracks include Lux Æterna, Death is the Road to Awe, The Last Man and A Swan Song (for Nina).
Only a few of us can imagine the woes one had to go through to write a report before the internet was invented. While most of our questions are answered by Google and Wikipedia, our parents had to spend hours at the library searching for the right books, going through them, highlighting relevant pages, citing the work and writing them by hand or on typewriters. We don't appreciate the internet enough.
Even though we have search engines and sites like scribd.com, a properly written report or assignment needs a lot more effort than just ctrl+C and ctrl+V, and here are some websites that can make studying a lot easier.
Flashcard Machine: Flashcards are the reason a lot of us pass those tough chemistry and bio tests. If you have a ton of things to memorise for an exam, or just don't feel like staring at the squiggly lines on your notebook, flashcardmachine.com can help you out. Users can even audio create flashcards and share with friends.
The Awesome Highlighter: How many times have you saved a webpage and later completely forgot what that was for? How many times have you sent a link to your friends but they didn't even get what you were talking about? The Awesome Highlighter lets you highlight the important parts of a webpage, saving a lot of confusion.
CliffsNotes: Cliffsnotes.com is a great study-aid for literature. Written by actual teachers and professors, you can use it to learn more about the chapter you are reading. It gives you chapter by chapter notes, quizzes and tips for reading. Although they cover a lot of subjects, the focus is primarily on literature.
Project Gutenberg: Project Gutenberg is an excellent initiative to digitalise and store books. It currently has around 36,000 free e-books and it's a lifesaver.
Zotero: Zotero.com claims to be the next generation research tool, and it is. This neat app lets you collect, organise, cite and share your research sources. From collecting all the necessary web pages and taking notes alongside them as you drag-and-drop bibliographies, it comes very handy for the daunting term papers.
BibMe: Bibme.org is going to be your best friend if the teachers are really strict about citing formats. This useful site lets you search books, magazines, journals and films and cite them. You can also make and download bibliographies in any format you like.
Student Hacks: From study tips to note taking strategies or managing group dynamics, this site has got a lot to offer.
Go on now, get to work!