The 1st of January 2022 kicked off with a treat for Harry Potter fans. The legendary cast of the movie franchise all finally came back together ON SET for the Harry Potter Reunion. Spanning 1:45 hours in length, it was surprising that this exclusive event was as long as a full-fledged feature film.
To see all the main heroes looking amazing as ever is definitely the perfect start to the New Year weekend 2022. For movie buffs in India, it was a great relief that we could watch the Harry Potter 20th Anniversary edition so easily on Prime Video. The Harry Potter Anniversary was splashed across the news for quite some time. And there was a huge amount of build-up for the premiere on HBO Max. But did the actual movie live up to its name? Did the Return to Hogwarts give die-hard Potterheads the satisfaction of seeing their most beloved characters once again? We watched it first thing in 2022 and we gotta say we’re impressed. Here’s a review of the Harry Potter special to help you decide if its worth a watch!
Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts
In typical Wizarding World fashion, the alumni of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft & Wizardry take the train from Platform 9 & 3/4 back to the splendid sets. And to see it again exactly how we left it back in 2011 is so refreshing.
Of course, the star of the ‘evening’ is none other than Emma Watson. Looking as beautiful and as otherworldly as ever, Emma stands tall throughout the featurette. She leaves us spellbound as usual, right from the start. Her voice and sense of self-expression are more than enough to a cast a spell on viewers.
A soul-warming rendezvous with the HP family:
The film kicks off as a cozy, fun conversation between the 3 stars of course, Harry, Ron, and Hermione. Daniel Radcliffe makes a grand entrance as the man of the hour.
Its divided into chapters encompassing one or more of the movies. They mark a specific journey for both the cast and the characters. Chris Columbus, the Director of the first two movies makes an entrance. As fans are aware, every movie in the Harry Potter series is quite different from the other in terms of the picturization. That is because a lot of different directors have contributed something unique. Other directors like Alfonso Cuaron, Michael Newell, and David Yates join in to share their own experiences filming the movies
All our favorite OG characters like Mathew Lewis (Neville Longbottom), Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy), James & Oliver Phelps (Weasley Twins), Alfred Enoch (Dean Thomas), Evanna Lynch (Looney* Luna Lovegood), Robbie Coltrane (Rubeus Hagrid) talk about their deepest thoughts about having lived through one of the greatest sagas on Earth. Of course, David Heyman, the Producer of the Harry Potter films is a central part of the harry potter reunion.
What viewers can expect
The Harry Potter Reunion is mainly a heart-to-heart tete-a-tete between the heroes who made our childhood. Its also mainly about the behind-the-scenes and the filming journey of the children. Rupert Grint, Emma, and Dan reminisce the memories of growing up on set. They take great pains to put into exact words the overwhelming and inexpressible emotions that have run through them throughout filming and long after the end of the Harry Potter era. Its amazing to see them embrace and meet each other officially after such a long time. Its a reliving moment for Harry Potter fans whose lives have been defined by the stories.
We learn how the cast forged real-life relationships based on their characters. Its incredible how deeply the stories are ingrained into their own lives and in their equations with each other.
While watching the actors go back in time to the filming of specific scenes, you automatically feel the urge to rewatch the movies again no matter if you’ve practically seen them way too many times for a single lifetime already.
The entire harry potter reunion is just a series of little conversations and catch ups between the cast members on various all-too-familiar sets like the Gringotts Wizarding Bank, the Gryffindor Common Room, Dumbledore’s Office, the Burrow, the Potions classroom, etc.
Cream of the crop – The British acting legends
We meet the elite club of the Harry Potter cast, the actors who were already grown ups on set, and some of the finest like Helena Bonham Carter (Bellatrix), Gary Oldman (Sirius), Jason Isaacs (Lucius Malfoy), and Ralph Fiennes (Voldemort).
Emma’s chemistry with Rupert and Tom Felton
Emma Watson, Tom Felton, and Rupert Grint talk about their on and off-screen chemistry. They expressed their deepest feelings for each other, even going on to say that they ‘loved’ each other, although never romantically.
Remembering the Actors that passed away
The cast remembers some the finest actors who passed away over the years including Richard Harris (Dumbledore from the Sorcerer’s Stone & Chamber of Secrets), Alan Rickman (Severus Snape), Helen McCrory (Narcissa Malfoy), Richard Griffiths (Mr.Dursley), John Hurt (Mr.Ollivander from the Sorcerer’s Stone). The gentleness and the emotion with which they remember the deep relationships they harbored with some of the greatest actors that passed away is deeply touching and makes your heart clench.
In all, its a must-watch for Potterheads to remember all the little bits and pieces from the movies that are so close to our hearts. And its also exciting to see our favorite actors getting into character once again, even if for a brief moment. Emotions were flying high throughout the film and it warmed our soul, even jerking a few tears to remember all those beautiful moments of when Harry Potter grew to become a permanent part of who we grew up to be.
Is it unfair that J K Rowling wasn’t there?
The biggest piece of gossip of course, was the fact that J K Rowling wasn’t a part of the Reunion, although they did show a 2019 interview from the Warner Bros. Studio Tour. Whatever the reason was for her not being there, is it justified that her recent controversy regarding Transgender women may have contributed to her absence? We don’t know. However, all the participants definitely spoke of her with adulation and gave her full credit, as she rightfully deserves.
Mind-blowing facts from the reunion
Did you know that the floating candles in the great hall were suspended from the ceiling on wires? We come across a number of mind-blowing facts about the movies in the Reunion. For instance, Dobby was played by Toby Jones. We always thought Dobby was a product of CGI and not an actual person playing the part. This and more mind-blowing facts are awaiting you when you watch the Return to Hogwarts. Since we wouldn’t want to spoil it for you, its time to go and watch the show on Amazon Prime.