In anticipation of Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows (Part I) hitting the theaters last year, I re-read the entire series through the end of the 6th book. I intentionally did not re-read the 7th book at that time as I knew I would enjoy the movie more that way.
As a result, I thought the movie was amazingly well done and enjoyed it very much.
Released On Video Today
Prior to the release on video, I decided to finally re-read the 7th book so I could see what was actually different in the movie.
Naturally, I was terribly disappointed. There were a vast number of minor details left out, quite a number of good-sized chucks reduced to a single line, and even a few major plot pieces completely removed.
Obviously, all of these omissions were necessary to shorten the story to a manageable length. Even so, Part I is a two and a half hour long movie. To do the entire 7th book, without cutting anything out, would probably result in at least a ten hour long movie. Personally, I wish they had done that. But it’s understandable that they made the decisions that they did.
All in all, I think Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows (Part I) is, like all the previous films, a fantastic movie and well worth watching over and over again.
However, I strongly suggest not watching any of the movies too soon after reading the corresponding book!