All eight "Harry Potter" films will arguably make it the most successful film franchise in history when the series finally concludes in July 2011. The journey of Harry Potter, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley took 10 years to commit to film and the three principal cast members have literally grown up together.
There are so many great scenes in the "Harry Potter" franchise, it's difficult to narrow down which ones are all-time favorites amongst avid fans. Here's a look at my most treasured scenes and a brief summary as to why they are so very important to the series as a whole.
Letters from Hogwarts in "The Sorcerer's Stone"
In "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone," which opened the film series, Harry receives strange letters from owls at his home on Privet Drive, which he shares with his aunt, uncle and cousin. When the Dursley family freaks out, they take a spontaneous vacation to their dark and dank island getaway and the owls and hundreds of letters follow. Finally the large wooden door is broken down and the huge form of Hagrid enters and tells Harry he is to come to Hogwart's to become a wizard. This scene is one of the funniest and most lighthearted of the films and books. It is the pivotal point which launches Harry Potter into the world of wizardry.
Harry Sees Voldemort in "The Sorcerer's Stone"
In the Forbidden Forest outside of Hogwart's something is feeding on unicorn blood. It is the ghostly form of Lord Voldemort. When Harry Potter sees him for the first time in "The Sorcerer's Stone," he realizes what he's up against. Harry also sees the world he's been thrust into as being relatively dark and dangerous. Harry Potter slowly begins to recognize his destiny as he looks into the pale, haunting eyes of his adversary in a fleeting moment in the Forbidden Forest.
The Death of Sirius Black in "The Order of the Phoenix"
Sirius Black is the best friend of Harry's parents. When things are amiss in "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," Harry Potter and his friends try to save the prophecy of Harry's birth from falling into the hands of Voldemort's Death Eaters. Surrounded and outnumbered in the Ministry of Mystery, Sirius Black tells Harry and his friends to get out while he holds off Voldemort's goons. Harry watches in horror as one of the only links to his past is killed when Sirius Black is knocked back into the veil of the Death Chamber.
It is at this point that Harry is tempted to the dark side by potentially joining Voldemort when he contemplates killing Bellatrix Lestrange for murdering his godfather. Harry also realizes how powerful Voldemort is and his followers will stop at nothing to end Harry Potter and his friends.
Harry and Ginny Kiss in "The Half-Blood Prince"
Harry Potter finally falls in love with Ron Weasley's younger sister, Ginny. Throughout the entire film of "The Half Blood Prince" Harry comes to realize he has feelings for Ginny Weasley after she's had a crush on him for the entire series. Now that they've both grown older, they finally come to terms with their feelings. In an abandoned room in Hogwart's the two finally share a kiss which unfolds much differently in J.K. Rowling's novels.
The Death of Dumbledore in "The Half-Blood Prince"
Harry must take the lead now when his mentor Albus Dumbledore is killed by fellow professor Severus Snape. It is only because Snape vowed to protect Draco Malfoy and entered into an unbreakable curse with his mother to protect Malfoy. After Dumbledore's death it was Harry's turn to lead the new Dumbledore's Army against the Death Eaters before they take over the entire world.
With so many epic scenes already, the ultimate "Harry Potter" movie will likely produce many more as Harry takes on Voldemort face-to-face in the final installment movie of the series due in theaters in July of 2011.