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On Demand movie highlights

HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS: PART 2 ½

(HBO on Comcast) The beloved franchise comes to a close after a decade of movies and 14 years of page-turning. It’s an exhausting, exhilarating experience, good enough to survive the unnecessary 3-D and flawed only in its march to a predetermined end. There’s terrific pop storytelling in this movie, but there are surprisingly few surprises, and that hurts more than one might wish. (PG-13; runs through Oct. 29)

THE THING ½

(HBO on Comcast) The makers of this sci-fi fright flick frame their story as a prequel to the 1982 John Carpenter movie of the same name, rather than as a remake. Mary Elizabeth Winstead (‘‘Scott Pilgrim’’) plays a paleontologist fighting a shape-shifting alien chiseled out of the Antarctic ice. Some lean suspense, but also some slavishness. (R; runs through Oct. 29)

BATMAN

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(Encore on Comcast) It’s not perfect — for one thing, there’s not enough Batman and too much Joker — but its brilliant visual style makes it unforgettable. Director Tim Burton and production designer Anton Furst show Gotham City as a soul-crushing post-industrial Art Deco gothic pile steeped in perpetual night. They put this black diamond of a film in the class of “Metropolis,” “Blade Runner,” and “Brazil.” (PG-13; runs through Dec. 25)

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