Monday, November 21, 2005
Four and a half out of five stars for "Goblet of Fire"
Over seventy-two hours and US$101 million dollars later, HP and GOF were the top grossing movie this weeknd at the box office int he United States. Oooo, color me "shocked".
And Time Warner who brought us this film is lovin' every minute of it.
Yes, I did see it. Yes, Geo went with me voluntarily. Yes, the movie was absolutely, without a doubt, great. It kept my interest from opening scene to closing credits. You won't even realize the movie lasts for over two hours.
Now, for those of us that have read GOF, PLEASE go in the theatre with an open mind. Don't try and predict what will happen in the next scene because you'll just tick yourself off. If you forget the book and watch the movie, you'll enjoy the movie so much more. Okay? Promise you'll do that?
I mean, just imagine if they did do the book verbatim. You'd have to come back the next day for the second showing.
For those who have not read the book, so what? Don't try and cram over 2,000 pages of pre-teen novel in your skull before trotting off to the United Artist. Geo has never looked at a page in any of the books and he loved it. Honest ...
The movie was visually stimulating a la computer graphics but not so much that it looked fake. I really believed there was a horn-tailed dragon about to smash poor Harry into kibble. The scenes at the Quidditch World Cup and Harry's first task made you feel like those guys were truly flying (but of course we all know they weren't). Even though what was on the screen could never happen in reality (?), the effects crew gave the film a feeling of believablity that almost makes you want to buy a Firebolt as your new way to commute.
The acting was what you would expect from a bunch of teenagers mixing in with the adults - emotional roller coaster time. Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter is our reluctant hero battling dragons and stomach pains brought on by wanting to ask his crush, Cho Chang played by Katie Leung, to the Yule Ball. Ron Weasley, played by Rupert Grint, and Hermione Granger, played by Emma Watson, are Harry's best friends. They also have a thing for each other (Ron and Hermione) and it really come sto light in this the fourth movie. But they go about it like a couple of little kids in the school yard hitting each other with their bookbags and shouting "Natty natty boo boo". At times it kinda reminded me of the O.C. or some other version of 90210, but that's the angst of growing up. The supporting cast of Maggie Smith (Professor Minerva McGonagall), Robbie Coltrane (Rubeus Hagrid), Alan Rickman (Serveus Snape), Michael Gambon (Albus Dumbledore) and, for the filming of GOF, Brendan Gleeson (Alastor "MadEye" Moody) once again proved it is possible to work with a gaggle of teenagers and still keep your sanity.
A bit of warning though for those with little ones under ten who are readers of the series. This movie is by far very dark and there are a few disturbing moments. It truly earned the rating PG-13. If you feel your little one can handle it, by all means take them. Just a warning that there are some creepy scenes that are only matched by the Dementors in "Prisoner of Azkaban".
If you like fantasy films, or even if you don't, I highly recommend taking the time to see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (reading of all 734 pages not required).