Saturday, May 22, 2010

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)

Many have said that Mike Newell's Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire left out many important details from J.K. Rowling's novel. However, if you haven't read the book, you won't be lost and will still be entertained by this adaptation.

Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) along with his friends Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) and Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) are preparing to start their fourth year at Hogwarts, a British wizardry school. Besides, this school is welcoming a group of students from two wizardry schools (from France and Bulgaria) and is holding the Triwizard Tournament. During this event, each school must choose one student - who is at least 17 years old - to represent it.

However, by a quirk of fate, a piece of paper with Harry's name on it gets out of the Goblet of Fire. Because he doesn't have the required age to participate in the tournament, Harry couldn't have registered in the first place. Besides, he has to take part in the Triwizard Tournament, perform dangerous tasks to win the Goblet of Fire and prepare to face Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes), the most feared evil wizard in the world.

Despite being one of the most entertaining films in the Harry Potter movie franchise, the fourth instalment leaves a bitter taste in our mouth because of its storyline. While Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire also simultaneously tries to show the crisis of adolescence for Harry, Ron and Hermione, the film doesn't manage to make the three leading characters as interesting as they are in the novel. Indeed, because the story was hugely trimmed, the leading characters' psychological growth take a back seat at the expense of the action sequences. Nonetheless, the film still manages to hint some fascinating things about the stormy relation between Hermione and Ron.

Therefore, the fourth film in the Harry Potter franchise is a sad proof that it's hard to adapt a voluminous novel. Of course, one can't blame J.K. Rowling for writing entertaining novels that care a lot about details.

Finally, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is your usual entertainment flick that doesn't aim too high nor too low in terms of artistic quality. Despite that, the film should entertain people who are in for action scenes and dazzling special/visual effects. Besides, the film does contain some small lovely performance by two supporting actresses: Miranda Richardson, as a journalist of a tabloid, and Katie Leung, as Cho Chang (Harry's love interest).

Rating: 3.5/5

Origin:UK/USA (2005)
Length:157 minutes
Screenplay:Steve Kloves
Director:Mike Newell
Starring:Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint and Ralph Fiennes

Titles on Amazon (Canada):

Titles on Amazon (USA):

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