|I have to admit, I am biased against the Harry Potter movie series. I've been very confused and unimpressed by the movies so far, so I went into this one with a bad attitude. In fact, the main reason I went to see it was because Pulp's Jarvis Cocker and Radiohead's Johnny Greenwood were slated to have cameo appearances. Like so many recent epics, the movies were only made for people who have read the books.|
|A week before opening night, we got tickets for the first midnight showing.
I was skeptical that the theater would even be filled, but I was dead wrong.
Hundreds of teenagers and young adults swarmed the theater hours before
the opening, in hopes of getting good seats. The show was sold out in all
6 theaters of the Regal alone. I knew there was hype behind the Star Wars
and Lord of The Rings series, but Harry Potter? This was a big deal. As
the lights dimmed for the previews, the crowd packing the theater went wild.
As the Warner Bros. logo appeared signaling the start of the movie, they
went wilder. I sat silently in my seat, much more concerned with my popcorn
than what was happening on screen.
|The movie opens with one of Harry Potter's dreams. This was the only part of
the movie that I could consciously follow. It goes downhill from there.
In the next scene, the gang grabs a boot and is transported to the unexplained
magical world again. This time, they go to the "world cup" match
of that flying broom game. Millions of wizards are in attendance at the
largest stadium ever concieved. After the match, 4 or 5 bad guys come in
and literally wipe out the 5 million or so wizards that just watched the
game. Somehow, millions of wizard's powers combined were not powerful enough
to stop the rampage of 5 guys who can cast a fire spell. These 5 guys must
be the most powerful wizards ever. But how would we know? It's not as if
they'd explain them.
|The movie then transports the viewer back to the wizardry school. This time the old guy has set up a tournament to see who the best wizard is. The prize:a blue trophy and eternal fame. The only stipulation is that you have to
be 17 years old to enter, and you have to let a cup decide if you qualify.
goblet decides the competitors
|Basically, you write your name on a piece of paper and put it into "The
Goblet of Fire". The goblet is this magical cup who's sole purpose
is to decide the best candidates for the tournament. Apparently the school
faculty couldn't just draw names out of a hat, or have a panel of judges
decide. Three candidates are shown putting their names in the cup for a
chance to compete in the tournament, not leaving a huge mystery as to who
the goblet will choose to compete. The surprise, is that somehow the goblet
also chooses Potter (who is too young and not eligible to compete) as a
4th candidate. The old Gandolph guy tells Potter that even though he isn't
old enough to qualify, he still has to compete in the tournament. Why? Because
that's just the way it is. Potter is criticized for being chosen to compete,
and loses most of his friends. Everyone in the school seems to have forgotten
that he has already saved their sorry asses like 3 times before. Luckily
Potter finds sympathy in one of the new teachers, played by the Irish barber
from Gangs of New York.
|The tournament kicks off with a deadly battle against a dragon. Basically, you have to steal an egg from a dragon without being killed. Although the teachers are not allowed to teach death chants or cast harmless spells on students, a deadly gladiator-type competition is just fine. Potter is chosen to fight the most deadly dragon. The dragon gets loose and chases Potter all over
campus, nearly killing him and destroying bridges, artifacts, and parts of the school itself. Potter lives through it and gets the egg. We are left
to wonder if they ever caught the dragon or were even concerned with Potter's
injuries and near-death experience.
second competition is to figure out where the 3rd competition will be held.
Instead of just following all the students to the huge stands overlooking
the "secret" location, Potter decides to rack his brain by looking
through books and talking to an unexplained face that appears in his fireplace.
He finally figures out that the next event will be held underwater at a
lake. He also figures out a magical way to breathe underwater.
shows up at the lake ready to go. Instead of explaining exactly what the
students are supposed to do, Gandolph or whoever he is just says, "Ready
set go!" The 4 competitors dive into the lake and start swimming. This
competition ends up being even more deadly than the first. They run into
a bunch of evil mermaids, and 4 students who are passed out and tied up
underwater. Apparently, the goal of the competition is to save the students
(who have been underwater for over 5 minutes) from drowning. Whoever saves
one of the poor students from dying with the fastest time wins. Potter decides
to save his friend, the useless red haired kid. He then attempts to save
another student, but is told by one of the mermaids that he is only allowed
to save just one student's life. The other student is accidentally let loose,
so Potter grabs her as well. As he's swimming to the top with his friends,
Potter is attacked by a swarm of weird squids. He gets loose and saves the
other children. Although he finishes in last place, the old guy gives Potter
2nd place because he saved 2 students from certain death, instead of just
one (even though that was against the rules).
all this tournament nonsense, the school decides to hold a dance. The boys
fumble about deciding which girl they should ask. Potter tries to go for
this one girl, gets turned down, and ends up going with someone he doesn't
the dance, Potter and his friend solidify their wallflower status by refusing
to dance to Radiohead and Cocker's 3 second long screen appearance. The
pointless dance ends, and Potter gets called into the old guy's office.
There, he looks into this cauldron and instantly falls into some sort of
courtroom. In the courtroom, he learns that this one guy is bad and is guilty
of something or other. He comes back to the room he started in, and then
"Gandolph" tells him to just erase his memory of that whole debacle.
No point in explaining it, better to just erase it from ever happening.
Potter is later accused of stealing potions by the Sheriff of Nottingham
guy, and then we are back to the tournament.
4th and final event is also deadly. The 4 candidates have to make their
way through a death-trap maze. The first one to find the trophy wins it,
and the tournament itself. The other events apparently had nothing to do
with winning the tournament, it's all about the final maze event. The event
kicks off and we learn that this maze is alive. There is a wind that distracts
you, the walls can change, and vines reach out and grab you. One of the
competitors gets nabbed by the vines and disappears. Potter gets to the
end and finds the trophy, but alas, one of the other competitors gets grabbed
by the vines. Potter has to decide whether to save the other guy, or go
for the trophy and win. Apparently, these vines are very deadly and Potter
decides to save the guy. They both grab the trophy at the same time. The
surprise here is that the trophy, much like the boot at the beginning of
the story, is also a sort of transportation device. The two are whisked
away to a graveyard where the Voldimort guy is being created. It was all
a trap. The secret ingredient to creating a character that has never been
in any of the movies, but is always mentioned as the main bad guy, is Harry
Potter's blood. Voldimort is created and the super powerful wizards who
rampaged the broom flying game at the start of the movie show up. One of
the wizards is that blonde-haired kid's dad. Voldimort then kills the other
kid from the tournament who was transported to the graveyard with Potter,
and attempts to then kill Potter. During the fight, the ghosts of Potter's
family show up out of nowhere and distract Voldimort long enough for Potter
to make a break for the transportational trophy.
the trophy transported Potter to the graveyard before, this time it transports
him (and, somehow, his dead companion's body) back to the beginning to the
maze. The viewer is left to wonder if you can even control where the transporting
trophy takes you. If the user can control it, then why would Potter go to
Voldimort's graveyard? If not, why would it this time take him to where
he wants to go? Who knows? As Potter appears back at the tournament with
the dead body, the faculty becomes dumbfounded and outraged as to how one
of their students could have possibly been killed in their tournament. It's
not as if each competition was a certain death scenario. They simply can't
believe that all their attempts at killing their students finally worked.
also learn that the competitor who was nabbed by the vines in the maze lived
through it without a scratch, and is waiting with everyone else at the start
of the maze. Apparently the vines from the maze don't actually kill you,
they just send you back to the start of the maze. Which leaves the viewer
wondering, why did Potter save the guy from the vines instead of going for
the win and getting the trophy? If the vines just send you back to the beginning,
why not just let the other guy get caught up in the vines? Again, who knows?
No time for explanations when you are trying to fit 5 hours of information
into a 2 and a half hour movie.
In conclusion, Harry
is the case with The
Lord of the Rings, the only people that seem to like any of these ortarded
movies are those who've read the books. Sure, I suppose if you already know
the whole story forwards and backwards, watching a series of random events
from the book you love would be entertaining. To anyone else, this movie,
along with the rest of the Harry Potter series, is complete garbage.