Whew! The new Harry Potter movie was really really good and really really scary.
The crowd was a spectacle in itself. There were some people who had made their own costumes, and looked like the ladies of Beauxbatons, and various Hogwarts students. Really outstanding, down to the shoes. Sorry, didn't get pictures of them, but here's us:
Ken in his Gryffindor PoA scarf and Harry glasses
Me in my HiP and Harry glasses
Geekery abounded. Here's some knitters who were sitting next to us:
And here's Ken playing Grand Theft Auto on his PSP, using wireless remote, and playing with another moviegoer before the show.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: A review, and highlights for your pleasure.
I think this movie made a big impact on me because I can barely come up with a coherent review. Or it might be that I only got two hours of sleep. But I felt a profound heartsick weariness at the end of the movie, and I think that's a good thing. It was a combination of sadness, and relief from the fear I felt all the way through the movie. Those of you who have read the book know that this story is full of fearful, upsetting events. So I think it is a testament to the craft of this movie, and the skill of the director and actors, that I can barely remember the "movie" part of this movie at all. My impressions of the film are of the emotional beats, the high and low points, and the interaction between the actors. Except that I have to admit, during a few closeups, I was counting rows in their scarves. (geek!)
Even though the film was full of special effects, they were all used to emphasize the emotional tone and impact of the scenes. If you don't want to read any spoilers about this movie or books 5 and 6, STOP NOW!
OK, here are some of my favorite parts of the new movie:
- Snape. One of my all time favorites -- he has a sense of humor in this movie. A good setup for the forthcoming continuing ambiguity about his loyalties. I'm glad he's not just an out-and-out baddie in this movie. Much has been said about Mike Newell (the director) and his uniquely English approach to Harry Potter -- I think this is very much evident in his treatment of the relationship between professors and students. Snape is very much the exasperated professor in this movie.
- The twins. They just keep getting better and better. Can't wait till year 5!
- The "asking out" sequences, with the confusion and frustration of the boys as they are relentlessly shut out by the girls. Every look exchanged that's about dating and boy-girl relationships reads completely true to my memory in this film. Also of note, at the end of the Yule ball, there is a scene with a bunch of assorted girls crying on the stairs. If they were leaning against the lockers, this would have been my high school.
- The sickening way that the champions' friends looked during the second challenge. Scared the bejeebers out of me, let me tell you. I would have been worried if I were a champion!
- Moaning Myrtle flirting with Harry in the bath. Nuff said.
- The easy, casual friendship between Harry and Hermione. For those who wish to read more into their relationship, this would give them fodder, but for those of us who know where the real attractions in the trio lay, the evidence is right there in front of our eyes, particularly in this sexual tension, adolescent angst-tinged movie, the relaxed manner between Harry and Hermione is a relief.
- Neville. My third favorite character. It's nice to see him in his strengths in this movie (dancing! who knew?) He just keeps getting better and better, coming into his own, and is a worthy companion to Harry. Again, looking forward to Year 5.
- The stained glass. Gorgeous!
- The way that Cedric and Harry are constantly shifting between competitors and cooperators.
- The ending. Heartwrenching. Especially Harry's distraught return. Also what particularly got me was the look of hope in Harry's eyes when he thinks he might be able to bring his parents back from the dead. Woof.
I still think Azkaban is my favorite (book and movie), but this is a worthy, beautiful addition to the series.
Go. Go right away. It's great.