Monday, November 21, 2005

Scary Potter.. har har

We FINALLY got to see Harry Potter: Goblet of Fire today, after an agonizing weekend of attempting to avoid all reviews and articles talking about the movie. Usually, I like to research movies before I go see them, because no use wasting $8 on a movie I probably won't like anyway, since I tend to agree with the critics for the most part. Sidebar: if Hollywood wants to get out of its box office slump, it needs to stop making crappy movies. $8 is a bargain movies these days, but when there's two people and not much income, that's a lot of money!

Returning to the subject at hand, I personally thought this was one the best movies in the series, especially considering that this book was one of (if not the) largest in the series so far. The director/screenwriters did a very good job of sticking to what they could cover and trying not to go into every detail or plot twist J.K. Rowling's book offered.

I also read in a article that the director, Mike Newell (the first Brit to direct a Potter movie) really tried to focus on the emotional progression of the characters rather than relying on CG to blow the audience's collective mind. I think that's why I really liked this movie best of all. For the first time, I actually cared about Movie Harry and his friends and understood on an emotional level what it must feel like to be in his postition. In fact, I think I understood the characters even better in the film than I did in the book, partly because I read HP books for the escapism and I don't like to escape to a place that is more stressful than my real life. In the book, I couldn't understand why Rowling concentrated on the Yultide Ball so much. I could care less if Harry found a date or not. I went through that trauma already in real life, why relive it? But I thought that sequence of the film was a really refreshing break from the tension of the Triwozard Tournament tasks, which no doubt was the original intent of the Ball!

So yeah, go see it, but don't demand absolute fidelity to the book if you've read it. The book is much more nuanced, but I strongly agreed with the choices the director made in what to cut out and what to adapt. Unlike previous "episodes" of HP movies, I didn't see any changes that could or would affect the overall understanding of a non-reader as far as future movies go. Let's hope all the following movies are as good as this one!

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