Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire at Hoyts Broadway

It’s over a week since I saw Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and I really haven’t felt inspired to write anything about it.

Yes, I enjoyed it. No, I won’t be buying the DVD, or even bothering to see it a second time. Yes, I thought it was better than the first two, and probably about on par with the third. I thought they did a great job of trimming the excess material from the plot, and the casting was good. But like all the other Harry Potter films (and the more recent books) it didn’t really have the kind of magic that makes me want to go back to it again and again.

I think the Asking the Wrong Questions blog makes an excellent point when it says “These films haven’t been made because a director or a screenwriter was burning to bring a beloved world to the screen. They were made because this is what Hollywood does with successful books, and it shows in the final product.”

All four films have been eminently competent works of cinema, and it’s been not uninteresting to see how different directors, working with the same source material and the same screenplay writer, have produced such different films. But one of the reasons I like seeing films made from books is that it gives me an insight into how other people see the book – sometimes this makes me adjust my own opinions, more often it doesn’t, but it’s usually interesting. But even the first three Harry Potter films (i.e. the ones from books I really like in the series) haven’t given me different perspectives, or made me question my own assumptions, or even inspired me to re-read them immediately. Of course, it’s arguable that this is because the source material doesn’t stand up to this type of scrutiny, but I don’t think that’s really the problem. I think it’s that, although the films are well crafted, they are basically a bit uninspired, and therefore uninspiring.

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