PCR past banners
Now in our sixth calendar year!
PCR # 297  (Vol. 6, No. 48)  This edition is for the week of November 28--December 4, 2005.

This Week's PCR
Movie Review
"Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire"

Movie review by:
Michael A. Smith
Three and a half stars

Movies are rated 0 to 4 stars

theater seats

"Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire"
 by Mike Smith
Xmas Toy Roundup
 by Vinnie Blesi
VNV Nation
 by Dylan Jones
Tampa Indie Film Fest III....The Tampa Giant Toy and Comic Convention...."Walk The Line"
 by John Lewis
Ouch....And Your Point Is?...Where's Matt?...Caveat Emptor....And So It Begins....It's About Frickin' Time....Speaking Of....Passing On....Coming Soon....Jaws: The Story, Part 45
 by Mike Smith
Archives of Nolan's Pop Culture Review
Archives 2005
Archives 2004
Archives 2003
Archives 2002
Archives 2001
Archives 2000
Email PCR

Warner Brothers     
Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Michael Gambon and Ralph Fiennes
Directed by: Mike Newell
Rated: PG 13
Running Time: 2 hours 27 mins

"Difficult times lie ahead, Harry." That is what teenage wizard Harry Potter (Radcliffe) is told as he begins his fourth year at Hogwarts. He is joined, as always, by his two best friends, Hermione Granger (Watson) and Ron Weasley (Grint). An early back-to-school trip to the World Quidditch Tournament introduces us to Viktor Krum (Stanislav Lanevski), who is regaled as one of the best players in the world. However, the tournament is attacked by a band of Death Eaters, evil bidders of the work of Lord Voldemort, the man who killed Harry's parents. After making their escape, the students learn that Hogwarts has been chosen to host the annual Tri-Wizard Tournament, pitting three exceptional students from different schools against each other to determine the best of the best. In spite of an age requirement (like an R-rated film, you must be 17 to compete), somehow Harry's name is drawn and he is allowed to participate. A series of special events, many including dragons, make this film another fine addition to the series. The action is non-stop and the special effects top-notch.

Director Newell, best known for "Four Weddings and a Funeral," is the perfect choice for this chapter as the film becomes a true coming of age story. You can't have a Tri-Wizard Tournament without a formal ball, and it's fun watching our three friends fumble and stumble trying to deal with the opposite sex. Anyone who has ever been fourteen can empathize with them and it's nice to see that even wizards have trouble asking each other for a dance.

The rest of the cast is equally good. As with the earlier films, "Goblet of Fire" introduces fans to a new instructor, Alastor "MadEye" Moody (Brendan Gleason). You'll have to see him to understand the nickname. The film takes a very dark turn towards the end when Harry finally comes face to face with Lord Voldemort (Fiennes in full "Red Dragon" mode). A pale man with an almost snake like appearance, Voldemort is evil incarnate and Fiennes fleshes out each wicked nuance. Parents of young fans should be warned that blood is shed and people die, so make sure your little wizards are old enough to handle this. The production has been beautifully crafted and the rousing score by Patrick Doyle (along with John Williams' themes) helps the story flow.

With four films down and three to go, the "Harry Potter" series just gets better and better. On a scale of zero to four stars, I give "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire"  Three and a half stars

This week's movie review of "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" is ©2005 by Michael A. Smith.  All graphics this page are creations of Nolan B. Canova, ©2005, all rights reserved. All contents of "Nolan's Pop Culture Review" are ©2005 by Nolan B. Canova.