This was yet another Harry Potter film that I watched before I read the novel. I watched it only once, at the movies, and could remember very little about it several years later. My first impressions mustn’t have been very positive (although I can’t actually remember) because I didn’t even buy the DVD. Warning that this post may contain spoilers.
Made in 2005 by director Mike Newell, writer Steve Kloves and producer David Heyman. A new director and a new film. Newell successfully brought back the magic that Cuarón took out of it by putting the cast back into their school uniforms 😛
As just a movie, I thought it was pretty good. It was dark, exciting and I wanted to watch the following films to know more about Harry’s story. I wanted to know what happens next. It’s aimed towards an older audience than the previous films and this can be seen by the fact that it’s considerably darker than the previous films. This is partially due to the storyline (with Voldemort coming back and everything) but it also emphasises the unknown and the mystery of the dark side, that seems so close and so dangerous. The entire film has the feeling that something is going to happen. Something is going to go wrong. Signs of the Death Eaters and Voldemort appear to be everywhere. It also needs an older audience to be able to appreciate the romantic elements of the film. I can remember the first time I saw it, I didn’t understand why Hermione was so mad at Ron at the Yule Ball. It’s also the first film to have the death of a known “good guy”; Cedric Diggory (Robert Pattinson).
The film misses out on a lot of details, more than any of the previous films. For those who don’t read the books it would seem like the movie was just about the Triwizard Tournanment. There’s no mention of S.P.E.W, Winky, Dobby, the house-elf kitchen, Ludo Bagman, Percy Weasley working for the Ministry, the explanation of Barty Crouch (both Jr. and Sr.), the monsters in the Triwizard Tournament maze, Hermione teaching Harry spells for the Tournament and so much more. Plus there were the things that they just got plain wrong, like making the schools Durmstrang and Beauxbatons unisex. It wouldn’t have been that hard to change this. I also think that the completely different personalities of Cedric Diggory and Amos Diggory weren’t shown at all and would have really added to their character development. I can see why some of these things weren’t in the film, but leaving out all of them was just heart-breaking.
There are lots of new minor actors added to this film; Robert Pattinson (Cedric Diggory), Brendan Gleeson (Alastor “Mad-Eye” Moody), Miranda Richardson (Rita Skeeter) and of course Ralph Fiennes (Voldemort/ Lord Voldermort/You-Know-Who/He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named/the Dark Lord/Tom Marvello Riddle). All of whom I think do a marvelous job, maintaining the generally high acting standards of the previous films.
This is the first Harry Potter film that John Williams did not do the score for. Instead, Patrick Doyle was brought in as the composer. I could definitely see the difference in soundtracks. Doyle’s style is more modern whereas Williams’ is more classic. I quite like the new shake-up. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire has my favourite starting song of all of the films; it’s so dark and creepy with its minor chords. I also really love the music of the Weird Sisters, the Quidditch World Cup and the introduction of Beauxbatons and Durmstrang. “Ah, music, a magic far beyond we do here!”
Favourite character/portrayal: Severus Snape/Alan Rickman
Least favourite character/portrayal: Albus Dumbledore/Michael Gambon
Favourite scene: The entrance of Beauxbatons and Durmstrang
Least favourite scene: When Dumbledore continuously shouts at Harry when he’s supposed to be calm and comforting
Rating; 3.5/5 stars