'Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire Deluxe Edition'
(Danielle Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Eric Sykes, Timothy Spall, et al / 2-Disc DVD / PG-13 / (2005) 2006 / Warner Bros.)
Overview: Harry's fourth summer and the following year at Hogwarts are marked by the Quidditch World Cup and the Triwizard Tournament, in which student representatives from three different wizarding schools compete in a series of increasingly challenging contests. However, Voldemort's Death Eaters are gaining strength and even creating the Dark Mark giving evidence that the Dark Lord is ready to rise again. In the unsuspecting lives of the young wizard and witches at Hogwarts the competitors are selected by the goblet of fire, which this year makes a very surprising announcement: Hogwarts will have two representatives in the tournament, including Harry Potter! Will Harry be able to rise to the challenge for the Tri Wizard Tournament while keeping up with school or will the challenges along with Voldemort's rebirth be too much for the young hero?
DVD Verdict: The previous movies, especially the first, were very good adaptations of the books. The movie adaptation of the 'Goblet of Fire,' however, is very poorly done. It's a major disappointment. It appears that either the director, producer(s), or screenwriter(s)(or all of them) were not up to the task of making a good movie or were simply intent on cashing in on the financial success of the previous movies and books by simply going through the minimal motions to release an "adequate" movie, knowing very well that Potter fans will pay to see and buy the movie regardless of its deficiencies. The movie does provide impressive glitzy special effects and the actors continue to perform well. However, the movie corrupts and deviates from the theme and storyline found in the books and previous movies. The movie also has the central characters in the movie behaving "out of character" from the thousands of pages that have been used to develop their characters and personalities (and previous movies, too); for example, this movie has Dumbledore running around ranting and appearing to act impulsively. Anyone who has carefully read the books knows that the essence of Dumbledore is: calmness, thoughtfulness, and a cool logical mind (like Sherlock Holmes). It makes it appear that those involved in the production of the movie either don't care about being true to the story or characters, or have never read the books, which in either case indicate this movie should have been titled "The New Changed (Fast Money Maker) Version of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" (loosely based on some book by "JK what's her name"). The movie should bring the original story (the one found in the book) to life; instead, this movie sucked the life out of the original story and substituted a vaguely similar but flawed story in its place. This movie should and could have been very good. Instead, the one chance to produce a great movie of a good book has been squandered by what appears to be the rush to cash in on a successful franchise. Please JKR, if you have any input get your hands dirty on all the future films! The special effects as a whole were good and the ending was in tune with the darkness the books as a whole are heading. But, I did miss the well known theme music. Again, I truly hope JKR will take a more hands on role in at least the last two films, or the whole set will not be done well!! This is a Widescreen Presentation (1:85.1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
Conversations with the cast: Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint
Preparing for the Yule Ball
Reflections on the Fourth Film
Triwizard Tournament, Dragon Arena: Dragon Challenge, Harry vs. the Horntail:The First Task, Meet the Champions
Triwizard Tournament, Lake: Lake Challenge, In Too Deep: The Second Task
Triwizard Tournament, Maze: Maze Challenge, To the Graveyard and Back Challenge, The Maze: The Third Task, He Who Must Not Be Named
DVD-ROM Features: EA Game Demo, Hogwarts Timeline, Web Interactivity