Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)

Rated PG-13 Our ratings: V- ; L- ; S/N . Running time: 2 hours 37 min.

Wrath is cruel, anger is overwhelming,
but who is able to stand before jealousy?
Proverbs 27:4

For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of yourself more highly than you ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. For as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another. We have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us: prophecy, in proportion to faith; ministry, in ministering; the teacher, in teaching; the exhorter, in exhortation; the giver, in generosity; the leader, in diligence; the compassionate, in cheerfulness. Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor.
Romans 12:3-10

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

I am sure that by now you Harry Potter fans have discovered that the latest film of the series is indeed darker than the first three films. If the rating change to PG-13 didn’t lead us to sense this, then the darker colors and atmosphere of the film would, as well as the increased stakes in the inter-wizard school games and the violent death of an important character. Then, also, there is the increase in male hormones and the resulting discovery by Harry and best friend Ron that girls can be more than just friends. Although his very life is at stake in the three trials he will have to face in the Triwizard Tournament, getting up the courage to ask a girl to the school ball proves just as difficult for our hero.

The film opens with a nightmare of murder that haunts Harry (Daniel Radcliffe). When he returns to Hogwarts, our three friends discover that their school will host the Triwizard Tournament, which means that teams and students from the other two schools will be guests of the school. From France come the Beauxbaton girls, looking spiffy in their cloaks as they march into the great hall. The Durmstrang Institute students are from Eastern Europe, looking like they could be professional athletes as they stride into the hall.

Headmaster Albus Dumbledore (Michael Gambon), a fine replacement for the late Richard Harris) welcomes all, and then invites the students to enroll as representatives of their schools for the Triwazard Tournament. The time-honored rules state that there can be but one champion per school, and the age limit is 17. The enchanted Goblet of Fire selects a name per school—Cedric Diggory for Hogwarts; Viktor Krum from Durmstrang; and Fleur Delacour from Beauxbaton. Prof. Dumbledore starts to move on with the welcoming ceremony when the Goblet of Fire emits a noise, and another scroll issues forth. Harry Potter’s name is on it!

Everyone is surprised, and upset, Harry Potter most of all. He is three years too young to be eligible, plus this would give Hogwarts an additional champion. However, the adults (most of whom have walk-on parts this time around, the film concentrating far more on the teens) agree that the laws of wizardry allow for no deviation from the decision of the Goblet of Fire, so the under-aged Harry is enrolled as a champion to meet the three challenges, far more dangerous than anything he has faced in a Quidditch match, as perilous as the latter is.

Harry’s reputation drops precipitously, almost everyone believing that he submitted his own name and manipulated the Goblet of Fire to spit it out. Even Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint), giving in to his jealousy of his friend, stops speaking to Harry. Although Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) also is bothered by Harry’s selection, she tries to mediate between the two former friends. Harry’s situation is not helped by the nosy Rita Skeeter (Miranda Richardson), the newspaper gossip reporter whose chief talent is being able to transform an innocent remark into an innuendo that besmirches its speaker. The Headmaster, deeply worried about Harry, asks the new Professor of the Dark Arts, Alastor “Mad-Eye” Moody (Brendan Gleeson), to keep an eye on his favorite student. Moody is well nicknamed, possessed with a huge artificial eye that can revolve independently of the other.

The Triwizard Tournament’s three challenges require that each champion must face and defeat a fire-breathing dragon; plunge into a deep lagoon and rescue a person held captive there; and enter into a dark and menacing maze to secure a prized object. How these contests further reveal Harry’s values and bring him at last face to face with his nemesis Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes).

The film is directed by its first Brit Mike Newell, who brings his considerable talents to bear upon Steve Kloves’ screen adaptation. I was disappointed that the social justice-themed subplot, involving Hermione’s campaign to emancipate Dobby the house elf, had to be eliminated, but this is understandable in that the film as it runs a little over 2 ½ hours. A great deal more of the 700+ page book had to be eliminated, making me wish that the later books could be produced as one of those 6 to 12-hour TV miniseries. Still, the essence of the film is there, Harry’s story continuing to be one of courage, friendship and loyalty.

For Reflection/Discussion

1) How are Harry, Ron, and Hermione close to each other, similar to what the apostle Paul wrote in his letter to the Romans?

2) What gifts do each have which have benefited them all in the past?

3) How important do think are Prof. Dumbledore’s words to Harry, “Remember, you have friends here. You are not alone”? When have you needed such encouragement? How can your church be such a supporting fellowship?

4) How does jealously affect their relationship?

5) What forms of the cross does Harry shoulder in the film? Though probably neither as dangerous nor as burdensome, what forms of the cross have you borne?

11) What qualities does Harry show in the three trials? In other words, what do they, especially the last two reveal about his values?Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire Rated PG-13 Our ratings: V- ; L- ; S/N . Running time: 2 hours 37 min.

Wrath is cruel, anger is overwhelming, but who is able to stand before jealousy?

Proverbs 27:4

For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of yourself more highly than you ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. For as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another. We have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us: prophecy, in proportion to faith; ministry, in ministering; the teacher, in teaching; the exhorter, in exhortation; the giver, in generosity; the leader, in diligence; the compassionate, in cheerfulness. Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor.

Romans 12:3-10

I am sure that by now you Harry Potter fans have discovered that the latest film of the series is indeed darker than the first three films. If the rating change to PG-13 didn’t lead us to sense this, then the darker colors and atmosphere of the film would, as well as the increased stakes in the inter-wizard school games and the violent death of an important character. Then, also, there is the increase in male hormones and the resulting discovery by Harry and best friend Ron that girls can be more than just friends. Although his very life is at stake in the three trials he will have to face in the Triwizard Tournament, getting up the courage to ask a girl to the school ball proves just as difficult for our hero.

The film opens with a nightmare of murder that haunts Harry (Daniel Radcliffe). When he returns to Hogwarts, our three friends discover that their school will host the Triwizard Tournament, which means that teams and students from the other two schools will be guests of the school. From France come the Beauxbaton girls, looking spiffy in their cloaks as they march into the great hall. The Durmstrang Institute students are from Eastern Europe, looking like they could be professional athletes as they stride into the hall.

Headmaster Albus Dumbledore (Michael Gambon), a fine replacement for the late Richard Harris) welcomes all, and then invites the students to enroll as representatives of their schools for the Triwazard Tournament. The time-honored rules state that there can be but one champion per school, and the age limit is 17. The enchanted Goblet of Fire selects a name per school—Cedric Diggory for Hogwarts; Viktor Krum from Durmstrang; and Fleur Delacour from Beauxbaton. Prof. Dumbledore starts to move on with the welcoming ceremony when the Goblet of Fire emits a noise, and another scroll issues forth. Harry Potter’s name is on it!

Everyone is surprised, and upset, Harry Potter most of all. He is three years too young to be eligible, plus this would give Hogwarts an additional champion. However, the adults (most of whom have walk-on parts this time around, the film concentrating far more on the teens) agree that the laws of wizardry allow for no deviation from the decision of the Goblet of Fire, so the under-aged Harry is enrolled as a champion to meet the three challenges, far more dangerous than anything he has faced in a Quidditch match, as perilous as the latter is.

Harry’s reputation drops precipitously, almost everyone believing that he submitted his own name and manipulated the Goblet of Fire to spit it out. Even Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint), giving in to his jealousy of his friend, stops speaking to Harry. Although Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) also is bothered by Harry’s selection, she tries to mediate between the two former friends. Harry’s situation is not helped by the nosy Rita Skeeter (Miranda Richardson), the newspaper gossip reporter whose chief talent is being able to transform an innocent remark into an innuendo that besmirches its speaker. The Headmaster, deeply worried about Harry, asks the new Professor of the Dark Arts, Alastor “Mad-Eye” Moody (Brendan Gleeson), to keep an eye on his favorite student. Moody is well nicknamed, possessed with a huge artificial eye that can revolve independently of the other.

The Triwizard Tournament’s three challenges require that each champion must face and defeat a fire-breathing dragon; plunge into a deep lagoon and rescue a person held captive there; and enter into a dark and menacing maze to secure a prized object. How these contests further reveal Harry’s values and bring him at last face to face with his nemesis Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes).

The film is directed by its first Brit Mike Newell, who brings his considerable talents to bear upon Steve Kloves’ screen adaptation. I was disappointed that the social justice-themed subplot, involving Hermione’s campaign to emancipate Dobby the house elf, had to be eliminated, but this is understandable in that the film as it runs a little over 2 ½ hours. A great deal more of the 700+ page book had to be eliminated, making me wish that the later books could be produced as one of those 6 to 12-hour TV miniseries. Still, the essence of the film is there, Harry’s story continuing to be one of courage, friendship and loyalty.

For Reflection/Discussion

1) How are Harry, Ron, and Hermione close to each other, similar to what the apostle Paul wrote in his letter to the Romans?

2) What gifts do each have which have benefited them all in the past?

3) How important do think are Prof. Dumbledore’s words to Harry, “Remember, you have friends here. You are not alone”? When have you needed such encouragement? How can your church be such a supporting fellowship?

4) How does jealously affect their relationship?

5) What forms of the cross does Harry shoulder in the film? Though probably neither as dangerous nor as burdensome, what forms of the cross have you borne?

11) What qualities does Harry show in the three trials? In other words, what do they, especially the last two reveal about his values?