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Revaluing Harry Potter, &c.

In the midst of our second snowstorm in as many days we went to see Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire again last night. It was, I think, worth the trip: my previous criticisms were too harsh. I appreciate the performances, especially those of the adult characters, more—and Daniel Radcliffe’s Harry was particularly good. Emma Watson, however, overacts to the point of distraction (“HARRY, you TOLD me that you had DISCOVERED the secret of the egg WEEKS AGO! I’m SCARED for you, Harry.”—Kathy pointed out that she also telegraphs her lines), and I still love Ralph Fiennes’s Lord Voldemort: full of energy he is, yet he cradles his wand in his fingers like an artist with a delicate brush. Suspense is still a problem; it’s exacerbated with some clumsy transitions between scenes (Snape shuts a door and immediately we’re to the final task?), but the question with this movie is what it is that we’re waiting for. To that end, the Tri-Wizard tournament reallly is a means to an end, or rather, a rebirth of Lord Voldemort. And there are thematic points from the novel that should have been written into the movie, but they weren’t. Nevertheless, I no longer think it’s the worst of HP movies. It’s not as good as Prisoner of Azkaban, but it’s decent.

In other important news, Brad is adopting Angelina’s kids.



Ooh! Since we read the HP books, Kathy & I have wondered to what extent, if at all, Scholastic has Americanized the books in its editing. Now we have a chance to see! I was at a consignment store today and found a $2.50 hardcover Bloomsbury (Brit publishers) copy of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire!

And by the way, if this copy is anything like the series in Bloomsbury’s hands, the book is actually easier to hold than the Scholastic ones. Smaller profile.