Year Four: "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" (2005), Running Time: 2:37
12:30pm: New year, new director. Mike Newell, who was previously most famous for 1997's mobster flick "Donnie Brasco." There's probably also a new defense against the dark arts teacher coming.
12:31pm: An older Muggle makes a kettle of tea, only to be interrupted by what he thinks are prankster kids. He'll probably be OK. Nothing bad will happen to him.
12:33pm: The Dark Lord welcomes the Muggle with the Killing Curse. First use of Avada Kedavra!
12:35pm: Quidditch World Cup. And who's that handsome older boy? Oh it's Cedric Diggory. I see big things in his future.
12:38pm: As the World Cup starts I'll pause and say that the filmmakers' decision to not show any actual Quidditch play here is the single biggest mistake of the series. In the books, the Quidditch World Cup match is epic. But we see none of it. Just a flash of the opening and then fans celebrating. I understand they had to cut something from the 734 pages of novel, but the World Cup should not have been among those cuts. "S.P.E.W." sub-plot: Good cut. Quidditch: Bad cut.
12:41pm: Death Eaters! The Dark Mark! We're back in business now, baby.
12:43pm: On the train, Cho Chang makes her debut, while Ginny becomes more of a presence too. "Something sweet for you?" the woman with the snack trolley asks Harry. Subtle.
12:46pm: Hair check. Watson's is longer again. Radcliffe's is too. Fred and George's are even longer. There must be something in the pumpkin juice.
12:48pm: The ladies of the Beauxbatons Academy of Magic swoop in like the Cirque du Soliel. Just once I want to enter a room and have birds and butterflies swarm out of my body. Just once!
12:50pm: Mad-Eye Moody suddenly pops out of the woodwork. Or so we're meant to think.
12:52pm: As the actual Goblet of Fire is unveiled, my wife leaves for work. We do some rough math and conclude I'll be roughly at the end of "Half-Blood Prince" or the beginning of "Deathly Hallows, Part 1" when she returns.
12:53: Mad-Eye's first class as defense against the dark arts teacher, where we learn--and have to watch--the unforgivable curses. Intense.
1:00pm: That handsome devil Cedric Diggory throws his name into the goblet. He's then outdone by Fred and George who comically bungle their underage entries.
1:08pm: Rita Skeeter, aka the TMZ of the Wizarding World, appears for the first time.
1:13pm: Amazing effect as Sirius' face appears in the embers of the Gryffindor fireplace.
1:16pm: The tension between the kids -- Ron and Hermione, Harry and Ron -- is starting to get serious. This is the movie where the snogging starts, right?
1:18pm: Dragons! Dragons for the Tri-Wizard Tournament! Of course they're from Charlie Weasley in Romania, which is where all Dragons go or come from.
1:21pm: "Is that a student?" "Technically, it's a ferret." Bulls-eye!
1:26pm: As the first task begins, I do some light housekeeping. Not because anything's really dirty. Just because it involves standing up off the couch briefly.
1:29pm: Those dragons look fabulous. Given, of course, that dragons aren't real so there's nothing to compare them to.
1:30pm: "Goblet of Fire" was where the novels really got long and complex (see tirade at 12:38, above), and it certainly has a much grander story arc than one, two, or three. It's where the mainstream media (aka our parents) took note in a big way. It's also where, I'm afraid, I'm most likely to accidentally fall asleep. Especially given that I started this eight hours ago.
1:35pm: The children go on a rant against Rita Skeeter. I sneak a peek at the internet for early NFL scores.
1:38pm: In practice for the Yule Ball, McGonagall forces Ron to slow dance with her, further increasing the awkward sexual tension the students are already experiencing. Snogging ahead.
1:40pm: Ron, you stupid Git. Ask Hermione to the ball. Don't be such a Prat.
1:42pm: Snape shines (again, still) as he wallops the boys in the head with books.
1:43pm: Cho Chang, and her amazing Scottish brogue, thwart Harry's romantic intentions. Where was she in years one through three, anyhow?
1:45pm: The Yule Ball! Hilariously bad dress robes! Hermione all done up! Wizard rock music! It's like a Jennifer Love Hewitt movie. This scene rules.
1:54pm: "We don't talk much at all. Victor's more of a physical being." Gross, Miss Granger. Gross.
1:55pm: That nice boy Cedric, his fantastic haircut and dreamy eyes are back. I don't know about you, but I'm team Diggory!
1:59pm: Second task: the black lake, and Mer-man Harry. If only the Wizarding World had Google, this whole "how do I breathe underwater" problem would have been way easier.
2:07pm: What's weird about the Twi-Wizard tournament is that they seem like they're in real physical peril. Here's a kid who defeats the most powerful evil sorcerer in the world and he nearly drowns during a school activity. But they won't let him go to Hogsmeade Village without a permission slip.
2:13pm: Harry falls into the Pensieve and witnesses the trial of Death Eater/Durmstrang Headmaster Igor Karkaroff. What's interesting about it is that it reveals Barty Crouch, Jr as a Death Eater. But it also introduces the Pensieve which the heroes will use again and again for details in the "case" of Lord Voldemort. If you're not familiar, it's a big magical sink.
2:22pm: Third and last task. Not to be mean, but .... Did anyone at any point think Fleur Delacour had a chance of winning this tournament?
2:23pm: We get a wide aerial shot of the entire, massive maze. Love it.
2:25pm: Fleur is out of the competition. Called it.
2:26pm: Harry and Cedric close in on the Tri-Wizard cup as the U2 cover band continues to play outside my window on the street. At least, I think its a cover band. Maybe it's actually U2. Maybe I should check.
2:29pm: Oh snap the cup is a Portkey! I learned about those at the beginning of the movie and now it's a key plot point at the end.
2:30pm: Cedric meets his end at the hands of Wormtail, of all people. He's not a Vampire yet, though. I guess that scene is coming up.
2:31pm: Ralph Fiennes erupts into being as You Know Who. Now it's a party. What is thy bidding, Master?
2:32pm: I adore everything about Fiennes' portrayal of Voldemort, except that there's so precious little until the very end of the series. The makeup, the way he delivers dialogue, the way he floats instead of walks. Love it.
2:35pm: Voldemort steps on the deceased Cedric's face. Not his handsome face! He needs it!
2:38pm: Potter/Voldemort duel #1. You can't help but watch this scene, with their red & green jets of magic hitting each other, and think of "Star Wars." Except Yoda's ghost was not as handsome as Cedric's ghost.
2:40pm: Harry returns to Hogwarts with Cedric's body but no one believes that Voldemort has returned. Cedric's father, played by Jeff Rawle, gives a short but heart-wrenching performance as he wails over his dead son's corpse. Luckily, Mad-Eye Moody pulls Harry away to safety.
2:45pm: Moody is revealed to not only be bad but not even actually be Moody at all. Shouldn't they have some anti-Polyjuice test for just this sort of thing? Maybe they can Google it.
2:48pm: Dumbledore sorta eulogizes Diggory to the rest of the school. Surprisingly, the word "handsome" doesn't come up. Although, point of order, Dumbledore says Voldemort murdered Cedric but it was actually Wormtail who threw the killing curse. Credit where credit is due, and all that.
2:52pm: Hermione gets the last meaningful word. "Everything's going to change now, isn't it?" Yes, it is. Cause we're four down and four to go! On to year five!>>