My friend invited me to an unnamed advanced screening he'd gotten tickets for at the "Fantastic Four" premiere. We got there two hours ahead of time, waited a while, then they took all of our phones, purses, cameras, etc. We got wanded, went through security, got a stamp on our hands, sat down...MIKE NEWELL WAS THERE! But I didn't speak with him--no one really did. Then, at two in the afternoon, they told us we were the first audience to see "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire"! Most of us had guessed by then, because they wanted 8-14 year olds mostly, and then some other groups, like sixteen-year-olds (me and my friend). Anyways, a huge cheer went up, and then the lights dimmed. After the movie was over, we didn't see any credits, the lights came up, and we had to fill out a two-page survey.
It starts out with Nagini the snake weaving through the grass, and it's the first chapter of the fourth book, where the old caretaker is making tea. He sees a light on in the old Riddle house, we get a shot or two of the very important graveyard, then we stumble upon Wormtail and Voldemort (hidden by a chair) and-get this-- BARTY CROUCH JR.! They're clearly planning the whole Moody chirade.
You know what happens next-- all of that was very true to the book, aside from the plot device of Barty Crouch being there. Then Harry wakes up, we realize it was a dream, he and Hermione and the Weaselys (Molly and Percy aren't even IN this movie) go to the World Cup with Amos and Cedric Diggory (the latter of which jumps out of a tree and is SO PERFECT-- very handsome!), and we see a nice CG (computer graphics) shot of the tents. Basically, the Quidditch World Cup is VERY BRIEF to establish the character of Viktor Krum, then it turns to evening time. The twins and Hermione are teasing Ron about his thing for Viktor Krum when Mr. Weasely tells them all to run. The entire camp of tents is burned down, and we see Death Eaters for the first time. VERY SCARY. We do see some Muggles in the sky, suspended in green flames, but that's all we get. Their masks are half-skulls that cover all but their mouths, and their robes are basically Klu Klux robes in black. Harry gets trampled and passes out. When he wakes up, he sees Barty Crouch Jr. (Winky the House-Elf is totally cut out of the movie, as is Dobby) shoot the Dark Mark into the sky and we're introduced to Barty Crouch Sr. getting all freaked out.
Blah blah blah, train ride later...Harry sends out a message to Sirius, and the moment the trio arrives at school we see the flying horses of Beauxbatons and the ship of Durmstrang arrive as well back at Hogwarts. Sometime during this, and I'm sorry-- can't remember if it's before or after we see the ship and carriage of the other schools-- Dumbledore gives his typical cryptic speech. Then he talks about the Triwizard Tournament, and introduces first the Beauxbatons girls (who do a very odd little simpering dance and flit around like ballerinas) and the Durmstrang boys (who do something very weird with kung-fu sticks that spark everywhere). Then Moody arrives, and he and Dumbledore greet one another.
Okay, okay. Then we meet the goblet (of fire). Then we see the boys back in the dormitory, I think. There aren't any classes in this movie-- except for Moody's Unforgiveable Curses lesson--- just times between them, in halls and study hall (with Snape- VERY FUNNY scene there) and mealtimes. Okay, so everyone is gathered around the Goblet at one point, and we see Fleur and Krum and Cedric (again, *sigh*) enter the tournament. Everyone claps, Fred and George do their dumb yet hysterical little thing and grow beards, Hermione is annoyed. At this point, my chronology is getting a little confused. Okay, so the whole part where the Goblet coughs up names is pretty close to the book. Everyone is pissed off at Harry because they think he entered it himself. There is a brief scene between Moody and Dumbledore and McGonagall and Snape in some odd little back-room while the contestants wait in another weird back-room behind the Great Hall. We see the Pensieve for the first time. Dumbledore puts the memory of reading Harry's name out of the Goblet into it.
Ron and Harry have an ongoing fight that lasts three or four whole scenes. Ron is mad because Harry didn't tell him he entered or how he did it and always wants to be the hero, yadda yadda yadda. He makes some comment about how he's "Ronald Weasely, Harry Potter's stupid friend". Sad. Then we see the infamous "POTTER STINKS" buttons, although I couldn't, because the CGI wasn't finished. Ron and Harry are still fighting. Hermione tells Harry that Ron saw Hagrid and told him to tell Harry to go meet him (and it's even more confusing- and thus, funnier- than that!), and Harry goes with Madame Maxime (who looks like a transvestite and is even taller than Hagrid) and Hagrid to see the dragons. He tells Cedric about the dragons. We meet Rita Skeeter. SHE IS MARVELOUS- PERFECTION, really. So true to the book, in my humble opinion.
Fred and George take bets continually throughout the movie on Harry's life. The contestants choose dragons. Hermione hugs Harry because she thinks he's going to die, and the first task begins. We only see Harry's turn. It's painfully long and action-packed, with a nice chase scene between the dragon and Harry on his broom.
There is a party in Griffindor later that night for Harry.Cedric tells Harry to take the egg into the bathroom. He does. Moaning Myrtle is actually IN THE BATH with Harry and keeps peeking under the bubbles. We hear the mermaids, finally.
The second task was almost finished in terms of CGI, and it was quite pretty. NEVILLE gives Harry the Gillyweed. The grindylows were scary. Harry gets second place for saving Gabrielle AND Ron. The four hostages look very waxy- it's not the actors, but some weird floaty mannequins, it seems.
Ron asks Fleur out, we see him all pale and queasy after, Cho rejects Harry but sincerely apologizes in the Owlery. There are lots of cute scenes where Ron and Harry complain about not having dates, and Fred asks Angelina in a very cute way similar to the book.
THERE IS A DANCING LESSON SCENE. McGonagall makes all the Griffindors take dance lessons! The YULE BALL IS FANTABULOUS. Emma Watson looks predictably gorgeous. Ron is jealous. The Patil sisters get cheated out of a nice night. The band playing is clearly NOT the Weird Sisters, considering they are all guys.
A scene between Harry and Hermione talking about Krum later...
Barty Crouch Sr. is found dead by the trio and Hagrid in the Forbidden Forest.
The third task--okay, the sphynx is cut completely, and there's a weird mist that bewitches Krum. Some brambles take Fleur away, and Harry saves Cedric from the same fate. They Portkey to the graveyard, and the rest is totally like it was in the book. Virtually nothing is changed. Voldemort, played here by Ralph Fiennes, is BRILLIANT. The scene where Wormtail cuts off his hand and cuts Harry is VERY CREEPY. So much so that I wouldn't take younger kids to this movie, no way. It's darker than the third in terms of cinematography.
Harry won't let go of Cedric when he brings him back to his father-- he's just crying over his dead body. Pleasant.
We discover that Moody is really Barty Crouch Jr, etc.
It ends with Dumbledore giving a service for Cedric--black banners adorn the Great Hall and everyone is sad. Then the trio talk about how everything is going to be different now that Voldemort is back, and there are jokes about how Harry and Ron probably won't write to Hermione. The end.
OPINION and OVERALL WOW! This movie is by far the greatest movie we've had yet! I have a lot of love for the third, because Sirius and Lupin are my favorite characters, but I can't deny the absolute fabulousness of this one. The hormones are running even higher and this installment- even higher than they were in the book. I hate to say it, but even though they kept in all of the great Ron/Hermione issues (i.e. Krum), there's a lot of Harry/Hermione going on. Fred, George, and Neville all play MUCH LARGER parts. The romance throughout is just terrific. I also really loved the way Rupert Grint and Daniel Radcliffe acted during their fight over Harry's being in the Tournament. Also, Daniel Radcliffe's on-screen crying abilities have REALLY IMPROVED since "Prisoner of Azkaban". Having said that, the ending is wrapped up way too quickly with virtually NO EXPLANATION as to the death of Barty Crouch Sr. and everything, and they cut out the wonderful Hospital Wing part at the end of the book where Sirius meets the Weasely clan and Dumbledore tells him to lie low at Lupin's. Bah, humbug. Anyways, all in all, aside from maybe the last morbid ten minutes, a really enjoyable, reasonably true-to-the-book movie. Very action-packed, as we've been told, but also very romantic. LOVELY!