Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire - * * * 1/2
Harry Potter and his friends are back once again in the fourth movie of the popular series. Unlike most franchise movies, the Harry Potter films get better and better. I can safely say this is the best of all of them.
In "Goblet of Fire," the wizard Olympics (of sorts) come to Hogwarts, where only the best can compete. In this case, it's the best from each of the three wizard schools. And even though Harry is too young, he is mysteriously drawn into the competition.
The competition places these young wizards in dangerous situations that are twice as hard for young Harry. In one of these tests, he faces a fierce dragon that is hellbent on killing him. For once, I can say I was genuinely worried for Harry. And the tests become more and more difficult. In some ways, it's not much different than a Bruce Lee movie, where the hero faces greater and greater challenges.
There's a ballroom dance in "Goblet of Fire" that captures both the magic and misery of being a teenager. Hermione Granger learns that boys aren't as easy to understand as when they were younger. Harry and his friend Ron discover that girls are equally difficult to understand.
In the world of Harry Potter, nothing is quite what it seems. Good is bad. Bad is good. And the shadow of the evil Lord Voldermort hangs over everything.