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Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE Directed by Mike Newell (Warner Brothers, 2005)

The fourth installment of J. K. Rowling's magical saga adds the demons of adolescence to the litany of monsters confronting school chums Harry (Daniel Radcliffe), Ron (Rupert Grintt), and Hermione (Emma Watson) in this PG-13 tale of dragons, deep sea creatures, and deadly mazes--oh my!

Hogwarts goes international for this episode as foreign exchange students from other magical schools arrive to compete in the Triwizard Tournament, and things start to heat up quickly when a noticeably hunkier 14-year-old Harry finds himself mysteriously and unwillingly drafted into this dangerous competition. An incredulous Ron struggles with jealousy and suspicion while the increasingly lovely Hermione finds herself drawn to the inarticulate but physical tournament champion Viktor Krum (Stanislav Ianevski).

Meanwhile, Harry, tortured by nightmares of a returning Lord Voldemort, receives aid and mentoring from Alastor "Mad Eye" Moody (Brendan Gleeson), the new Defense Against the Dark Arts instructor, and struggles to prove his mettle in a series of increasingly dangerous and deadly challenges that take him into the very lair of his archnemesis, played by Ralph Fiennes with a nastiness we haven't seen since Schindler's List.

Teenagers will sympathize with a pubescent Potter who must (like Spiderman and other adolescent heroes) save the world while trying to get up the nerve to ask a really cute girl to the high school dance. And adults in this country will be heartened by a tale that encourages international cooperation and friendship instead of the go-it-alone attitude fueling so much of our own recent and disastrous foreign policy.

Wouldn't it be magical if we could figure out how to work with our French and Eastern European allies the way Potter and the students at Hogwarts manage to do? Perhaps Rowling is teaching the adults a lesson or two this time out.
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Author:McCormick, Patrick
Publication:U.S. Catholic
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2006
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