Harry Potter & The Goblet of Fire

Might as well be called "Harry Potter and the Deux Ex Machina" like the rest of 'em.

Let's be realistic. This is all most people remember of HP and the Goblet of Fire nowadays.

Just The Facts

  1. It is the Fourth book of the famous Harry Potter series, by renown English writer J.K. Rowling.
  2. It marks the return to life of the main antagonist of the series, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.
  3. It also marks the beginning of what would later be known as the "J.K. Rowling's killing spree", that would take the lives of almost the entire original cast over the following three books.
  4. It describes some of the most impressive acts of child endangerment ever passed as an interschool competition, sanctioned and overseen by government officials.


Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was one of the most expected books ever to be written. Thousands upon thousands of young magic-enthusiasts, none of which was me, flocked the libraries around the world, some of them in pajamas, some others in even more embarrassing forms of clothing, to rudely grab the newest instalment in the Harry Potter series from library employees who probably thought they didn’t get paid enough to put up with any of it.

Said HP fans, which were probably saved from being considered some of the biggest weirdos ever by the appearance of the feared “Twihards”, would later flock the Internet to post disturbing Harry/Giant Squid fanfiction and discuss in forums when the movie would come out so they could be happy again, or more likely obsess about the fifth book. Again, none of those fans is me, no matter who says they saw me dressed like Hermione Granger at 2 AM, waiting in line.

But regardless of that, there was much to be said about the fourth book. Harry Potter & The Goblet of Fire was, after all, the first book in the Harry Potter series to give us awkward, teenage love, dragons, unsexy mermaids and leave us all wondering why the heck Lord Voldemort decided to compete with The Count Of Monte Cristo for the title of "Most Convoluted Revenge/Comeback Plan Ever". Seriously.

It also made us question once again why the destiny of the known world is forever being left in the hands of hormonal-driven, angst-ridden, teenagers. And why every sport activity that takes place in the grounds of Hogwarts’ School of Witchcraft and Wizardry consists of clever ways to put the students in all sorts of danger (lethal danger, might I add) in front of the faculty and the occasional member of government.


The "Plot": Book and Movie

The Harry Potter books and movies ask for us to believe. Believe in magic, believe in friendship and mostly believe that the kid with no black hair or green eyes is in fact Harry Potter. They also ask us to believe that child-endangerment is good as long as, at the end of the day, the only real injuries are psychological and not physical and that popular and good-looking sport idols go for the little bookworm in the corner who they had never spoken to before and who shows no signs of being interested. So you should have that in mind to be able to get past all those gaping plot holes and truly enjoy (or at least get through) the Harry Potter experience.

Not pictured: Any physical attributes of Harry Potter

HP and the Goblet of Fire centres, once again, on the quest of the evil and not-quite-dead-but-nor-really-alive Lord Voldemort to regain his full power and kill Harry Potter, which teaches us that he might be evil but he is also perseverant and optimistic. For some reason that is never fully explained (or explained at all) instead of turning whatever crappy object that Harry might touch into an instant portkey to transport Harry to the mandatory foggy cemetery to do the ritual that in the movie roughly takes less than five minutes to regain his powers and go back to enslaving the shit out of the Wizard World he chooses to place one of his most loyal and valuable followers as a decoy inside the castle to charm this Goblet of Fire (which is seen on screen for mere seconds and has even less importance in the book) to get the kid to participate in a life-threatening tournament (even though the “Dark Lord” really needs Harry alive or else his plans for world domination vanish into thin air), to help him along till the last task, to make his reach the finish line, to grab the cup and then portkey him into his evil clutches.

It spits out papers... And that’s about it. Really.

It makes no sense but, as you will eventually realize, that is the defining trait that unites all of the Harry Potter books and the Harry Potter movies... That and the main character. But mostly the senselessness. It makes no sense either that three schools from different parts of Europe gather every now and then to put three of their very-willing students in mortal danger not once but three times, in front of members of the local government, who are more interested in placing illegal bets on the outcome of the tournaments than they are in ensuring the safety of the participants. It all makes no sense (I really cannot stress this enough, I tell you) and at the end of the day Harry Potter and his friends seem more preoccupied on what girl to ask out to a Yule Ball and what to wear than on who is trying to kill them this year. And we are all supposed to sit down, shake our heads and sigh, as if the fact that the main characters are in their teens totally explains why they are more afraid of social interaction with the opposite sex than they are of Ralph Fiennes without a freaking nose (Like Michael Jackson, Lord Voldemort  managed to pull off the “no nose” look. They both also enjoy pursuing kids in their early teens).

“You know I’m BAD, I’m BAD...!”

In the end, which includes some “shocking” twists of events (that are even less shocking in the movie, since people who watch movies are apparently even denser than people who read books and so are less likely to catch the dragon-sized clues they keep dropping for two and a half hours), Harry lives (No way, he lives to be the protagonist in other two books? I totally did not see this coming!), Ron doesn’t score and Headmaster Dumbledore finally gets a kid killed during school year, after trying for four years in a row. Way to go, Headmaster!

To Summarize

Harry gets placed in mortal danger yet again, while surrounded by a myriad of adults (either teachers or governmental figures) that either remain oblivious or consciously allow all of this to happen. Ron Weasley takes a break from being scared of his shadow to be a jerk to his best friend, to show us some of his versatility and the producers still refuse to make Daniel Radcliffe resemble the character he plays even a little, thinking that the round glasses will make us overlook the not-black hair and the not-green eyes. But, then again, it is not always required to make sense in the magical universe of Harry Potter. Actually, I am pretty sure that in the contract Warner Bros signed with J. K. Rowling there is a clause strictly forbidding too much sense... Which would actually make sense.