Since I'm a few weeks late in reviewing the movie, and it has grossed well over $250 million in North America, everyone knows the story. It's the fourth year at Hogwart's, and Potter and the gang now have to not only deal with their studies, they also have to deal with something else, their hormones. Potter also has to compete in the Tri-Wizards Tournament, a collection of 3 tasks which will determine the greatest wizard.
Director Mike Newell (Four Weddings and a Funeral, Donnie Brasco) has helmed this latest installment of the series with a steady hand, and has given us the darkest Potter yet. So dark in fact, that the film is rated PG-13 in the states.
When I was sitting in the theatre waiting for the movie to start, I was surrounded by a LOT of Potter fans and they were discussing the fact that maybe this movie should have been made in 2 parts, so everything in the book could have been shown. I can't really comment about that, as I haven't read the book so I can only judge the film on what appears on the screen, not the translation from page to screen. I've been told that J.K. Rowling has a a lot of input into the screenplay so I would assume that the movie doesn't disappoint her.
I went to the first Potter movie just to see what the commotion was all about, and sucked into the whole premise and world of Harry Potter. It's rare for that to happen to me, but what's even more rare is having it happen through 4 movies. I'm NOT going to the opening night of the Potter movies dressed up as a Wizard, and "casting spells" on the other "wizards" standing in line, but I do find myself enjoying the 2 hour+ visits (Goblet of Fire is 2.5 hours, with about 13 minutes devoted to credits) when they come around and almost always a few days AFTER the opening. B
GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK
So, I'm sitting in the theatre, waiting for this movie (any frequest readers of this blog know how long I've been waiting for this movie), and notice 2 things: 1) It isn't that full, and 2) There's NO ONE under the age of 30 in the theatre. Two very good signs for me.
I come home and look over my past blog posts and see how MUCH I've been waxing poetic over this movie before I saw it. All I can think is "How can I do a review that doesn't smack of bias after all the hype?"
Good night, and Good Luck looks at legendary newsman Edward R. Murrow's battle against the injustice known as the McCarthy hearings. Like the pioneering TV newsman it depicts, Good Night, and Good Luck, achieves something beyond entertainment. Like Edward R. Murrow, this drama is relentless in achieving its goals.
Last year Jamie Foxx became Ray Charles in the biopic Ray. This year David Strathairn becomes Murrow His performance, so focused and illustrative of Murrow's courage and idealism, is worthy of an Academy Award nomination, and he probably will get one.
This is the second outing for Clooney as a director, and he's picked some interesting subjects. I'm looking forward to the next film. B+