Lottery Post Journal

Saw new Harry Potter - GOF

GOF = Goblet of Fire

I went to see the new Harry Potter movie yesterday (opening day), and I'm here to report it was very good.

Book 4 of the series, on which the movie was based, was and is still my favorite in the whole series of books.  It is a masterpiece.

Thus, with such high expectation for the movie, I don't think there was any way for the movie to live up to those standards, but it did come close.

The main problem, especially if the movie-goer had not read the book, is that in order to fit such a long book into 2-1/2 hours, they had to condense a lot of material.  Hence, there are entire sections of the book absent from the movie, and other concepts, like certain explanations of the Harry/Voldemort duel at the end, are not fully explained.

One of the nicest things about the movie franchise is that each movie is so uniquely different from the other.  You don't feel like it is another James Bond movie, where they have "insert criminal here" or "insert dangerous situation here".  Each movie is completely different, both in content and tone.

To the producer's credit, they did not shy from the fact that one of the characters dies in the book, and did in fact show that event just like it happens in the book.  However, the PG-13 rating is a bit of a mystery to me.  I don't know of any 8- or 9-year-old who can not easily handle the material in the movie.  The PG-13 rating of a movie like Revenge of the Sith is much more fitting that the one given to GOF.

The special effects continue to get better and better with each movie.  The dragon is entirely convincing, and very threatening.

Overall, a very fun movie, recommended for any Potter fan, or any fan of fantasy films for that matter.

Star Trek Enterprise

Besides being a big Star Wars fan, I am also a bit of a Star Trek nut. The only Star Trek TV series I was not a big fan of was Voyager. It ever seemed to pull me in, for some reason. I suppose I didn't like the liberties they took with the Star Trek universe's concepts.

I collect the DVD box sets of the various Star Trek shows, and the last one I added to my collection is Enterprise — the last Star Trek TV series ever made.

Enterprise is a show set back in the time where mankind first went exploring in space, after they built the first warp 5 vessel. Naturally, the ship was called Enterprise.

I really like the show. It is very inventive, and each season follows an overall story arch, in which the whole season revolves around a basic goal or concept, and they sprinkle various self-contained story episodes in between.

The sad part is that the show was canceled after only 4 years on the air, so the season that I'm currently watching on DVD will be the last. How unfortunate! It seems that the ratings didn't hold up, and that's a crying shame.

So far I've watched the first three seasons, and now I'm about six episodes into the fourth season. Among all those episodes, there are a surprisingly few number of "duds".

The writing has been very good, and the writers have in fact come up with a huge number of really good ideas, including the development of the Vulcans as a "flawed" species, who evolve just like the humans do. When I first saw how the Vulcans were portrayed I was left scratching my head as to what they were doing, but now in season 4 it is all making sense. What a terrific back-story, making the Vulcans in other later Trek series much more deep in character.

The one character I cannot get enough of is the blue-skinned Andorian — definitely my favorite character in the entire show. Thank goodness they keep finding ways of weaving him into the stories, even though it stretches believability at times. Just watching his antennae "emote" is enough to crack me up. The writers must have had a blast with his character!

It will be bittersweet to get to the end of season 4, knowing that a really great show was canceled prematurely. I think Voyager must have turned off a number of Trek fans, like it did for me, which in turn hurt Enterprise's ratings. Enterprise is so vastly superior, and has so much untapped potential, it will be sad to get to the last DVD.

Anyone was is a Star Trek fan owes it to themselves to see all four seasons — in order. A really engaging experience, not to be missed.