Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets Reviews
The weakest entry in the Harry Potter franchise loses the wonder and novelty that made the 1st one so good, and goes for a more formulaic movie introducing more adult and dark elements. Enjoyable nonetheless, Chris Colombus did not fail here.
Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) and his friends Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) and Hermione Granger (Emma Watson) return for a second year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where Headmaster Dumbledore (Richard Harris), Professor Snape (Alan Rickman), Professor McGonagall (Maggie Smith), and Hagrid the Giant (Robbie Coltrane) are joined by new faculty members Gilderoy Lockhart (Kenneth Branagh), a self-centered expert in Defense against the Dark Arts, and Sprout (Miriam Margolyes), who teaches Herbology. However, it isn't long before Harry and company discover something is amiss at Hogwarts: Students are petrified like statues, threats are written in blood on the walls, and a deadly monster is on the loose.
Out of all 8 films, this was probably the film I was least looking forward to. I don't know why honestly. Maybe it's because I didn't remember anything about it, or maybe because it nearly hit a 3 hour runtime. Either way, like its predecessor, it was actually a really nice surprise. Not only did I have a decent amount of fun with it, but I found some parts starting to get emotional. I think it's still more of a kid's movie in the end, but it's certainly a fun ride.
One thing this movie serves well as is another fun adventure where we can see our characters grow up a little bit more. You start to learn a little bit more about who Voldemort is and all the pieces start to fall together a little bit more. It still doesn't focus on that plot, rather, it's own subplot. I didn't think the subplot of The Chamber of Secrets was as interesting as it could've been, but it was effective in the progression of the growth of our characters.
There are some moments in here that are still kind of cringe worthy and eye rolling. They're moments where it probably is geared toward kids, but it's non sensical and it makes you groan a little. There's not a ton of these moments, maybe a handful at most, but when they happen, it's painfully obvious. That really does come down to the way the story is told and what they were trying to go, but if the characters used a little common sense in the film, it might've saved some otherwise "eh" moments.
Like I said in my other review, the Blu-Ray rendition actually looks pretty good. As expected, this movie is 15 years old. Not all the CGI will be top notch, nor will the visuals be perfect. But the quality still looks good, and this still holds up well in 2017. It didn't always feel like I was watching a movie made in 2002, which is a big credit to Chris Columbus and everyone else involved.
In the end, this film was a nice surprise, and exceeded expectations. Again, it's not perfect, but it sure is a solid film in the "Harry Potter" franchise.
Chamber Of Secrets has a half an hour setup starting in the Dursleys house again but a peasant elf named Dobby warns that Harry Potter should not go back to Hogwarts this year as something as he would be put in danger. The Dursleys house scene is a lot more entertaining this time as there's something that looks so visually improved from the first one in fact no scratch that. I confuses me to how everyone looks past this film and dismisses it as 'too similar to the first' where it actually does look from a technical standpoint a lot better than the first.
around 30 minutes of a very entertaining setup with a flying car scene and crashing in to the 'Womping WIllow' they finally arrive at hogwarts. This movie has a lot of wondering around. There is not a great hall scene this time as you already seen that in the first film. Another reason as to why this is in no way too similar to philosophers stone. Instead of setting things up for the next movie. This film is not a drag. It doesn't take it's time and gets right in to what's important. The reason why I love this film so much is because it's completely focused on what the chamber Of Secrets is and is the only one to live up to it's name besides Prisoner of Askaban. The pacing is just perfect here. Chris Columbus really knew how to make a flawed formula great.
Gilderoy Lockhart is the new defense against the dark arts teacher and I know people have problems with him but honestly? he gives the film so much charm and personality. He's entertaining to say the least. There are creepy sequences with voices saying 'kill' 'kill' It's really effective and chilling which leads me to another thing this movie did right. Atmosphere. There is even a scene where Professor McGonagall explains the origins of the Chamber Of Secrets and it's probably the most effective scene in the film.
There is a really cool scene not long after which involves Harry communicating with a book getting took back 50 years before and learns more about the chamber.
There is a short section of the film where they go and fight a bunch of spiders (which got me a little freaked as I have arachnophobia myself) and then when Harry Manages to get in to the Chamber Of Secrets. He finds out that the person who opened the chamber was Ginny...but because Tom Riddle. The man from the past in the book Harry opened who revealed himself as Lord Voldemort. through a smart scene where he directly spells out his name then there is one of the most epic scenes in film history the basilisk fight. Harry manages to save Ginny and get out while Tom gets defeated by Harry stabbing his Quill in to the book. And your telling me this is the worst Harry Potter film?
The ending rehashes the 1st ones ending but it goes out with a band this time. Instead it ends with a camera shot zooming out of the great hall of Hogwarts and then it ends. It's just as epic as you think it sounds. This film is so overlooked and does not get the respect it deserves.
This film isn't flawless as it's own film though as there are problems. Molly says Ginny's jumper is on the cat? Seriously?
Overall I would say this is definitely my favorite Harry Potter film. Always will be. I didn't even mention half of the things that went on in this movie that make it so original and unique. I loved every single second of this film. It's one of my favorite films of all time and it's not just Columbus nostalgia keeping this one alive. Daniel Radcliffe who never really 'acted' much in the first one but in this. He's excellent. This is where his acting started to shine. This is where Columbus formula would perfect and would go in a different direction with a change of directors for the other masterpiece and next entry known as Prisoner Of Askaban. Harry Potter and The Chamber Of Secrets is the perfect balance between dumb, absurd and epic and that's why it makes it the best Harry Potter movie in the series for me but Prisoner a close second.