Mudcat Café message #823015 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #53451   Message #823015
Posted By: Grab
10-Nov-02 - 09:31 PM
Thread Name: BS: Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets film
Subject: RE: BS: Harry Potter &the C of S
I went to a showing this weekend, expecting it to be equally as bad as the first one. I was pleasantly surprised.

The background: I like the books, but the first film was just blah. The first one was all "this is Hogwarts, and this is Quidditch, and look at the flashy computer-generated things we can do to this book!!!" - lots of surface glitz, but no substance. And they'd obviously surveyed a bunch of 7-year-olds for their favourite scenes, who'd all picked different ones, so as a result they tried to get in every little scene to make a "film of the book" instead of just making it as a film. The result was that it rushed around aimlessly, looking pretty in places but never letting you give a damn about Harry or his friends.

Thank god, they've sorted it this time around. Basically, I guess they've managed to settle down now. Knowing the book, I know a lot has been cut, and the film works so much better for it. Also the effects are much better than the dodgy troll animation in the first one, and the children are getting to be better actors too, so it's coming together quite nicely. And as Selby says, the animated Dobby works pretty damn well - I guess Star Wars has broken a lot of ground on animated characters, especially non-human ones where looking slightly odd is expected.

But the main difference is that they've obviously approached it from the point-of-view of making a film. There's a lot of stuff cut, and there's also quite a lot of new lines or changes to scenes which give more of the "dark tone" that the books are getting increasingly towards. The best actor from the kids is the one playing Draco - he's got the kind of malignant charisma that I was never quite sure about in the books - and he does a good line in little gestures and expressions which work well. The others do a good job too, although the lad playing Ron only seems to have two facial expressions, normal and surprised/shocked/scared.

One definite problem for the future - Hermione in the books is supposed to be bookish and not be very attractive, but judging by this film she shows signs of turning into a very pretty girl in a few years time. I can see her being the next Natalie Portman (remember, you heard it here first! ;-)

Graham.