Movie Review: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)


The other day was the blogathon thing, and we still got some Month of Spooks stuff left to do… but we can also not forget my series of “Harry Potter” reviews leading up to “Fantastic Beasts” in November. And now we are finally continuing it after,,, two and a half weeks, good grief. Anyhow, let’s stop with this intro and get into the review itself!

Ladies and gentlemen… “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets”!

Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) begins his second year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in a rather rocky way. First off, he got warnings from a house-elf named Dobby (Toby Jones) about bad things that will happen at Hogwarts. Secondly, his journey from Little Whinging to Hogwarts was kind of troublesome and filled with mishaps. But the trouble is not over yet, as people start getting petrified for some reason. And this of course creates a mystery where Harry, Ron (Rupter Grint), and Hermione (Emma Watson) to try to figure out who/what might have done this. With that said, I really liked how the plot unfolded… a lot. What I think the plot of this movie benefited from was how it doesn’t have to set the world up, since that was done (pretty fucking well) in the last movie. So now we can just get right into the main plot of this movie, which of course gives the plot of this movie a much better pace. Which is of course a bit ironic seeing as this movie is longer than the last. But yeah, it was an interesting plot which created a compelling mystery which of course led to the plot going to some darker places when it comes to this world and it’s main character. It was pretty great.

The characters in the movie are about as great as in the first one, but as the plot unfolds we do get a little bit more development from them as they learn more things. Daniel Radcliffe once again knocked it out of the park, getting some more moments to shine here in comparison to the first one. And the development of the character itself is actually really good, as we learn more about who he really is, at the same rate he does. Rupter Grint and Emma Watson also did great in this movie in their roles. And the chemistry between these three central actors is so great and so believable. The other actors in the movie do pretty great as well. Tom Felton as Malfoy once again was great, with his character being even more despicable than in the first movie. Richard Harris (R.I.P) was also really great as Dumbledore, Maggie Smith once again was great as professor McGonagall, Alan Rickman (R.I.P) was still amazing as Snape, and it goes on like that for pretty much every returning actor/character. But we also got a few new interesting faces in this one, so let’s go through them. First off we have the previously mentioned Dobby the house-elf, a magical little dude voiced by the great Toby Jones. At first he is actually a bit annoying, but after a while you grow to actually kind of like him, especially near the end when you find out some more stuff about him and his “family”. Next is Kenneth Branagh as Gilderoy Lockhart, a very famous wizard who you immediately can tell is more bark than bite. Basically he is the magical equivalent of the classic saying “Girls want to be with him and guys want to be him”. Think to have that dude as the “Defense Against the Dark Arts” teacher… yeah. But you can tell that Branagh had fun with the role, and I think he did a good jobas the character. And finally we have Jason Isaacs as Lucius Malfoy, AKA Draco’s dad. And this dude just oozes of self-important asshole, as soon as he enters the scene you immediately tell that this guy is bad news. And Jason Isaacs is pretty damn great in the role. In other words, this cast is great!

Once again the music was composed by the one and only John Williams and its still great. Some of the themes in there are of course the same as in the first movie, but that’s nothing to complain about because those tracks are pretty great. But there are also a bunch of new tracks composed for this movie as well, and they are pretty great too, perfectly capturing the magical and whimsical but still dark world that Harry and his friends live in. Yeah, the music’s fucking great.

Like the first movie, this was directed by Chris Columbus (still not re-discovering America). And he did a great job again. Sure, a lot of bits remind me of the first movie a lot, but it’s not too much of a complaint. But he is a very talented director who did a great job, giving us some great directing and some great angles. He also managed to make this movie even more suspenseful and even scarier than the first. I mean, the final act is really tense and actually a bit scary. And the visual effects in this movie are even better than in the first, especially the Quidditch match which looks so much better than the first movie, which of course makes it more engaging and more fun.

This movie has been well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has an 82% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 63/100. Roger Ebert gave the movie 4/4 stars. And on it has a score of 7,4/10.

“Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” is a a definite improvement over the first movie. With a really interesting plot, better pacing, great characters/acting, great music, fantastic visual effects, and better suspense/tension. Time for my final score. *Magically summons score*. My final score for “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” is a 9,67/10. So of course it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

My review of “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” is now completed.

If you have arachnophobia then this movie might not be the best for you…

Movie Review: Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)


Time for the third part in my series of “Indiana Jones” reviews. So I guess it’s time to just stop with these formalities and just get on with it.

Ladies and gents… “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade”.

Indy (Harrison Ford) is back… again. He is looking for another MacGuffin… again, but this time he is looking for the holy Grail. He is also trying to find his missing father (Sean Connery). He also have to avoid being killed by nazis and death traps and I am starting to see a pattern here. Yes, all of the movies have the same basic plot and that might bug some people… but I don’t mind. I find the plots engaging, entertaining and interesting. So yeah… I like the plot.

The characters in this movie are just all kinds of entertaining. Harrison Ford still knocks it out of the park as Indy, there is no other way of putting it. Sean Connery is fantastic in the role of Indy’s father. But here’s the best part… Ford and Connery has some of the best chemistry I’ve seen in any movie ever. I totally believe their “father/son” relationship, which is kind of funny considering there’s only 12 years between the two actors. Then we also get some really good supporting performances from Denholm Elliott, Alison Doody, John Rhys-Davies, Julian Glover and River Phoenix (R.I.P).

The score for this movie was (like the previous two) composed by the one and only John Williams who again managed to make an absolutely fantastic collection of tracks that perfectly fit the film they’re used in. Seriously, the music’s great and there was never any doubt about it.

Steven Spielberg directed this one as well and once again he did a great job, the shots are great and everything is terrifically done. What I can add here is that I think this movie might have the best action scenes in this franchise. They are fast-paced, well shot, very real and simply fun. From the opening scene with young Indy & the train, to the tank, to the… everything. This movie is constantly moving, never really a minute passes by without SOMETHING happening. It’s an incredibly fast-paced movie that just blew by. It’s also a very funny movie, most of it being the banter between Ford and Connery.

This movie has been very well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has an 88% positive rating with a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 65/100. Roger Ebert gave it 3,5/4 stars. And on it has a score of 8,3/10 and is ranked #103 on the “Top 250” list. The movie also won 1 Oscar in the category of Best sound effects editing. It also got an additional 2 nominations in the categories of Best sound and Best original score.

Guys, this is a really fun movie that has a good plot, great characters/acting/chemistry, great music, great directing and great action. Time for my final score. KALI M- wrong movie. My final score for “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” is a 9,90/10. It does most definitely get the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

My review of “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” is now completed.

Ya know, after my discovery in the plot department I feel like a certain post is in order (at some point).