Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets Chris Columbus

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets Chris Columbus
While many fans of the Harry Potter series claim that Chamber of Secrets is possibly its weakest literary offering, converting it to film has enhanced it greatly, making it even better than its predecessor, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. Free for the most part of the constraints of exposition and back-story, assuming you've either seen the first movie or read the books, Chamber is the stronger film so far. Telling a more linear story, although still with twists, also works for Chamber, dropping Harry quickly back into the magical Hogwart's School For Wizards, reuniting him with his chums Hermione and Ron, pitting him against his foes (Malfoy, Voldemort) and forcing him to solve an ancient mystery because, well, he's freakin' Harry Potter. The movie is darker and looks great, full of the magic and wonder of the first, but not as cartoonish in certain aspects. Because of its charm, adults and children alike remain enamoured with the franchise, and with the exception of Dobby the house elf, who comes close to Jar-Jar annoyance, there's every reason to like Chamber, especially Kenneth Branagh's scene-stealing turn as Gilderoy Lockhart, the foppish defence against the dark arts professor, and the sadly deceased Richard Harris, as professor Dumbledore. Following in the footsteps of its predecessor's DVD legacy, Chamber is laden with charming extras designed to further the immersion into the Potter world, requiring a two-disk set to house them all. Included in the impressive extras are a staggering 19 deleted scenes and a number of interactive challenges and tours designed to flush out the Potter world, such as Gilderoy Lockhart's Classroom, Dumbledore's Office and the Chamber Challenge, not to mention numerous revealing interviews, and tons more for the Potter-obsessed. Extras: deleted scenes; behind Hogwarts; activities; Gilderoy Lockhart's Classroom; Spellcaster Knowledge Challenge; game preview; DVD-Rom Trailer; trailer; Year One at Hogwarts; game preview. (Warner)