Rakesh's movie talk
Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets (2002)

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Directed by Chris Columbus
Written by  Steve Kloves (based on novel by J.K. Rowling)
Starring Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Richard Harris, Alan Rickman and Kenneth Brannagh.


This will shock many readers. I have never read any of the Harry Potter books. Quick, alert 'Ridley's believe it or not'. It's true. I am an avid reader, but I am not what one may say, a contemporary reader. I usually stay away from the books often listed in the top ten category and well, stay away from the contemporary section in books stores. But Harry Potter did arouse my curiosity. I tried reading a few pages. Nope. I was not interested. The language seem a bit uninteresting for me. It is just my taste.

So, my disinterest in that boy's adventure made me overlook the first Harry Potter movie. Everyone told me that the movie was interesting. I accepted the comments and did not bother to see it. I was simply not interested.

Then, a chance came for me to see The Chamber of secrets. I honestly didn't want to see it. I had always trusted my instincts, and my instincts told me that I will also not enjoy this film. As usual, my instincts can be as accurate as stock market speculations. The opportunity came when a journalist friend of mine (Vinodhani, she works for Business Today, everyone say hi to Vino) got some free tickets - thanks to a Storage Solution provider. God bless them. May the company be more successful so that they can give away more free tickets. So, after going through her priority list - must be 100 names before mine - Vino called me and another friend. Harry Potter? I thought for a while. Hell, how often do you get free movie tickets in your life. I said yes.

The theatre was brimming with busy journalist. Busy eating of course. The refreshment was good. I downed more of the Tapioca 'kuih' than I should and prayed hard that the movie will not do anything to bring the stuff out again. Then on to the movie theatre.

I enjoyed the first half tremendously. It was as plain and simple as that. There was more laugh than I expected and the crowd (three quarters are journalist) knew the right place to laugh, unlike the usual audience I end up with , who seem to be much more intelligent and laugh at the place I usually feel disgusted with. I liked the flying car scenes and the car itself, which has a life of its own and doesn't take too kindly to what the boys were doing with it. The CGI were done near perfection, almost flawless.

Here I must salute the author of the book, J. K. Rowling. Such an imagination. Every character and scenes sparkles with brilliance. They stay in your mind, amusing you with their strong individuality. I liked Keneth Branaghs performance as self praising Wizard, boastful and arrogant but never failing to make us laugh with his stupidity and the real coward self. The kids did a good job, and so did the rest of the cast. Theres also cameo of John Cleese, though I feel that he should have rather stayed out.

Now, here comes the complain. The second half of the movie, though still exciting and funny, began to bore me. It was getting very talkative at this point and I lose interest in the storyline - a supposed mystery that should also turn Harry into Sherlock Holmes. There is one fighting scene with a giant snake that would even make Arnold's Conan sweat a bucket. But here, Harry dispatches the snake with a sword fit for his size. I would have believed it if Harry were to kill the snake with his magic wand, but a sword? Where's Arnold when you need him?

Now, I urge you to ignore my complaints. It is a good movie. Fun and funny. I am hard to please when it comes to movies, though I always keep an open mind. As for this movie, well, I saw it once and it is enough. I don't think I will wait for the video version for my collection.