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View Poll Results: Harry Potter, Chamber of Secrets, vs. Sorcerer's Stone..
I liked Chamber of Secrets better 4 16.67%
I liked both, nearly equally 6 25.00%
I liked Sorcerer's Stone better 2 8.33%
I haven't seen Chamber of secrets yet. 4 16.67%
I've seen neither 8 33.33%
Voters: 24. You may not vote on this poll

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Old Nov 18, 2002, 01:20 PM
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Harry Potter, Chamber of Secrets, vs. Sorcerer's Stone.


We went to see the Chamber of Secrets a couple of days ago. It was pretty good, but I didn't think it came off with the quality that Sorcerer's Stone had. May I elaborate a little?

There is something about Richard Harris as Prof. Dumbledore in the beginning of Sorcerer's Stone, walking down Privet Lane, snuffing street lights, prior to Hagrid's and baby Harry's noisesome arrival, that makes for intriguing cinema. The first movie was very quirky and unusual. And it used those qualities to it's advantage. It also was pretty true to the book. I wonder though, if present day England would allow the obvious child abuse that the Dursley's subjected Harry to. I mean what would the neighbors think?

I guess I was a little bothered by the second films pacing, seemed like it was in a headlong rush to get into the chamber and get to the meaty special effects. The nice thing about the first film was, it was about character development, and it used it's great XFs as the grand backdrop, instead of the wherewithall that the Chamber's CGI seemed destined for. Although, I really liked the narcissustic fop that was Richard Branaugh's character, Prof. Gilderoy Lockhart. He was hilarious. ( Hang around for the end of the credits!)

One of my favorite characters from Sorcerer's Stone, is Robbie Coltrane as Hagrid. I remember him originally from that Black Adder Christmas special, as Father Christmas, trying to keep Mr. Adder from slipping back towards the darkside. (another story..). He is the possibly the most perfect choice to play Hagrid. And yet I felt he was made second fiddle this time 'round to a fairly good CGI character, Dobby the House Elf, when he should have been getting more lines and scenes. Oh well, they needed Dobby 'cause he's a big part of this book.

So, whada'ya think, was Sorcerer's Stone better than Chamber of Secret's? I liked both, but Chamber of Secrets seemed slightly lacking. Maybe I need to watch it again.
I guess I shouldn't elaborate the details of "Chambers"too much, I have been accused of ruining another E-Zoners expectations about the Two Towers, due next month..

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Last edited by Looooeeee!; Nov 18, 2002 at 03:17 PM.
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 06:01 PM
Official Old Git!
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Hmmm... Some thoughful comments (almost quite British, you know! )

I've just seen Chamber of Secrets, so some thoughts for what they are worth.

I like the first film, agreeing with a number of points that you made. I thought that Dumbledore was underplayed, which seems to have been continued into the current film (to be fair I haven't read the books yet - all my family have read ALL of the books, so I've got some catching up!).

The first film seemed a good introduction film aimed at kids, whereas Chamber of Secrets seems to be a much 'darker' film aimed more towards adults. My family say the books also become more 'adult / serious' (still good to read though!)

My family say that a number of the explanations / detail were skipped over in the film version of Chamber of Secrets, for example the stricter treatment of the Wheasley children by their parents were skipped over (in the book there is a bit where the kids are pushed by having to work in the garden to pull up and throw over the fence troublesome garden gnomes).

My feeling is that, with the time constraints (especially if you haven't read the books yet) that it / they are both good enjoyable films.

The problem is how can a film beat that fully 3D, multi-colour, personalised world that is our imagination which we employ when reading books!
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 06:24 PM
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So true!
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 08:11 PM
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Canada, NS, Lunenburg
Joined Oct 1999
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But the second film was almost an exact repeat of the first! Substitute spiders for three headed dog and change the actor playing the baddy and the rest was virtually identical. There was no proper character development and if it wasn't for Dobbie, there would be nothing worth looking at at all.

Add to that the fact that it was excrutiatingly long (wife fell asleep) and the special effects were mediocre to say the least and you have something that frankly I wouldn't recommend to anyone. Why wasn't that an option in the poll?

I've not read the books but after all the hype, I was expecting something a LOT better. I certainly won't be wasting my time when the third installment comes out.
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 09:07 PM
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Joined Dec 1996
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Read the books! Go to your local used bookstore and pickup all 4 for a good price. While generalized to be a kiddie book, they are certainly entertaining for a kid of 22 yrs (me).

I would have loved to have read these when I was younger.
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 11:04 PM
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Naperville, IL USA
Joined Nov 2000
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A bit of rambling to follow ...

There are a couple of problems the film makers had to contend with in doing the second book. One is that the second book just isn't as good as the first one, imho. (However, books 3 and 4 are on par and in some ways better than the first.) Also, the second book is longer than the first, iirc. So, some editing was needed - heck the movie is 2.5 hours long as it is.

Now, I had forgotten about the gnomes scene. That would have been a fun scene to see on the big screen. Also, I thought the McCreavy character was more prominent in the book whereas the movie hardly noticed him. But, then again, I'm guessing these mods were necessary due to the movie's length.

Overall, I liked the movie about as much a I did the first. But, for me these movies are more accessories to the books than movies that stand on their own - although they do. So, when I saw each movie, I found myself enjoying the process of remembering the book moreso than actually watching the movie. So, the fact that the second and third movies were very similar in story line or one wasn't as good as the another just isn't as important to me as being true to the books (as much as is possible).

I, too, thought Kenneth Branagh was very well cast as Lockhart. And, the guy they got to play Lucius Malfoy was a good choice as well. I also think that the acting on the part of the kid who plays Potter (can't remember his name just now) has improved. And, I think the girl who plays Hermione has a long and prosperous career ahead of her.

I was bummed when I heard of Richard Harris' death and wonder who they will get to play him in the future movies. I also hope that Chris Columbus continues directing the movies since I would like to see the continuity in style and the general desire to not paraphrase the books it not necessary.

And, if you have not read the books yet, do so. I read them with/to my kids and we are looking forward to book 5. In the meantime, however, we are reading the Narnia Chronicles.

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Old Nov 26, 2002, 02:46 PM
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I can also only say, read the books !!!
When they first came out, my wife and friends, just ate them up, I did not want to read them, since I am more into Clancy and the likes, and I would read no "kiddie" books about a 13 year old sorcerer.

Well, eventually, some time later, I didn't have anything to read, no airplanes to build or fix, nothing decent on the tube, so I decided to give it a try, and ended up reading all four of the books in a stretch, closing one and going straight to the next !

The movie is nice ( I haven't seen "chamber" yet ) but like Norman says, there's nothing that will beat the 3D generated by your imagination !

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Old Nov 26, 2002, 09:15 PM
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I didn't want to see the first movie, thinking it would be terribly childish and kidsy, but I watched with my Mum when she borrowed it. I quite enjoyed it! I'm going to have to see the second one (and read the books once my brother has finished with them).
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Old Nov 27, 2002, 01:14 AM
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Originally posted by Trizza
I didn't want to see the first movie, thinking it would be terribly childish and kidsy, but I watched with my Mum when she borrowed it. I quite enjoyed it! I'm going to have to see the second one (and read the books once my brother has finished with them).
I just wanted to add that Norm is right on the nose about the 3D screen in your head, and that you should all do yourself, your spouses and kids a favor, and rent the first film if you haven't already in addition to reading the books, they're fantastic. (I'm just through with the Prisoner of Azkaban for the third time.)

I was reading somewhere that J.K. spent a lot of time on set in the first film, and that this accounts for the success of it in my mind as she took the liberties, (heck, it's her story..) and subtely changed the movie, condensed the story a bit without detracting from it. In some ways I like the movie better. in other ways not, I just think of it as another retelling of it. I'm also saddened by Richard Harris's passing. Sherri and I were thinking about his replacement for the third film,..who could do it? Peter O'Toole? His voice is different..

( I also thought it was really great that Hagrid made his arrival in the first film on a proper Triumph Bonni, instead of the substituted Harley that was used for the motorcycles arrival noise.)

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