Got to see the film adaptation of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Chamber Secrets as it opened on local big screens today.
It was a great movie, highlighting most of the events from the book, and a few times at least, managed to convey the same grim and eerie atmosphere of Harry Potter's second year at Hogwarts.
The book was spookier, in my humble opinion, though I'm thinking this can be more ascribed to my propensity to let my imagination run wild. Also, the exclusion of certain scenes from the book may also have contributed to the movie's lesser fear factor. Then again, this could have been the intent of the producers who are, obviously, aiming for a younger target audience. The tragedy of the various petrified victims and the suspense of impending doom, while given screen time and scenic development (no matter how brief), was certainly downplayed in the movie.
I am well aware of the various differences between the books and films, and the obligatory "loss" of data as one converts from one media to the other. Still, if it had been my movie, I'd really try to include every scene from the book, though, admittedly, that might make the movie a bit on the dragging side.
Anyway, to each his own, and the Chris Columbus has once again delivered a superb adaptation, as well as a worthy sequel to the first Harry Potter film. I've heard somewhere that he won't be helming the next Harry Potter movie anymore. Let's hope he handles Harry Potter 3 with as much mastery of the craft as Columbus did, if not more.
Sadly, Richard Harris, the sterling gentleman who played Albus Dumbledore, also won't be able to re-join the cast. He will surely be missed.
Game on, all.