On Wed, 01 Jan 2003 10:42:46 -0800, "David S Bratman"
> Ernest called Chris Columbus's Harry Potter movies "competent film
> I don't entirely agree. I liked the books; I found the first film
> tedious. That in itself is enough to remove it from competence in my
> book. I haven't seen the sequel.
I attributed the weakness of the first film partly to the weakness of the
first book; Rowling had not quite found her footing yet, and the story of
_Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone_ is less coherent than her
later stories, more obviously a collection of episodes and set
pieces--and, as the very title suggests, bits cribbed from mythology and
lore--the Philosopher's Stone, unicorns, centaurs, goblins, &c. _Chamber
of Secrets_ is more original and a better story, and its film adaptation
> In the case of Harry Potter, what was missing was in part the anxiousness
> of the wizards over Harry's birth and development, but mostly the light
> tone and humor which so enlivens the book.
It has been some time since I saw the film of _Philosopher's Stone_ and
even longer since I read the book, but I think you're right; I don't
remember that the movie had that light touch; considering that Chris
Columbus had previously been known chiefly as a director of light
comedies, this is curious.
> Except for a couple references
> to Every Flavor Beans (and surprise, surprise, I've seen them for sale)...
<sigh> I have occasionally defended the Harry Potter books and movies,
but the huge mercantile empire which has grown around Harry Potter is
indefensible. It will be hard now to avoid the thought that Rowling will
write the books in order to sell the movies, and the movies will be
designed to sell toys.
> ...and the scenes of danger and menace were Jacksonically
> enlarged grossly out of proportion (compare Neville's flight on the first
> day of broomstick training with the same scene in the book, and you'll be
> very surprised).
In that case, you'll probably not care for the second movie much either.
The Quidditch match turns into a demolition derby, as the "rogue Bludger"
smashes its way through wooden posts and beams. The boys' flight from
the spiders in the possessed Ford is "Jacksonically" protracted.
Ernest S. Tomlinson