"Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" is based on the eponym book, which is having the exact same structure as its precedessor novel, "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone". Therefore, the film is also very similar to its precedessor, even though knowing that Chris Colombus directed both movies.
But there are still differences in the two films.
- In this one, even though it is very true to the book, there are more inventions which are very good, clever and interesting in a movie. For instance, having the Hogwarts Express just behind the flying car of Ron and Harry. Or Harry understanding a key element by looking at a mirror by coincidence. A few scenes from the book are also completely unseen in the film or shortened. This is a welcome thing, as the previous film was way too close to the book. So close that, ironically, it denaturated the original material. A film is not a book, and vice-versa.
Since the book is darker than its predecessor, the look of the movie is also darker, which is proving that Chris Columbus found something. When the camera is tilting and handheld, you can feel the dark forces, which is nowhere to be seen in the first film.
Meanwhile, Daniel Radcliffe is providing a much more mature interpretation of Harry Potter. In the previous film, it was as though the young actor was citing his lines. In this one, it is still not great, but clearly there has been some work there and Radcliffe is more believable as the young wizard. You can see in his eyes that he believes the part.
Also, Kenneth Branhagh is simply perfect as the hilarious Galderoy Lockhart.
To me, this film is slightly better than "Philosopher's Stone". The special effects are better, the scenes are moving together much more elegantly, the acting of the main character has vastly improved.
I give this film a 5 (Good), where I gave its predecessor a 4 (Average). I cannot wait to watch the next films to compare and see the evolution.