Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets (2002) – 8/10 fantasy action movie review

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Cast / crew
Director and Executive Producer: Chris Columbus
Screenplay Writer Based on the novel by J.K. Rowling: Steve Kloves
Producer: David Heyman
Writer (Original Novel): J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter: Daniel Radcliffe
Ron Weasley: Rupert Grint
Hermione Granger: Emma Watson
Kenneth Branagh: Gilderoy Lockhart
Nearly Headless Nick: John Cleese
Rubeus Hagrid: Robbie Coltrane
Professor Filius Flitwick: Warwick Davis
Vernon Dursley: Richard Griffiths
Professor Albus Dumbledore: Richard Harris
Lucius Malfoy: Jason Isaacs
Professor Severus Snape: Alan Rickman
Petunia Dursley: Fiona Shaw
Professor Minverva McConagall: Maggie Smith
Molly Weasley: Julie Walters

Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets (2002)

Unhappily existing at his Muggle family anxious to return to Hogwart’s, Harry Potter is visisted by a house elf who’s mission is to stop him attending this year at all costs. Despite the elf’s best efforts, Harry manages to get to school but he might wish he hadn’t as petrified animals and students and writing in blood on the walls warn of the re-opening of the legendary Chamber of Secrets and the unleashing of the horror within.

8/10

Significantly better than the first episode with vastly improved special effects, more interesting photography and lots of ideas and good moments. Kenneth Branagh steals the show as a superstar wizard, Jason Isaacs is good value as what will hopefully be a recurring character but the two male leads, Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint, provide the movies’ unshakable heart and soul.

This movie contains intense scary scenes, violence, strong unpleasant scenes

Classified PG by BBFC. Parental Guidance.

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Castlevania: Lords of Shadow (2010, PS3) – 8/10 fantasy action game review

Cast / crew
Director: Enric Álvarez
Writer (Story): Enric Álvarez
Writer (Story): Luis Miguel Quijada
Writer: Enric Álvarez
Writer: Dave Cox
Writer: Eddie Deighton
Writer: Jon Sloan
Technical Lead: Carlos Rodríguez
Technical Lead: Jose González
Game Programming Lead: Darío Halle
Lead Level Designer: Daniel Alcázar
Music Producer and Composer: Óscar Araujo
Patrick Stewart: Zobek
Natascha McElhone: Marie
Robert Carlyle: Gabriel
Jason Isaacs: Satan

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow (2010)

Gabriel Belmont, a Knight of the Brotherhood of Light, as sent to the Lake of Oblivion and begins an odyssey to defeat the Lords of Shadow, prevent the end of the world and resurrect his murdered wife.

8/10

It cannot be overstated how good this game looks; alongside the Batman: Arkham-games, this is probably the best-looking cross-platform game available on console. It’s technically lovely with lots of details and nice shadows and lighting but it’s also invariably spectacular and interesting and full of atmosphere (helped no end by Óscar Araujo’s lovely music). The combat is aiming for God of War and it does hit those heights, albeit not consistently. Gabriel’s whip feels a bit weedier than it should and, between endlessly blocking and dodging, you frequently don’t seem to have time to use any of the moves you’ve learned but, brilliantly, the game doesn’t need to offer XP to artificially boost your artifical skill. Castlevania: Lords of Shadow requires and educates you to genuinely boost your own genuine skill. It’s not as well done as the God of War games but, then, nothing is.

This game contains bad language and gory fantasy violence and nudity.

Classified 15 by BBFC. Suitable only for persons of 15 years and over.

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