Movie » CoS DVD Review » Disc 2: Special Features
By Joe, Reporter - April 11, 2003
Everything on the DVD is, as before, accompanied by a pleasantly rich narration. An animated portrait of Filch has also, for some reason made it onto your desk, which gives the otherwise static menu some character.
Spell Caster Challenge:
Clicking on the wand will bring up the "Spellcaster Challenge" which is a contradiction in terms, seeing as it's probably the least challenging thing on the disc. It's a film trivia test, whereby you are played footage from the film where spells are cast. The film pauses just before the spell takes effect, and you have to 'guess' what the result will be. Simple but well presented. The easily amused may squeeze some enjoyment from it.
The Chamber Challenge:
Despite not having to laboriously drag through them to access treasured deleted scenes, The Chamber of Secrets DVD isn't devoid of irritating games. This is one of them, whereby you're taken through some nicely animated Hogwarts halls to Moaning Myrtle's Bathroom and into a tour of The Chamber of Secrets Itself. You have to go through a series of three simple film trivia puzzles to get there. Not one for the adults, but younger children will no doubt find fun in it.
The Forbidden Forest Challenge:
They were telling you the annoyance was gone. They lied. This is a shadow of the wasted hours from the previous DVD. In this game, you have to use your remote control arrows at predefined points to apparently navigate through the Forbidden Forest. Whilst this is very well animated, and certainly a thrill ride for the first minute or so, after the first fifty times you die the novelty will wear off. You'll be frenzically driven through seemingly endless miles of creepy Forbidden Forest scenery in the Flying Ford Anglia, with passing tribes of giant spiders with luminous eyes. Your journey is ultimately fruitless however, other than reward of getting back to the menu after the drawn out process of conquering the "game". There's far too much of it, there doesn't seem to be any strategy involved, and it's increasingly dizzying and annoying. Avoid.
Nothing exciting here either. You click on various pictures from three drawers in Colin's Dark Room, and are promised an animated montage at the end. Don't be deceived, it simply puts your selected still images in sequence and regurgitates them. Again, avoid.
Tour Diagon Alley:
An extensive guided tour of Diagon Alley populated by a rich myriad of wizarding shoppers. Certainly worth a watch, if only to see that almost every window on Diagon Alley actually has a fully dressed shop behind it! The ubiquitous narrator has plenty of dialogue to keep you informed as you explore.
J.K. Rowling and Steve Kloves Interview:
This is probably one of my favorite things on the DVD. CBBC's resident Potterite, Lizo Mzimba, predictably asks some thoroughly basic questions, so don't expect any revelations, but it's nice to see how well Rowling and screenscribe Kloves get along. They ad lib admirably and manage to flesh out a decent interview.
A guided tour of Dumbledore's office, which reveals two new areas attached to the office; a small sitting room, and observatory fitted with an impressive and elaborate telescope. More than anything it's an example of how much detail production designer Stuart Craig and his team put into their sets- something you don't necessarily grasp the full effect of in the film. Additionally, you can choose to play the "Build A Scene" feature, which is essentially a production design documentary. It's quite comprehensive, and fairly insightful into the filmmaking process, so this is more one for the film buffs than the casual viewer. Definitely worth a watch though.
Professors and More
The actors comment briefly on their characters and their on-set experiences:
Kenneth Branagh (Gilderoy Lockhart) Kenneth Branagh is the anti-Gildeory Lockhart! Of Lockhart's character he has some maternal wisdom; "If you've been to the moon, he's been there twice."
Jason Isaacs (Lucius Malfoy) Always worthy of attention, Jason Isaacs comments on his hair and his misconceptions about his on-screen son, Tom Felton.
Professor Sprout (Miriam Morgoyles) Who quite simply put, IS Professor Sprout!
Molly Weasley (Julie Walters) The wonderfully enthusiastic Julie Walters comments on the Weasley House.
Arthur Weasley (Mark Williams) The pleasantly humble and well-humored ex-"Fast Show" star offers his thoughts on filmmaking and the highlights of working with Dan and Rupert.
Albus Dumbledore (Richard Harris) The sadly deceased acting legend comments on the relaxed atmosphere on set.
Robbie Coltrane (Rubeus Hagrid) The always charming Robbie Coltrane, clad in full demi-giant garb, comments on the embarrassment of being 18ft tall.
Professor Severus Snape (Alan Rickman) The ever-sublime Alan Rickman praises the achievement of the set craftspeople.
Uncle Vernon (Richard Griffiths) The actor comments on Daniel Radcliffe's apparent maturing professionalism.
Aunt Petunia (Fiona Shaw) The veteran actress comments on the nature of the Dursleys.
Professor Minerva McGonagall (Dame Maggie Smith) The thespian comments on her character, and the novelty of being a witch.
Clicking on the fireplace will launch you into the floo network and deposit you in the circular Additional Scenes Room, where you can access any one of 19 scenes cut from the theatrical version of the film.
1. A fairly redundant extension of the pudding scene at the beginning of the film, interspersed with some new footage. It's a little awkward and forced, but the final shot of the splattered pudding on Mrs. Mason is priceless. 1/5
2. A short, but nonetheless fun scene featuring the flying Ford Anglia taking off from Kings Cross, much to the confusion of a Muggle taxi driver. 2.5/5
3. The full Borgin and Burkes scene, featuring a deliciously greasy Mr Borgin. It loses its thread here and there, but Lucius bullies Draco a bit and it's generally well put together. 2/5
4. A short scene where Harry picks up Filch's Kiwkspell letter and returns it to him. Useful only for simple exposition, but it introduces the fact that Filch is a squib which would have added a new layer to his character had it been included in the theatrical release. Dan's nails need a trim... 1/5
5. A completely superflous scene where Mr Borgin catches Harry leaving his shop. 0/5
6. A great scene introducing Colin Creevey. Hugh Mitchell is perfect as Colin, and the last line is a classic. 4/5
7. Funny scene featuring Lockhart's egotistical quiz and subsequent marking. Some great Gilderoy moments. 3.5/5
8. Extension of the dueling scene that establishes that Justin Finch Fletchley is Muggle-born, hence why greater suspicion arose in the parseltonuge incident. Pure exposition but worth a watch. 3/5
9. Scene featuring Harry worrying some more about his parseltongue incident. Set outside in the "snow" with an abundance of polysterene balls. Fred and George fans watch out for the "seriously evil wizard" line which makes a slightly inapt appearance. Marks lost for annoyance factor. 0/5
10. Harry bumps into a dead-rooster wielding Hagrid who explains how the birds have been being killed. 1/5
11. This scene is best, if only, for a nice panoramic view of Hogwarts and the lake. This is the view that was somewhat deceptively on early trailers for the film, but didn't make the final cut. It features Harry, apparently having flown out over the lake, reflecting on his ancestry yet againwith Hedwig at his side. 0/5
12. A fairly well executed scene extending on the 'Homework Room' scene featuring Harry secretly listening in on two Hufflepuffs discussing their suspicions about him after the Dueling Club incident. It gives more substance to the abridged scene that appeared in the film, but is still at a little loss. 3.5/5
13. A short and forgettable extension to the Quidditch scene where Harry, pursued by the rogue bludger, is forced through a crowd of Slytherins in the stands. 2/10
14. A very short and unnecessary piece of exposition in the Forbidden Forest that sets up Harry and Ron's rescue from the spiders. Harry and Ron discover the Flying Ford Anglia turned wild, but Harry turns ranger and drags Ron back towards the trial to Aragog's lair. 3.5/5
15. Another purely explanatory scene where Harry and Ron sit at Hermione's bedside after she's been completely de-furred from her unfortunate polyjuice potion incident. The trio discuss the diary and Tom Riddle until Harry conveniently realises there's no writing in it. Harry then proceeds to the Gryffindor common room to investigate the diary alone where he is thoroughly rude to a completely harmless ghost. 3.5/5
16. A hilarious little gem where the recovered Crabbe and Goyle bump into a semi-transformed Harry and Ron. 4/5
17. A small superfluous scene where, after having been in Tom Riddle's diary, Harry awakens Ron (much like in the first film) to inform him what he has learned. Couldn't that have waited until tomorrow?! It's not as if it's the end of Hogwarts or anything... 0/5
19. An intermediate scene that fills in the gaps between Crabbe and Goyle's instant slumber and the drinking of the Polyjuice Potion. We see Harry and Ron drag Crabbe and Goyle into a broom cupboard, and then return to Moaning Myrtle's Bathroom where Hermione informs them she has obtained Slytherin robes from the laundry, something which should anull the fears of those who concluded Harry and Ron must have stripped Crabbe and Goyle to obtain their Slytherin attire. Here we see a more convincing performance from Emma Watson as Hermione which would have added some much needed colour to her part in the theatrical version. 4/5
20. A terribly short last scene rounds off the quotient of deleted material. Harry pulls out his trunk, removes his invisibility cloak and he and Ron put it on. I can't think why they even filmed this let alone include it on the DVD. 0/5
While Joe shared his dislike for the deleted scenes, I can only add that overall, the second disc of this DVD was much, much better than the last one's. Although, I was surprised there wasn't an interview with the movie's own director, Chris Columbus. -Jasen
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