Die Another Day, Bond, James Bond

Description: Do you really need one. Bad people try to destroy the world. Bond, James Bond, shaken, but not stirred, sleeps around, saves the world, there are gadgets. Things blow up.

Is there such a thing as meaty fluff?

I mean itís a Bond movie. The plot is the plot is the plot is the plot. Not a lot of the complex and yet, this was really good Bond. The action was fast paced. Bond was occasionally, ruffled. Okay, he spent 14 months in prison. He was very ruffled, but damn, still Bond.

Actually, this is one of the better of the recent offerings. The villain was fun. The action fast paced. Neet gizmos. Fencing. Power surfing. Twice. It was a total adrenaline rush. There were a couple really funny references to previous movies. Movies in which someone else was Bond. Cleese finally seems to be stepping into the Q role. Q for Quartermaster.

And yet, there were actually some nice emotional moments. 

And seriously, Halle Berry as Jinx, very cool. She is Bond, just you know, a Black American woman. And possibly her liver is in better shape.

Blast of a movie.


Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Description: Second movie made from the Harry Potter books. Harry and the gang return to Hogwort's for the second year and find more danger and intrigue await them.

I enjoyed all of the Harry Potter books, but the second one was the hardest for me to get into so I didn't re-read the book before going to see the movie. Since it's been a few years, I was surprised by some plot points (or at least when "oh yeah, I remember that now"). I liked it that way. The movie has a good pace and lots of fun action scenes without quite as much of the angst that the book had. 

At the beginning of the movie, Harry is suffering through another summer with his muggle relatives when he gets a visit from Dobey the house elf and a warning not to return to Hogwort's. We all know that'll be brushed aside and Harry is soon rescued by Ron and his brothers in their flying car. Very amusing. I would have liked to have seen more of the Weasley household, but the movie is already way over 2 hours so I can see why they left that out. 

Horrible things start happening to and around Harry. He and Ron miss the train to Hogwort's and their creative solution for getting to school almost gets them expelled. Once there, various students and others at the school are mysteriously petrified and suspicion soon falls on Harry when he displays a new and uncommon power. He pulls to together with his friends Ron and Harmione to solve the mystery and save the school. 

Again, those kids they found are perfect and provide their characters with a lot of heart. Kenneth Branaugh is hilarious as Gilderoy, the glory-hogging teacher of Defense against the Dark Arts. And Lucius Malfoy is convincingly menacing and icky. You'll hate him on sight.

Personally, I enjoyed this Potter chapter as much as the first and am eager to see the next one. If you like Harry Potter, you'll probably have already seen it so I'm not even going to bother recommending it to you die-hard fans. I will throw out this for people who don't think Harry Potter is for them: we took my grandfather with us to see the movie. He hadn't seen the first and never read the books. He's much more into WWII and cowboy movies, but he loved it. He was laughing and had a great time. So even if you don't generally like kids movies or fantasy, if you want some light-hearted fun with a portion of rousing action, go see Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

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