We threw all self-respect in the bin today and went to see the new Harry Potter film. Actually, it wasn't half bad. The effects were pretty good, and the plot cracked along at a reasonable pace. It was quite a lot darker than the first film, and I thought it was probably a little scary for little kids (and adult arachnophobes). There were some great cameos, notably by Kenneth Branagh as Professor Lockhart - a charming, celebrity obsessed dandy - the Lawrence Llewellyn-Bowen of magic. However, the thing is riddled with every clichï¿½ in the book ("I'll get you Harry Potter!"), and just seems to lack a little passion and zest. Part of the problem might have been all the CGI - much of the time, the child actors were presumably acting against nothing, which isn't easy, even for experienced actors.
Still, it made for a reasonably fun and brain-free afternoon. We did have to suffer nearly half an hour of adverts and trailers. We'd almost forgotten what that was like, as we've been mostly going to The Phoenix where - get this - there are sometimes no adverts or trailers. At all. The worst offender was a trailer for a new animated film. We were treated to some very poor quality animation depicting some kind of space-pirate scenario. Then the words, "Robert Louis Stevenson's" came up. Uh oh. The voice-over continued, "The classic story as it's never been told before - Treasure Planet". Oh. My. God. I've blanked out who was responsible, but I'm guessing it might be Disney.