The soundtrack to Warner Brothers Pictures' HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS is a fairly run-of-the-mill offering from the great John Williams. In other words, it's better than most other soundtrack composers' best work. Like the classic scores from CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND or JAWS, the music here is rich and elegant, with heady doses of Williams's trademark charging string sections and thundering tympani.
While it often recalls the composer's work on RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK and ET: THE EXTRATERRESTRIAL, the HARRY POTTER score also occasionally sports a certain cartoonish stop-and-start quality seemingly influenced by Danny Elfman. This style may seem slightly out of character for Williams (who's known more for his grand, sweeping statements and heart-stopping climaxes), but the effect is totally appropriate for what is, after all, a movie about a teenage wizard who rides around on a broom in a coat and tie. HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS provides a perfect reminder of the excitement, intrigue and light-hearted spirit of both the film and J.K. Rowling's novels.