Here's an event movie that holds up to being an event. This filmed version of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, adapted from the wildly popular book by J.K. Rowling, stunningly brings to life Harry Potter's world of Hogwarts, the school for young witches and wizards. The greatest strength of the film comes from its faithfulness to the novel, and this new cinematic world is filled with all the details of Rowling's imagination, thanks to exuberant sets, elaborate costumes, clever makeup and visual effects, and a crème de la crème cast, including Maggie Smith, Richard Harris, Alan Rickman, and more. Especially fine is the interplay between Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) and his schoolmates Ron (Rupert Grint) and Hermione (Emma Watson), as well as his protector, the looming Hagrid (Robbie Coltrane). The second-half adventure--involving the titular sorcerer's stone--doesn't translate perfectly from page to screen, ultimately because of the film's fidelity to the novel; this is a case of making a movie for the book's fans, as opposed to a transcending film. Writer Steve Kloves and director Chris Columbus keep the spooks in check, making this a true family film, and with its resourceful hero wide-eyed and ready, one can't wait for Harry's return. Ages 8 and up. --Doug Thomas
In this enchanting film adaptation of J.K. Rowling's delightful bestseller, Harry Potter learns on his 11th birthday that he is the orphaned first son of two powerful wizards and possesses magical powers of his own. At Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry embarks on the adventure of a lifetime. He learns the high-flying sport Quidditch and plays a thrilling game with living chess pieces on his way to face a Dark Wizard bent on destroying him. For the most extraordinary adventure, see you on platform nine and three quarters!
Magical and lots of fun!
A few days ago, my VCR ate the VHS copy I had of this movie. I instantly bought another copy, (on DVD, thank God) because I love all of the Harry Potter series, and wanted a complete collection. This movie, based on the first book of a popular series, follows three adorable 11 year olds through their first year at a unique school for witches and wizards, in a land filled with magical creatures. It is sweet and inspiring, and quite a bit of fun for all ages. There are a few parts that may be a little bit scary for young children, although nothing to bad. If you haven't seen this movie, I suggest you see it right away!!
One of the things that makes owning the Harry Potter movies so much fun is going back and watching the early films after a brand new one comes out! Having not watched this for a long time it was a bit of a shock going from seeing Daniel Radcliffe in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (and those Equus promotional shots you cant avoid online no matter how hard you try, and trust me, I've tried.)
Also notable is Tom Felton, as the dastardly Draco Malfoy who's only crime at the time was being so cute I wished I could reach through the screen and pinch his chubby cheeks!
Unfortunately what is getting lost in all the Equus and Radcliffe nudity hoopla is the fact that this is one very talented young actor. Watching Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone is a nice reminder of the sweet young boy and his cohorts Hermione and Ron (Emma Watson, Rupert Grint) who first charmed us out of our cynicism six years ago, allowed us to believe in magic made even us adults wish for a Nimbus2000 so we could play quidditch ourselves!
Should my kids watch this movie?
When J.K. Rowling released these books and all the media were having a field day over Christians not wanting these in public school, my best friend wouldn't allow her kids to read the books or watch the movies.
I was working in a hair salon at the time and after a little shop the majority decided to read these books to see what the big deal was.
I feel the media actually helped the series "Harry Potter" and ended up getting a lot of Christians as well as others to read these books just to see for themselves.
Should kids read or watch the movie?
I am a mother of 3, whom my oldest and I made it a contest to see who could finish reading them first. She loves to read because of these books, and now reads anything she can get her hands. My 13 year old loves the movies as well as dad, who hate reading.
This series is no more than what they show on TV, or perhaps a cartoon in some ways. I do not feel that anyone would really think of themselves as a wizard who can conjour magic, fly, or conduct spells on others.
Special Features aren't all that special.
The second disc had very little to offer, and the only reason to get this two-disc version is to be a collector. I'm not a collector; I just love the films!
Now, the movie is great. It's the origin story of Harry Potter. It's a must-have for any Harry Potter fan. I mean, the sixth movie will be in theaters this summer, and I'm pretty sure you want to see the movies in order, so jump on the bandwagon and get all the Harry Potter movies on DVD!
My plan is to watch all of them in a marathon fashion before I see the sixth one. I have every one of them, and the only one not the two-disc version is Goblet of Fire. The only one I settled for standard full screen resolution on was Prisoner of Azkaban. I must say that widescreen is the only way to truly get your fix of Harry Potter.
Back to this DVD, the special features were terrible, and I found that I only liked the interview with the film's producer. There's no commentary, and the additional scenes really aren't all that great. That said, if you get the two-disc version, don't expect many additional scenes. I only got maybe ten minutes of entertainment from the second disc. Beyond that, the rest of the bonus features were just plain aggravating.