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"HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER'S STONE"
(2001) (Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson) (PG)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Minor Mild Extreme *Heavy Mild
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild Mild Extreme None Minor
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
None Minor Moderate Mild Heavy


QUICK TAKE:
Adventure: An 11-year-old boy has various adventures as he spends a year at a boarding school for sorcerers after learning that he's a wizard.
PLOT:
Harry Potter (DANIEL RADCLIFFE) is an 11-year-old boy who's forced to live under the stairs in the home of his mean-spirited aunt and uncle, Vernon (RICHARD GRIFFITHS) and Petunia Dursley (FIONA SHAW) and their spoiled son, Dudley (HARRY MELLING). Told that his parents died in a car crash when he was an infant, Harry has never known the love of family, and is mistreated by his relatives who seem suspicious of him and his abilities.

In reality, Harry is a wizard who was placed in the home by Professor Dumbledore (RICHARD HARRIS) and Professor McGonagall (MAGGIE SMITH). They are two veteran wizards who run Hogwarts, a boarding school for sorcerers, and initially wanted to keep the boy away from the evil wizard Voldemort who killed his parents.

Now, however, the time has come for Harry to attend Hogwarts, so Rubeus Hagrid (ROBBIE COLTRANE), the school's giant groundskeeper, retrieves the boy, equips him with everything he'll need for his new education, and sends him off. En route to Hogwarts, Harry meets other new students including Ron Weasley (RUPERT GRINT) and Hermione Granger (EMMA WATSON), and the three quickly become fast friends.

Upon their arrival, the three meet other students, such as elitist Draco Malfoy (TOM FELTON), and learn the rules of the school as they're assigned to one of Hogwarts' four schools. As they attend various classes and activities taught by the likes of Professor Snape (ALAN RICKMAN), Professor Quirrell (IAN HART) and Madam Hooch (ZOň WANAMAKER) and meet the schools' various oddities such as the ghostly Nearly Headless Nick (JOHN CLEESE), the kids learn more about the school and how to perform magic.

While doing so, Harry and his friends become suspicious of some mysterious occurrences and behavior. That all leads up to them learning about the Sorcerer's Stone, a small rock with magical powers that can turn any metal into gold and creates the elixir of life that insures immortality. As the three dig deeper into the mystery, they must deal with various adventures and menacing figures, all while trying to get through their first year at Hogwarts.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
While some older teens might think they're too old for it, many younger kids will definitely want to see it, especially if they're fans of the novels.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG
For some scary moments and mild language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • To avoid giving away any late in the story surprises, certain characteristics for a few key players listed below have been left out.
  • DANIEL RADCLIFFE plays an 11-year-old who discovers that he's a wizard and happily leaves his mean-spirited relatives who were "raising" him. Generally good-natured, Harry breaks a few rules, but shows bravery in trying to help others and solve the school's mystery.
  • RUPERT GRINT plays another student who instantly bonds with Harry and Hermione and participates in their many adventures.
  • EMMA WATSON plays their somewhat bossy friend and new classmate at Hogwarts who's very smart and adventurous.
  • ROBBIE COLTRANE play the giant groundskeeper who is Harry's first contact concerning the world of magic and wizards, and usually finds himself giving out too much information to others.
  • RICHARD GRIFFITHS plays Harry's uncle who's mean and disrespectful to him, while FIONA SHAW plays Harry's aunt who's the same and HARRY MELLING plays Harry's spoiled and bratty cousin who's also mean and disrespectful to him.
  • RICHARD HARRIS plays Harry's mentor and the professor who runs Hogwarts.
  • IAN HART plays another professor at the school who stutters.
  • ALAN RICKMAN plays another professor and head of a rival house at Hogwarts who seems to have it out for Harry and acts menacingly toward him.
  • MAGGIE SMITH plays the stern headmistress/professor at the school.
  • ZOň WANAMAKER plays the school's teacher of broomstick flight.
  • TOM FELTON plays an elitist student who becomes Harry's rival.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a quick look at the content found in this PG-rated adventure film. Various scenes - often accompanied by ominous or suspenseful music - might be unsettling, suspenseful or downright frightening to kids. That all depends, however, on any given child's age, level of maturity and tolerance for such material that includes characters seeing and interacting with various menacing looking monsters, close calls with menacing characters, supernatural events and various locales that appear foreboding, dangerous or simply scary.

    Related to that is a moderate amount of violence where some of those monstrous creatures try attacking the kids, a brief flashback to Harry's mother being killed, as well as kids pushing or knocking others around (including some being knocked unconscious). Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, while some tense family moments include a boy growing up with his mean relatives and some talk of his parents being killed when he was very young.

    A tiny bit of profanity (minor expletives) is present as are some colorful phrases, while some of the violence has bloody results, we see a ghost's neck wound that's nearly severed his head sometime in the past, and some other "gooey" moments are present. Finally, as the film deals with kids using magic/sorcery, some kids may want to imitate that while parents may want to discuss that and other subject matter with their kids.

    Should you still be concerned about the film and its appropriateness for anyone in your home who wants to see it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed content listings for more specific information about what's present in and/or occurs during the film.

    For those concerned with bright flashes of light on the screen, some of that occurs in various scenes.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • We see some bottles and kegs of what could be ale of some sort in an alley.
  • We hear of a student trying to turn water into what sounded like rum.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Nearly Headless Nick tilts his nearly severed (but still ghostly) head to the side to show why he has that name. As he does so, we see the large (but ghostly) cut in his neck that has a somewhat meaty/gory look to it.
  • As Harry pulls his wand out of a huge troll's nose (after battling the creature to protect Hermione), we see that it's covered in all sorts of slimy mucus.
  • Harry briefly spots a slightly bloody cut/scrape on Prof. Snape's leg.
  • We see a small pool of unicorn blood (that's silver and metallic looking rather than red) and see some of it on Hagrid's fingertips after he touches it. We later see a little more of this blood on a dead/injured unicorn lying in the forest.
  • A large amount of slimy dog drool pours down onto Ron's shoulder.
  • After various close calls, Harry has a few bloody scrapes on his head, as well as some bloody cuts on his hands.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Harry's aunt and uncle obviously have both for making him live in a tiny room under the steps, otherwise treating him badly, threatening him, not telling him the truth about himself or his parents, and trying to prevent him from attending Hogwarts (including tearing up mail addressed to him). Their son, Dudley, also has both toward Harry and is a spoiled brat of a child (throwing a tantrum over receiving less birthday gifts (still in the 30s) this year compared to last year).
  • Viewers who don't approve of the notion/practice of magic may find many of the characters and most of the movie as having both types of attitudes.
  • Draco has both types of attitudes toward Harry and his friends, calling another student fat, etc.
  • Ron briefly makes disparaging remarks about Hermione saying it's no wonder she doesn't have any friends (which hurts her feelings).
  • Harry breaks the rules by sneaking into restricted area of the school with his friends, and later does the same into part of the library.
  • The character behind all of the evil magic and wrongdoings obviously has both types of bad attitudes.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • The following scenes/sequences (especially when accompanied by suspenseful music) and others listed under "Violence" may or may not be unsettling, suspenseful and/or scary to some kids, all depending on their age, level of maturity and tolerance for such material. That said, there's little doubt that some/much of the following may affect some kids and could be the stuff of which nightmares are formed.
  • Those squeamish about snakes - particularly large ones - might not like a scene featuring a python that eventually gets loose and makes its way through terrified zoo visitors on its way out (although it briefly talks to Harry and thanks him for letting him out via magic). This is after Dudley falls into the snake's exhibit area and briefly seems in danger.
  • A scene where scores of owls flood the Dursley home with tons of letters might be a little unsettling for some younger viewers.
  • We hear something pounding on a door during a thunderstorm at night, with the door eventually falling to the floor and we then see Hagrid enter the room (and put the door back up against the opening).
  • The sight of various goblins with their old age looks and sharp and pointy teeth might be unsettling and/or scary to some kids.
  • We see a brief flashback scene where Voldemort uses his wand to zap Harry's mother who screams and then falls to the floor (presumably dead).
  • Nearly Headless Nick tilts his nearly severed (but still ghostly) head to the side to show why he has that name. As he does so, we see the large (but ghostly) cut in his neck that has a somewhat meaty/gory look to it.
  • Harry and his two friends enter a forbidden and dark floor with a scary looking statue that's covered in dust and cobwebs. They get spooked and run down a hallway with torches above them becoming illuminated as they pass. Hermione then uses magic to open a door where they encounter a gargantuan, three-headed dog that spots and then comes after them. They barely get back out through the door as one of its heads snaps and bites at them just as they close the door.
  • After Prof. Quirrell rushes in and faints after announcing there's a monstrous troll in the dungeon, all of the students panic. Although they're ordered to return to their houses, Harry and Ron break off to retrieve Hermione who hasn't heard the news as she's been in the bathroom. We then see her come out and encounter the towering troll who then comes after her with his giant club. As she hides in the stalls, he smashes them with his club. Harry and Ron then throw things that hit the troll, but they don't break his resolve as he smashes a sink under which she's hiding. As the gigantic troll tries to hit Hermione again, Harry jumps on the creature's back (around its neck) and jams his wand up its nose. The troll then tries to shake off Harry, eventually holds him upside down by his feet, and then repeatedly tries to hit him with the club. Ron eventually uses magic to make the troll's club float in the air and then drop onto the creature's head, knocking him unconscious (with Harry just managing to get out of the way before it falls onto him).
  • Harry opens a book in the library and a screaming head suddenly pops up from the page (Harry quickly closes the book).
  • Harry hides from several people (under his cloak that makes him appear invisible) after sneaking into a restricted area of the library (that includes Prof. Snape sensing and reaching out toward him).
  • Hagrid takes Harry, Ron, Hermione and Draco into the foreboding Dark Forest at night (that they've been told is forbidden) as part of their detention, and an adult tells them that there are more than werewolves in there before they enter. Hagrid then splits up the group, taking Ron and Hermione with him, and sending Harry and Draco off by themselves to look for an injured unicorn.
  • As scary music plays, the latter two spot a cloaked figure feeding on a downed unicorn. As Draco runs off screaming, the cloaked figure slowly approaches Harry who tries to scramble backwards, but falls and finds himself cornered. A centaur then shows up and scares the figure away before it reaches Harry.
  • Harry and his friends return to the roof with the three-headed dog that's asleep from a spell of hearing music from a harp. They move its paw to get to the trap door it guards, but then realize that the music has stopped. What they don't realize is that the dog is now awake and hovering over them and the three just make it down through the trapdoor as the dog's heads menacingly lunge and snap at them.
  • The three then find themselves landing and then lying on huge mound of roots - called Devil's Snare -- that suddenly come alive and wrap around them, pulling them down inside the mound while squeezing them (they eventually get out no worse for the wear).
  • Harry tries to elude a bunch of flying keys (with wings) that chase after him and eventually embed themselves into a door just as he passes by it.
  • The three kids find themselves on a huge-scale chessboard where they're pieces in a game that includes the huge figures bashing and destroying the other animated stone figures when "taken" during the game. As many pieces are destroyed, Ron is thrown from one and knocked unconscious after a player slowly comes at him.
  • The sight of a man with another man's monstrous head directly on the back of his may be scary to some kids.
  • A character comes at Harry, driving him backwards against some steps where he tries to strangle the boy. Harry, however, grabs this man's hand, causing him pain (and we then see the hand apparently turn to stone and crumble away as the man screams). Harry then puts his hands on this man's face, turning it and then all of him to stone that then crumbles away.
  • A ghostly and monstrous apparition/spirit races toward and through Harry before flying away.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Shotgun: Aimed at Hagrid by Vernon and then fired after the giant bends the gun's barrel, sending a shot up through the ceiling.
  • Swords: Used by huge, animated and stone chess pieces to strike and destroy others that are captured/taken during the game.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Blow me" (nonsexual), "Freak," "Muggle" (a non-magical person), "Blimey," "Bogey" (booger), "Bloody (hell)" (adjective), "Fat lubbard," "Fat ass," "What an idiot," "Nasty little buggers" and "Pea brain."
  • It's possible some kids could be enticed to imitate casting spells, etc. as well as running at a column thinking they'll disappear into it just like Harry and others do.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • The sudden sound of a minor explosion might startle some viewers.
  • Harry opens a book in the library and a screaming head suddenly pops up from the page (Harry quickly closes the book).
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • An extreme amount of suspenseful, ominous and dramatically adventurous music plays during the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 1 ass, 1 damn, 1 hell, and 1 use each of "For God's sakes," "God" and "Good God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • None.
  • SMOKING
  • A few miscellaneous people smoke (pipes, etc.) in a store that Harry briefly visits.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Harry's aunt and uncle are mean and disrespectful to him and he doesn't remember anything about his parents whom he was told died in a car accident (but we learn that Voldemort killed them). He does, however, go up to a mirror that allows him to see his parents - appearing alive, healthy and happy -- with him in the reflection.
  • We also see a brief flashback of Harry's mother being killed (being zapped by a wand and falling to the floor).
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • How successful the film was in adapting the Potter story from novel to movie form.
  • The use of magic/sorcery in the film.
  • Stuttering - Prof. Quirrell stutters.
  • The various creatures - some of them mythological - seen in the film.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Dudley pushes Harry back under the stairs.
  • Excited about seeing a snake move, Dudley knocks Harry to the floor to get a closer look.
  • Harry's uncle grabs him by the hair and throws him back under the stairs.
  • Hagrid knocks down a door to get into the Dursleys' new home. Vernon then aims a shotgun at him, but Hagrid bends the barrel upwards. Vernon then tries firing it, but it shoots up and blows a hole through the ceiling.
  • As Harry tests some wands, he inadvertently causes some property damage in the wand shop (knocking things around, causing a vase to explode, etc.).
  • We see a brief flashback scene where Voldemort uses his wand to zap Harry's mother who screams and then falls to the floor (presumably dead).
  • There's a small explosion (that we don't see) as a student tries to perform some magic and we then see some soot/smoke on the boy's face. He later does the same (and the results are the same) as he tries to levitate a feather with his wand.
  • While trying to get a broomstick to fly up into his hand, Ron's accidentally hits him in the face. Meanwhile, another kid is out of control on his and flies all over the courtyard, eventually crashing a few times into a tower before finding himself hanging by his clothing from atop a tower. He slips from the clothing and falls down to another level where he's briefly caught before falling again to the ground rather hard (we hear that he has a broken wrist).
  • A towering troll comes after Hermione with his giant club. As she hides in some bathroom stalls, he smashes them with one swing of his club. Harry and Ron then throw things that hit the troll, but they don't break his resolve as he smashes a sink under which she's hiding. As the gigantic troll tries to hit Hermione again, Harry jumps on the creature's back (around its neck) and jams his wand up its nose. The troll then tries to shake off Harry, eventually holds him upside down by his feet, and then repeatedly tries to hit him with the club. Ron eventually uses magic to make the troll's club float in the air and then drop onto the creature's head, knocking him unconscious (with Harry just managing to get out of the way before it falls onto him).
  • During a Quidditch match (somewhat like rugby on flying broomsticks), various participants purposefully bump and smash into others at high speed. A goalie of sorts is hit during this and falls to the ground unconscious. Another player in knocked inside some sort of tower and comes out at the bottom unconscious.
  • Hermione causes the bottom of Prof. Snape's cape to catch on fire to distract and prevent him from appearing to cause Harry's broomstick to go out of control during the above match.
  • Ron makes a small chess piece pick up its chair and smash the opposing piece it's now captured.
  • A baby dragon inadvertently shoots out a little flame that catches part of Hagrid's beard on fire.
  • Hermione puts a spell on another boy, causing him to freeze like a board and fall backwards to the floor.
  • A large flock of flying keys embed themselves in a door just as Harry flies into an adjoining room.
  • The three kids find themselves on a huge-scale chessboard where they're pieces in a game that includes the huge figures bashing and destroying the other animated stone figures when "taken" during the game. As many pieces are destroyed, Ron is thrown from one and knocked unconscious.
  • A character comes at Harry, driving him backwards against some steps where he tries to strangle the boy. Harry, however, grabs this man's hand, causing him pain (and we then see the hand apparently turn to stone and crumble away as the man screams). Harry then puts his hands on this man's face, turning it and then all of him to stone that then crumbles away (killing him).



  • Reviewed November 11, 2001 / Posted November 16, 2001

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