User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 520 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 42 out of 520
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  1. PaulaW.
    Dec 30, 2001
    2
    A great disappointment to Potter fans over age 12. What makes the books great, beyond the adventure and fantasy setting, is the emotional truth in each character; J.K. Rowling clearly knows a lot about the slings and arrows of pre-adolescence. Granted, 300 busy pages will always be hard to squeeze into a feature-length film, but the unfortunately-chosen Chris Columbus (Home Alone, Mrs. A great disappointment to Potter fans over age 12. What makes the books great, beyond the adventure and fantasy setting, is the emotional truth in each character; J.K. Rowling clearly knows a lot about the slings and arrows of pre-adolescence. Granted, 300 busy pages will always be hard to squeeze into a feature-length film, but the unfortunately-chosen Chris Columbus (Home Alone, Mrs. Doubtfire) forgoes character development, and for that matter any sense of true magic, in favor of extended hijinks a la Home Alone. Too much time is spent on actiony set pieces like a fight with a troll in a bathroom, the Quidditch game, and the final showdown, and on shots of cute kids gaping in wonder at magical stunts. You might think of this literal-minded adaptation as no more than an illustrated companion to the book, but sadly, it doesn't even look good. The aesthetic owes a lot to mid-sixties Disney, or maybe Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. The animated effects don't come close to justifying the reported $150 million budget. This is fine as a run-of-the-mill kiddy flick, but it's a tragic waste of a great book. There is no need to see this is in the theater. I would argue that there's no need to see it at all. Expand
  2. AdamE.
    Nov 27, 2002
    2
    A film that really doesn't all the success it has had. It is very boring and even the sp.effects seem pointless.
  3. RobertH.
    Jan 13, 2002
    1
    Terribly slow moving boring movie. It was so bad that I walked out in the middle as I could not take any more. It is simply amazing what good marketing can do. Pet Rock anyone?
  4. AppleH.
    Apr 20, 2002
    2
    Terrible flick. Would have given it a 0 but I walked out in the middle so I penalized myself. Is it any wonder AOL stock is now practically worthless?
  5. SeanL.
    Apr 24, 2003
    0
    See the 2nd one.
  6. Amoviecritic
    Apr 9, 2003
    0
    Completely fails when compared to Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. See that instead. That makes this slow, badly paced movie seem like a complete 0.....it's not a bad movie....but horrible when compared to the 2nd one.
  7. JohnM.
    Dec 30, 2001
    1
    It is so upsetting (and irritating) to watch a movie die in front of your very eyes. Harry Potter begins well enough, nicely portraying the cruel family that Harry grew up with, yet the film develops into such a disaster that even saying it was dismal is to give it some credit. The film relied on amateurish special effects that persistently failed to invoke the magic of the book. Then It is so upsetting (and irritating) to watch a movie die in front of your very eyes. Harry Potter begins well enough, nicely portraying the cruel family that Harry grew up with, yet the film develops into such a disaster that even saying it was dismal is to give it some credit. The film relied on amateurish special effects that persistently failed to invoke the magic of the book. Then when the effects failed to hold my attention, I tried to focus on the story, which was greatly hindered by terribly annoying acting and choppy screenplay. There was indeed almost nothing to enjoy by the time the film was over. Aside from "Thirteen Ghosts," which sets the standards for movie lows, Harry Potter is the WORST film of the year. Grade: D- Expand
  8. SaiK.
    Oct 22, 2002
    3
    The movie is boring. It is lifeless. There is no continuity. Although the settings are great, The movie failed to reflect the deeper aspects of harry potter. It is as if The movie is only intended to show of hogwarts in a highly colorful perspective. I would expect a better job on the next one.
  9. Carol-AnnC.
    Feb 23, 2002
    0
    Boring overhyped movie that I walked out on 2/3rds through this garbage. Don't waste your money!
  10. RobertM.
    Apr 28, 2003
    3
    This movie features come cool scenes, but overall, just lacked imagination. See the 2nd one.
  11. Amoviecritic
    Jun 22, 2003
    0
    In the United States, the term Philosopher is not really a term that young people use often. They don't really know much about it. Sorcerer, however, is a word most younger readers have heard a lot, so they changed it to that.
  12. FrankL.
    Nov 16, 2001
    2
    Hasn't this been done before?
  13. MarcB.
    Nov 21, 2001
    3
    Nice special effects, cute for kids, over rated. I think every movie should open to 5,000 screens...They would all have bragging rights! If they make the remaining books to flix, I guarantee the revenues will all be lower. It's also nice to have a zillion dollars in advertising.
  14. RobertoL.
    Mar 16, 2002
    0
    So slow, so boring that watching paint dry is more appealing. Don't bother to let me know when the sequel is out!
  15. HeathB.
    Apr 9, 2002
    3
    Though I prefered the zoo scene in the movie better than the book, I just wasn't overly impressed with the movie. Most of the film I got an image of a fat guy with thick glasses sitting at a keyboard saying "Look what I can do with a computer." More story, less special effects would have made this a better movie.
  16. WalterB.
    Jan 2, 2003
    2
    The book may be nice to read. I can say I can include this movie among the worsts I've ever seen.
  17. PeterM.
    Mar 6, 2005
    2
    Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Daniel Radcliffe were all appalling in this film, they were unconvincing and awful to watch. If you looked at their résumés you would never believe they were actors.
  18. JohnD.
    Jul 12, 2007
    3
    The story was kind of fun, but the kids couldn't act and many scenes dragged on and on and on...
  19. Jun 20, 2012
    0
    Harry Potter the movie was great! Yes the book was better, but isn't that always the way when there is a novel to film adaptation? There was magic, friendships and basically evil magicians going around wanting to win the world and kill specific people. Great movie and fun for the kids and a good family viewing movie.
  20. Jan 3, 2013
    3
    I saw this at a friend's house along with the second Harry Potter movie after it was released on video. This movie just bored me to death. I don't see what all the hype is about. Maybe you had to read the book, my friends who have read the book tell me that the book is way better than the movie. Rating it as a bad movie since it was so boring I only remember two parts, the beginning andI saw this at a friend's house along with the second Harry Potter movie after it was released on video. This movie just bored me to death. I don't see what all the hype is about. Maybe you had to read the book, my friends who have read the book tell me that the book is way better than the movie. Rating it as a bad movie since it was so boring I only remember two parts, the beginning and the end and neither or those were that exciting either. I thought the ending was stupid actually. After seeing the first two movies, I have never bothered seeing any others since I was so bored by the first two. Expand
  21. RobertA.
    May 30, 2004
    4
    Yeah. this was a good film but it leaves an empty feeling inside of me.
  22. KalllL.
    May 21, 2003
    4
    OK GUYS! The reason they changed the title to Sorceror's Stone was to attract more attention. Not too many people know what a philosopher is.
  23. Jul 24, 2013
    4
    Tiene un buen contenido de algo que se desviaba a la brujeria cursi pero la pelicula es realmente es relmente aburrida y con nombres raros desde el principio
Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. 50
    Potter-philes are sure to get what they want -- if what they want is, in fact, an exacting version of J.K. Rowling's charming children's fantasy. If it's enchantment they are after, that's quite another matter.
  2. If the movie doesn't ultimately transport us to places The Wizard of Oz once took us, that may be partly because "The Sorcerer's Stone" is just the first chapter, with more magic waiting to be parceled out in the coming years.
  3. That sense of déjà vu is at once this Harry Potter's balm and its limitation: many charms, but few surprises.