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Movie Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone (2001)

Discussion in 'DLP & Chill' started by Jon, Jul 16, 2018.


I give it a rating of...

  1. Troll

  2. Dreadful

    0 vote(s)
  3. Poor

  4. Acceptable

  5. Exceeds Expectations

  6. Outstanding

  1. Arthellion

    Arthellion Lord of the Banned ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

    Apr 14, 2017
    Georgia, USA
    High Score:
    I'd trade all of Mckellen just to hear..

    "You! Shall not! Passhh!"
  2. Microwave

    Microwave Professor

    Oct 21, 2017
    I almost forgot how much I loved the end sequence song as a kid.

    I painstakingly pestered my parents to find me sheet music for it.
  3. cucio

    cucio Groundskeeper

    Aug 13, 2016
    High Score:
    Richard Harris was too good an actor for such a light entertainment movie.

    In CoS, in the scene when Harry meets Fawkes and Dumbledore ponders about how wonderful creatures phoenixes are, he shows more acting skill in his pinky finger that all the rest of the cast combined. It shocked me, because I was immersed in the farcical, mediocre acting of the rest of the crew, which is more or less what you expect from a fantasy blockbuster, and listening to Harris deliver that line felt like attending frigging Hamlet in Drury Lane. Goosebumps-exquisite, but it called your attention to how trite the rest of the movie was, acting-wise.

    I felt something similar watching Gemma Arterton's cliff scene in Prince of Persia, her final cry was of such genuine terror that it didn't belong in a movie like that.

    PS was a fine book and the movie was a decent adaptation. I wonder what would have happened if JKR would have gone on with HP as a series about lighthearted adventures of a group of kids in a magic school, instead of the awkward epic for teenagers it became. Her superb talent for wordbuilding and fancy gimmicks shines bright in PS and CoS, and the rest of the series doesn't really play to her strenghts.
  4. Jeram

    Jeram Elder of Zion ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

    Jun 27, 2006
    High Score:
    I think my only real issue is that the visual style is quite boring, I had hoped for a more interesting, unusual look at the magical world. Oh, and Harry's parents are like twenty years older than they should be in the mirror. And Harry's eyes are the wrong color. And the script began the trend of destroying Ron's character and the Weasleys in general, case in point, the Devil's Snare had Ron and Hermione saying the wrong lines. Baby Emma Watson really felt right to me, before they glammed her all up. Worst casting? Susan Bones by Chris Columbus' daughter.
  5. Skeletaure

    Skeletaure Magical Core Enthusiast ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter

    Mar 5, 2006
    United Kingdom
    High Score:
    Correct Susan Bones:

  6. Nazgoose

    Nazgoose The Honky-tonk ~ Prestige ~ DLP Supporter DLP Gold Supporter

    Mar 16, 2011
    High Score:
    Just got through my watching, and my main thought is that it does not slow down let alone stop. The only seen that didn't drive the plot forward was Harry's first night at Hogwarts, sitting against the window with Hedwig. Overall really enjoyed it, but I do feel like maybe they should've cut certain parts (dragon plotline for example) to give us more breathing room.

    Not sure where I fall on the Dumbledore casting. Richard Harris was wonderful, but Michael Gambon did a great job in the rest of them. I'll wait to say one way or the other until we finish our rewatches I think, because it's been far too long since I've seen most of them.
  7. DrSarcasm

    DrSarcasm Headmaster

    May 16, 2010
    I think Richard Harris could have been a good casting, and did an excellent job for his age (72), but he needed to be about a decade or so younger to really pull it off. Dumbledore in the books always felt old and wise, which Harris did pretty well, but also still physically robust. Like despite his age, he's still in his prime. In Chapter 26 of HBP he even goes swimming in pretty stormy waters:
    There's multiple examples of Dumbledore being pretty robust, such as having a quick and powerful stride in battle, or when he met Remus as a child and just sat cross-legged on the floor and played Gobstones with him. Richard Harris always had this fragile quality about him, a tremor in his voice being the most prominent. When everyone is clapping in one of the movies, he's just tapping two fingers on the back of his hand.

    It's kind of like the situation of the casting of Gandalf in the LotR movies. Christopher Lee loved Lord of the Rings. He was the only one of the cast who had ever met Tolkien, he read the books once a year, and playing Gandalf had always been his dream. But when they finally had the technology to make the movies the way they deserved, he was 78. He did all of his own stunts as Saruman (apart from walking up and down stairs), but the role of Gandalf needed someone able to do fighting and horse-back riding scenes, so they picked the 61-year old Ian McKellen. Incidentally, McKellen was considered as the replacement for Dumbledore after Harris died, but he turned it down out of respect for Harris because he had believed that McKellen was 'technically brilliant, but passionless.'

    As for the rest of the movie, I liked it for the most part. When it came out I was 10, so I absolutely loved it then. Looking back on it, it still holds up for the most part. The only complaints I really had about it were of the minor changes in personality that would escalate in later films (Ron) and that it was a bit too neat and clean. Like how the grounds were almost perfectly flat, instead of being hilly and mountainous. Or how every student perfectly wore their uniform neatly, while the PoA movie's director had the kid actors dress up perfectly then make themselves comfortable--hence, the untucked shirts and sweaters around the waist. The later movies may not have been mostly-perfect adaptations like the first two films, but they made the world feel more alive in little ways that couldn't be included in the books without unnecessarily padding the word count.

    One of my personal favorite examples of this is the spoon scene mentioned above from PoA. It's a little touch that brings some extra life into the world. Immediately after we see that guy, we see a busboy finish cleaning the table then make a gesture with his hand, causing the chairs to put themselves on the table. I have so many questions about these. Are they wandless magic spells? Or is it like how when Molly Weasley used the Summoning Charm with just 'Accio' but Harry needed to say 'Accio Firebolt,' with being older coming with less need to use spells or a wand for simple things? Are they enchanted items, or are they just items that have been around magic for so long that they've picked up their own little quirks? I've got to know!

    End Verdict: Exceed Expectations. A mostly faithful adaptation, but didn't go the extra mile to make the film world feel more alive.
  8. Anarchy

    Anarchy Half-Blood Prince DLP Supporter

    Dec 12, 2009
    I'm a little late in actually reviewing this, but better late than never.

    I've probably seen the movies 10+ times, and I'm a jaded fuck, so take that for what it's worth. I see the movies and the books as two separate entities, because you kind of have to. I'm not really going to harp on about exclusions or divergences or plotholes, as there are lists upon lists of comparisons available with a google search. But I can't help but point out some things that annoy me, though might not have necessarily annoyed my 12 year old self when I first saw this.

    Firstly, the actors and characters. The secondary characters really make the movie, and the whole series really. Hagrid was a great casting. Ollivander was perfect as well, and his one scene was great. Dumbledore has the perfect grandfatherly voice. Some of the actors did the role well, but were just too old imo. the 30 year old Snape being played by 55 year old Alan Rickman. He did it well, but it's still weird. Same with Maggie Smith and McGonagall. Not exactly a hot take, I know.

    Secondly, the pacing of the movie. Holy shit, it never stops. Scene after scene after scene, plotpoint into plotpoint into plotpoint. It's relentless. Fuck, cut the Norbert scene. Like, Norbert's introduced, and literally a minute later, its taken away. Set up, payoff, set up, payoff, over and over. Really jarring.

    I really don't want to point out plotholes, since there's a million and a half of them, with most of them probably not even noticeable if you have't read the books, but some of them are just lazy. Like, Hagrid picks up Harry at midnight on his birthday to go shopping at Diagon Alley... they leave right then and don't wait until the morning. And Harry seemingly goes straight from Diagon Alley to the Hogwart's Express. I would have appreciated the scene where Vernon laughs at the notion of platform 9 3/4 and leaves Harry there anyways.

    The sorting scene is another example of breakneck pacing. Also, why didn't they do it in alphabetically order? They start right off with Hermione, and then jump around to all the other characters with more than 1 line in the movie. Plus Susan Bones for some reason (director's daughter).

    Alright, so I don't think I'll be able to get through any of the movies without hating on Hermione. It's ridiculous how much she's been propped up. It's over the top in the books, but in the movies, it's even worse. Take the Troll scene for example. She's cowering under the sink. Yet despite that, she still manages to tell Ron to "swish and flick," as if he wouldn't have been able to do it without her. In the book, Ron just does the first spell that comes to mind while Hermione is scared shitless. And further on, Hermione just outright remembers who Nicholas Flamel is by herself, with no lead in. In the book, Harry recalls the Chocolate Frog card which has his name on it, which then prompts Hermione into getting the book she saw him in.

    Speaking of the troll scene... it's out of order. Harry get's his Nimbus 2000 before the troll scene. In fact, in the books, he actually has time to practice with it. In the movie, he pretty much gets the broom and immediately has a game. Also, in the book, the broom comes with a note that literally say, verbatim, "DO NOT OPEN THE PARCEL AT THE TABLE" and it took 6+1 owls to delivery it. Movie just has a single owl carrying this massive package with the three of them opening it right at the table, with McGonagall waving at them in the background. 12 year old me probably didn't give a shit about this at all, but the pacing is ridiculous. In the book, there's a great scene with Draco where he tells Ron something like "What would you know about that broom? You couldn't even afford half the handle!"

    I don't want to say lastly, because there's dozens of more things, but lastly, is the gauntlet at the end. In the movie, it's directly said that Snape is one of the teacher's protecting the stone. Well, where the fuck is his protections? Where is the potion riddle? I get that it probably doesn't make the best cinematic scene, but it's still odd. Was it a cut scene? Or are you telling me that Hermione got 50 points for know what Devil's Snare is (which in itself is another scene that powers Hermione up a bit compared to the book, but not by enough to really draw attention to it)

    All in all, it's still an enjoyable film. It feels magical enough. I can get through them, because like I said, I tread the movies and books as separate entities, so something like James Potter being a seeker in the movies doesn't really bother me that much, or the goddamn remembrall scene where there's 50 kids cheering him on as he catches the stupid thing. I'd give it an 7/10. I wish I had the perspective of someone who saw the movies without reading the books, but I don't. But, I would give the soundtrack a 10/10.