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Guest Movie Review: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Story: Finally, the last 2000 Oscar prize was collected this week (just shy of the time limit, I might add). If you can remember way back to last March the annual LOBO Oscar ballot contest was held. We had two winners with 12 right (out of 16) and two losers (big time) with 0 correct. One of the zero losers was my favorite police officer Matt. Since he has been so busy being one of New York's finest, he all too gladly handed over his prize to his wife, Carol. I happily agreed to see Harry Potter. (I have not read any of the books but wanted to get in on the movie hoopla ... and was not disappointed.) Carol's choice of complimentary beverage and snack were medium popcorn and Diet Coke (as was mine).

Harry Potter is orphaned as an infant and sent to live with his horrible muggle (non-magical) relatives. At the age of 11 he discovers he is a wizard and gets to go to HOGWARTS School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He meets all sorts of wizards and witches, and discovers a plot that has to do with HE WHO SHALL NOT BE NAMED, the evil wizard who killed Harry's parents.

Acting: How does one perform as a believable Wizard? Does one employ method acting? Who knows. But, after wrestling them from my 10 year old nephew, Jimmy, I read all of the Harry Potter books and thought the casting was impeccable. All the characters were exactly as I imagined. Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter was perfect. Rupert Grint as Ron and Emma Watson as Hermione were also right on the money. As was Richard Harris as Albus Dumbledore. Robbie Coltrane exceeded my expectations of Hagrid. So did Alan Rickman as Professor Snape. Maggie Smith was a wonderful Professor McGonagall.

Critters: A three headed dog named Fluffy, a recently hatched dinosaur named Norbert, one centaur, a dead unicorn, lots and lots of owls, a rat, and who can remember what else.

Food: Lots of food magically appears at different feasts in the Hogwarts dining hall. It all looked pretty good. (I was hungry.)

Visual Art: Old fashioned sort of English manor paintings where the people actually move. Sort of like the characters in the Haunted Mansion at Disney with frames around them.

Blatant Product Placement: none

Soundtrack: HUH?

Opening Titles: I was supposed to pay attention to those?

Theater Audience: We were in the secret balcony. There were 6 others there.

Quirky Meter: 0, as long as you actually believe in wizards and three headed dogs.

Squirm Scale: 2, I squirmed a little when Harry got his wand stuck in a troll's nose. Ew!

Predictability Level: if you read the book, 10; if you didn't, 7. It wasn't like there were any BIG surprises. It was faithful to the book. Some people complained about that. I didn't.

Tissue Usage: C'mon

Oscar Worthy: What do I know? The last movie I saw was Jaws.

Nit Picking: It was a little too long, but this is REAL nit picking. I was entranced the whole time.

Big Screen or Rental: Big Screen - you need to see Hagrid in all his 9 foot glory.

Length: 22 minutes over the 2 hour Lobo limit.