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Friday, 3 May, 2002, 09:22 GMT 10:22 UK
Potter DVD weaves more magic
The user, like Harry, must find The Philosopher's Stone
The Harry Potter DVD is highly interactive
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By Caroline Westbrook
BBC News Online

Lord Of The Rings might have captured all the critical acclaim and awards glory, but it is still not nearly as much fun as the first screen outing for the now infamous boy wizard.

Thanks to some near perfect casting, assured direction from Chris Columbus and awesome visuals that allow JK Rowling's original text to truly leap off the page, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone remains a spectacular accomplishment.

For those who still have not had a chance to see Harry's first year at Hogwarts School come to life, DVD provides the perfect opportunity to do so - and if you are a Potter-phile, you are not going to be disappointed either.

From Carry On to Harry On
Jim Dale provides the narration
This double disc boasts some truly original features, which actually allow the user to interactively immerse themselves in the goings-on at the magical academy, all at the touch of a remote control button.

The object of the DVD is to find the Philosopher's Stone and claim your reward - all of which involves taking part in a series of complicated interactive games.

The games either allow you to progress further along the disc or, should you make a wrong move, be sent right back to the main menus.

Finding the stone gives access to seven deleted scenes.

And there is lots of DVD fun to be had along the way, with highlights including cast interviews, character montages and a virtual tour of Hogwarts, narrated by Carry On star Jim Dale.


Although the director's commentary, by now a standard feature of most major DVD releases, is disappointingly absent, this still offers more than enough to keep both fans and DVD collectors enthralled.

And while it might be pitched at the younger viewer, it is still hugely enjoyable no matter how old you are.

One of the most inventive DVDs you are likely to see all year, this gives a bunch of standard extras a genuinely unique spin.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone is available on DVD in the UK on 11 May from Warner Brothers.

See also:

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Potter 'blew me away'
06 Nov 01 | Reviews
Magical Potter casts his spell
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Critics spellbound by Potter movie
03 May 02 | Reviews
Harry Potter DVD: Your views
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