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Monday, 5 November, 2001, 18:58 GMT
Harry Potter: Craze or classic?
One of the most-eagerly awaited movies in years, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, has received its world première in London's Leicester Square

The film's released later this week worldwide, is widely expected to be among the most successful ever made.

JK Rowling, the author of the Potter books, said she was "happy and relieved" by how faithful the film is to her creation.

Have you seen the film or read the books - what do you think? Will children be reading them in years to come? Is Harry Potter the latest craze or major classic? HAVE YOUR SAY

Kids don't need to be 'led' to believe in magic and fantasy - it's intrinsic to childhood

Sarah C, UK
Classic? Maybe. Hyped? Yes, but even classics get that treatment when the film comes out. But dangerous? No, no, a thousand times no! Kids don't need to be 'led' to believe in magic and fantasy - it's intrinsic to childhood, unless do-gooders try to brainwash it out of them. You have to ask what these people's motives are, and Tolkien put it best - that the only people opposed to escape are jailers....
Sarah C, UK

It's too early to rate them as classics, yet. Only time will show. I do think that they are over-hyped, but if people like them, why not.
Peter, Finland

Harry Potter is far from a classic. It is probably a classic case of leading children to be obsessed with the spectacular and paranormal. Be warned that dabbling with things magical on this scale could bring a great judgement to the peoples of the world.
RJ Brown, UK

RJ Brown - riddikulus!
Anne, UK

RJ Brown is obviously one of the Dursley's
M Maclean, USA

Harry Potter can be used as a recruitment tool for the occult

James Ike, USA
They are definitely not classics when compared to Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis. The witch there was evil. Harry Potter can be used as a recruitment tool for the occult and parents and kids are duped by it.
James Ike, USA

To see a real, bona-fide classic, wait until December for the first instalment of "The Lord Of The Rings" - perhaps the Potter-mania will be set into sharp relief when compared to something of undoubted substance and quality.
Tim McNulty, Isle Of Man

November 5th. 2015. Harry who...?
Chris B, England

At least it has gotten children reading again

Akki, UK
Whether it is a classic or a craze doesn't really matter, but it is impossible to tell if it's a classic yet. In ten years time you could say yes but not now. At least it has gotten children reading again instead of watching the TV all the time
Akki, UK

I am not sure whether Harry Potter is a classic. As others have said only time will tell. However, it does seem that the whole Harry Potter phenomena has benefited from enormous media hype aimed at generating massive amounts of revenue from children. It will be interesting to see how Harry Potter stands up at the box office next month against Lord of the Rings, which is widely regarded as a timeless classic of appeal to all age groups.
R Watson, Manchester, UK

It's either a classic craze or a crazy classic.
TJ Cassidy, USA

I'm not pedantically qualified to give an expert critique. But, I do know it's made a lot of people happy, and it's been a marketing success. What more of a yardstick is needed?
Tom, Australia

The current commercially- fuelled enthusiasm for all things Potter is certainly a craze, but the hype is founded on something much more enduring

Alice Stainer, UK
The current commercially- fuelled enthusiasm for all things Potter is certainly a craze, but the hype is founded on something much more enduring. The label 'classic' is a dubious one because it is open to multiple interpretation, but the Potter ingredients fit my own definition: a meticulously realised 'other' (but curiously recognisable) world; intelligently observed characters between which there is complex and often touching interaction; and importantly, a reassuringly sound moral core, all delivered in well-executed prose. I find the same in the 'classics' of Ransome, Lewis and Tolkein I enjoyed as a child.
Alice Stainer, UK

"Classic" is a term that usually means something has held or increased its worth over a period of time. 100 years from now the answer will be self-evident.
Jane, USA

Of course Harry Potter's a craze but what a fun craze it is

Martin Law, UK
Of course Harry Potter's a craze but what a fun craze it is. Every now and again people need something to distract them from the current negative global events that they can do nothing about except worry. In a short time, just like Star Wars, ET and Pokemon, Harry will disappear and be taken over by something else. Only time will tell whether or not Harry will re-emerge as another Alice in Wonderland.
Martin Law, UK

I don't think HP's got the makings of a classic, but at least the stories are infinitely more enjoyable than the hugely over-rated Lord of the Rings and Narnia Chronicles. HP's also far preferable to much of the contemporary teen junk my 14 year old daughter and her friends read.
Alex Cutelli, UK

Enough with the Harry Potter already!

Paul, UK
Enough with the Harry Potter already! I've got it at home with my kids, I've got it on the radio, I've got it on the TV, I've got it in the newspapers. I have even got it at work. AArrgghhh is there no escape?
Paul, UK

JK Rowling will be remembered alongside JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis as one of the great children's authors of all time.
Guy Hammond, England

In 20 odd years time, sad 30-somethings will be sitting around at parties going "hey, do you remember Harry Potter?" in the same way sad 30-somethings now go on about The Clangers or Bagpuss.
Antony, UK

Harry Potter is something different, a fantasy land for children and adults. Good clean entertainment with nice humour. I think that it will have enduring appeal for many years to come.
Owen Jones, UK

R.J. Brown should remember that Harry Potter is a fictional character intended for children (though also enjoyed by adults!) and along with his adventures should be accepted as such. If you are worried about the supernatural, there are worse things in this world to be worried about and misinformed judgement is one of them!
Jim, UK

Harry Potter is the same old kids nonsense dressed up in new clothes - absence of parents, boarding school, fatness as the sin above all other - all of these can be found in Enid Blyton. Kids will be reading Harry Potter for years, just as they read Blyton, but that doesn't make it a classic. It's just good fun and escapism - which RJ Brown would realise if he were living in the same universe as most other people.
Karen Dixon, UK

Harry Potter is a fantastic piece of literature and will thrill both children and grown-ups for many years to come. RJ Brown, one of my favourite sayings is "paralysis by over-analysis". Just enjoy!
Charlotte Ives, UK

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Harry Potter: Classic or craze?



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