Critic Reviews



Based on 28 critic reviews provided by
The Hollywood Reporter
The endearingly enduring 1952 E.B. White novel about friendship and salvation, has been turned into a beautifully rendered motion picture that's full of warmth, wit and wonder.
Entertainment Weekly
What hooks you from the start is Dakota Fanning's unfussy passion as Fern.
May not be perfect, but it honors its source and captures the key elements -- the humor and good sense, as well as the sheer narrative exuberance -- that have made White’s book a classic.
Chicago Tribune
Now, about the spider. Julia Roberts voices Charlotte in a way that suggests ... not much, I'm afraid. She may be a genuine movie star and can be a good actress, but her voice -- and what she does with it -- never has been one of her strengths.
What results is, for a film purporting to reflect the nobility of a beloved book, the propensity to slip occasionally into the fart and belch slapstick that passes for humor in just about every present-day animated movie. It's a misstep that pulls us out of our awe for the carefully studied world the filmmakers have lovingly labored to create.
Village Voice
Still, with such stellar source material, this Charlotte's Web won't disgrace your childhood memories -- or your child.
Washington Post
Remember the peaceful atmosphere of bedtime storytelling? The kind that allows parent and child to take satisfaction in the story, not the teller? That's how "Charlotte" draws you into its web.
The A.V. Club
This take on Charlotte's Web has its tacky side, but when dealing with a book this simply sweet and this revered--and given what was done with White's similarly gentle "Stuart Little" only a few years ago--"It could have been worse" practically counts as high praise.
Nowhere to be found is any dramatic surprise, heightening of the pulse or genuine pulling of heartstrings. Gary Winick's direction consists of button pushing, and the mechanics are palpable at every step.
What Charlotte's Web has always had going for it, and what I imagine kids will always cling to (regardless of technological advances), is a sweet, simple, and timeless story about the power of friendship and the acceptance of loss, a story that's told faithfully here. And that ending is still a doozy.

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