Spellbound (2002) - Rotten Tomatoes

Spellbound (2002)



Critic Consensus: A suspenseful, gripping documentary that features an engaging cross section of American children.

Movie Info

Eight kids of wildly disparate ethnic, class, and regional backgrounds are followed from their individual hometowns to Washington D.C. for the National Spelling Bee Finals.


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Critic Reviews for Spellbound

All Critics (139) | Top Critics (33)

Spellbound is not a great piece of filmmaking, but it is more entertaining than you might expect from a story whose heroes are all brainiacs.

July 16, 2003 | Rating: 3/5

Spellbound finds its thrills with nary a chase scene nor a quick cut; it's a simple and utterly gripping story about kids, words and a microphone.

June 27, 2003 | Rating: 3.5/4

When a child stands at the microphone and frantically writes invisible letters on her hand, we can't help but love each and every one of these people.

June 13, 2003 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

A genuinely charming and often funny documentary about the high-pressured world of competitive spelling.

June 13, 2003 | Rating: B

Whatever else it may be, this is also a film about being young, hopeful and focused.

June 6, 2003 | Rating: 4/5

An unpretentious classic of the form.

June 6, 2003 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Spellbound


im glad i only won the school spelling bee and not the regionals because i would probably be one of the hopeless nerds on this dvd

Coxxie Mild Sauce
Coxxie Mild Sauce

Super Reviewer

The hardships and stifes of the American Spelling Bee contestant are exemplified in this grueling documentary chronicling the climb and competitive drive of some of America's most intelligent and note worthy spellers ever.

Spencer S.
Spencer S.

Super Reviewer

A good watch. Most of the kids involved are fun to learn about except for the one who talks a hundred miles an hour and has to be one of the most annoying kids in the world. Well made and really gets you into the hype.

Jason Spencer
Jason Spencer

Super Reviewer

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