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Harry Potter: Book vs. Movie
Transcript of Harry Potter: Book vs. Movie
Speaker: Third Person limited POV Harry Potter
Audience: People who enjoy fantasy novels, but is aimed primarily at adolescents and children
Purpose: To entertain the audience while delivering inspiring messages that promote bravery, friendship, and strength in the face of adversity
Major Themes: Growing up, the power of love, the importance of loyalty and friendship
The tone of the movie is somewhat darker than the book. The book could get somewhat dark at times, but the movie's tone is much darker. For example, the cover of the novel is bright and appealing to children, while the movie was marketed in a way that made the plot seem incredibly dark and dangerous. The imagery within the film, such as the lighting, music, and effects also contributed to this effect. Overall, the film is much darker visually and was marketed as being more edgy than its predecessors.
The pace of the book is incredibly slow compared to the pace of the movie. The book is 734 pages long, and often describes events in excruciating detail. Since the average movie is only about an hour and a half to 2 hours long, the filmakers clearly couldn't fit everything into that time frame. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is 2 hours and 37 minutes long, which is fairly long by movie standards, but it covers important plot points fairly quickly in contrast to the slow pace of the novel. The director, screenwriters, and producers had to find a way to fit all the important plot points into a reasonable time frame so they had to skim over some minor details that the book delved into at length. Some parts of the book are evn omitted entirely. Several chapters, two through five to be exact, were actually not present in the movie. Minor subplots were also excluded. The movie still flowed well without these chapters and details, and some might even say that it made the film more palatable because they wouldn't have to endure inane plot points that are present in the book, such as the budding romance between the half-giants Hagrid and Madame Maxime.
As stated before, the movie cut many minor subplots out of the book in order to attain a reasonable length. The film is aimed primarily at adolescents and children, so an insanely long runtime is counter productive because children tend to get antsy if they sit down for too long. They had to make the length palatable for that age group. Not only did they omit events entirely, they also made minor changes to the flow of events in the movie. The vision Harry has is present in both the film and the movie, but in the novel it occurs at the Dursley's, while in the film it occurs at the Weasley's house. The movie also skims over how Harry got to the Weasley's, a journey which has several chapters dedicated to it in the novel. Also, several characters that make appearances in the novel do not appear in the movie. Here are a few of those characters: Winky, Ludo Bagman, Dobby, Lavender Brown, Charlie Weasley, Bill Weasley etc.
Characters that Do Not Appear in the Movie:
Hogwarts Kitchen Houselves
Theme- both the book and the film carry the same message that love and bravery can help overcome adversity and evil.
Pathos- Emotional appeals are used in both the book and the film to convey the author's position that the love is a powerful force. Voldemort is resurrected using Harry's blood specifically because when Harry's mother sacrificed her life for Harry's, her sacrifice magically protected Harry from Voldemort. Only by having the same blood running through his veins coudl Voldemort even bear to touch Harry. This powerful plot point further emphasizes the importance the author places on love.
Observe the theatrical trailer above. The major themes of the film remain the same (growing up, friendship, bravery, etc), but the imagery and tone of the film is incredibly dark. The color scheme is especially indicative of this difference.
Here is a clear example of the stark difference between the source material and the film. In the film, Dumbledore freaks out and shouts at Harry while questioning him, while in the novel he is calm. This is also a clear example of the differences in pacing. It takes nearly 300 pages for Rowling to reach the beginning of the Triwizard Tournament, while in the movie it is reached in about 30 minutes.
"Did you put your name in the Goblet of Fire, Harry?" he [Dumbledore] asked calmly.
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, page 276
Other events cut out or changed to create faster pacing:
In the book the Beauxbatons and Durmstrang students arrive on the first day of school instead of later on in October
In the film, Harry, Hermione, and Ron don't visit Sirius in Hogsmeade
Barty Crouch Jr. frames his house elf Winky for casting the dark mark in the book, while in the film he blatantly casts the mark himself without any scapegoats
Harry training for the First Task
Visiting the house elves in the kitchen
Hermione setting up SPEW (Society for the Promotion of Elvish Welfare) to help get the house elves out of servitude
Weasley's Wizard Wheezes testing
Ludo Bagman in debt to the goblins
All the obstacles in the maze
The weighing of the wands
Rita Skeeter smear campaign against Harry and Hermione
Family visit before the Third Task
Hagrid exposed as half-giant
Disappearance of Bertha Jorkins
Confiscation of the Marauders Map
Harry giving his winnings to Fred and George
"I could not touch the boy... [h]is mother left upon him the traces of her sacrifice... This is old magic."
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, pages 652-653
"The house of Godric Gryffindor has commanded the respect of the wizarding world for nearly ten centuries. I will not have you, in one night, besmirching that name by behaving like a babbling, bumbling band of baboons! Now to dance is to let the body breathe, inside every girl a secret swan slumbers longing to burst forth and take flight. Inside every boy a lordly lion prepared to prance."
- Prof. McGonagall
Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans
Padama and Parvati Patil
Alliteration is used in both the film and book in order to enhance the magical whimsicality of the wizarding world. Alliteration also makes phrase and names easier to remember, since it's catchy.
The reason the differences exist is because of the contrainsts on the effects the movie is able to produce, the time limit the film has, and the director's attempts to appeal to a wider audience.
The similarities exist because the filmmakers didn't want to alienate Harry Potter fans, and because they had to adhere to the basic plot and themes to for the film to make any sort of sense.
AP English Period 5