This post contains spoilers for all the Harry Potter movies.
I’ll start by sharing what I like about these movies. Then I’ll share what I don’t like about these movies. I’ll end with my overall thoughts.
One of my absolute favorite things about the movies is the actors’ portrayal of the characters. I think they did an excellent job of bringing the characters to life. My favorite is definitely Alan Rickman’s portrayal of Snape. The costumes, sets, and special effects also really bring the story to life.
I love that the movies keep many of the original details and some of the original dialogue. Some movie adaptations throw out a bunch of details, but Harry Potter isn’t one of them. They’re not completely innocent, but they include a lot of miniscule details that could easily be overlooked.
The movies also made some improvements by skipping some of the boring stuff (like SPEW), fixing plot holes (although they also created new ones), increasing the tension and foreshadowing, and adding new scenes. I love the added Dumbledore’s Army meetings and the addition of Harry being able to sense Horcruxes.
There are some things I don’t like about the movies. They cut a lot of things I feel are important to the story. A lot of information is left out (like who the Marauders are). Some of the best scenes didn’t make it into the movies. I’m thinking of a particular scene with Harry, Ron, and Snape in The Chamber of Secrets. The movies don’t include Peeves. Neville plays a less significant role, particularly in the early movies. They cut the evacuation of Hogwarts at the end of The Deathly Hallows, Pt. 2. In that same movie, they cut Kreacher and the house elves.
There are some added things that create plot holes and confusion. The books have Polyjuice Potion inconsistencies, and the inconsistencies are even worse in the movies. There are random added scenes that add nothing to the storyline.
On a more technical level, Hagrid’s hut moves between the second and third movies, and the patronuses start out corporeal and shift into incorporeal later on.
Overall, I think the movies are a decent adaptation of the books. A lot of adaptations significantly change the story, but Harry Potter isn’t one of those. I think a lot of the problems with the movies stem from the early movies being filmed before the later books were published. The producers didn’t know about all the foreshadowing. I think the adaptations would have been better if all the books had been published before any filming was done. I realize that means a lot of the cast would be the wrong age, but it’s just an observation. Rowling could have just shared all the foreshadowing with the producers, and that would’ve solved the problem too.
What do you think of the movies? Do you think they’re decent adaptations of the books? Is there a scene from the books you really love that didn’t make it into the movie? Let me know in the comments down below.