A major reason why the books are better than the movies is because the books give the reader so much more detail to help them understand, and the movies don’t. Along with that, the movies leave out major events and characters. As a big Harry Potter fan, it makes me wonder how they can do that because the viewers aren’t really getting the full story.
Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone, the first book and movie of the series. There are quite a few differences in them and if you have read the book, you will have noticed them too while watching the movie and thinking, “Wow it didn’t happen that way in the book” or “They left that part out?” For example, in the movie, Hagrid (friendly giant and teacher at Hogwarts) tells Harry that he is a wizard and they go to Diagon Alley to get all of Harry’s school supplies. Right after that, Harry is taken right to the train station to go to Hogwarts. As for the books, Harry goes to Diagon Alley and then goes back to his aunt and uncle’s house, the Dursleys, who are terrible to Harry. This is a big deal because if reading the book, you learn a lot more about the Dursleys with how uptight and judgmental they are. Also, the reader see’s more of the bad ways they treat Harry rather than just the first 15 minutes of the movie. Another difference is what happens with Norbert, Hagrid’s baby dragon which is illegal to have. In the movie, Harry, Hermione, and Ron (Harry’s best friends) go down to Hagrids cabin and see the egg hatch, but ending up getting in trouble because Malfoy (Harry’s enemy) saw them out of bed and told on them. It just ends up being said that Norbert was taken away to live in a colony. The book has Harry and Hermione taking Norbert to Charlie, Ron’s brother, because he works with dragons and he was going to take him away so Hagrid wouldn’t get into trouble. The whole event ended differently, because Harry, Hermoine, Neville, and Malfoy ALL got detention for being found out of bed; Ron wasn’t even involved. The final and biggest major difference are the last final “scenes” or “chapters.” Harry, Hermione, and Ron all go down the trap door to find and fight Snape, who didn’t even end up being the villain. It ended up being another Professor, Professor Quirrell and Voldemort was there with him, but in the same body. The major differences are the events that took place before finding Quirrell. In the movie, the three of them only had to get past 3 obstacles: The Devil’s Snare, flying keys, and the live chess board. As for the book, they had to get past 5: The Devils Snare, a troll, flying keys, live chessboard, and potions, one that had to get them past the fire blocking their path. This is major because it takes more of their skill and effort, and the reader see’s more of Hermione’s brilliance. The movie leaves out a major character in this book, and for the remainder of the series; Peeves the Poltergeist, a ghost who causes a lot of trouble and plays a lot of jokes on the students at Hogwarts. It’s a disappointment that he was left out of the storyline of the movies.
There is really only one difference in the second book and movie, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets that I find to be important. Obviously there are many differences, just not too big a deal. Pretty much, Dobby the House Elf is a lot more important in the book than they make him look in the movie. He is in more scenes and on more than one occasion almost got Harry in trouble or injured while trying to protect him. On the other hand, whether you’re reading the book or watching the movie, you’re still going to fall in love with Dobby.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (third book and movie) has more than one difference yet one is one of the most important differences in the whole series. The first difference is when they leave out Hermione’s cat, Crookshanks, in the movie, that she buys in the book. It’s questionable why the writers of the movie would do that because Crookshanks ends up being a pretty important character. He works and tries to help Sirius (Harry’s Godfather) who was accused of murder and is also an animagus (can transform into an animal). He tries to help Sirius by exposing the truth about Peter Pettigrew, a MAJOR character in this series. One of the biggest differences (that is important to the whole entire series) is how the movie left out who made the Marauder’s Map and why. It is extremely important to the series because it had to do with Harry’s father and friends while they were at school. It was made to help Lupin, who is a werewolf and needed to get away from the school at the time of his transformations. Also, Harry’s father, James, Lupin, Sirius, and Peter were all troublemakers while at Hogwarts so they made the map to sneak out of the castle through seven different secret passageways. A few minutes could’ve been added to the movie to give these details because the viewers of the movie are not getting the whole story, and therefore will not understand everything that comes to be.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of fire is the fourth of the series. Harry is forced to play in the Triwizard Tournament which is a big threat to his life. In the beginning of the movie, the Dursleys aren’t even mentioned at all when in the book, the Weasley’s came to pick Harry up from them and problems were presented. Ludo Bagman (works for the Ministry of Magic) and Winky (another house elf) are left out of the movie when they prove to be pretty important characters in the book. Winky has an important connection to Barty Crouch, who ends up dying in this film. Another difference is Neville in the movie gives Harry Gillyweed to help in the tournament but in the book, Dobby did. Next, when Harry is given his winnings, one thousand galleons, from the Triwizard Tournament. It isn’t even mentioned at all in the movie but in the book, Harry ends up giving the winnings to Fred and George, Ron’s older brothers, which they use to open up their joke shop. The final major difference is the end of the book/movie. In the book after Barty Crouch Jr. (dark wizard) is caught, a dementor ends up sucking out his soul so he is no longer able to give information about Voldemort yet in the movie, after Barty is caught, he’s never mentioned again. Why the directors thought that was a good idea, who knows?
The fifth Harry Potter book and movie is Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. A beginning difference is after the Dementors (Azkaban Prison guards) attack Harry and Dudley (Harry’s cousin), Mrs.Figg shows up. In the movie, this is the first time that she has ever been introduced to the viewers while in the books, she’s been mentioned since book one. Another big difference is Uncle Vernon wants to kick Harry out of the house but then Aunt Petunia gets a letter threatening that Harry is not to leave. It ends up being from Dumbledore (the headmaster of Hogwarts and one of the most important characters of the series). The problem is, this was never mentioned in the movie, only the book. Another difference is Quidditch, a wizard sport, isn’t even mention in this movie at all, when really Umbridge (evil lady from the Ministry) tries to ban Gryffindor house from playing at all and eventually tells Harry that he’s banned for life from playing at Hogwarts. A big difference that I’m surprised by is in the movie, Cho (Harry’s crush) turns out to be the one who ratted them out to Umbridge about their secret group rebelling against her. In the book, Cho’s friend is actually the culprit. This is surprising because the movie is ruining Cho’s reputation and making the movie watchers not like her. They also leave out dates that Harry and Cho go on. The final big difference is the final battle of the movie and book between Voldemort and Dumbledore.
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince movie leaves out quite a bit. A big point left out? The actual explanation for the title of the movie. When you find out the Half Blood Prince is Snape, (Harrys least favorite teacher) it’s not told why he’s called that. It’s actually because his mother was a pure blood wizard and his dad was a muggle (non magical) as explained in the book. Another important detail is a lot about Voldemort’s background. In the book, you learn completely about his family and about the Horcruxes he made. The movie never mentions any of this. Yes, you learn that Voldemort was in an orphanage, but that’s not half of it.
The final book is Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, yet the book split it into two movies, not having enough time to explain the whole story in one. The biggest problem I have with the 7th movie, Part 1, is when they leave out Peter Pettigrews death even though he is a vital character in the series. This is something extremely important to leave out and he is never mentioned again throughout the rest of that movie and the final one. Also, the movie never reveals that Tonks is pregnant with Lupins baby; he’s just sort of mentioned at the end, surprising the viewer that Lupin even had a son. Another difference is when Fred is showed at the end of Part 2, to be dead, but it’s never said how or who killed him. Also, in one of the final scenes with Molfoy, he is accompanied by Goyle and a black boy who has never appeared in any of the other movies: Goyle ends up dying after setting the Room of Requirement on fire. In the book, Malfoy is really accompanied by Crabbe and Goyle and Crabbe is the one stupid enough to set the room on fire and dies.
The Harry Potter series, both books and movies, have shown entertainment in a whole new way. Your mind is just taken into a new world and you get to experience all of the characters happiness, sadness, and the fantasy throughout the whole series. Even though the books are better, the movies are extremely well made too, just with some differences. The movies did an excellent job of explaining the book series and it’s impossible to get every single detail into a movie, I just feel they could have removed some unnecessary scenes and characters to add the important ones mentioned above. The books and movies have made millions and millions of dollars, making J.K. Rowling (author of the books) one of the richest women in the world. The Harry Potter series is definitely worth trying out. It’s almost guaranteed that you won’t be disappointed.