Adaptation and Transcriptions – A Harry Potter Review
Harry Potter has been published in 7 books and 8 films, which makes it ideal for an adaptation review. The first 4 books, up to the goblet of fire had been published before the first film came out and therefore readers would have an easier time to have the characters look after their own idea rather than having them look like the actors – which is unavoidable in an adaptation from anything written.
For the purpose of this review I will concentrate on the Goblet of Fire as it was the first book I read and my favourite. The film came into the cinema in 2005 and with that was published 5 years after the book. To work as one film and not be a 5 hours’ epos, the producers decided to omit quite a bit of everyday story from it. Characters have been left out that play a bigger role in the coming books (to the producer’s defence, the fifth book was not published by the time the fourth film came out so they scrapped a lot of details that were important in later movies) like Percy Weasley, who joins the ministry of magic and fully supports any ideas that his parents are and have always been against, Bill Weasley who meets Fleur, the Beauxbatons contestant for the tournament for the first time and falls in love with her which is only shown in the later films and Charlie Weasley, a character who isn’t featured in the films at all, and many more, including houself Winky who develops a drinking problem when her master, Barty Crouch Senior, dismisses her from his service. All the characters have important roles later on but have been cut out for the sake of more action during the tournament.
There are many incorrect scenes in the film that would require to introduce another character, soften those scenes have been substituted or cut out altogether and many events are not happening at all. For example, the quidditch world championship is a massive event for Harry in that year, but for some reason the film hasn’t bothered to give any details about it, and as Harry wins the tournament by the end of the year he receives a hefty amount of gold, which he gives to the twins and they later use it to fund their shop. This was not shown in the film so how did Fred and Gorge, coming from a poor family, finance the shop all by themselves? Diagon Alley is surely not a cheap place.
As much as I loved the book, I was disappointed by the film as it twisted so many facts and left out many loving detail that brings the book to life. Nevertheless, I saw it a few times in the cinema and it was a success in the box office as it’s the middle part of the Harry Potter franchise. In my opinion, Goblet of Fire was the best book but the worst film as it only deals with the bare essentials of the plot, often not even that and just changing it into an unrelated action sequence. My score would be 3/5.