Harry Potter Book Vs Film Essay

1581 words - 6 pages

Are the Films as Good as the Books?Many books have been adapted into films throughout the years. Lately though most of the films have not been just adaptations, but exact replications of the novel they are being based upon. Movies such as the Harry Potter series and the Lord of the Rings trilogy are the two that are getting the most criticism and attention. Bringing films like Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone to the big screen present the problem of condensing the novel into a two and a half hour film without losing any elements of the book. Although Chris Columbus, the producer of Harry Potter, does a good job for the most part in doing this, he fails the develop the characters the way JR Rowling, the author of Harry Potter, does in her novel. The zoo scene, character development and interaction especially between Ron and Harry, and Dumbledore and Harry need to be analyzed in order to fairly compare the film to the book. This scene and these characters are the ones that differ the most from the novel to the film making the movie not enough like the book, but at the same time, very much like the book.Columbus concentrates too much on the visual effects of the film, and did not spend nearly enough time developing the characters that Rowling made readers of all ages identify with and love. Many people who read the book before they saw the film would agree with the fact that "the film's lavish attention to the visual leaves little time for the characters to interact with one another" (Nel 2). Rowling, when she writes her book, focuses more on her characters and their interactive dialogue, which give the reader insight into their lives, allowing the reader to find a character to easily identify with. Columbus also elaborates on little details and then leaves many out, although this seems like a minor problem, it does change the movie in comparison to the book. For example, in the book Dudley Dursley actually falls into the snake's cage in the movie when the glass "disappears," and in the movie Harry seems fully aware of the fact that he has imprisoned his cousin; on the other hand, the book seems to leave it open whether or not Harry believes that this is caused by him. When the film has Harry capture Dudley in the snake's cage, it makes the viewer believe that Harry beats Dudley, but in the novel Rowling shows the dominance Dudley has. In doing this in the novel, it is more believable that Harry is honestly shocked when Hagrid tells Harry that he is a wizard. Harry realizes that this is the truth and everything falls into place, "chased by Dudley's gang, he had somehow found himself outside of their reach... dreading going to school with that ridiculous haircut, he had managed to make it grow back... and the last time Dudley had hit him, hadn't he gotten his revenge, without even realizing he was doing it? Hadn't he set a boa constrictor on him?" (Rowling 58) This demonstrates the genuine surprise of Harry, but in the film it seems as though he...

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