20 years after the first Harry Potter movie was released being a diehard fan of the saga remains complicated, why? Because there are a number of chunky plot holes in the Harry Potter stories between the books and the movies.
These are ones which no fan after years of analysis of the films, books, author’s comments, fan fiction, videos of theories on YouTube and other resources, has managed to give satisfactory answers.
Lovers of J. K. Rowling’s magic world accept that when the author let her imagination run wild she had moments of doubt. Ones in which she didn’t know how to resolve the functioning of that magical universe she presented to the world. After all, she built what is probably the best fantasy story in literature, that’s no small task.
From the logic of Quidditch’s games to the effects of some spells and potions. The misinterpretation of some parts of the books in the movies and holes in the plot that can be found if you stop to look carefully. There are many. The worst thing of all is that even after reading all the books from beginning to end over and over can you give them a solution that explains why they exist.
J. K. Rowling is a fantastic writer. The directors and scriptwriters of the films are great professionals. Between them, they managed to create a film universe as special and effective as the one the author designed on paper. The problem is that they’re also human and they make mistakes. Often letting themselves be carried away by the force of cinema and by wanting to always seek a more surprising visual effect over logic.
Does this make Harry Potter stop being cool? Does it make us fans less likely to recognize that there are things that don’t make sense? Of course not. But it’s worthwhile to look into these questions and see the reality of everything that didn’t work well within the magic of this story.
That’s what we’re going to do: explain in detail 9 scandalous holes in the plot that nobody has managed to explain.
If you’re prepared to know the clumsier side of the magic world then read on.
1. No international help in the final battle at Hogwarts
The first of our Harry Potter plot holes occurs both in the last book of the saga ‘The Deathly Hallows’ and the film. Where were the other magic schools when Hogwarts was being besieged by Voldemort’s army? No one knows.
In the Goblet of Fire, there was an expansion of the magic world. It was revealed to us that the universe of wizards was not limited to Hogwarts and Great Britain. But that in the rest of the planet there were magic institutions with people with the same powers as our protagonists.
During the Tri-Wizard Tournament teachers and students from Bulgaria and France arrived at Hogwarts as guests. Their leaders made clear their position against Voldemort. Plus their unconditional support for Hogwarts and its then Headteacher Albus Dumbledore. Now, where were they all when the school was under attack? Was there no one left to give a secret warning to alert them to what was happening? The truth is that there was a very important gap that the author didn’t fill.
For months Harry, Ron and Hermione were searching for Horcruxes. Those who stayed at Hogwarts had plenty of time to look for new allies overseas while Voldemort did the same for himself. But, that never happened. It’s a failure we will have to live with. Unless in the future the author tries to clarify it and provide us with relevant information to help us understand it. Who knows.
2. Memory spells, just as dangerous as the unforgivable curses?
The fourth film and book also explain the three unforgivable curses. Ones that no magician can use on another magician or Muggle. These would mean the violation of the most sacred of the magical laws that protect the integrity of people and you would end up inside an Azkaban cell.
But, the mind-reading and memory-erasing spells that Hermione and Harry use in the sixth and last movie are not penalised. Aren’t these spells just as dangerous and an attack on people’s freedom and integrity?
Hermione needed to protect her family from what was going on in the magical universe. And Harry needed to find Voldemort to know his every move. So it could be said that these were natural demands of the script. Where the good guys in the story use invalid resources to confront their worst enemies. Does that make it any more ethical or logical?
3. Why didn’t Voldemort subject his followers to an unbreakable vow?
During ‘The Half-Bood Prince’ we saw Snape, with Draco’s mother, perform a spell that was unknown to fans until that moment: The Unbreakable Vow. Through this binding oath, the magicians committed themselves to fulfil what they had sworn in that pact. To break it they would end up paying with their own lives.
So, why didn’t Voldemort submit all his followers to this oath during the last great magic war?
One of Voldemort’s main concerns was that he never really knew who his loyal followers were. Compared to those who were following him for fear of dying and waiting for the best moment to betray him. It would have been logical for him to use this oath to make sure. But he didn’t.
4. The number of wands equals strength
In ‘The Deathly Hallows: Part One’ film we see Harry use up to three different wands at once to disarm GreyBack in the Malfoy house. According to the OWL, the strength of a spell depends on the conviction of the wizard who conjures it and not on the number of wands he uses for it. This leaves us in doubt about whether a wizard can have more strength when the number of wands is greater than his opponent’s. Or if it is something that will always depend on the mental strength of each wizard.
In the movie, the effect is that it is the wands that give Harry that extra strength. Although in the books it said the opposite. Another adaptation fault where the logic is blurred to give way to the action for Hollywood.
5. The inconsistency of the trace law
This is one of the plot holes that follows Harry Potter over the series. Even to be on trial for it in ‘The Order of the Phoenix’. Using magic as a minor or using it in front of a Muggle.
The law of magical tracing detects if someone has used magic, but it cannot detect exactly who has carried out the spell.
So, did the Ministry really have the information necessary to take Harry to court for casting a Patronus in front of a Muggle as a minor?
In the movies, it is not clear and in the books, it’s presented as an inaccurate system where magicians could find a legal vacuum to act in an improper way.
6. The personality of Hogwarts’ portraits
Throughout the years, J. K. Rowling has made an effort to explain in detail that all the portraits of the magical universe.
All the portraits that appear in the movies seem to have their own ideas and the ability to have rational conversations with their owners. Giving rise to all sorts of gaps that have hardly any logical explanation. How much memory to they contain, are they like ghosts or like an A.I?
7. The Thestral dilemma
Why can’t Harry see the Thestrals in ‘The Goblet of Fire’?
According to J. K. Rowling’s own theory, the Thestrals are creatures that can only be seen by those who have seen “death”, to see someone die.
Yet, Harry, despite having seen his parents die, Harry isn’t able to see them until the fifth instalment of the saga. When he shares the scene with Luna Lovegood.
J. K. Rowling said he couldn’t see them because he didn’t really understand what it meant to die as a baby. That’s why it wasn’t until the fifth instalment that he was able to see them after Cedric died. Although most fans still see this explanation as insufficient. The creatures weren’t mentioned on the journey away from Hogwarts at the end of the school year.
8. Criminal records
Currently, any country can find out who we are and whether we have a criminal record. How is it possible that in a place where magic governs everything, there is no mechanism for tracking undercover criminals? This would have been really useful when Professor Quirrell snuck into the school with Voldemort in his turban.
It’s a necessary mistake so that Hogwarts has no control over its staff. Obviously, it allows the plot to happen. But it takes all security credibility away from a first-rate magic institution.
9. Is divination a reliable discipline or mere superstition?
It seems ironic that in a universe where people are able to keep their memories in glass jars, divination is still a questionable discipline. One that many describe as superstitious and deceptive. Not even Professor Dumbledore, who admits that Voldemort and Harry’s prophecy was fulfilled, as Professor Trelawney predicted, believes that divination is an exact art.
Thanks for reading our article on 9 plot holes from the Harry Potter films. Did we miss anything? Do you agree or disagree with our points or have anything to add? If so, leave us a comment below.
Read about the tragic life of Remus Lupin HERE.
Read IMDB information on Harry Potter HERE.
Harry Potter: The Questions You Keep Asking, Answered
It’s been over 24 years since the first instalment of the Harry Potter series was published. But regardless of the length of time passed, many questions are still left unanswered. Fansites still tear apart page upon page looking for the key to unlock J. K. Rowling’s extraordinary mind. Interviewers have fired question after question at the infamous author. Yet, when one question is answered, it seems to open the flood gates for many more.
J. K. Rowling has now moved onto crime fiction. But she still finds the odd spare moment to grace Potter fans with her virtual presence. Using Twitter to answer some of the endless questions’ fans have conjured.
Let’s take a look at some of the most valid Harry Potter questions asked on Twitter and how J.K. Rowling answered them.
What happened to Fluffy the three-headed dog?
Poor Fluffy wasn’t mentioned again after being set free in the Forbidden Forest. Never fear! Rowling is here to tell us of Fluffy’s fate.
Back in February 2015, Rowling replied to the question on Twitter. stating that ‘He was repatriated to Greece. Dumbledore liked to put Hagrid’s more foolish acquisitions back where they belong.’
Beyond the happily ever after
A snapshot of Harry, Ron and Hermione’s Happily Ever After is presented at the end of the final book. The three (and Ginny) complete the circle by walking their own children to the Hogwarts train.
But, their lives developed much more than having children. As Rowling revealed back in 2007. Hermione began her career within the Ministry of Magic. She worked in the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures. Here, she became instrumental in the improvements for the treatment of house-elves. After this, she moved to the Dept. of Magical Law Enforcement, where she ensured the eradication of pro-pureblood laws.
Harry and Ron took different paths. Harry became an aura, a highly trained law enforcement officer. Ron went into the family business, helping his brother run Weasley’s Wizarding Wheels.
Did Harry, Ron and Hermione return to their schooling?
There’s a huge gap at the end of The Deathly Hallows. The pages seem to jump from the defeat of Voldemort to 19 years later. So did the famous trio return to school?
Rowling stated that Hermione returned to Hogwarts to complete her NEWT’s. But Harry and Ron did not, instead, they followed their career paths straight away. Although, I’m pretty sure defeating the source of all evil scores big points on a C.V.
Harry’s scar shape is important, right?
Well, no. Unfortunately, Rowling just thought ‘it looked cool’.
Potter super-fans have other ideas, though. One Tweet back in 2019 revealed that the scar could symbolise much more. @TodayYearsOld Tweeted:
‘Did you know Harry Potter’s scar isn’t a lightning bolt, but the hand motion to cast Avada Kedavra.’
Avada Kedavra is a killing curse used within the Dark Arts. The hand movement looks like a lightning bolt, but much softer. Not surprisingly, the Tweet went viral and caused shock waves through the Potter community.
What does Hufflepuff’s common room look like?
We are taken on a trip to Slytherin and Ravenclaw’s common room, and we spend a lot of time in Gryffindor’s. So, when fans asked Rowling for a description, she was only too happy to oblige.
‘The Hufflepuff common room is accessed through a portrait near the kitchens, as I am sure you have deduced. Sorry – I should say ‘painting’ rather than portrait because it is a still-life. It is a very cosy and welcoming place, as dissimilar as possible from Snape’s dungeon. Lots of yellow hangings, fat armchairs, and underground tunnels leading to the dormitories. All of which have perfectly round doors, like barrel tops.’
Is there more than one Wizarding school?
If you are one of those people who watch the films before the books. You’ll have probably asked ‘Is Hogwarts the only school for wizards?’. In this instance, it’s the books that hold the key, and if you take notes in ‘The Goblet of Fire.’ Students from other schools arrive at Hogwarts to attend the Tri-Wizard Tournament.
The books reveal more about a couple of schools, such as the Palace of Beauxbatons. Beauxbatons is a beautiful chateau situated in the Pyrenees mountains of Southern France. Durmstrang is another, and one of the three largest in Europe. Durmstrang is situated in the northmost regions of Norway or Sweden and is known for its Dark Arts.
Rowling has since revealed more schools, including Castelobruxo, Mahoutokoro, Uagadou and Ilverymorny.
Neville Longbottom and Luna Lovegood end up together?
It’s a no, which has disappointed fans. But the two remained close friends as Luna followed a career in Wizarding Naturalism. She became famous for tracking rare creatures before marrying Rolf Scamander.
Neville married fellow Hogwarts student Hannah Abbot. Surprisingly, Neville became an aura before returning to Hogwarts as a Herbology Professor.
Did Draco Malfoy get his just desserts?
This is a big one for Potter fans who wished to see Draco pay for everything he subjugated Harry to. But, as The Deathly Hallows hints, it appears he went through a huge transformation.
Draco was a complex character, not only a member of Slytherin, but he was also a bully. But much of his behaviour came from his upbringing.
Draco tried to prove himself to the Dark Lord, only to be rescued by the three he often tormented. This caused him and his mother to neglect Voldemort once it was believed Harry was dead. The two avoided Azkaban, and he went into a very dark place, emotionally. But he emerged a changed man. He had a wife and a son, and a simple nod to the trio 29 years on seemed to solidify that he had changed.
Thanks for reading our article on unanswered Harry Potter questions now answered. Did you already know these? Did we miss any big ones? Let us know in the comments below.
Check out 5 Hidden Messages In Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows That You Missed HERE.
Read IMDB information on Harry Potter HERE.
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