My, it seems like only yesterday when I started this.
We are certainly the nadir of the series. Mainly because it feels like there’s a great deal of nothing going on during these films. It’s not really the director’s fault; the books hadn’t been finished by this time. The considerations of what would and wouldn’t be important towards the endgame were still very speculative. But without further ado, let’s start fixing.
The lack of the Dursley’s in this film isn’t a problem in and of itself. Following book five, they become fairly irrelevant until the seventh book. But the addition of them would allow the set up of Fred and George’s joke shop in the next books. Also, Dudley’s exceedingly long tongue would be a great thing to see on screen.
The portrayal of the Quidditch World Cup within the film is definitely the only way that it could have been done. The time dedicated to it in the book made the whole story feel bloated and sluggish. The panic caused by the Death Eaters in the aftermath of the event amounts to not much more than them firing spells willy-nilly into the crowd and tents. It’s understandable that many people who were around during the First Wizarding War would recognise the outfits and fear for their lives. But it’s not so clear to the audience aside from they’re attacking innocent people. The best way to solve this would be to have them parading the muggle campsite owners around in the air, much like in the book. It helps show the audience that the sinister looking people are bad news, and helps cement the Death Eaters contempt for muggles.
Moving to Hogwarts, Filch’s character has changed dramatically from the previous films. Whereas then he was a sinister, creepy figure who couldn’t abide broken rules and dirt, he is now a complete joke, most obviously seen when he is running through the Great Hall to inform Dumbledore that the other schools have arrived. This character change is permanent, unfortunately, and only gets worse as the films progress.
Moody’s classes, wherein the students learn of the unforgivable curses, is another interesting scene. The uses of the Cruciatus and the Avada Kedavra curses are more or less as written in the book. However, the Imperius curse seems to be more akin to telekinesis than mind control. We see Moody lift the creature off his desk and float it above the heads of students and even threaten to throw it out the window, or have it drown itself. At no point does it appear that the spell is causing the creature to do this, it is just being moved around by Moody’s wand. The Imperius curse is more like Levicorpus or Wingardium Leviosa, and completely different to its use in the final film.
Following the results of the Goblet of Fire, Harry and Ron stop talking, except for when Hermione is asked to convey a long message to Harry from Ron regarding Hagrid wanting to see Harry. The entire conversation revolves predominantly around who told whom and both Hermione and Harry getting confused, despite the most important part of the message (Hagrid would like to see you) being said by both parties. This entire conversation is played for laughs, but the confusion seems absolutely pointless when the message was told and understood fairly quickly.
The first task of the Tournament requires the contestants to get past a dragon and steal the golden egg that they are guarding. In the book, a large portion of Harry’s preparation for the task is to learn a summoning spell so he can use his broomstick to obtain the egg. Why didn’t he just try summoning the egg in the first place? It stands to reason that the egg would have been protected from such an obvious attempt, but if it had worked, it would have been the easiest thing to do as opposed to the dog (dragon?) fight that happened in the film. Also of note, Dumbledore explicitly states that the Triwizard Tournament is safe for the contestants, yet everyone still seems to think that someone (Harry especially) will die. It’s a perfectly natural thing to see Malfoy trying to intimidate him by doing this; it seems strange when Fred and George are seen taking bets on whether or not he’ll make it.
And there you have it, if I’m right in thinking so, this is my longest Fix it in Post to date. Though I may break that with the next one. We’ll find out then. Once again, let me know what you think in the comments. I’ll see you next time.
Check out Graham's fixings in Philosopher's Stone, Chamber of Secrets and Prisoner of Azkaban.