10 Worst Movie Plot Holes That Have Been Explained In The Books (According To Reddit)

The Harry Potter franchise continued through games like Hogwarts Legacy and the fantastic beasts series, but few recent installments have been compared to the original series. Fans fell in love with Harry, Ron, and Hermione, encouraging them to excel at Hogwarts and defeat Lord Voldemort. Unlike most adapted series, most fans enjoy the movies about as much as the books since the intrigue and magic has been captured so well in translation.

However, all film adaptations must cut portions of their source material, and in a series like Harry Potter, this can cause problems. Small details that were left out in the early films ended up being major plot points in the later books, creating plot holes that the filmmakers had to work around. Fans took to Reddit to discuss the worst of these plot holes, noting in particular how the books explained things the movies simply ignored.


The twin nuclei

Duel between Harry and Voldemort in Goblet Of Fire

MaimedPhoenix had a major issue with how the main conflict in Goblet of Fire went down. As they explain, “Harry’s wand causes all figures or shades of dead people to appear after a connection. All subsequent duels between two people after that also connect and yet no dead come back. And no explanation as to why it happened to Harry.”

In the book, Dumbledore gives a full explanation of the phenomenon known as “Priori Incantatem”, which only occurs when wands sharing the same core have opposed each other. One wand would force the other to project its previous spells until they disconnected. By not explaining this, fans had no idea what really happened and missed part of why Voldemort sent Death Eaters against Harry in the following two films.

Dumbledore’s place of death

Dumbledore's death scene in Half-Blood Prince

Redditor Sophie_Blitz_123 specifically hated the way Dumbledore’s death unfolded, saying, “Why did Dumbledore go straight to the astronomy tower with no dark marks hanging over it??? the most random place ever. And how did Draco know he would be there?” These questions are not answered by the films.

It’s especially frustrating because it wouldn’t have taken much to fill in the blanks. Draco shares all the details of his plan with Dumbledore, but all viewers would have needed was to see the Dark Mark – which was explained in Goblet of Fire – hung above the Astronomy Tower to explain why both sides knew how to get there.

Speak Voldemort’s name

Death Eaters Attacking the Lovegood House

SpoonPee would have liked the movies to include “The Curse on Voldy’s Name” as it explains how the Golden Trio kept getting caught. After taking over the Ministry, the Death Eaters cast a spell, so they could find and capture anyone who utters the name “Voldemort”. However, Harry and Hermione didn’t know this, which put them in danger.

In the film, this is seen when the Death Eaters appear after Xenophilius Lovegood says his name, but it remains unexplained. Then the Snatchers come across the trio. It would have made more sense to eliminate the taboo altogether or explain it away since the version that ended up in the movies didn’t make much sense.

Snape’s role in protecting the Philosopher’s Stone

Snape in Harry Potter.

The plot holes began in the first film, where Reviewingremy noticed Hagrid’s line, “Snape isn’t trying to steal the stone. He was one of the teachers who helped protect it!” that does not make any sense. That’s because the movie removed Snape’s own test to get to the Philosopher’s Stone.

In the film, Harry only has to face four challenges before the Mirror of Erised, while the book included six (a troll chosen by Quirrel and a logic puzzle chosen by Snape). Hagrid’s logic could have been flawed either way, but the quote itself seems inconsistent without the context of the book. Moviegoers saw no protection from Snape on the Stone, which makes Hagrid seem misinformed.

The Marauders

Illustration of marauders in Harry Potter

A critical part of the Harry Potter franchise, especially for the fandom, is the connection between Harry’s parents, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin and Peter Pettigrew. Yet, as TheaGreatWallofChris pointed out, “In PoA they never explain about the Marauders, never mention that James was an animagus. No connection between him and the deer.”

For book fans, the blanks were easily filled in, but just watching the movies things get really confusing. James, Sirius, Remus and Peter were a close-knit group of Marauders in Harry Potter, who created the Marauder’s Map and became an animagi for Lupin’s sake. Without this information, literally every plot point about the deer is incomprehensible.

Dobby worked at Hogwarts

Dobby takes a sock in Harry Potter

One of Harry Potter fan-favorite characters are also tied into several key plot holes. As MeyerMeyBird said, “Dobby disappears for 5 movies, then suddenly reappears when it was convenient [didn’t make sense]. The fact that he was in the other books made his death even more important.

As book fans know, Dobby got a paid job at Hogwarts after being freed from the Malfoys. Through this position, he regularly interacted with the Golden Trio, including exchanging Christmas gifts. Without knowing it, it’s incredibly difficult to know why and how Dobby shows up at Malfoy Manor.

One-way mirrors

Harry Potter looks at a mirror

At Malfoy Manor, Harry pulled out a mirror shard and asked for help, but the movies cut the significance of this particular artifact. As Powerful_Artist explained, “If you haven’t read the books, it makes absolutely no sense that all of a sudden [Harry] has a broken mirror with which he can talk to a random stranger. That’s literally what gets them out of Malfoy Manor, and that’s such a big part of the book, but in the movies, their escape doesn’t make sense.

The mirror was a gift from Sirius in The order of the Phoenix, which would have allowed Harry to speak with his godfather. It broke in its trunk, but Harry couldn’t bear to throw it away. Aberforth Dumbledore was given the other mirror after Sirius died, allowing him to send Dobby to Harry’s aid.

Sorcerers randomly improve in magic

Neville Longbottom wielding the sword of Gryffindor in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II

It was a well-known fact that Neville wasn’t good at magic until after the fifth installment of the Harry Potter series, but his sudden talent wasn’t really explained in the movies. This is largely because the movies weren’t about the wand lore. Technically, any wand works for any wizard, but as Ollivander points out, “the wand chooses the wizard.”

Mutant_Jedi gives critical examples of this information, saying “We see Ron getting better after he stops using Charlie’s wand, we see that to a much greater extent with Neville after he stops using his father’s wand, and with Draco. Each had sudden fluctuations in magical skill – largely unexplained in the movies.

All Peeves

Artwork of Peeves in Harry Potter
Artwork by Peeves in Harry Potter from the Wizarding World website

Peeves is one of the characters that should have been in Harry Potter movies, but tracey-ann12 does a good job of explaining how his absence hurts the show: “movie makers missed a bunch of subplots without him – like giving Umb***h the hell and McGonagall telling her that the chandelier unscrew it some other way just so she can get a little revenge on Umb***h too.

In addition to personally battling Umbridge and Voldemort, Peeves helped feed various characters information that no other character had reason to know. Without these moments, objects just seemed to pop up out of convenience, and the characters knew more about them than they should. Other characters had to take on his roles, which rarely made sense.

Harry’s wand

Harry receives his wand in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

There have been many times Harry Potter fans were eagerly awaiting the eighth movie, but one important movie was left out. As CityHawk17 notes, moviegoers don’t learn “How Harry gets his wand back. In the books, he uses the elderberry wand to fix his old phoenix quill. Then returns the wand to Dumbledore’s tomb. In the movie, he snaps the elderberry wand and throws it away.

By breaking the only wand that works for him, without fixing his original wand, Harry effectively cuts himself off from the wizarding world. Several of Harry’s biggest struggles came down to ownership of the wand, so there’s no good explanation why the movies would leave out an important moment that establishes how Harry sets up his future in the magical community.

NEXT: 10 Scenes From The Harry Potter Books And Movies That Hit Differently A Second Time

Andrea G. Henderson