An Analysis of the Harry Potter Film Series

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For my film analysis I chose the Harry Potter film series. The series is about a young boy who finds out that he is a wizard. He is sent to a wizarding school called Hogwarts and immersed in the world of witchcraft and Wizardry. What's more is that he learns that he is one of the most famous wizards of all time, because as a child he survived a killing curse from the most powerful and evil wizard in the world. Harry has to battle with this evil wizard throughout the series and has multiple friends and mentors that are stereotypical archetypes, and who help him during his trials and tribulations.

The first major archetype that comes to mind in any story is the hero. This would obviously be Harry. The hero pursues a great quest to realize his own destiny. In this case Harry's quest is to defeat Voldemort, the aforementioned evil, powerful wizard. Harry goes through countless quests during the 7 books to eventually accomplish this. Voldemort would in turn be the trickster archetype. Voldemort attempts to trick Harry into giving up and joining his side multiple times as well as trying to convince other wizards. He was successful in some cases. I'm not sure why there is no villain archetype on the sheet but I feel this would be more all-encompassing for Voldemort's personality. Voldemort is evil, wants to take over the world and kill anyone in his way, so villain would be more appropriate than trickster but both are applicable.

The next most important character is Professor Dumbledore. He is the headmaster of Hogwarts, and Harry's mentor. Dumbledore could be considered the father archetype, as he is an authority figure in the school and in the entire wizarding world. Students fear him for disciplinary reasons, and evil wizards fear him because he's so powerful. He could also be seen as the god, because he is the image of a perfect person. He essentially does no wrong, and always knows exactly what to do in every situation. Also, because of this ability to always know what to do and "transformation needed" he could ironically be considered the wizard as well.

Harry has two best friends that help him with all his problems for the duration of the story; Ron and Hermoine. Ron represents the fool archetype. He is goofy and is always getting himself into trouble. Hermoine is the mother. She looks out for the three of them and has maternal role in their friendship. She is the smartest and always keeps them out of trouble.

Two examples of similar stories to Harry Potter, would be the Lord of the Rings book series and the original Star Wars trilogy. In Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter would be comparable to Frodo Baggins. Frodo is the hero, and has to accomplish his destiny, which is to destroy an all powerful ring to save the world. Gandalf is like Dumbledore because he is the father figure for Frodo and always knows what to do. Frodo's friends, Sam, Pippin, and Merry are comparable to Ron because they are goofy and always getting into trouble. Aragon, Legolas, and Gimlie are like Hermoine because they look out for Frodo. Soromon, the evil wizard is comparable to Dumbledore.

In Star Wars, Luke Skywalker is the hero. His robots R2D2 are similar to Ron. Princess Leia is like the Hermoine. Obi-Wan is similar to Dumbledore because he is old and wise and always knows whats best for Luke. Yoda is also comparable to Dumbledore, and he comes along in the second movie of the trilogy., Darth Vader is the villain or trickster of the movie, and constantly attempts to get Luke to convert to the "dark side."

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An Analysis of the Harry Potter Film Series. (2022, Oct 05). Retrieved February 22, 2024 , from

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