7 Worst Sins of 'Prisoner of Azkaban' Movie Only Book Readers Will Understand

7 Worst Sins of 'Prisoner of Azkaban' Movie Only Book Readers Will Understand
Image credit: Warner Bros.

Avada Kedavra is the most Unforgivable Curse, and these are the movie's most unforgivable decisons.

Many movie fans will say that Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is the best movie in the fantasy series.

However, these fans are not the ones who have read the books. In the eyes of self-proclaimed book purists, PoA was actually the worst movie of the series.

7. Freeze-frame ending

At the top of the list is the ending of the movie. For book readers, PoA marked a departure from the carefree magic and wonder to a darker and more serious tone. The movie stays true to this until the very last scene, where they decided to show Harry happily flying around on the Firebolt and end with a ridiculous freeze-frame of his face. One frame took away the somber tone of the movie.

6. Leaning on Backstory

There are many moments in the movie series where fans who have not read the books are confused by the lack of backstory. This all seems to have started with PoA, which was the first movie to rely on the fact that its fans had already read the books, and therefore needed no explanation or context.

This left plot holes, confusion for non-readers, and frustration for the book fans who could see the missing pieces.

5. Characters were too old

Remus Lupin and Sirius Black were two characters that book readers felt were much older than they should have been. Both were supposed to be in their late 30s, but were portrayed by actors who looked tired and closer to 50, although some justify their aging based on their circumstances. Perhaps the stresses of Lupin's werewolf affliction and Sirius' years of imprisonment were reflected in their characters' faces.

4. Peter Pettigrew and the Marauder's Map

One of the most talked about issues fans have with the third film is the awkward plot hold involving the Marauder's Map. In the movie, we see the presumed dead Peter Pettigrew appear on the map, and later learn that he took the form of Ron's pet rat.

How did no one notice that Peter's name was always on the map with Ron, and more importantly, why did no one, not even Ron's brothers, care that Ron was sleeping with some random guy every night?

3. The Marauders Map Backstory

The Peter Pettigrew issue isn't the only time this map gets the movies in hot water with fans.

The book explains that the Marauders Map was created by Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs, who were actually Remus, Peter, Sirius and James. It is an important part of the backstory and character relationships, but the movie leaves it out completely.

2. Change of style

PoA takes a darker and more serious turn, but in doing so, it tramples on the magic that was a big part of the franchise's appeal to book readers.

The mood, the backgrounds, the way the characters dress, all take on a grayer and more somber look, but there's a reason for that, according to the film's director, Alfonso Cuaron:

'In the first two, Harry is still a child there is a greater optimism around the tone itself. Nevertheless, when the kid turns 13, there is a big cloud that overshadows everything around Harry, and we needed to convey that also stylistically.'

1. Ron's heroism was criminally downplayed

In the book, Ron struggles to stand up and protect Harry with a broken leg, telling Sirius, 'If you want to get to Harry, you'll have to go through us.' In the movie, however, Ron takes the comedic idiot position, and the courageous line is spoken by Hermione. This is one of many instances, and in fact the worst, where Ron has been robbed by the film adaptations.