Prisoner of Azkaban Summary
An escaped convict, named Sirius Black, is being reported about on the Muggle News. Harry gets kicked out of the Dursley’s when he accidently inflates his mean Aunt Marge.
Harry sees a black dog in an alleyway as he hitches a ride on the Knight Bus to the Leaky Cauldron. Cornelius Fudge, the Minister of Magic, is waiting on Harry, being oddly concerned for his safety. Ron and Hermione meet Harry there to get their school supplies. Ron’s pet rat, Scabbers is looking sick and Hermione buys a cat, named Crookshanks.
Harry overhears that Sirius Black is a wizard who escaped from the wizarding prison, Azkaban and is after him. Because of this the Dementors, Azkaban guards, are guarding Hogwarts. Harry faints and hears his mother screaming at her death when he gets close to one. Dementors can suck out your soul by performing a kiss on their victim. Remus Lupin is the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher and teaches Harry how to produce a Patronus charm, which wards away Dementors.
3rd year students and up get to visit the neighboring village of Hogsmeade, but Harry isn’t allowed to go since the Dursley’s wouldn’t sign his permission form. Harry uses the Marauder’s Map, which shows the school, its inhabitants & its secret passageways to get out of Hogwarts and into Hogsmeade secretly. Under his invisibility cloak, Harry again overhears the Minister of Magic say that Sirius Black is Harry’s godfather and was James and Lilly’s secret keeper. Sirius Black betrayed the Potter’s whereabouts to Lord Voldemort and then killed another friend of their friends, Peter Pettigrew.
Harry continues to see visions of a black dog throughout the year. Harry overhears Professor Trelawney make a prophecy that the Dark Lord’s servant will return to join him. The Trio goes to Hagrid’s before the Ministry puts his pet hippogriff, Buckbeak to death. A black dog grabs Ron and pulls him into a hole at the Whomping Willow. Harry and Hermione follow them through a passageway that leads to the Shrieking Shack outside Hogsmeade. They see Sirius Black, who is an Animagus (a wizard that can turn into an animal) and discover that Scabbers is also an Animagus and is really Peter Pettigrew. Sirius tells the Trio that it was Peter Pettigrew who betrayed James and Lilly Potter and Sirius was only framed for it. Lupin shows up to back up Sirius’ story. Snape shows up to turn them in. Harry stuns Snape and they all return to the castle. On the way back, Lupin turns into a werewolf and runs away. The Dementors attack Sirius and Harry when a white stag Patronus chases the Dementors away. Harry thinks it’s his father.
Harry and Hermione wake up in the hospital wing. Sirius is captured. Dumbledore tells them that in order to save Sirius they’ll need to use Hermione’s time-turner that she’s been using all year to take more classes. They go back in time and save Buckbeak and then Harry casts his Patronus (the white stag) to save his other self and Sirius. Sirius escapes on Buckbeak.
What You Need To Know
Professor Trelawney is the Divination Professor, but isn’t too good at predicting the future. However, Harry overheard her make a real prophecy about the servant returning to the Dark Lord, but it was Peter Pettigrew, not Sirius Black.
Cornelius Fudge, the Minister of Magic, takes great pains to ensure Harry’s safety, like wait for his arrival at the Leaky Cauldron and to have the Dementors guard Hogwarts.
Cornelius Fudge does not bother to believe the Trio’s story about Sirius Black’s innocence.
What the Movie Doesn’t Tell You
Alfonso Cuaron left out quite a bit of information from the book that is needed to understand the whole series. Mainly the backstory regarding the Maurader’s is what gets left out. So much of the entire series directly involves or is related to these four individuals. Just a bit of attention from Cuaron would’ve done the trick.
The Marauder’s Map was made by Harry’s father, James & his friends Sirius Black, Remus Lupin and Peter Pettigrew
While students at Hogwarts, the Marauders underwent a difficult magical transformation to became Animagi:
James Potter – Stag
Sirius Black – Dog
Peter Pettigrew – Rat
Remus Lupin – Werewolf (bitten as a child)
Harry’s Patronus takes the form of a Stag, which was James’ Animagus form.
There are several secret passageways out of Hogwarts:
The Whomping Willow covers the entrance to a secret passageway that leads to the Shrieking Shack just outside of Hogsmeade. This secret passageway was made specifically for Remus Lupin to have a place to go at the full moon when he was a student at Hogwarts.
The hump on the One-eyed Witch Statue is the entrance to a secret passageway that leads to Honeyduke’s basement in Hogsmeade.
As students, James saved Snape’s life when Sirius told Snape to go down the Whomping Willow passageway, knowing that the werewolf Lupin would be in the Shrieking Shack at the other end. James stopped Snape at the last minute.
When Harry prevents Lupin and Sirius from killing Pettigrew, he creates a bond of debt that Pettigrew must fulfill, much like Snape feeling the need to protect Harry because of James saving his life years ago.