What do Harry Potter and Oskar Schindler have in common?

It’s an odd pairing, isn’t it? A fictional 1990s British boy wizard and a WWII German who saved hundreds of Jews from concentration camps. Both films were scored by the legendary John Williams, and I believe the main themes are very similar.

Go listen to the main theme of Schindler’s list, which starts around the 0:22 mark of this video:

Notice how heartbreakingly sad the melody is. Now let’s shift the key a bit and make it less sad and more magical and you might hear a very similar melody as the main theme of Harry Potter:

What do you think? Am I on to something or am I way out in left field?

It’s pretty common for composers to use similar motifs–the late James Horner was known for this–but Williams’ work has so much breadth and depth this is the first time I’ve found one from one cinematic setting leaking into another.

Featured Image Source: Gettty

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