The magic is back! While I’m slightly disappointed that this wasn’t all over the posters for the oddly named Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them, I am excited to see it. After all, every one of the 49 Harry Potter entries were on point, so there’s no reason to think that this spin-off won’t be, too.
Since no world building needs to be done for anything related to Harry Potter, David Yates’ Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them hits the ground running. Newt Scamander (a quirky Eddie Redmayne) arrives in NYC and before he can even do anything touristy, he bumps into a few important people, a bit of magic happens and then bang, an adventure is underway. Now, there are two storylines to be aware of here. The first is Scamander and his gang’s quest to recover his lost creatures. This makes up the majority of the film, and it’s an overwhelmingly charming and enchanting time. All of the characters are lovable, the magic is fun and the creatures are wondrous. You will adore every bit of it. As for the other plot, it’s not particularly well executed. This is where Percival Graves (a surprisingly one note Colin Farrell) comes into play. Right from the start it’s obvious that he’s up to something, but his end-game isn’t ever fully explained and more often than not his scenes just feel jammed into the film. He’s unnecessary (so much so in fact that he could be cut out and the overall story wouldn’t change) and the only real blemish on an otherwise great movie. Can’t win them all, I suppose.
If you’ve ever enjoyed any part of any Harry Potter film, then go see Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them. You won’t be disappointed.
One Last Thought:
I like Eddie Redmayne, I really do, but I have to admit that he totally weirds me out. This is largely because every part of him (face, voice, gait, etc.) seems to be composed of strange tics. It’s super weird, man. Just saying.