‘Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them’ (2016)

‘Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them’ has to be one of the funnest movie experiences I have had this year. I felt like a little kid again the moment the opening credit and theme song.I will never forget the movie magic and feeling back in 2001 when I was 12, see the owl land of the sign of Privet Drive for the first time. Like Star Wars before it JK Rowling has created a world that will last for a very long time. I always assumed that in the future kids would roll their eyes as my generation Millenials wax lyrical about loving Harry Potter in their youth, now I feel as though many future generations will fall in love with the wizarding world as well. As a world building exercise the film has opened the door to the endless possibilities of this world. Doing an exciting job of laying the groundwork for the story I most want to see in the HP universe: romance between Grindelwald and Dumbledore and Grindelwald’s rise to power. I am disappointed in the casting of Johnny Depp though, such a hack these days. The best part of the film has to be the exploration of the Beasts in Newt’s briefcase, rather than the main storyline. The cast is almost uniformly excellent, especially the supporting cast. The plot is a bit rambling, the ending a bit anti-climatic and one plot outcome, a death, is surprisingly dark but glossed over. But for creating the wider wizarding world, exploring the beasts of the world, and setting us up for the rise of Grindelwald the film is very successful. You won’t have more fun at a cinema in 2016!!

8/10   ***1/2

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