Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them Review
4 / 5
IMDb Rating | 7.9
Starring: Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, Colin Farrell, Ezra Miller, Alison Sudol
Plot Summary: Following a global excursion to find, document and protect an array of magical creatures, Newt Scamander arrives in New York for a planned, brief stopover. However, Newt, No-Maj (Muggle) Jacob and Former-Auror Tina find themselves in a chaotic situation as they try to retrieve some escaped magical beasts in strict New York. This eventful story becomes more complicated due to the threat of attack from Grindelwald, as well as a mysterious and unexplained dark force that continues to wreak havoc in New York.
Sitting down in the dark and packed cinema auditorium, I waited with bated breath for another special visit into the wonderful and magical world of J.K. Rowling’s imagination. This time it was Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them, the first cinematic departure from the Potter films, but the opening music tones were undoubtedly from the same repertoire as the aforementioned films. The music gave me goosebumps and I also took an intake of breath as it was a score not only similar to Potter, but also different from Potter. This deviation in the music showed that the next batch of films will have their own identity, while staying true to some of the touches that made Rowling’s well known work so successful.
Having read the screenplay before watching the film I continued my own tradition of reading Rowling’s work before seeing it on screen and stage. While the books will always trump the films in terms of Potter, I feel that the film adaptation of the screenplay has the edge, probably due to form. The screenplay lacks the expressions, reactions and delivery that the film has. This was particularly the case in regard to No-Maj Jacob, who was such a delightful character. Fogler’s reactions and expressions in response to the wizarding world hit a chord with many in the audience as this was how we would potentially react to magic being performed in front of our eyes. Jacob’s eyes, eyebrows, thoughts and exclamations were used very effectively in comically delivering brilliant scenes that had the audience in fits of laughter. His and Newt’s friendship was a touching and later poignant inclusion that felt real to both characters and the audience too. The moments in the case were a favourite of mine, it wasn’t so much what was said, it was the looks that Newt gave Jacob when meeting the creatures Newt had saved.
Fantastic Beasts is a brilliant film that I and many Potterheads will enjoy and will also be a very solid inclusion into the Potter canon. Redmayne was a fantastic choice to lead the series into a new era, and the supporting cast more than played their part in creating a family feel we associate with Rowling’s work. Will we see Grindelwald take over the mantle of Tom Riddle as the main villain, or will we see different villains emerge to provide some variety to the franchise? The possibilities are endless, and I for one can not wait to see what it is in store!
Also, I am going to see The Cursed Child in December…2017!
The Humpo Show | Richard