Movie Review: ‘Fantastic Beasts’

December 20, 2016 at 12:01 am | Posted in Movies, Reviews, scifi/fantasy | Leave a comment
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Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is an interesting departure for the Harry Potter franchise as it dives into a story without its most famous character. Can a Harry Potter movie without Harry Potter work? Yes. In fact, Fantastic Beasts is a surprisingly enjoyable film and one I highly recommend checking out.

First off, this movie stars a different wizard than the one most fans are familiar with. There is no Harry Potter in this film. Instead there’s Newt Scamander, and older wizard traveling to New York with a suitcase full of fantastic creatures and a secret mission of his own. The whole movie takes place in New York and is set in 1926 giving the film a very interesting vibe. In America, the wizarding world is very different. There are different rules, different customs and new people to meet and learn about. For instance they call muggles no-maj and wizards are encouraged to stay away from the non-magical community. It’s an interesting exploration of a world we thought we were familiar with.

The story follows Newt and the creatures in his suitcase. A few get out, there’s hijinks, and his storyline weaves in with fellow co-stars. Dan Fogler plays a pretty big role in the movie as a no-maj named Jacob Kowalski who has aspirations of opening up a bakery. He winds up helping Newt out as they try to track down a few wayward mythical creatures, and then get caught up in the movies main plot. At the center of the chaos is a strange creature going around New York and wrecking havoc. Newt, Jacob and an American wizard named Tina Goldstein end up chasing down the mysterious monster, while competing with fellow wizard Percival Graves (played by Colin Farrell). It leads to a fun adventure.

The acting in the movie is really good with some fun characters and an entertaining storyline. However there were two aspects that really sold me on the film. For starters, they did a great job on the look of the beasts. The CGI is top notch and the designs are very cool. Plus most of the creatures have some rather endearing personalities. The other aspect is how the movie seems to be aimed at a slightly older audience. This movie doesn’t star a bunch of kids going to school. Instead, it’s about an adult wizard teaming up with some other adults on an adventure. There’s nothing to make the movie off limits to kids, but there’s also nothing dumbing it down or holding it back. As an adult, I rather liked the change of focus.

If you’re a fan of the Harry Potter films and/or books, you’ll definitely want to check out Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. I was definitely impressed and really enjoyed the film. Furthermore this is the first in a new series which is leading to the wizarding war, so hopefully there will be some great movies to follow. As is, I give this one a five out of five metal bikinis.

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Reviewed By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.
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