Potterheads around the world rejoiced two years ago when this movie was announced. And now, most of the world has finally seen this magical motion picture. The queen, JK Rowling took us back to the wizarding world bringing back all the nostalgia, the memories of what’s it like to be a wizard, all of the adventures of the golden trio, crying like a baby for Dobby, and the fact that we learned to accept that we are never ever going to receive our letter of acceptance from Hogwarts. All of these feelings were present for this movie except there’s this one thing –there’s no Harry Potter.
As you may call it a prequel of sorts, the year is 1926 and is set in New York. The film starts with the presentation of our main protagonist, Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne). He is a wizard zoologist who studies magical beasts on how to properly take good care of them and to show the world that they are not to be mistaken as dangerous. We also learned from the film that he was expelled from Hogwarts because of these creatures even though Albus Dumbledore strongly objects his expulsion.
Coming from England, he steps to New York bringing with him a suitcase. The thing is that the contents of his suitcase are magical creatures, which you would probably get in trouble for eventually if you happen to be travelling to another country. He happens to come across with Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler) who is a muggle, sorry, a No-Maj (short for No Magic, that’s what they call muggles in the United States). They were instantly noticed by Tina Goldstein (Katherine Waterston), a former auror that now works in the wand permit office at MACUSA (Magical Congress of the United States of America), the American version of Ministry of Magic. Together, along with Tina’s sister, Queenie (Alison Sudol), they team-up to catch all the creatures that escaped from Newt’s suitcase before they could cause even more major trouble and to find out that they are in the middle of a bigger problem.
Another introduction to the movie is the Obscurus. It is a type of a magical parasite that forms when a wizard or a witch suppresses their magical ability. An Obscurus usually takes host bodies of children and it kills them when they reach the ages of 10-12. The person that the Obscurus takes as a host is called an Obscurial. They are extremely dangerous if not controlled. This is where the second half of the movie revolves and as to why would Grindelwald want to control and harness this type of dark entity.
The perfect word Fantastic Beasts is essentially, fantastic. The movie was handled with top-notched effects. The quality of effects were greatly noticed for scenes like apparating from one place to another, wand duels, seeing house elves and the magical creatures, the showing of magical abilities, and many more throughout the movie. It had the feels of the first Potter film, where character introduction was key for the most part until they dive deeper into the main plot. You’ll notice that the movie starts soft and eventually will get darker to the end. Of course, it won’t be complete without a little bit of Harry Potter-type references thrown here and there. And the funny scenes also add to the success of the movie. The actors did not disappoint on how they portrayed their roles. It was like we really see them on how Rowling sees and understands her characters. Especially for Newt, where his character is charming but somehow also weird.
Overall, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is a great movie. It attracts both the old fans and the new fans together. Director David Yates and JK Rowling have made it possible to make an amazing film about the wizarding world without Harry Potter and we’re lucky enough that this expands to five films in total. We couldn’t even wait for the sequel in 2018!