Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them (2016)

J K Rowling is back and the Harry Potter fans are not left hanging when we are taken back to this magical world we all know and love.

Set in New York, America, in a very different light from Hogwarts, as pre-Harry Potter we are introduced to a different magical world, yet one with similarities we know and can relate to so well. This was done brilliantly. I don’t know about other Harry Potter fans but I feel that his story ended perfectly for us to accept an end and move on, therefore I didn’t want to watch another film that was a repeat of all the characters we already know (and love) or similar stories repeating themselves as we’ve already ingested those. I’m a big believer of those things coming to an end and not over-doing it to eventually ruin it (not that J K Rowling could actually ruin anything). So where does ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them’ fit into this? As it was set in a different country, a whole different atmosphere was created; this a difference that was needed. Plus the introduction of new characters and different aspects should be loved. However, saying this, there were similarities to get the Harry Potter fans excited and ready for a new story. This was excellently done, I don’t want something completely different, polar opposites wouldn’t satisfy Harry Potter fans, and I believe that this film had the perfect combination of similarities and differences that Harry Potter fans and new fans would love.

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The new world was brought to us in a blast. A dramatic beginning to throw us straight into the wonderful, yet dangerous side of magic. But even before that, as you’re sitting there ready to watch this new almost prequel of Harry Potter, the music, that joy that brings Harry Potter fans to the reminder of when it ended in 2011. Then the film began, hooking in the audience straight away with a new plot we are unfamiliar with, yet need to know. There were many little plots going on at the same time in this film, with newspaper clippings, to the danger, to the Salem witches hunters, to Mr Graves (Colin Farrell), to the magical world of New York, to the main character, Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne). However, all these plots tied perfectly in the end. Now we all know Eddie Redmayne can play some challenging roles excellently, so we know he will be brilliant in a role such as this one. He plays the nervy, awkward, animal loving young wizard perfectly. A character we want to understand, yet one with much more depth than we are aware. Newt is a character who introduces the magical creatures to us extremely well. Not only are we fascinated with these new creatures, but they are adorable or even funny, as some escape and are accidentally let loose onto New York City. As I said there are many different little plot lines, so we don’t just delve into these new magical creatures, but they make the film fun and unpredictable to watch.

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There’s also an introduction of some other characters that should be appreciated. In America the non-magic person is called a No-Maj, even if we are familiar of the word Muggle; although do not be raged by this change in name, as Newt is a British wizard and appreciated Hogwarts as the best wizarding school in the world, plus he is more well known to a non-magic person being a Muggle as we are. Anyway, as we come to terms of a new dialect as Newt does himself, we are introduced to a No-Maj as he becomes a main character. One of my favourite characters in the film I might add. Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler). A fellow man who just wants to open up his new bakery. However, he becomes wrapped into this magical world just as the audience does, we learn about the new magical creatures along with Kowalski, which in my opinion brings the audience in with the film more closely; cleverly done. Kowalski is a humorous character, one confused by this new world yet loving as well. Also, we cannot forget Tina (Katherine Waterston) and her sister Queenie (Alison Sudol), two new characters to be appreciated as they both bring a new edge to the film, even Queenie being able to read minds.

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I would recommend seeing this film, it really is worth a watch. Even if it is quite a long film, however we are quite used to this from Harry Potter. But I believe ‘Fantastic Beasts’ cleverly combines what we know and what we don’t know extremely well to keep the audience gripped and even bring in a new audience. Besides of course there are similarities as David Yates directs it, just like the last four Harry Potter films. There are times in the film of stress, of fun adventure, of laughter, and of shock. If you can’t tell I enjoyed the film a lot and there’s even a glimpse of Johnny Depp! It’s the first introduction to our new characters and new plots, beginning the love of magical creatures for many more films to come. Ones that tie into the Harry Potter world we know. Besides one of the creatures is adorable as all it wants is shiny things… Isn’t that persuasion enough?

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