'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them': Everything We Learned on Our Set Visit
IMDb worked its magic to apparate onto the set of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Check out exclusive interviews with the cast and creators as well as new pictures and teasers from the movie and beyond.
It's Harry's third year at Hogwarts; not only does he have a new "Defense Against the Dark Arts" teacher, but there is also trouble brewing. Convicted murderer Sirius Black has escaped the Wizards' Prison and is coming after Harry.
In mid-20s New York, Newt Scamander, the British young activist wizard, arrives in town, holding a mysterious leather suitcase which shelters a wide array of diverse and magical creatures that exist among us. Amid an already fragile equilibrium of secrecy, and the increasing disasters ascribed to the dark wizard, Gellert Grindelwald, Newt's precious suitcase will be lost--and to make matters worse--several creatures will manage to escape. Before long, this situation will catch Senior Auror Percival Graves' attention who will target Newt, in the background of an invisible, devastating, and utterly unpredictable menace that still wreaks havoc on 5th Avenue. In the end, is there a hidden agenda behind Graves' intentions; moreover, what will happen to the remaining fantastic beasts still loose in the streets?Written by
Do you like going to the zoo? That is the question ...
Although I was a fan of the Harry Potter series, I had no preconceived notions or requirements for this stand-alone movie, other than an expectation that J.K. Rowling would not disappoint.
Nonetheless, I was disappointed. The first half of the movie is basically an overlong visit to a CGI-created zoo. We watch as the protagonist hunts down a half dozen or so "fantastic beasts", mostly one at a time and in extended chase sequences. If you do not enjoy visiting zoos or watching car chases (which have the same dynamic as animal chases, no matter how exotic the species), you may be bored. I certainly was.
The second half of the movie is more engaging, as loose strands from the first are finally woven into a conventional good vs. evil morality play. But even here, virtually every turn in the plot is easily predictable, as Rowling uses the same pro- Muggle/anti-Muggle dynamic employed in the Potter series to define her characters, plus an ironically preachy lesson in the harmful nature of organised religion. Fortunately, the actors, particularly the good guys and gals, are able to overcome the limitations of the script so that I couldn't help but like them and cheer them on. The cinematic recreation of early 20th century New York is also well done.
However, on the whole, I think Rowling is capable of better work than this. For movie-goers content to be dazzled by special effects, this film may do the trick. For those who want more than a formulaic "Hagrid saves the world" knock-off, the film will probably seem much longer than its two hour running time.
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