Movie Review: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

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Ella Butler, Staff Writer

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The movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is the new prequel to the Harry Potter series. It is a British-American fantasy film about wizards and No-Majs (American term for Muggles) in America.

The setting is New York, 1926. Wizard and magizoologist Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) has recently arrived by boat to New York City, planning to go to Arizona. He then encounters Mary Lou Barbone (Samantha Morton), a No-Maj who is a part of the New Salem Philanthropic Society, and who claims that witches and wizards are dangerous. As she speaks, a creature from Newt’s magically expanded bag escapes. As Newt tries to catch the beast, he stumbles upon No-Maj and aspiring baker Jacob Kowalski (David Fogler). They accidentally swap suitcases, and some of the beasts pop out when Kowalski is alone in his home. Meanwhile, Newt is arrested for being an unregistered wizard by Aurortina Goldstein (Katherine Waterston), and takes him to the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA) headquarters in a hope to regain her former position. When the Congress only finds baked goods in the suitcase, Newt is released. Jacob then follows Newt, Tina, and her sister Queenie (Fine Frenzy) on an adventure to return the missing beasts, and finding a creature that is tearing up New York.

The movie was a delight to see. The audience never was bored by the film, and no one fell asleep in the theater. The acting was really good, with a talented cast playing interesting characters. The cinematography was visually pleasing, magical yet grounded, and really enhanced the effects of the movie. The beasts, all entirely CGI, were very fitting in the rich tale.

So, what’s the issue? The movie is simply a launchpad for five movies in total, and some fans even think that the movie ending was good enough. (Not going to say what it was.) Here’s why: The ending was a major cliffhanger. We as an audience want to see what’s next in store for Newt, where he’ll travel to after New York, what new beasts he’ll meet, what new societies he’ll be arrested by, etc. The list keeps going on and on, and this is why most are glad there’s going to be more movies. It will expand the Wizarding World even farther than just having Hogwarts in Britain and a magic society in New York.

In short, this movie is definitely worth your time to go see. If you haven’t seen it yet: well, what are you waiting for?

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