"Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald" was a movie that fans were eagerly anticipating yet dreading from the very beginning. In the midst of political and social crises, this movie was filled with terrible casting choices (coughJohnnyDeppcough), their subsequent defense by an author that most of us had looked up to for our childhood years, and the complete denial of the portrayal of an essential part of a main character’s backstory (coughDUMBLEDOREcough), this movie was always going to be a rollercoaster of emotions. So, when it released earlier in November 2018 , I obviously had to go watch it.
First things first, do not watch this movie from the second row of a theatre. You will definitely walk out with a splitting headache. The movie begins in a manner that helps us understand the intricacies and subtleties with which Grindelwald can move and the reasons as to why he is considered as big of a threat in the wizarding world as he is given credit for. The entire movie is a search for Credence, whose identity is unknown by everyone including himself and finally revealed at the end. Grindelwald’s power is rising in Europe and Newt once again finds himself in the midst of it all, helping his old professor while trying to reconcile with Tina. Queenie and Jacob are also at odds and so Newt and Jacob set out to France to try and “win them back.”
While a fairly overused trope, the main points in the plot of this movie are riddled with holes and disappointingly portrayed. The one new character that viewers begin forming an attachment to is prematurely killed and the Minister of Magic, as usual, is portrayed in the same light almost as Cornelius Fudge. This movie, unfortunately, fails to gather and express anything new and exciting for the most part with the only twists and turns coming within the last ten minutes. Even then, these plot twists are not enough to keep a dire interest within the franchise as a whole and after having watched the movie, I can say that it’s no wonder this was the first movie to have a Rotten Tomatoes score of 40% within a week after its release and the lowest opening weekend of the entire franchise (about $65 million). Fans expect more from Rowling and if she doesn’t deliver, I am afraid that this will be the short road to the end of the success of this entire legacy.
Image courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures