HomeMoviesREVIEW — “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald”

REVIEW — “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald”

I’ve been a huge fan of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter ever since I was a young boy. I begged my mom to let me see The Sorcerer’s Stone when I was only 6 years old, and after much persisting, she finally let me watch it. From the moment that Hagrid told Harry that he was a wizard and helped him escape from his mundane reality, I fell instantly in love with the world that J.K. Rowling created. As I got older, I saw every sequel and read every book of the series (even bought Deathly Hallows from Barnes & Noble at midnight) – as I’ve gotten older, my love for this franchise and the characters inside of it has never diminished. I’m mentioning all of this so that when I say I was disappointed with Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, you know that I get absolutely no pleasure in saying that. Even as someone who enjoyed the first Fantastic Beasts film, I couldn’t get on board with a lot of the choices that were made in this film.

Crimes of Grindelwald once again follows Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), the lovable, awkward magizoologist and his vast array of creatures that inhabit the inside of his magical suitcase. In an attempt to stop Grindelwald (Johnny Depp) from influencing pure-blood wizards to rule against non-magical beings, Dumbledore (Jude Law) enlists Newt’s help in the fight against him. There’s also a ton of other subplots in this film, but it would take forever to actually list them all down and try to explain how they connect to the central characters. This is part of why I found this film to be a mess, and easily the least enjoyable of the franchise thus far.

I guess it will vary from person to person, but I just don’t care about the character of Grindelwald. We are two films into what is planned to be a five-film franchise, and I still don’t find him to be either an intimidating presence or even a mildly interesting villain. I was forgiving of this in the first film, because Grindelwald felt like an after thought to an otherwise fun adventure with Newt and his friends. This time around? It’s all about stopping Grindelwald. When we actually do get a chance to focus on Newt and Jacob’s adventures or dig into the relationship between Newt and Tina or Jacob and Queenie – it’s fun! Unfortunately, there’s not nearly enough of that to be found in this film. Even Jude Law, who turns in a great performance as Dumbledore, feels a bit wasted in this film. There’s so much going on here that you don’t get a chance to enjoy any of it.  There’s just too much focus on Grindelwald and Ezra Miller’s Credence.
I don’t want it to seem like this is a terrible film, because it isn’t. It’s a mostly well-directed film with some fun sequences throughout and a solid cast at hand – but this is beginning to remind me of the Star Wars prequels or even The Hobbit films. Hopefully the future Fantastic Beasts installments can bring the magic back, but it seems like Rowling is interested in exploring more of this time in wizard history and putting all hands on deck to make sure this story has a five-film arc. I’m glad that some people are enjoying this, but for me, it is the first time that I’ve ever felt underwhelmed by a Wizarding World film and I can honestly say I’m not looking forward to the next one now.
Previous post
REVIEW — SCAD Savannah Film Festival!
Next post
REVIEW — "Ralph Breaks the Internet"

No Comment

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *