On Friday, November 4, I had the awesome opportunity to attend the New York premiere of Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them with Movie Pilot and then last Friday, I went to the worldwide press conference. Since then, I have had to keep quiet on my thoughts on the film along with many other critics, but now a week and a half later, I am able to reveal what I thought of the movie. Overall, I was impressed by Fantastic Beasts as it was a solid foundation for the new franchise.
While it's not a perfect movie, it was a pretty great film and there was an abundance of things I really enjoyed in it. I definitely recommend checking it out this weekend as there are so many reasons to love it. However, I'll narrow it down to five main reasons why Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them is nothing short of an awesome film.
1. The Movie Is A Breath of Fresh Air
In a year of many reboots and sequels, it was understandable that someone could worry that Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is nothing more than a re-hash of the Harry Potter movies in an attempt for Warner Bros. to bring in some extra cash after some of their other properties have underperformed. In the end, Fantastic Beasts is almost too different from the Harry Potter movies. It is like taking in a big breath of fresh air after walking 30 blocks in Manhattan.
When I sat down to watch the film a few weeks ago, I was thrown off guard at how different this movie was from the rest of the Harry Potter movies. While the magic is still intact, almost everything about this blockbuster feels totally different. The tone and mood separates this movie from its predecessors, the setting is wildly new and fresh, and the characters give off a total different vibe than Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and the rest of the gang.
2. The Characters Are Unique, Fun, And Share Great Chemistry
One of my biggest personal fears going into this Harry Potter spin-off movie was the cast. While it appeared great on paper, the trailers gave off a vibe that these characters would share an awkward chemistry and as a result, the movie would suffer. Ironically, the characters ended up being very awkward yet working terrifically.
Newt Scamander, the protagonist being played by Eddie Redmayne, is a total anti-social character who does not know how to interact with other humans as they tend to find him annoying. He often finds himself getting along with his magical beasts and connecting with them on a personal level. This is unlike any other characters we have seen thus far in the Potter-verse, beyond even the habits of Hagrid.
On top of that, we see the story focus on a No-Maj (or Muggle) for a change, an abused child, and a bunch of other intriguing characters. The main cast members bond in an unusual way but it is delightful to see their story arcs play out on screen. Besides a few weak supporting characters, Fantastic Beasts had a lot to offer when it came to characters.
Read up on Fantastic Beasts right here on Movie Pilot:
- What We Learned From The Fantastic Beasts Press Conference
- Fantastic Beasts 19-Year Story Suggests The Series Will End With The Ultimate Dumbledore vs. Grindelwald Showdown!
- 5 Actors Who Could Play A Younger Dumbledore
3. The Story Is Riveting
The actual plot for Fantastic Beasts seemed pretty weak at first as it was hard to even describe what the movie was about to casual Potterheads. It's about a wizard who travels to New York with a suitcase filled with an array of magical creatures and they suddenly get loose. At first glance, the story doesn't feel strong enough to hold its own film let alone five. However, it turned out that the movie is a lot more complicated than that.
It contains so many different elements between Newt's mysterious story, Tina and Queenie's story, Kowalski's character arc, and Credence's depressing, abusive background. The movie made us invested not just in its characters but in the overall story arc. Even though the movie had a solid ending, there are so many questions that people are dying to find answers to. On top of all of this, Fantastic Beasts isn't a very simple, predictable story as it dons some twists and turns that manage to surprise its viewers. Obviously, I don't want to get specific and spoil the movie for you guys, but just be prepared to be shocked.
4. Amazing Action And High-Quality Entertainment
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is no yawn-fest. This movie is an awesome roller coaster ride filled with stand-out moments all along the way. Arguably one of the most important elements of this movie that Warner Bros. had to hit right was the entertainment value. It doesn't matter how great the script was written or how amazing the CGI looks because a blockbuster movie like Fantastic Beasts has to be entertaining — and it definitely was.
There weren't as many wand battles as I expected there to be, but Fantastic Beasts makes up for itself by using action in other ways besides wand battles between wizards. With the incorporation of these huge, magical beasts, there is so much potential to make the best action scenes play out on the big screen. In general, this movie was extremely entertaining and didn't fail to feel as "magical" as the Harry Potter movies.
5. The Beasts Were Fantastic
In a movie titled Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which features an extraordinary array of magical creatures, you'd expect them to be pretty "fantastic." Luckily, this was for sure the case. J.K. Rowling has created a cluster of magical beasts and creatures for this franchise and they are all super creative and unique and donn very cool appearances.
From the cute Nifflers, to the tiny little Bowtruckles, to the huge Thunderbirds, Fantastic Beasts doesn't hold back from blowing away fans with its imagination. In the movie, we see Kowalski, Tina, and Queenie enter inside Newt's suitcase, where he keeps all of his creatures, and it is safe to say that it is a sight to see. I will confirm that there are no creatures seen in this movie from the Harry Potter movies, but it doesn't matter as Fantastic Beasts creates brand new creatures that will become as iconic as our Centaurs and Boggarts.
Are you excited for "Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them"?
How excited are you guys to see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them? Have you seen it? If so, tell me how you liked it in the comment section below!