‘Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them’ (2016, 12A)

Does the first of J.K. Rowling’s spin-off ‘Harry Potter’ movies mad of magnificent magic or woeful wizardry?

The quiet and elusive ‘magizoologist’ Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) arrived in 1926 New York in the hope of a relaxing time after his expedition studying the magical creatures that inhabit the wizarding world. But, after an encounter with a non-magical man named Jacob Kowalski in a bank, he soon sets off an adventure to reclaim his missing suitcase — and the magical creatures that inhabit it.

A lot of people would’ve had very high expectations going in to see this film, and I purposely tried to stop myself from this as I knew that if I did I’d be disappointed. With that in mind, this film is exactly what I thought it would be — mediocre. This film is not so outstanding that I’ve already pre-ordered the DVD, nor is it so poor that I need to write a long series of paragraphs outlining its many weaknesses.

The cast all gave good performances, and I especially liked Redmayne as Newt Scamander as he portrayed the shy and lovable protagonist very well. The characters all very much resembled those in the main ‘Harry Potter’ films — the hero male protagonist who’s new to the wizarding community, the comic-relief best friend of the protagonist, and the serious and intelligent witch to complete the trio.

For those eagle-eyed ‘Potter’ fans out there, ‘Fantastic Beasts’ has the odd reference to the main series. Also, the film does appear to be a slightly more tied-in to the main films than I first thought, which I’m personally not a fan of. I think this film would’ve coped just as well without the name-drops and character references asI felt they just weren’t necessary. I won’t get into too much detail about these so as to avoid spoilers, but I’m sure most will agree with me.

Overall, ‘Fantastic Beasts’ is a reasonable film, and I’m sure most hard-core ‘Potter’ fans will love it. However, for me, it lacked anything to bring it much above average, meaning I’ll have to settle with an eight-out-of-ten for ‘Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them’.



If you like what you read here, please say so in the comments below. Don’t forget, if you’d like me to review any film or TV Show in particular, just click the button at the top of the screen labelled ‘Film and TV Show Requests’. Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @screencritic either. Happy watching!

One thought on “‘Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them’ (2016, 12A)

  1. Another great review Jack although the FT’s film critic was a bit more taken with the film than you were, he thought Eddie Redmayne was the weak link! Apparently it’s the first of a possible 5 films on this theme so the producers-and J.K. Rowling-will be hoping for a few rave reviews about this one.

    Keep it up, it’s always a pleasure to read your reviews.

    Vic Shirley


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s