Review: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Harry Potter is back in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them! No, wait, this isn’t The Cursed Child, though it is filled all of your favorite Harry Potter characters! Ok, maybe not, but you might recognize a few names here or there. But it is set in the beloved world of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series! Well alright, it’s actually set in the 1920s in New York, filled with unfamiliar magical slang and completely foreign to both our protagonist and to viewers. Still, this is the Harry Potter spinoff that everyone has yearned for since the series concluded! No, it’s not? So why should anyone care about Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, when it seemingly lacks everything that audiences grew to love about the Harry Potter saga? For starters, it’s an exciting, dark, fun, funny, emotional, and immensely creative film set in a rich and fascinating world that is strong enough to stand on its own. It deepens and broadens the Harry Potter universe, showing us previously unexplored aspects, locations, and eras of the wizarding world providing new insights and a greater context for the events that shaped the life of the Boy Who Lived. And it kicks off a five film series in a way that’s far more topical, political, relevant, and just more interesting than any of the Harry Potter films that came before (matching the tone of the later books much more closely than the movies). And most importantly to me at least, this is the story that J.K. Rowling wanted to tell, that she thought would be the most compelling way to expand and explore the universe she created. As far as I’m concerned she was right, and I can’t wait to see more.

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Trailer: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

I’m currently traveling, which is why I haven’t gotten around to posting more in-depth looks at the two trailers I posted last week (or any of the other articles I have in the works), but I didn’t want to pass up the opportunity to share another new trailer with you. We got a teaser a while back for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, but this latest trailer gives us a much broader look than we got before. Take a look at it below and let me know what you think! I’m really impressed by the look of the trailer, which feels like it’s a part of the Harry Potter universe while still feeling substantially different. I’m intrigued by Newt Scamander’s magic briefcase, which definitely feels like something J.K. Rowling would come up with, taking something so ordinary and making it a source of wonder and humor. I’m not at all surprised that Warner Bros. really hammered home the Harry Potter connection in this trailer with the Dumbledore references and the new take on John Williams’ theme from the first film. Given the backlash to Batman V. Superman it’s no surprise that they’re eager to drum up enthusiasm for a different, beloved franchise. It’s a smart move, but we’ll see how well it works in the long run. I’m not 100% convinced that the general public is super enthusiastic about a Harry Potter story without any of our beloved characters from the books, even if J.K. Rowling is the one writing it. I’m on board, but as far as spinoffs go, I don’t think Fantastic Beasts will be able to compete with the likes of Rogue One. But what do you think?

Quote of the Day

The last trace of steam evaporated in the autumn air. The train rounded a corner. Harry’s hand was still raised in farewell.

“He’ll be all right,” murmured Ginny.

As Harry looked at her, he lowered his hand absentmindedly and touched the lightning scar on his forehead.

“I know he will.”

The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling

Quote of the Day

“Why are they all staring?” demanded Albus as he and Rose craned around to look at the other students.

“Don’t let it worry you,” said Ron. “It’s me. I’m extremely famous.”

Albus, Rose, Hugo, and Lily laughed.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling

Quote of the Day

“Bye, Al,” said Harry as his son hugged him. “Don’t forget Hagrid’s invited you to tea next Friday. Don’t mess with Peeves. Don’t duel anyone till you’ve learned how. And don’t let James wind you up.”

“What if I’m in Slytherin?”

The whisper was for his father alone, and Harry knew that only the moment of departure could have forced Albus to reveal how great and sincere that fear was.

Harry crouched down so that Albus’s face was slightly above his own. Alone of Harry’s three children, Albus had inherited Lily’s eyes.

“Albus Severus,” Harry said quietly, so that nobody but Ginny could hear, and she was tactful enough to pretend to be waving to Rose, who was now on the train, “you were named for two headmasters of Hogwarts. One of them was a Slytherin and he was probably the bravest mane I ever knew.”

“But just say –“

“– then Slytherin House will have gained an excellent student, won’t it? It doesn’t matter to us, Al. But if it matters to you, you’ll be able to choose Gryffindor over Slytherin. The Sorting Hat takes your choice into account.”

“Really?”

“It did for me,” said Harry.

He had never told any of his children that before, and he saw the wonder in Albus’s face when he said it.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling

Quote of the Day

“Don’t forget to give Neville our love!” Ginny told James as she hugged him.

“Mum! I can’t give a professor love!”

“But you know Neville –“

James rolled his eyes.

“Outside, yeah, but at school he’s Professor Longbottom, isn’t he? I can’t walk into Herbology and give him love. . . .”

Shaking his head at his mother’s foolishness, he vented his feelings by aiming a kick at Albus.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling

Quote of the Day

“So that’s little Scorpius,” said Ron under his breath. “Make sure you beat him in every test, Rosie. Thank God you inherited your mother’s brains.”

“Ron, for heaven’s sake,” said Hermione, half stern, half amused. “Don’t try to turn them against each other before they’ve even started school!”

“You’re right, sorry,” said Ron, but unable to help himself, he added, “Don’t get too friendly with him, though, Rosie. Granddad Weasley would never forgive you if you married a pureblood.”

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling

Quote of the Day

“If you’re not in Gryffindor, we’ll disinherit you,” said Ron, “but no pressure.”

Ron!

Lily and Hugo laughed, but Albus and Rose looked solemn.

“He doesn’t mean it,” said Hermione and Ginny.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling

Quote of the Day

“Parked all right, then?” Ron asked Harry. “I did. Hermione didn’t believe I could pass a Muggle driving test, did you? She thought I’d have to Confund the examiner.”

“No, I didn’t,” said Hermione, “I had complete faith in you.”

“As a matter of fact, I did Confund him,” Ron whispered to Harry, as together they lifted Albus’s trunk and owl onto the train. “I only forgot to look in the wing mirror, and let’s face it, I can use a Supersensory Charm for that.”

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – J.K. Rowling