Eddie Redmayne, Jude Law, Mads Mikkelsen, Ezra Miller, Katherine Waterston
Adventure, Family, Fantasy
Rated: PG-13 for some fantasy action/violence.
All media used courtesy of Warner Bros.
We’re now in the third installment of “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” loosely following our bouquet of heroes Newt Scamander, Jacob Kowalski, Albus Dumbledore, and more in their fight against the notorious Grindelwald. Dumbledore has secrets, but have the creators of this franchise built them up enough for a satisfying reveal, or it this another installment in a franchise that only a select number of fans are still on board for.
Jude Law works as Dumbledore for me. Yes, the decades after this franchise leading into Harry Potter are a HARD few decades, but he embodies a twinkling positivity that really works for a younger Albus. Of course, we have to mention Johnny Depp’s sudden removal of the franchise and recruitment of Mads Mikkelsen. This is now the third iteration of one character and I think is finally the sweet spot for where they can potentially bring out more to this character than we’ve seen before. His and Jude Law’s chemistry work, and his physical appearance is much more toned down, and something I feel is more compatible with this version of Dumbledore falling in love with when they were young. Nothing to say about Depp’s acting, but the blonde hair and intensity was off-putting…
The story itself is more streamlined than the previous film, but still not solely centered around Newt as the first film was. The incorporation of more magical creatures was better with this, as well I found myself more dazzled by them and enjoying the moments Newt interacts with them. Newt is no longer a stationary character, but it feels much more like a Dumbledore-centric story. There aren’t a crazy amount of new characters, but some plot lines I needed to be reminded of because of the lessened impact they had from the previous film.
I overall had an okay time and I would say it does clear the mark for being my favorite of the Fantastic Beasts franchise. It’s set up hopefully to fulfill on the promise when you introduce Grindelwald and Dumbledore, and can only hope that showdown redeems the series for the Harry Potter fans who may not have connected with this so far. I would recommend regardless for fans.