“Fantastic Beasts” Movie Review

    “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” follows a British wizard and Magizoologist Newt Scamander (played by Eddy Redmayne) as he travels to America to write a research books on different magical creatures, and works to protect both wizards and No-Maj (or non-magical) people from the beginnings of a civil war.

    J.K. Rowling has written and produced this movie as a continuation of her very famous and popular “Harry Potter” book and film series. The franchise has been thriving since her first book in 1997. Now, almost 20 years later, she continues to delve into her fabricated world of magic and provide a prequel series to Potter’s school years—beginning with the story of Scamander.

 The spinoff film pays homage to the Harry Potter movie series by incorporating variations of the melodies from the movies’ original soundtracks. The music provides a wide range of orchestral and choral themes and emotions that work to strengthen the audience’s emotional responses to the movie. Scenes of action are fittingly accompanied by music with high percussion and intense brass. Similarly, the more tragic parts of the movie are juxtaposed with a more melodic tune. The music effectively elevates the otherworldly matters of the magical film, and makes it more emotionally captivating.

    The film provides an ethereal that feel is also bettered by the usage of computer-generated imagery (CGI) and digital editing.  Director David Yates has succeeded in making the movie visually impressive and imaginative, helping bring the world of magic onto the big screen. As expected, many scenes in the movie include close interactions with magical creatures, which are all rendered expertly and realistically. A scene of Scamander taming a rhino-like creature called an Erumpet has him dancing with the large animal, and closely shows off the details of the digital editing crew when it comes to rendering the movements of the beasts. The characters work closely with the CGI elements, but do not contrast against them in any way. The edited and acted components of the film flow together very pleasantly.

    Though the film provides a well-written spinoff of J.K. Rowling’s works, there is a flaw when it comes to explanation of certain elements for those unfamiliar to the “Harry Potter” series. Any newcomer to the wizarding world or child who is being newly introduced to the movies may not know about certain aspects, like Scamander’s origins at Hogwarts or even what the spell “Oblivious” (which they reference often in the beginning of the movie) may mean. Though it did not pose as a problem to avid fans, this confusion could incline a few not to enjoy the movie as fully as they could have.

    The continuation of the “Harry Potter” franchise has been anticipated by many long-time fans as well as newcomers to the world of magic. This film kicks off the prequel series with a captivatingly moving plot, accompanied by many supplemental elements that make the movie extremely enjoyable. There are plans to make this spinoff series into a trilogy, so all No-Maj fans alike can anticipate more adventure and developments in the future. All in all, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” is a cinematically and musically beautiful film that is worth seeing.

Written by Staff Writer,

Joselyn Carbonell

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