Director: David Yates
Writer: J. K. Rowling
Released: November 2016
Starring: Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything), Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, Alison Sudol, Ezra Miller (The Perks of Being a Wallflower), Samantha Morton, Jon Voight, Carmen Ejogo, Ron Perlman and Colin Farrell (In Bruges).
After 20 minutes of watching this Harry Potter spin-off, I realised it was not going to get any better.
A story of a man (Eddie Redmayne) who was expelled from Hogwarts goes to America to save and conserve magical beasts that have been wrongly accused of being dangerous within the magical community.
Unfortunately, this gets out of hand and his magical beasts escape into New York city and interact with Muggles – or as the Americans call them, No-maj. (Non-magical people.)
I had hyped myself up to see it because I had recently had a Harry Potter movie binge-watch, and had read one of the Potter books. So I thought, to be a real Harry Potter fan, I really ought to see Fantastic Beasts before it ‘disapparated’ from the cinemas.
Unfortunately, it was everything I feared and less:
A desperate clutch at straws to keep Harry Potter cool. Only this time, rather than a down to Earth, scary, gothic English classic, it was drenched in melodrama, and dripping with cringe-worthy, unrealistic American dialogue.
I am aware it was based in New York. But it was too clean, too cheesey, theatrical and lame.
I think it was a business decision to change the tone of the Harry Potter franchise. Perhaps to draw in the American audience. But, as an English Harry Potter film fan, I certainly felt alienated. I don’t enjoy the faff and bright colours of Hollywood in a supernatural movie. The movie just seemed made of plastic. You could tell every scene was filmed on a stage – I kept waiting to see the edge of the cardboard walls when the camera panned.
I thought some of the characters had jumped out of an old Doctor Who episode. (You’ll know what I mean if you’ve seen the David Tennant Doctor Who episode ‘Daleks in Manhattan’.)
Finally: What. the. hell. Why did Johnny Depp make an appearance at the end? Did anyone else get confused by this? Maybe the set design lacked in realism because all the budget was spent on Mr. Depp’s two-second appearance. So ridiculous.
If I hadn’t of spent so much on a cinema ticket, I would have walked out.
But maybe the book is better.
Jodie’s rating: 3/10