“Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”

Wizards returfantastic-beasts-where-find-them-movie-postern to the big screen in this spin-off of Harry Potter showing how American wizards differ from the Brits. “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” shows American wizards and how their government works, along with some action from some escapee magical creatures.

The year is 1926 and British wizard Newt Scamander (played by Eddie Redmayne) has just arrived in New York City, a quick stopover before heading out to Arizona. He carries with him a briefcase full of magical creatures not yet completely understood by the wizarding world. When he runs into a No-Maj (a human, American for Muggle), Jacob Kowalksi (played by Dan Fogler), a briefcase switch up leads to the creatures escaping and running wild in the city.

Newt uses magic and is caught by Tina Goldstein who works for the MACUSA (The Magical Congress of the United States), who arrests him for being an unregistered wizard. Tina and her sister Queenie, who’s a Legillimen (mind reader), join the two on their journey. Queenie even becomes a love interest for Jacob. The movie follows those four trying to catch these creatures while also fighting a dark force that’s been wreaking havoc throughout the city.

This movie differs from the Harry Potter series in many ways. First, this movie is set up before Harry Potter’s time. There are some references to Hogwarts and Albus Dumbledore, but it’s not yet known how the two series will link to one another. Another is how the overall story made you feel. With Harry Potter everything was high scale and took place in castles and giant courtyards, where this movie has a variety of scenery and is kind of all over the place.

Personally, I thought this film was a lot more fun and light-hearted than Harry Potter. With the Potter films, you really have to pay attention and link all the tiny details together or you won’t understand the storyline. “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” was a lot more fun and informational, almost everything was set out and didn’t really make you think and work. This movie does seem run long at a little over two hours, but the movie is so intriguing that time will just fly right by. I loved how this showed the many different creatures and their powers. If you fell in love with the Harry Potter films like I did, this movie will not disappoint.

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