User Review( votes)
Full disclosure here: I have not read any of the Harry Potter or related books. I’ve only watched all of the movies as they have released in theaters, and I have not rewatched any of them recently before watching this film. So you can take that into account in terms of how I’ve approached this film. With that said, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald falls short of being a satisfactory standalone film. While there are reportedly five films in total for this Fantastic Beasts franchise, this movie felt like a long middle, transitional film. The cliffhanger at the end is supposed to have you drop your jaw in shock, but I’m not sure it’ll have general audiences feeling that effect.
As one could expect with any Harry Potter related film, the visual effects were outstanding in this film. Despite seeing so many of these similar special effects, that replicate the magical powers of the wizards in previous films, you still can’t help to feel a bit enchanted with what you’ll see on the screen. As the title of the film suggests, the magical beasts in this film are truly fantastic and a treat to see. As a matter of fact, they’re so intriguing, you can’t help but to actually see more of them just like we did in the previous film.
There are a couple of issues I had with this film, and I think the majority of it may stem from the direction the film appears to be taking. Coming into this sequel, there is a pretty dark shift in the tone compared to its predecessor. All the things that you may have enjoyed in the previous Fantastic Beasts film have been minimized. The problem with the shifting of the tone is that it’s hard to tell what this movie tries to be at times. We go from a family friendly tone with the magical beasts, to a really dark tone that might not be so suitable for young children. Not to mention the fact that there seems to be weird gaps in the story that may be due to poor editing.