Movie review: ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’


Originally published November 28, 2018.


Blood oaths. Love. Loyalty. Family. Friendship. What or who do you follow?


In “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” there are a lot of pathways from which to choose. This movie was a movie goer’s dream, if all it had to do with cinematography. The back drops, scenery and beasts were quite amazing. The colors and the wardrobe choices were period pieces and very beautiful. Spoiler alert from here on out.


It is amazing that Albus Dumbledore is played by Jude Law and is in a three-piece suite and not the glorious robes that he is known for and he is also quite handsome with dark hair. I know that it doesn’t take that long for someone to go completely gray, and former President Obama did it in eight years, but the full-on platinum flow sixteen years later with all of the wrinkles leaves something to be desired. Newt Scamander is back to his travels, but not how he wishes to do them.


His lovely little Niffler is back for another adventure as well. It seems that Niffler is one of the most loyal creatures in the movie because it always comes back to Newt no matter what, even after finding shiny things. Theseus Scamander, Newt’s brother, is working for the British Ministry of Magic and wants Newt to work with him, but Newt remains as anti-social as ever and since he doesn’t take sides, he turns down the offer to be able to travel and to assist the Ministry in finding Gellert Grindelwald.


Now, Theseus has a love interest and her name is Leta Lestrange. Yes, possible distant relative of Bellatrix, but that is a Harry Potter character and not apart of this tale at the moment. Porpentina and Queenie Goldstein are sisters in this movie and both have love interests. Newt is in love with Porpentina and Queenie is in love with Jacob Kolwaski. The problems with these relationships are that one is avoided because of misinformation and the other is an abomination because of Jacob’s magic status.


Gellert Grindelwald, played by Johnny Depp, left something to be desired. It was not his best work as a character and it felt like he borrowed from the last of Captain Jack Sparrow to bring his character to life. We will have to see where this journey for the Fantastic Beasts takes us because there is so much left to uncover with the movie leaving so much hanging.


Siblings are found and lost and there is a character by the name of Cadence who reminds me of G. Callen, from NCIS, not knowing from where he came, but knows he can do extra special things like magic. Of course, Grindelwald has to aid in this coming together somehow. So, we have bad guys, good guys, blood oaths, love, loyalty, family and friendships in this movie. We just have to figure out which one is more advantageous to follow.


I would give this movie 6.5 out of 10 stars because of the cinematography and the beasts. The plot left a little to be desired, but I will be awaiting the next installment of J.K. Rowling’s wonderful imagination.