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16th November
2018
written by Adam

The second installment of the “Fantastic Beasts” series set in the Wizarding World of J.K. Rowling’s imagination, magizoologist Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) is tasked by his former teacher, Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law), to put an end to the uprising of the tremendously dark and severely misguided wizard, Grindelwald (Johnny Depp). Aided by friends Queenie, Tina, Jacob, and Leta (Alison Sudol, Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, and ZoĆ« Kravitz), conquering this insurmountable task will take a brutal toll on all involved, and still, what’s the fascination surrounding the mysterious Credence Barebone (Ezra Miller)?Directed by David Yates and written by J.K. Rowling, this slowly plodding setup and exposition rich screenplay appears to suffer from the all too common pitfall of middle story-itus. While not serving as the world establishing opener or apex crushing closer, attempts to create richer context come across largely as a yawn material, leaving the serious wizarding to the final act; furthermore, pivotal dramatic moments consistently lack the emotional hook or pull to add the appropriate gravity to the situation. In short, wands are swung, people die, creatures roar and fly, and at the end of it all, none of it really feels like it mattered, except of course for the last big reveal, of which I’ll spare you the details. So, with hopes of a greater bridge film lost, perhaps we’ll finish strong? Here’s to more hocus-pocus with better focus next time? Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is rated PG-13.

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