Fantastic Beast: The Secrets of Dumbledore – Movie Reviews by Ry!

Fantastic Beast: The Secrets of Dumbledore – A Magical Display of Love and Politics

Within a journey, there are many paths to wander upon.  It is a story that weaves through endless situations that build upon adventure.  In any case, we are enticed by the wonder, hoping everything will be an enjoyable experience.  In this review I look at the latest sequel in the Fantastic Beast franchise.  With a new threat to the world of magic, it is another experience of something unique in the familiar.  Even with a shaky start, Fantastic Beast: The Secrets of Dumbledore provides a spark for an intriguing look into the wizarding world of politics. 

This is the third film in the series, as we follow the continued exploits of Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne).  In this latest chapter, he is tasked by Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) to bring together a team to go against Gellert Grindelwald (Mads Mikkelsen).  The beginning is a mixture of laying the foundation for the current story while also wrapping up loose ends of the previous film.  Through the initial epilogue, we are introduced to the current conflict: Grindelwald is trying to become the new leader of the wizarding world.  If he gets elected, he will enact his plan of war to the muggles.  Because of a blood pact, Dumbledore cannot fight him directly (plot device).  Because of this, he has tasked Newt (and others) to stop him from gaining ultimate power.  With a returning cast (Credence, Jacob Kowalski, Queenie) combined with newcomers (Theseus Scamander, Aberforth, Lally), the first half is a muddling of forced exposition and characterized setups.  It is simplified moving of general chess pieces, maneuvering character around because of circumstance.  This provides a lot of strain dialogue and predictable situations, dragging down the initial intrigue of the unique creatures and magical world-building.  There is this ‘tug-a-war’ feeling, breaking the conceptual with forced influences to be connected.  There are moments of emotional gravitas but lose any strength because of the script.  Eventually, the story begins to evolve beyond the foolery of forced intent, leaning into the political and flawed aspects of certain relationships.  As the story begins to morph into its own, each character because a unique cog in the overall scope (of the story).  This brings about a levity that showcases the emotional aspect (and ramification) of Grindelwald’s plan. 

As the story moves into the second half, the warring factions become a litmus test of purposeful guise.  The representation that stands within the wizarding world highlights a society of difference of opinions, adding causality to the intent of the message.  This escape of the sublime showcases the importance of Grindelwald and Dumbledore, building a delicate balance of relationship and survival.  This struggle of power and responsibility weighs through the scheming, creating an adrenaline rush within the ‘race against time’ mission for Newt and his team.  When things reach the finale, it becomes a riveting sensation of political conflict, magical action scenes and poignant displays of flawed relationships.  This leads into a bittersweet triumph climax, leading to the possibilities of what may happen in the future.  Fantastic Beast: The Secrets of Dumbledore starts off shaky, but eventually stands out in its own way.  If you are a fan of this franchise or fantasy, this is one for you.  It is enjoyable time that can be a fun time at theaters.   

Full Score – 3.5 out of 5 (Matinee)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *