When I first heard the news that J.K Rowling was continuing the Harry Potter films I was very excited. The news left many to speculate whether these movies would be as good as the original stories and if a new film would draw fans of the original Harry Potter films. It was refreshing to see J.K Rowling and the producers come up with a completely reimagined story and new characters that takes place in the same magical universe.
Fantastic Beasts begins with Newt Scamander, played by Eddie Redmayne, a magizoologist traveling the world to document and find magical animals. He loses his briefcase that magically protects and carries magical animals that are endangered. Scamander and his new friends must find the escaped animals before they wreak havoc in New York city. While he is searching for these animals he gets caught into a dangerous and dark plot along the way.
One of the highlights of the film was to see all the magical animals that each had a unique personality. Fantastic Beasts takes place many years before the story of Harry Potter but still references key characters and places such as Dumbledore, Hogwarts, and the first dark wizard who caused a war.
Unlike Harry Potter, the main characters are already adults and established in life which brought a maturity to the Harry Potter franchise. Most of the fans that grew up with the Harry Potter series who are now adults will be able to enjoy Fantastic Beasts and the darker themes of the movie. Themes such as abuse and dysfunctional families showed a darker direction for the Harry Potter franchise.
While the original Harry Potter series focused on the adventures in England and Hogwarts with a few mentions of other wizardry schools, Fantastic Beasts takes the story outside of Hogwarts to New York City during the 1920s. It was interesting to explore the Harry Potter universe in an entirely new setting. The story felt familiar and yet brand new.
Despite the adult themes, Fantastic Beasts still captures the magic that made children fall in love with the Harry Potter series. This movie is an amazing new chapter into the magical world of Harry Potter and I am looking forward to the next movies.