Movie Review – ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore’

Hello everyone! 🙂

Welcome to ‘Bradley’s Basement’ blog and I’m Tim Bradley!

On Easter Monday this year, I saw the third ‘Fantastic Beasts’ film at the cinema – ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore’. This is the sequel to ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’, which I saw at the cinema in 2016, and ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’, which I saw in 2018.

As you probably are aware, I’m not what you would call a fan of the ‘Wizarding World’ universe created by J. K. Rowling. I’ve enjoyed the eight ‘Harry Potter’ films and I’ve enjoyed the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ movies, but I wouldn’t say I was an expert on the series compared to knowing ‘Doctor Who’.

I must get around to watching the ‘Harry Potter’ films again sometime as well as the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ films. I wanted to check out this third ‘Fantastic Beasts’ film though, since the second film ended on a cliffhanger. I was keen to find out how the cliffhanger was resolved was in the third film.

I’ve only seen the first and second ‘Fantastic Beasts’ films once at the cinema. I wasn’t fully aware of what was going on when checking out the third film. Plus, the third film was released four years after the second film’s release. The third film had been delayed for release due to the Covid-19 pandemic – please keep safe.

In checking out the third ‘Fantastic Beasts’ film, I hadn’t heard many good things about it. This is in contrast to the first ‘Fantastic Beasts’ film, which was warmly received, whilst the second film was rather underwhelming. I can see why people don’t rate the third film as highly as it could’ve been rated.

For one thing, like the second film, there’s a lot of plot exposition, which would be unfamiliar to casual viewers like me who aren’t well versed into the ‘Wizarding World’ created by J. K. Rowling. At the same time, I wanted to give the third film a fair chance and to see if it stood well enough on its own.

And in all honestly, I have to say… the third film is fine. It’s not great, but it’s an improvement compared to the second film. I’m glad the third film concluded the arc that began in the second film involving Grindelwald. There’s also a happy ending between characters, which wasn’t in the second film.

It was nice to see familiar faces from the first two ‘Fantastic Beasts’ films, including Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander and Jude Law as Albus Dumbledore. There’s also Dan Folger as Jacob Kowalski and Alison Sudol as Queenie. It was nice to see that Jacob and Queenie got back together at the film’s end.

Mads Mikkelsen stars as the film’s villain, Gellert Grindelwald, taking over from Johnny Depp. Sadly, Johnny Depp has fallen from grace lately, which is a shame. I would’ve liked to have seen more of Johnny Depp as Grindelwald in the third film, as I felt there wasn’t enough of him in the second film.

With that said, Mads Mikkelsen does a good job playing Grindelwald in the third film. It’s slightly annoying that it’s never explained why Grindelwald looks like Mads Mikkelsen instead of Johnny Depp in this film. I’m guessing these films go by the ‘Jeeves & Wooster’ logic of recasting characters.

There’s Ezra Miller, who hasn’t been seen well lately in the limelight either 😦 , as Credence Barebone/Aurelius Dumbledore. There’s also Callum Turner as Theseus Scamander, Newt’s older brother, and Jessica Williams as Lally Hicks, a Charms teacher that persuades Jacob Kowalski to help.

Katherine Waterston makes a small return as Tina Goldstein in the film. I wish there was more of her compared to her appearances in the first two films. There’s also William Nadylam as Yusuf Kama, Victoria Yeates (from ‘Call the Midwife’) as Bunty, and Poppy Corby-Tuech as Vinda Rosier. 🙂

There’s also Richard Coyle as Aberforth Dumbledore, Albus’ brother and Credence’s father; Oliver Masucci as Anton Vogel, Maria Fernanda Cândido as Vicência Santos, Dave Wrong as Liu Tao, Fiona Glascott as Minerva McGonagall, and Valerie Pacher as Henrietta Fischer. Despite the film’s misgivings, the cast are exceptionally good.

‘Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore’ is a decent entry in the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ film series. I wouldn’t say it’s a great film, but I’m glad I’ve seen it. I feel though that this is where I think I should stop with the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ movies, unless I get around to revisiting the ‘Harry Potter’ films on DVD. 🙂

We’ll have to wait and see. Stay tuned! 😀

Thanks for reading!

Bye for now!

Tim. 🙂

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