Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them


The first installment of the 5-part prequel to the Harry Potter Series is a huge hit!



Catherine Healy, Business Manager

Release Date: November 18, 2016

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Writing Credits: J.K. Rowling

Starring: Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston, Colin Farrel, Ezra Miller, Dan Folger, Fine Frenzy

Our Rating: A

Newt Scamander, played by Eddie Redmayne.

A prequel to the Harry Potter Era, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them satisfies fans’ wizarding world cravings. The movie follows a young Newt Scamander, formerly mentioned in the Harry Potter Series as the author of the famous textbook Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, to New York City in the 1920s. While the movie alludes to the United States’ connection to the ongoing Wizarding War in Europe, its main conflict is between Scamander, his party, and the Magical Congress of the United States. Fantastic Beasts eloquently captures the wonder behind magic while connecting it to human issues of bigotry and racism, a common theme in most of  J.K. Rowling’s works. The storyline entertains the audience from start to finish with thrill, emotion, and adventure; a true film for all.

Scamander in his office making an antidote.

“I, as a Harry Potter fanatic, cannot wait to see where this story leads and to what else we’ll discover about the wizarding world,” freshman Jesse Zambrano said.

In recent years, J.K. Rowling has diverted her attention away from writing books, shifting to scripts and screenplays. On July 31st, 2016, Rowling published the ninth installment of the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter And The Cursed Child, not as a book, but as a play script which has been playing at the Palace Theatre in London since. The Cursed Child and Fantastic Beast’s ongoing success have eradicated any doubt that that Rowling’s talents are not transferable across different media. Her writing style gave way to an articulately beautiful script that, when combined with David Yates’ vision, created a masterpiece.

Writing and directing can only go so far in the making of a movie; a key factor to what made this movie a must-see was the flawless job done by the casting department. Eddie Redmayne plays Newt Scamander to perfection. Redmayne captures the quirky absentmindedness behind the incredibly talented magizoologist character and is able to give Scamander a depth that few other actors could. Katherine Waterston and Fine Frenzy who play the magical sisters Porpentina and Queenie Goldstein accurately capture the chemistry and history between sisters that many can relate to.

One of Scamander’s beasts in action.

“I think the movie was great in many aspects including characters and content – overall a must see film,” senior Juan Morris said.

Impeccable casting, alongside experienced writing and directing, effortlessly constructed the necessary foundation for the next four Fantastic Beast movies.