Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

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Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby General Zod » 2016-11-18 10:24pm

Didn't see a thread for it, but I just got back and enjoyed it well enough. It's just too bad it came out after Doctor Strange because it doesn't quite manage to beat it out in terms of being awesome.

My only real quibble is I think they could have spent a bit more time fleshing out the politics of America's wizarding community.
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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2016-11-19 03:10am

Sadly probably won't get to either until December, but Fantastic Beasts looks awesome. I don't want to get my hopes too high based on trailers, but if the trailers reflect the film, then it honestly looks better than any of the book adaptations.
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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby General Zod » 2016-11-19 11:17am

The Romulan Republic wrote:Sadly probably won't get to either until December, but Fantastic Beasts looks awesome. I don't want to get my hopes too high based on trailers, but if the trailers reflect the film, then it honestly looks better than any of the book adaptations.


I'd say the trailer's a pretty accurate reflection of the film.
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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby JLTucker » 2016-11-19 03:19pm

It's pretty fantastic. The thematic elements trump all of those in the Potter series and the world building is really remarkable. Comparing and contrasting the British Wizarding World with the American Wizarding World is a sight to behold and learning the differences between their governments and how they deal with non-magic folk is up there in terms of interest. I strongly recommend it.

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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby Terralthra » 2016-11-24 06:28am

Saw it. Quite good.

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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby FaxModem1 » 2016-11-24 01:24pm

I saw it last week, rather enjoyed it. Kind of wish we focused more on the American magical politics and the Salem society a bit more, as while the magical creatures were neat, they didn't really hold all the screentime that they had, IMO.
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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby Terralthra » 2016-11-25 02:05am

I think the finale was a bit rushed. Clipping the beasts down a bit in various places - maybe chase the platypus just once? and cut down on exploring the suitcase - would've left a bit more time to flesh out the four-way confrontation and reveal.

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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby Crazedwraith » 2016-11-25 06:19pm

Terralthra wrote:I think the finale was a bit rushed. Clipping the beasts down a bit in various places - maybe chase the platypus just once? and cut down on exploring the suitcase - would've left a bit more time to flesh out the four-way confrontation and reveal.



I actually would have preferred it the other way. I don't dig the Grindelwald plot, but Newt having fun chasing interesting magical creatures, being kooky and the varied environments would have been more what I expected.

They could also give Newt more of an arc and character development.
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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby LadyTevar » 2016-12-01 06:48pm

What did Grindelwald tell Newt there at the end?
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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2016-12-02 05:50pm

Saw it this evening as my regular Friday Night Film (TM), thoroughly enjoyed it. All of the magic of Harry Potter without the occasionally irritating children around.

As for fleshing stuff out, given that they're talking about doing four more films, I suspect we'll get to see plenty more. And if they live up to this one, I'm all for it. Some of the hints about the war (both against Grindelwald and the previous one) were intriguing, especially Newt's mention of mainly working with dragons; "Ukrainian Ironbellys. Eastern Front."
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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby JLTucker » 2016-12-03 11:24pm

LadyTevar wrote:What did Grindelwald tell Newt there at the end?

I think he said "We all die"

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Re: Fantastic Beasts (Spoilers probably.)

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2016-12-14 01:35am

Okay, so, seen the film.

The visuals were good (except for being a little blurry at times and my usual dislike of 3D, though the latter is no fault of this film). The music was adequate. The jokes ranged from genuinely funny to painfully stupid, even offensive.

The cast was largely solid, and Newt Scamander, Porpentina, Kowalski, and Graves were very good (especially as the last of those is a role I would never have expected to see Colin Farrell in). And I absolutely loved that we got a major Muggle character who was involved in Wizarding affairs and actually useful, and managed to be treated with respect by at least some other wizards/witches. A major Muggle character who isn't an idiot and/or asshole is a first for the franchise, and long overdue, and I hope they bring him back.

The plot and character development, sadly, were largely a disgrace, though I cut Rowling a little slack as a first-time screenwriter.

Spoiler
The heroes had no real flaws (or none that were much elaborated on), Newt's dark backstory was vague and disconnected from the rest of the film, the creatures plot had rather little to do with the Grindelwald plot, and the plot/themes of the latter were just the same old Muggle vs. wizard prejudice (delivered in a rather ham-fisted manner, with a great deal of missed potential to explore the nuances of the conflict and differences between the societies and the moral dilemmas posed by secrecy) and JKR's seeming fixation with child abuse as backstory.

I think my biggest problem with the film structurally is that it felt like their were two different films shoved together, with very little to do with each other, and both suffered for it. We had the fun romp of Newt and friends chasing magical creatures around New York in the 20s (which admittedly might not have been able to carry a film on its own, unless they developed Newt and the others with a lot more depth), and the wizards vs. Grindelwald vs. Muggles plot, which had room for much more exploration of the subject matter and the questions it presents but didn't really follow through enough or connect much with the rest of the film.

I think I would have been more lost by it if I hadn't read the backstory for Wizarding America on Pottermore.

Credence being the monster also seemed like a bait and switch (even if I kind of saw it coming). Why did the little girl have the wand if she had no magical ability? Or did she have magical ability too?

It was cool seeing Grindelwald in action, but I think it was a mistake to make him the full-on Big Bad this early. Anything henceforth runs the risk of being anti-climactic, or repetitive. I'd have rather seen him in the background, with Graves being just a follower of his. Or at least have him escape at the end, rather than being captured when we know full well he'll escape, and it'll just raise questions about how he was able to escape this time and not from Nurmengard.

That, and, to be blunt, it shouldn't have been a fight between him and Newt or Porpentina. I don't mean that they should have lost. I mean it shouldn't have been a fight at all. Newt sucker-punching him with an unexpected tactic when he was taking on a bunch of other guys- okay. But actually duelling him? We've seen what a wizard of that calibre can do (in the books if not the films)- Dumbledore nailing two Aurors and three other Ministry officials in seconds, possibly with a single spell. Also, why was he wasting time with blasting spells or stunners or whatever when he could have just said "Avada Kedavra" (admittedly the films kind of seemed to throw out Avada Kedavra being unblockable a long time ago)?

But then, the duels have seldom been terribly imaginative or sensible in the films. Say what you will about Rowling's writing, her description of Dumbledore's duel with Voldemort in Order of the Phoenix was a lot more clever and memorable than most of the duels in the films.

Graves using wandless magic earlier in the film was a nice hint as to who he really was, though- that's high-end shit in the Potterverse. Likewise, his using "Graves" as a pseudonym could be seen as an allusion to Grindelwald's obsession with the Deathly Hallows and mastering death.

Also, anyone else pissed that that cunt running MACUSA never really got called out for her horse shit? She not only got hoodwinked by Grindelwald posing as her right-hand man (marginally forgivable), she runs a regime that enforces strict apartheid laws (which she seems quite willing and indeed determined to uphold) and where its apparently okay to sentence someone to summary execution without trial or appeal, and shows not a flicker of remorse over her men killing an abuse victim who Newt and Porpentina probably could have talked down.

What a scumbag.


On that note, I do like the subtle irony (intended or not- the film didn't really explore it or draw attention to it) of the Wizarding society being evidently far more accepting of (human) racial minorities and women- and some of those same people turning right around and enforcing discrimination against Muggles.
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that "all men are created equal." We now practically read it "all men are created equal, except negroes" When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read "all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics." When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy." - Lincoln.