Written by Luke Barnes
A love story between two wizards, wherein the drama is turned up to the maximum.
I will preface this review by saying that I did not want to see this film, I have issues with the removal of Johnny Depp and the casting of Ezra Miller, however, a friend of mine bought us tickets to see it and really wanted me to go so out of a sense of obligation I went. I want to put my bias right up front there.
However, despite going in expecting the worst the film was actually not bad. I was impressed with the romantic intimacy WB gave Dumbledore, played by Jude Law, and Grindelwald, played by Mads Mikkelsen, in that they felt like a real couple. Rather than just force in a same sex kiss for the sake of appearing progressive this film actually built the characters and went for it.
Again I think this film owes a lot to Law and Mikkelsen, with both adding a lot to the project. In the case of the former he brings an easy charm to proceedings but also a dramatic weight when required, and in the case of the latter he brings a strong villainous presence as well as the petulance of someone broken hearted and looking to spite their ex.
I think where the film falls down is once again in the fantastic beasts department. Newt, played by Eddie Redmayne is again fine, but nothing more than that and he basically acts as a passenger within his own film. Moreover, the magical creatures felt quite redundant to this film for the most part with the only exception to this being a few scenes towards the end wherein they are forced in for plot reasons.
In addition, I did not like how kill happy this film was with its magical creatures. They are CGI I know, but some of the scenes especially early on in the film wherein creatures are killed in quite graphic ways on screen just feels needless and done to try and appear edgy.
Overall, not as bad as I was expecting but certainly not great either.
Committing to the Dumbledore Grindelwald relationship
The sense of scope and adventure
The graphic creature death
It doesn’t need to exist and doesn’t justify itself
If you enjoyed this review, then please head over to my Patreon to support me, I offer personalized shoutouts, the ability for you to pick what I review next and full access to my Patreon exclusive game reviews. Check it out!