(2016) (Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston) (PG-13)
- QUICK TAKE:
- Fantasy: A 1920s era wizard who collects fantastic creatures must contend with losing some of those while visiting New York City that's besieged by other strange events that have the populace worried.
- It's 1926 and Newt Scamander (EDDIE REDMAYNE) is a wizard who's been traveling the world collecting fantastic creatures he desires to rescue, nurture and protect, all to educate other wizards about such beasts. He's arrived in New York City in hopes of capturing more of them, but strange goings-on there have Mary Lou Barebone (SAMANTHA MORTON) and her Second Salemers -- including teenager Credence (EZRA MILLER) and the younger Modesty (FAITH WOOD-BLAGROVE) -- believing the city is besieged with witches.
That has the local wizards -- who co-exist with the rest of the populace but keep their powers hidden from them -- concerned that the non-wizards (known as Muggles where Newt comes from but called No-Majs in the States) will soon learn of their existence and things will go downhill from there. Among those wizards is Percival Graves (COLIN FARRELL) of the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA) who's sought out the help of Credence to find a secret child wizard he believes controls a powerful vortex of repression and anger known as an obscurus. That's been damaging parts of the city, much to the concern of newspaper magnate Henry Shaw, Sr. (JON VOIGHT) and his politician son, Henry Shaw, Jr. (JOSH COWDERY).
Another wizard who was once part of Percival's investigatory team, Tina Goldstein (KATHERINE WATERSTON), believes that Newt's escaped beasts might be to blame and thus brings him in, although her beliefs are quickly dismissed by the rest of her kind, including their leader, Seraphina (CARMEN EJOGO). It doesn't help that a local No-Maj, Jacob Kowalski (DAN FOGLER), has witnessed the effects of such creatures on the loose, and the wizards want his memory wiped. But Newt needs his knowledge of the city to help find them, and they're soon joined by Tina's sister, Queenie (ALISON SUDOL), a mind-reader who's instantly smitten with Jacob and vice-versa.
Hoping for some help from gangster goblin Gnarlak (RON PERLMAN), Newt, Tina, Queenie and Jacob set out to recapture his escaped creatures, all while Percival's attempts to find the child who controls the obscurus puts them, the other wizards and the rest of New York City in harm's way.
- WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
- If they're fans of anything related to the "Harry Potter" universe that's a definite yes.
- WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
- For some fantasy action violence.
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