The Phoenix Fire

Crimes of Grindelwald review by Mohammad Khan

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Rating: ★★☆☆☆

The long-awaited second installment of the Fantastic Beast series hit theaters a little more than two weeks ago. In all honesty, the movie just goes to show that there is no magic left in the world of Harry Potter.

The Crimes of Grindelwald opens with Grindelwald, the main villain, escaping from his prison. To stop him, Albus Dumbledore, the future headmaster of Hogwarts, recruits Newt Scamander, his former student, to fight Grindelwald and his ever-increasing group of followers whose aim is to unite all pure-blood wizards to rule over the rest of the world, an idea reminiscent of the Nazi regime of World War II. When Newt agrees, he finds that wizards all over the world are taking sides, and even his own friends may not be safe from Grindelwald’s grasp. It’s a race against time to find Credence, a mysterious wizard on a quest to uncover his mysterious past, as he is integral to Grindelwald’s plots.

Let’s compliment before we criticize; the special effects were amazing, the acting wasn’t bad, the various creatures were interesting, and the cinematography was strong. But that didn’t make up for the unintelligible story, the many plot holes, and the countless mistakes that contradict the original Harry Potter books.

First of all, without recently watching Fantastic Beasts I, it was extremely hard to make sense of the movie. Half of the time I was trying to figure out who was who and what their relationships were to each other. The other half was spent reevaluating what I had just watched. And even after the movie ended, I was still left unsure who the heck Credence was. If you were wondering whether or not to watch it, don’t. If you are dead-set on watching it, rewatch the first movie to save yourself from my experience. Crimes of Grindelwald just lazily hashed up a lot of different threads that were seemingly irrelevant to the main story, but which haphazardly arranged themselves in the end to give you a vague sense of conclusion. And I don’t want to spoil anything, but the end of the film was a transparent ploy that was cheaply placed to promote the next movie.

Next, some of the many mistakes with the story. McGonagall shouldn’t have been a professor during that time, as she would have been born around that time. It might have been an aunt or other relation, but that seems far-fetched. Another plot hole is when Aurors are seen apparating onto Hogwarts ground. According to Hogwarts, A History this should be impossible. There are several other plot holes that are arguably more serious than these, but they reveal elements of the story that  would spoil the movie.

To conclude, the magic of Harry Potter has been sucked out of the franchise by the Fantastic Beast series and, a little before these movies, by The Cursed Child. It’s obvious that Rowling and other associates are milking the Harry Potter name for all its worth.

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Crimes of Grindelwald review by Mohammad Khan