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Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them


Stars: Eddie Redmayne, Ezra Miller, Colin Farrell, Jon Voight, Ron Perlman, Zoe Kravitz, Gemma Chan, Katherine Waterson, Samantha Morton, Carmen Ejogo

Director: David Yates

Darkest New York in 1926. Mysterious forces are causing destruction and chaos and and brand-new wizarding hero Newt Scamander, played to perfection (a sorcerer who can really act!) by Redmayne, arrives on a mission to rescue and research magical creatures and ends up having to save the Big Apple from destruction…

As one might expect from a supernatural hero, Redmayne carries magical creatures around in his unassuming brown case – and when No-Mag (American for Muggle) Fogler accidentally switches cases and then unleashes the magical beasts, leaving Redmayne (“I’m more of a chaser”), Fogler and assorted Good Guys, Bad Guys and both Magical and Malign women to save Mankind and the secret American wizarding worlds from killer conflict and destruction…

J K Rowling’s screenplay (her first) is packed with more than enough characters and fairy-tale incident to keep magic-loving moviegoers happily entertained for over two hours with director David Yates (veteran of five Harry Potter movies) moving the narrative briskly and maintaining a agreeable balance between thrills, chills and superb Oscar-worthy special effects that not only create memorable beasts but also transform New York into nightmare visions of destruction and reconstruction that would leave Godzilla and his simulated celluloid ilk simmering with envy.

Alan Frank

UK/USA 2016. UK Distributor: Warner Brothers. Colour.
126 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 12.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 21 Mar 2017

DVD review