Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will finally hit theaters this week, and fans are beyond excited to return to J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World. Now, the first reviews for the first entry of five movies have hit the web, and it looks like audiences are in for a treat when they meet Eddie Redmayne’s Newt Scamander and embark on a new adventure in this era set decades before Harry Potter was born.
The upcoming film currently stands at an impressive 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with a total of 9 fresh reviews and counting. Perhaps extending this series into 5 films was the right call after all.
You can read some excerpts below:
The Hollywood Reporter‘s John DeFore:
Whether or not the ensemble chemistry ever clicks to the extent it did for Harry, Hermione, and Ron, Rowling clearly has an endless supply of lore left to share with those invested in her world.
Variety‘s Peter Debruge:
Unsurprisingly, “Fantastic Beasts” amplifies both the strengths and weaknesses of Rowling’s storytelling approach, which unfolds in the episodic style of vintage serials — a cliff-hanger-oriented tactic that works well in novels, where readers might otherwise be tempted to put the book down after each chapter, but feels less elegant on screen, since viewers invariably commit to taking in the entire story in one sitting. And yet, the writer has learned something from the Potter franchise, clearly going out of her way to establish a foundation that can be enriched and expanded upon in future films.
Entertainment Weekly‘s Chris Nashawaty:
Fantastic Beasts is two-plus hours of meandering eye candy that feels numbingly inconsequential. Maybe this is all necessary table-setting that will lead to bigger payoffs in chapters 2 through 5. I hope so. Because for a movie stuffed with so many weird and wondrous creatures, there isn’t nearly enough magic.
Collider‘s Matt Goldberg:
Who needs Harry Potter? The boy wizard was the hero of one of the most popular book and film series of all-time, but with Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, it’s undeniable that the clear star is screenwriter and Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling. While magizoologist Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) is ostensibly the protagonist of Fantastic Beasts, it’s clear that rather than take us through another hero’s journey arc, Rowling wants to take her audience to a different era with timely conflicts. Director David Yates helps provide a cohesive vision, and Rowling brings us an endearing cast of characters that we’ll want to follow on new adventures.
The Wrap‘s Jason Solomons:
“Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” has all the makings of a huge family blockbuster, but all the bloated traps of those, too. It hasn’t quite got the balance right, but, like the title hints, surely knows where to find the magic formula over the ensuing movies. I’d check down that cheeky Niffler’s pouch, for starters.
Directed by David Yates and starring Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, Alison Sudol, Ezra Miller, Samantha Morton, Jon Voight, Carmen Ejogo, Colin Farrell and Ron Perlman, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them opens in theaters November 18.
Source: Rotten Tomatoes