Last year when the first full trailer was released for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”, Han Solo uttered the words “Chewy, we’re home.” and you could feel hearts stop around the world. The excitement was not so much the words that were said, as it was how you felt as you heard them. I, like I assume most people like to be in places they feel comfortable in. You can see the same theory at work as studios release that “comfort food “ we all love. Last year “The Force Awakens” promise of being home was fulfilled, and now another franchise hopes to relieve its previous magic.
I for one do believe in magic, and have felt a void since the last Harry Potter film came out so long ago. Lucky for me and all the other want to be wizards and witches, J.K. Rowling wrote another book that was sure to be another movie. That book was called “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”, which has now made it to your local movie theater. This story while not about the boy wizard, still takes place in that world, only at a much earlier time. While we have no Harry, we do have Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne ) a quite man carrying a very mysterious suitcase. We meet Scamander on a boat as he is traveling to New York City for an unknown reason. We soon find out that it is to release a magical creature from that not abnormal suitcase. Things don’t go as planned, as Scamander has many creatures in his luggage, and one of them gets lose. While trying to recapture this creature he is noticed by Porpentina Goldstein (Katherine Waterson) who wants to take him in for breaking a few magic rules. Scamander wasn’t the only one in a little trouble, as a nomag (human) named Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler) sees a little too much, and soon finds himself caught up in something. Together they must stop a force, before the magic world changes forever.
It didn’t take long for me to get a smile on my face knowing this was going to be the familiar world I was entering again. With that Warner Bothers logo and the “Harry Potter” theme playing, there is no doubt what you are getting into. That feeling isn’t a dream, as everyone from David Yates, who directed four of the Potter films, and J.K Rowling, who wrote not only the story, but the screenplay as well this time. While the world feels familiar, it also feels a little more grown up this time. The film does take a little while to get going, but not long enough to hurt it. The story soars when it is playful, most of that involving Fogler, who is a shinning light as an inspiring baker (if you can believe that). With a great cast lead by Redmayne, “Fantastic Beasts” feels every bit like “The Force Awakens” felt, which is just right. With all that is happening right now, something magical and fantastic is needed. “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” fits that very well, because in the end we needed this.