As a semi-obsessed HP fan, I of course had to go see Fantastic Beasts. I was fairly excited, because I love Eddie Redmayne and the idea of him in the HP universe made me giddy.
Thankfully the movie theater was not packed, as it isn't on a Saturday at 10 am, (this is the perfect time to see a movie in Philly, because there are no screaming babies in the theater, unlike every other time of day, which includes all types of movies), and I could enjoy my movie with little interruption.
I really enjoyed the Beasts part of the movie, which is obviously the main focus. They did a great job showing us the different species and what cool things they could do. And for that part, I give it an A+. The niffler beginning sequence was great. It was adorable and playful, and had that humor J.K. is known for. I really liked Newt and the Bowtruckle, and that relationship they had. It showed Newt's caring side and how much of a Hufflepuff he is.
It was super weird to hear wizards without British accents, since that is something I associate very closely with Harry Potter. It was also weird that non-magic people weren't called muggles. We all knew it going in, but it was still weird.
As for the movie, there were a few things that bothered me.
I didn't not connect with Newt Scamander. He had almost no backstory and only a "kooky" personality, that while charming, didn't resonate with me. He felt like a blank slate. We got some glimpses into his past at the end, and I'm sure the other movies will get into it, but the lack of backstory made him feel flat with no real motivation. There needs to be some of this for the audience to care about the character, even if it's the first in a series of movies.
While the villain was a cool concept, if I were a No-Maj in the movie during that time, I don't think I would think of an obscurial as a monster, but more of a natural disaster. It looks like a tornado. I don't think I would associate an odd mix of swirling gases as a monster. So to me, it didn't make sense that they were trying to fight against it. Obviously bullets don't work against hurricanes...
Overall, I think I'd give it a B+. Mostly because it's an HP movie and the beasts were interesting.
What did you guys think? Was it as good/bad as you thought it would be?