Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore Review

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Two old allies meet in a beautiful restaurant hoping to come to terms with the state of the world. On one side of the table, Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law), advocates for open Muggle relations. Across from him sits Gellert Grindlewald (Mads Mikkelsen), protector of Wizard supremacy.  Knowing that they cannot fight each other, but are determined not to let the other win, they try to persuade the other to their point of view.  With the upcoming election of the Leader of the Wizarding World coming up, it will be an adventure to see how the battle turns out

Fantastic Beast: Secrets of Dumbledore finds us in a continued battle of extremes.  We see Grindlewald continuing his quest for power.  His charismatic persona and undeniable power make him a desirable candidate for the next world leader of the Wizarding world elections.  His followers pave the way for his possible takeover.  As expected, he will do everything and everything to get his way and no life is too important to give him the win.  He has no opposition except the only thing he cannot eliminate, Albus Dumbledore.

Dumbledore knows how dangerous the world can be if Grindlewald becomes the Wizarding World’s leader.  He knows he must do something to stop him by any means possible. He does the only thing he can do he gathers the most unlikely team of misfits and try to stop him.  In addition, he continues to try and bring understanding to Credence/Aurelis Dumbledore(Ezra Miller).

We are introduced to his team. Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) is saving and caring for the creature that can decide the upcoming election of the Wizarding leader, a Qilin.   His dutiful assistant, Bunty (Victoria Yeats) passing on Dumbledore’s words “No one can know everything”.  They are joined by others recruited by Dumbledore, his brother Theseus (Callum Turner), a US Charms professor Lally (Jessica Williams), and returning muggle Jacob Kowalski (Dan Folger). Together they set out to save the world.

In watching this, I truly enjoyed seeing the characters they were like old friends.  I enjoyed seeing the meticulous but playful side of Dumbledore as he puts into place his well thought plans as well as his “why not” whims.  I admired the loyal but questioning Newt and his mesmerizing undulation to charm a giant scorpion.  The dedication of Bunty, to stand by Newt and his creatures is endearing. Thesus’ experience in going against dark wizards and Lally’s background in Charms bring a rounded strength to the team.  Jacob brings the “what do we got to lose” adventure to the team and finds a little magic of his own in the process.

Mads Mikkelsen’s Grindlewalt was perfection.  He brought a new side of the character to the story that changed the perspective for me.  Johnny Depp’s portrayal of the character was amazing but, the chemistry of Dumbledore and this Grindlewald was more fluid and believable.  The scenes between them appeared effortless and genuine.

So many things relevant to today are seen in this installment of Fantastic Beasts.  The blind faith that people put into persons that have a way of saying things or following for the sake of belonging.  Remorse for believing in veiled promises and strength to see a bad situation that is overlooked or ignored and have the courage to do something about it. Credence put his faith in Grindlewald in “Crimes of Grindelwald”, but now we see his faith and belief wavering as to who he really is.  We see doubts in him and how conflicted he is.  Queenie now questioning her decision to follow Grindelwald after seeing the hidden side of the man she thought stood for what she wanted.  Even Jacob, who put aside all his belief in magic to move on with his life picks up his wand and joins for the greater good.