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The Fantastic Beasts Series

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Is he seeing this as his chance at redemption? In which case, expect him to slip back for film 4 and be unworkwithable for 5.

Or does he have a huge Potter geek child? In which case, the power of hero-dad could be his salvation.

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So I saw it earlier and I was unimpressed, and I really liked the first one.

Spoiler

I really hated what they did with Queenie's storyline. And I wished there was some interaction between Queenie and Tina.

I zoned out completely when they were discussing the Lestrange family history

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I really liked it and, amazingly, Depp was good.  I have no idea who in his life can get him to put forth the effort but I applaud them and hope they give him a nudge for all his roles going forward.  Don't get me wrong, I'd still prefer Colin or Waltz, and I HATE that they're leaning into the Lost Targaryen thing, but Depp's performance was rock solid.

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Johnny Depp is playing Johnny Depp. He's not bad, but he isn't breaking any new ground either.

I enjoyed the film but didn't love it. The pace never really picked up for me and 1 hour in I was still waiting for the movie to START! 

Newt and Thaddeus are a throwback to the Weasleys...Thaddeus is giving me serious Percy vibes. Unless, the red headed Grindelwald follower who was killed at the meeting is a Weasley as well?

It's obvious Leta is related to Bellatrix Lestrange, but I'm having a hard time making the connection: She can't be her mother since she's single and has no kids (no kids without marriage in the wizarding world), she can't be her aunt since she ditched her only sibling. So...she can only be Bellatrix's cousin twice removed?

Don't have a clue how Credence and Dumbledore's familial relationship will be explained.

Sorry if this has been mentioned before: My friend and I had a mini debate after the movie about Dumbledore's and Grindelwald's friendship. To me, it was a friendship...to her, it implied a gay relationship. *shrugs*

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Bellatrix married into the Lestrange family so Leda is related to her husband, Rodolphus.  Well, all the English purebloods are distantly related to each other, so they are related in some way, but the direct line goes through Rodolphus.

The head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement is named Travers!  Who has a family member (son? grandson? nephew? great-nephew?) who later joins Voldemort as one of the first Death Eaters, so he's in for a nasty surprise. 

Like I posted above, I really liked it, but I will agree with a girl in my row that it's very much a set-up movie.  I don't think that's a bad thing at all but, when we still have three movies to go, I understand why it feels incomplete.  When all the movies are released and we can do proper marathons I bet it will work better. 

Which leads me to these:

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Spoiler

 

How is Credence related to Albus Dumbledore or the Dumbledore family in general? Based on the fact that when Credence needed a friend, he was taking care of a Pheonix, so I am inclined to beleive that Grindelwald was telling the truth and that Credence's real name is Aurelius Dumbledore.

How did Grindelwald know who Credence really was? 

 

 

Spoiler

We don't know how Credence is related to Albus, nor do we know how Grindelwald knows.  That's where this movie's role as setting up the rest comes into play.  Maybe we'll find out in 3, maybe 4, or maybe it will happen at the beginning of 5 and get the ball rolling on Dumbledore's duel with Grindelwald.  Personally, I'm inclined to think that Credence is related to the family but distantly and Grindelwald is exploiting his desire for identity and family.  Albus is significantly older than Credence which mean that there's no way they can be brothers.  Credence is in his twenties at most, right?  Well Percival died in Azkaban about twenty years before Credence's birth, Kendra's mysterious death (likely an accident at Ariana's hand) was after Percival but also before Credence, and nothing in the words or manner of Albus or Aberforth in Deathly Hallows gives any indication that they had another sibling.  Unless they're suddenly going to do the "wizards live much longer than Muggles" thing from the books and make Credence over fifty in age but not looks, there's no way they can be brothers.  Cousins?  Absolutely, and that phoenix does indicate that the relation is real.  It just isn't as close as Grindelwald is saying. 

Spoiler

One thing that I'm really appreciating now that I've seen this movie is how successful Grindelwald is at manipulation.  Voldemort took advantage of existing bigotry and then used power and fear to keep his followers and most of the British part of the Wizarding World in line.  Grindelwald manipulates the hell out of everyone and they don't even realize it.  He's also a long term planner, given that he had the foresight to have Albus enter into a blood pact back when they were eighteen/nineteen.  And I love that reveal as it really made no sense for Dumbledore to be so hung up on his feelings for the young man he knew that he wouldn't face him to save others.  But being magically unable to do so (for now anyway) gets around that and whets our appetites for the duel we know is coming. 

Spoiler

That's one of the reasons I buy Queenie joining Grindelwald.  One of the first things the MACUSA President talks about is Grindelwald's "silver tongue", that they cut it out, and that they had to keep changing his guards because he was so successfully manipulating them.  Then we see that he'd swapped places with Abernathy (that man Queenie made uncomfortable in the first movie when she mentioned "ladies things"), which allowed him to escape.  That opening sequence takes place six months after the first movie, during which we saw Colin's Grindelwald manipulate Credence repeatedly, so we have several examples of his manipulative skills.  Before Madame Rosier (there's another Death Eater ancestor!) found Queenie, they made a point of showing us a few things that, when added to Grindelwald's manipulation, laid out how she could join him at the end.  She was willing to enchant Jacob against his will so that they could get married, she was having issues with both Tina and Jacob because the relationship is against MACUSA law, she was literally all alone in Paris as she didn't know where Tina was and lost Newt and Jacob in the crowd of people.  Jacob seems to think that she may be under a spell of some kind, and she may turn out to be (a natural legilimens like Queenie would be invaluable to a guy like Grindelwald and he'd have no issue using the Imperius Curse against her) but I think these examples plus the manipulation are all that was needed.  I will be surprised if Queenie survives this story so my hope is that she takes one of Grindelwald's followers with her when she goes out. 

Spoiler

I loved, loved, LOVED seeing Hogwarts again!  And we got a glimpse of younger McGonagall!  Tiny retcon regarding Dumbledore teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts when we know Professor Merrythought had taught it for a looooong time when Tom Riddle sought the job, but I'm just telling myself that she took a sabbatical that year for research purposes and he filled in.  That's why he didn't look at all upset when Travers told him he was no longer allowed to teach it (since he'd just go back to Transfiguration for the next couple of decades until the Headmaster position opened up).  Also, that moment made me laugh (in a good way) because my mind immediately went to Dumbledore finding every loophole he could to get around Umbridge going after his teachers in Book 5.  I can easily picture him making a mental note to not let the Ministry have any significant power over Hogwarts once he was in charge in light of this moment.  Jude Law was fantastic by the way. 

Spoiler

 

I also enjoyed Nagini and I definitely think the human will be gone when she becomes the full snake.  She stood against Grindelwald so, while things can definitely change as we get to know her better, I think that choice indicates that she'd never have joined Voldemort if any of her humanity were still in tact.  I suspected that she'll be a tragic character and I think I'm going to be right. 

I also enjoyed Theseus and his relationship with Newt.  I'm glad he's not a bad guy who treats Newt badly but that they just had a strained relationship due to being so different. 

Guzman was a nice addition to the story, though I'm now wondering if his Unbreakable Vow is null in the wake of the reveal that Corvus is already dead.  I hope that also gets answered in the next movie. 

 

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11 hours ago, Stenbeck said:

Newt and Thaddeus are a throwback to the Weasleys...Thaddeus is giving me serious Percy vibes.

I thought Theseus Scamander looked a little like Percy as well.  

10 hours ago, scarynikki12 said:

Like I posted above, I really liked it, but I will agree with a girl in my row that it's very much a set-up movie.  I don't think that's a bad thing at all but, when we still have three movies to go, I understand why it feels incomplete.  

There’s nothing wrong with a set-up movie. Empire Strikes Back does this well. Luke is eager for any information on his father and they set this up in A New Hope. I’m sure people in 1980 were arguing about whether or not Darth Vader was telling the truth. It seems like information Darth Vader might actually know. 

Spoiler

If you want to have Grindelwald make the claim, then set it up, because the moment comes out of nowhere. Show him do some research or have him mention looking into the Dumbledore family or make it more vaugue and say old wizarding families.

One of the few things the movie did well was showing how successful Grindelwald is at manipulation. By the end of the movie you could totally understand why Queenie sided with Grindelwald at the end of the movie.

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I saw this yesterday afternoon.  I loved the first one.  I enjoyed this second installment.  My biggest gripe would be that so much was going on, it lost what was so awesome in the first one - -  all about Newt, his creatures, the relationship between Queenie and Jacob, Queenie and Tina and even Tina and Newt.  I almost found myself zoning out at times because there was just so much going on without any explanation.

I loved seeing Hogwarts and I liked Jude Law as the young Dumbledore.  But it felt like a stepping stone from the first movie to the (eventual) third.   

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On 11/15/2018 at 11:23 AM, Spartan Girl said:

I'm kind of surprised that Depp is getting so much good reviews for his performance.  Could it be that he actually makes an effort this time?

He at least makes a much greater effort to really disappear into the character of Grindelwald.  As a result Grindelwald comes off as a more complete, rounded person than Voldemort ever did.  Yes, he does awful things, but he's also a person you could see a younger Albus Dumbledore falling in love with.  Also, he comes off as a much smarter, much more charismatic figure than Voldemort.  In the HP movies, Voldemort came off a such an obviously evil, self-involved sociopath that I couldn't see why anyone would follow him.  He's like a wizard version of the Red Skull.  Grindelwald comes off more like wizard Magneto.  

At some point I could even see Jacob joining Grindelwald out of love for Queenie and horror at the idea of another world war (recall that Jacob was a veteran of World War I).

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I think writing for Grindelwald is the best part of the movie. He is populist, Rowling really succeded in making him believable. 

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I just got back from seeing it and thought it was meh. Some good ideas but TERRIBLE execution--the film was incredibly disjointed. Actually kind of a hot mess, really. The core problem, I think, is that this movie wants to be about the adventures of Newt, Tina, Queenie, and Jacob, and it also wants to be about the rise of Grindelwald in post-WWI/pre-WWII Europe. Those are two totally interesting movies--but they are two movies. This film suffers terribly from trying to make them into one movie, with a good dose of Dumbledore and Credence on the side to boot. I don't think the problem is that this is a set-up movie (though it clearly is), it's that it's a really choppy set-up movie that tries to do too much so everything is done very superficially and not particularly well. Its attempts to retroactively weave the first FB movie into the larger narrative don't help either.

More specific reactions under the spoiler tag below.

Spoiler

Leta Lestrange was easily the most interesting character this movie introduced...so of course they killed her off. Sigh. #LetaDeservedBetter because I thought the character had so much potential (part of that was Zoe Kravitz's performance, she was quite magnetic) that was just totally wasted by her stupid death. Theseus, on the other hand, is a big old block of wood. I'm utterly and completely uninterested in him. Oh, and why oh why was it necessary to have Leta maybe ambiguously still have feelings for Newt? Couldn't they just have been childhood friends whose relationship has been made awkward by her engagement to his estranged brother? The crush was so unnecessary.

Credence is a big YAWN. You felt badly for him in the first movie and the reveal that he was the Obscurus worked because it was legitimately surprising. As the ~special orphan trying to find his parents that all of wizarding Europe is fixated on? Nope, nope, nope. He doesn't work. And the reveal that he's a Dumbledore is kind of eyeroll-worthy. Also eyeroll-worthy is that his poor girlfriend ends up Voldemort's pet snake...GTFO with that nonsense.

Queenie's storyline sucked immensely, though I actually laughed out loud at her "I can't tell if you're joking or just...French." The actress really does have some great line deliveries. But I don't remember the character being someone who would enchant her lover to marry her when he doesn't want to and really, she just listened to Grindelwald say that Muggles are inferior and then she, desperately in love with a Muggle, was like "yes, I want to join up with him"? Yeah, no. I think that storyline could have worked...maybe...with different writing but it felt very, very contrived here.

Was Tina even IN this movie? She was the best part of the first movie and had like five lines here. #TinaDeservesBetter too.

Johnny Depp was meh--he was Johnny Depp playing Johnny Depp, not horrific but not good. He didn't have the charisma that Colin Farrell brought to the role and that feels right for Grindelwald, and too many flashes of Jack Sparrow leaked through for him to disappear into the character entirely (also I always pictured Grindelwald as way less weird-looking, Jamie Campbell Bower is at least hot), but at least he wasn't awful. Just forgettable. I liked Eddie Redmayne as Newt a LOT more in this one than in the first movie. Jude Law was solid as young Dumbledore. Oh, and the younger Newt and Leta NAILED their performances.

This movie also suffers from trying to have too many tie-ins with/callbacks to the original series. They actually become distracting at some point. Nagini, Nicolas Flamel (though his slo-mo running was HILARIOUS), escaping from the Ministry on the back of a crazy creature, young McGonagall...just too many.

IDK, I don't think the movie was as bad as I'm probably making it sound. There WERE interesting nuggets in how Grindelwald tried to sell the magical population on his ideas, especially the idea of averting another world war--although how he goes from "tortured and being transported under heavy guard" to "it's not a crime to listen to him" is a little murky--and the Tina/Newt pairing continues to be adorable (the "salamanders" stuff was cute but also they have good chemistry and balance each other well). I liked seeing Tina as an Auror in action, however briefly. Jacob continues to be gold with both Newt and Queenie. Jude Law did a really good job in the Mirror of Erised scene, and in the showdown with the Ministry. I DID like that you were all ready for Leta to join Grindelwald, only for her to spurn him--that was also a nice twist. But it just feels like the movie tried to stuff too much in--Kama felt entirely unnecessary, as did the magical sideshow where we found Credence and Nagini, just as two examples--and wasn't as polished as it needed to be to juggle everything it wanted to. The lack of a source novel as "anchor" was apparent. I hope they take a little more time with the next FB script and wait until it's really good.

Ultimately I'm glad I saw it, but doubt I'll go again.

Edited by stealinghome
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10 hours ago, stealinghome said:

Queenie's storyline sucked immensely, though I actually laughed out loud at her "I can't tell if you're joking or just...French." The actress really does have some great line deliveries. But I don't remember the character being someone who would enchant her lover to marry her when he doesn't want to and really, she just listened to Grindelwald say that Muggles are inferior and then she, desperately in love with a Muggle, was like "yes, I want to join up with him"? Yeah, no. I think that story-line could have worked...maybe...with different writing but it felt very, very contrived here.

Jacob did want to marry Queenie very much.  However, he even more didn't want her to be imprisoned/tortured/killed by the Ministry because of it.  Jacob didn't want to marry her for her sake, not his own. 

Also, recall that Grindelwald wasn't casting Muggles as inferior but as a different people who were also very much a potential threat to wizard-kind (why Voldemort seemed utterly dismissive/ignorant of this and especially of nuclear weapons makes him seem even more stupid by comparison).  Still, he was promising wizards in general (and Queenie in particular) that they could love who they wished.  Granted that it seems a bit like supporting Hitler in the hopes of being allowed a marry a Jew in Nazi Germany, but figure if anyone could grant official sanction to a Muggle/Wizard marriage, it would be "Hitler" himself.  Queenie is clearly naive and engaging in wishful thinking, which is odd for a person who can read minds to determine true motivations, but certainly in character for her.

Edited by johntfs
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19 hours ago, johntfs said:

He at least makes a much greater effort to really disappear into the character of Grindelwald.  As a result Grindelwald comes off as a more complete, rounded person than Voldemort ever did.  Yes, he does awful things, but he's also a person you could see a younger Albus Dumbledore falling in love with.  Also, he comes off as a much smarter, much more charismatic figure than Voldemort.  In the HP movies, Voldemort came off a such an obviously evil, self-involved sociopath that I couldn't see why anyone would follow him.  He's like a wizard version of the Red Skull.  Grindelwald comes off more like wizard Magneto.  

I figure Voldemort was a means to an end by the Pureblood fanatics in the Wizarding World the way Trump is to the Right. They saw him as an opportunity to finally take over with their long-held belief of superiority over "Mudbloods" and "Muggles". They didn't have to get along with everyone anymore because Voldy came along getting results. Another analogy is the mob turning to the Joker in The Dark Knight to deal with Batman.

Edited by VCRTracking
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Granted that it seems a bit like supporting Hitler in the hopes of being allowed a marry a Jew in Nazi Germany, but figure if anyone could grant official sanction to a Muggle/Wizard marriage, it would be "Hitler" himself.

Which emphasizes how offensive this storyline is given that Queenie is actually the Jewish character. I really don't think Rowling through through what it means for her story to have two Jewish sisters involved, and it's just going to get worse as the years of the story get closer to actual WW II.

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I hope so, but also doubt it. I've never been overly impressed with Yates' work and think his vision for the wizarding world has gotten a bit stale, but he clearly has impressed people at the WB and has a good working relationship with the studio/JK Rowling (even if I think he's not always able to reign in JKR's worse tendencies). I think a HP movie he directs would have to bomb badly--and we're talking like Justice League levels of badly--for him to be replaced. This movie might be underperforming a little bit in the US, but it's not going to be that level of stinker, so my guess is he stays. BUT given the mixed reception this movie is getting I hope the WB insists on shaking the creative voices in the room up a bit, and perhaps bringing on some people who can do a better job of curbing JKR's tendencies toward narrative sprawl.

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29 minutes ago, nikma said:

Do you think David Yates will be replaced if movie underperforms on box office? 

Since they didn't replace Depp even though 99% of the people were against him being Grindelwald, I would say no.

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19 hours ago, johntfs said:

As a result Grindelwald comes off as a more complete, rounded person than Voldemort ever did.  Yes, he does awful things, but he's also a person you could see a younger Albus Dumbledore falling in love with.  Also, he comes off as a much smarter, much more charismatic figure than Voldemort.  In the HP movies, Voldemort came off a such an obviously evil, self-involved sociopath that I couldn't see why anyone would follow him.

Voldemort is the Boogeyman.  He's the threat in the shadows that you can't even look at.  He's the monster so terrifying that just saying his name makes you fear for your life.  He's a larger than life evil.  That's why the Potter books systematically broke through the monster facade to reveal the human within.  The whole point of his final defeat is to show that he's not some mythic monster but a man.  The crowd in the Great Hall hears Harry call him Tom Riddle and destroy the myth with mere words, they see an ordinary spell counter the unblockable Avada Kedavra, and then they see his body hit the floor like any other.  The Death Eaters followed him because of his power but they all feared him as well and their loyalty wasn't as strong as he believed.  Snape tells Bellatrix that many of the ones who'd managed to avoid Azkaban believed that Harry defeating him as a baby was a sign that he would be an even greater Dark Wizard for them to rally around.  Only Bellatrix, Rodolphus, and Barty Crouch Jr seemed to be the ones genuinely loyal to Voldemort himself rather than any powerful Dark Wizard who would give them free reign to murder and bring chaos and even they weren't shown to be seeking out baby Harry but went after the Longbottoms for revenge instead.  Movie Voldemort is definitely flatter, cause WB had a special effects budget that apparently had to be used storytelling be damned, but then there are a lot of choices made that don't really make sense (I still can't believe that the Death Eaters have the opportunity to kill Harry at The Burrow and just...don't, while the books make it clear that he's got so much protection that they have to infiltrate and take over the Ministry so that Voldemort can get a shot).

Grindelwald is different.  He's evil and wants power like Voldemort but he seems to like leading his followers rather than sending them to do most of his bidding.  He's holding rallies and personally recruiting witches and wizards.  He could have told Queenie to join him or Jacob would die but instead he's saying that witches and wizards should be free to love whomever they want.  He gave Queenie a choice to stay or leave after Madame Rosier brought her to meet him.  He refers to Muggles as "beasts of burden" so there's no doubt he intends to subjugate them but only his inner circle knows this.  Everyone else gets to see his carefully crafted message of freedom and unity while missing the unspoken plans.  He showed everyone his visions of what we know as World War 2, scaring the hell out of them as intended, because he knows that the images are all they're going to focus on and remember.  Even Jacob, who doesn't buy into Grindelwald's shit, is now terrified that something even worse than the Great War is coming.  Credence, who knows that Grindelwald can misread his own visions, didn't realize that the same may be happening here (I'll be shocked if magic has nothing to do with WW2, even if it's just in parallel).  Grindelwald's talent for manipulation is key to who he is and is the biggest difference between the two wizards.  And, when Grindelwald's downfall comes, it will probably be presented as the downfall of a regime rather than ripping off a monster's mask to reveal the human underneath. 

In Deathly Hallows Dumbledore tells Harry that he'd heard that Grindelwald had eventually felt regret for his actions, and Grindelwald's glee at not being able to give Voldemort the Elder wand seems to support this, so I'm curious if they'll confirm this at the end of movie 5.  It could easily be that it was just a story Dumbledore had heard and that Grindelwald's glee was simply due to being happy that someone else would not succeed at being the Master of Death, so I hope it gets addressed. 

This also has me remembering all the theories that came out before Deathly Hallows.  Readers noticed that Tom Riddle graduated Hogwarts the year Dumbledore wins the duel and that led to so many to speculate that maybe Grindelwald was briefly his mentor, or was at least the one who taught him how to make Horcruxes.  The most popular spec was that Grindelwald had made just one, which Dumbledore destroyed before the duel, and that's how he recognized that Voldemort had made his own.  That's not what happened, of course, but it was a fun time and it's nice remembering all the speculating we did.  I will say that I expect to see Tom Riddle in some capacity going forward.  This movie takes place in 1927, so Tom's been born, and if they can have a McLaggen ancestor show up than I'd expect a young Tom Riddle to show up in the background somewhere.  Also I want to see young Hagrid!  Surely they can have a scene where Newt visits Dumbledore at Hogwarts and has a short chat with Hagrid about a creature. 

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41 minutes ago, nikma said:

Do you think David Yates will be replaced if movie underperforms on box office? 

I'd like them to bring back Cuaron but I think Yates is here to stay. 

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Well I have to say I liked it. It was fun and entertaining and the plot worked much better in this one.  Wizard Hitler is wonderfully timely without being too on the nose. I am not surprised Vanity Fair hated it they are extremely pretentious  and wouldn't know fun if it bit them on the ass.  I think the movie struck a good balance even though it was definitely darker and more adult than the first. The pacing was a little off and it felt like we missed some scenes particularly in Queenie's story but that's somewhat expected with this many characters. I do think the changing sides fits with her character though and that she struggles with her gift at times. It also means she will have a much bigger role in the next film.

Even Johnny Depp was competent. They must have threatened to fire and not pay him if he fucked up (he has had massive money troubles lately).

I like that they gave the Niffler a purpose. Otherwise I wouldn't have blamed Newt if he left the damn thing by the side of the road somewhere. Even if the baby Nifflers were freaking adorable. 

The way I see it there are a few possibilities for Aurelius Dumbledore's true parentage.

1) He's Aberforth's long lost son. This is the simplest explanation but its also the least interesting so it probably won't be used. 

2) A couple of places are referring to him as some kind of long lost brother but both of Albus's parents would have been long dead by the time Aurelius was born. Unless Albus's father got out of Azkaban and ran off and had a kid with someone else but I'm pretty sure he died there.

3) He Albus Dumbeldore's long lost son. This contradicts cannon in multiple ways and I would be severely disappointed if they retconned the series only major gay character. 

4)He's actually Ariana's child. This is probably the most twisted option as she was probably only about 14 or 15 when she died. It would also mean Grindelwald is likely the father since he's the only non-related male(I doubt TPTB would go there with incest) who would have had access to her. It would raise the question if it was consensual relationship but the series has gone there with killing babies so I don't see why rape would be an issue. It's also possible Aurelia as an extremely sheltered teen aged girl and was simply charmed by Grindelwald.  I also think those two beeing Aurelius's parents makes the most sense storywise. It would be a retcon but it makes sense that Aberforth would leave out the part of the story that might paint his sister in a bad light. It would also explain Gridelwald's obsession with the boy and why Albus sent him away. 

Edited by Emily Thrace
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2 minutes ago, Emily Thrace said:

He's Aberforth's long lost son. This is the simplest explanation but its also the least interesting so it probably won't be used. 

Oh I like that!  Aberforth would have been old enough to father a child at the time Credence was conceived, and I'm betting his mother was a Muggle (since no magic was used to save Corvus), and maybe he didn't know or she was American and taking him to meet her parents at the time of the shipwreck. 

7 minutes ago, Emily Thrace said:

A couple of places are referring to him as some kind of long lost brother but both of Albus's parents would have been long dead by the time Aurelius was born. Unless Albus's father got out of Azkaban and ran off and had a kid with someone else but I'm pretty sure he died there.

The Internet tells me that Credence was born circa 1901.  Percival and Kendra were both dead by then (1890 and 1899 respectively) so there's no way he can be a long lost brother.  And Percival died in Azkaban like you said, and a prison that is guarded by Dementors is not one to allow conjugal visits for inmates. 

11 minutes ago, Emily Thrace said:

He Albus Dumbeldore's long lost son. This contradicts cannon in multiple ways and I would be severely disappointed if they retconned the series only major gay character. 

Not a chance.  I'm not worried about this at all.

13 minutes ago, Emily Thrace said:

He's actually Aurelia's child. This is probably the most twisted option as she was probably only about 14 or 15 when she died. It would also mean Grindelwald is likely the father since he's the only non-related male(I doubt TPTB would go there with incest) who would have had access to her. It would raise the question if it was consensual relationship but the series has gone there with killing babies so I don't see why rape would be an issue. It's also possible Aurelia as an extremely sheltered teen aged girl and was simply charmed by Grindelwald.  I also think those two beeing Aurelius's parents makes the most sense storywise. It would be a retcon but it makes sense that Aberforth would leave out the part of the story that might paint his sister in a bad light. It would also explain Gridelwald's obsession with the boy and why Albus sent him away. 

I don't expect this to happen.  Ariana was dead when Credence was born but, more specifically, her gang rape happened almost a decade before her death (the rape was the reason Percival ended up in Azkaban so late 1880s), and the madness soon followed.  Kendra and Aberforth both became super protective of her, and there's no indication that she was ever raped again before her death, so there's no way.  Grindelwald only spent a few months with the Dumbledores before she died, so that's out too.  It's far more likely that they'll reveal Ariana was also an Obscurus than that she's Credence's mother.

I think Grindelwald's new obsession with Credence is due to seeing him as the one who can kill Dumbledore.  Credence was only useful to him in the first movie because he misinterpreted his vision to be about the little sister (Charity?).  It's possible that he was always searching for a long lost Dumbledore and thought she was it, but that would further prove that: a) Grindelwald is full of shit (shocker) and, b) that the Dumbledore relation is distant at best.  I think the simplest explanation is that he started looking into Credence's family tree after the first movie, discovered the Dumbledore connection, and settled on him being the perfect hitman.  Madam Rosier or any of his current followers would happily kill Dumbledore but Grindelwald was no doubt looking for someone sympathetic and pitiable to even get close.  Credence fits the bill.  The Dumbledore connection may just explain how he survived being an Obscurus and ultimately have little to do with the overall story.

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(I'll be shocked if magic has nothing to do with WW2, even if it's just in parallel). 

Oh, totally. I've always thought the books pretty much laid out that Grindelwald and his followers=Nazi Germany and the Axis Powers (Nazi-stye belief in eugenics and the superiority of one race--the so-called "master race"--included), and Dumbledore and everyone who fought against Grindelwald=the Allied Forces. JKR even pointedly gave Grindelwald a Germanic name. There's a reason the big Dumbledore/Grindelwald duel is in 1945, the same year WWII ended--it's got to be key to the end of WWII somehow, even if just in thematic parallel.

I do agree that Grindelwald is a fundamentally different type of monster than Voldemort, but I also suspect that Voldemort was much more like Grindelwald at the start of his ascension. We never really saw a Voldemort NOT at the height of his powers/evil/already with loads of followers. Grindelwald isn't there yet. He's still in the recruitment phase; he can't yet show his evil plans to anyone but his most trusted/twisted followers. And I believe Dumbledore mentioned that a young Tom Riddle was more like what we see Grindelwald be like here--manipulative and seductive, seeming to make just enough sense to get people to go along with him without really thinking things through. The question is at what point Grindelwald starts to make his evil intentions truly known (slash at what point does Queenie use her Legilimency on him and see what he truly plans, heh).

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In Deathly Hallows Dumbledore tells Harry that he'd heard that Grindelwald had eventually felt regret for his actions, and Grindelwald's glee at not being able to give Voldemort the Elder wand seems to support this, so I'm curious if they'll confirm this at the end of movie 5.  It could easily be that it was just a story Dumbledore had heard and that Grindelwald's glee was simply due to being happy that someone else would not succeed at being the Master of Death, so I hope it gets addressed. 

I also thought Grindelwald's refusal to give up the Elder Wand was in part a nod to the fact that part of him still loved Dumbledore, even so many years later and with so much water under the bridge.

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I just got back, and I'm not sure what to think.  It is definitely a middle episode, with lots of exposition and setting things up for the next one(s), and because of that, it seems a bit scattered.  There's a lot going on, and a lot to keep up with.  I didn't dislike it, and taken as a middle chapter, I might actually like it when I think about it some more.

Jude Law was an excellent casting choice for young Dumbledore.  His beard probably could have been a skosh longer, given how long it is when we see him first meet Tom Riddle, but perhaps it grows quickly. 

It is possible that I had very low expectations for Johnny Depp, but I didn't think he was bad, or playing Johnny Depp, and certainly not playing Jack Sparrow.  I saw none of Jack Sparrow.  He likely could have been better, and Christoph Walz likely would have been a better choice, but Johnny could have been so much worse. 

I could barely watch the parasite-in-the-eye bit.  Anything eye-related like that really squicks me out.

I loved loved loved the Chinese dragon/cat!  I forget the name of the actual beast, but it was awesome! 

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1 hour ago, GaT said:

Since they didn't replace Depp even though 99% of the people were against him being Grindelwald, I would say no.

Well, Depp is not a director. If movie underperformes, someone will be responsible. Either Rowling or Yates. And since they can't replace Rowling...

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51 minutes ago, stealinghome said:

Oh, totally. I've always thought the books pretty much laid out that Grindelwald and his followers=Nazi Germany and the Axis Powers (Nazi-stye belief in eugenics and the superiority of one race--the so-called "master race"--included), and Dumbledore and everyone who fought against Grindelwald=the Allied Forces. JKR even pointedly gave Grindelwald a Germanic name. There's a reason the big Dumbledore/Grindelwald duel is in 1945, the same year WWII ended--it's got to be key to the end of WWII somehow, even if just in thematic parallel.

And he built Nurmengard in Austria implying that's where he's originally from ala Hitler. 

I agree that young Tom Riddle was different than fully adult and powerful Voldemort.  We know he charmed almost everyone at Hogwarts and his clients when he worked for Borgin and Burkes, so my theory on why the Voldemort we saw in real time wasn't at all manipulative is because he didn't need to be and so that talent went away.  We may see the same happen with Grindelwald when his downfall begins but, since we have no indication that the general public was ever as scared of him as they were of Voldemort, I don't know that they'll show the same level of ruling through fear.  At least from just Grindelwald himself.  Since this movie was more spread out among the other characters they may show subjugation via fear from the whole of Grindy's organization rather than just himself. 

1 hour ago, stealinghome said:

The question is at what point Grindelwald starts to make his evil intentions truly known (slash at what point does Queenie use her Legilimency on him and see what he truly plans, heh).

I'm curious about this too.  They have to start doing significant time jumps at some point for the remaining movies if they want to get us to the 1945 duel, so it could be as early as movie 3.  I'm guessing movie 4 as I think Queenie will see some things in 3 that will start to snap her out of her denial and she'll also need time to start breaking through the Occlumency that Grindy is no doubt using against her.  I'd love it if she becomes a double agent and feeds info to Tina to help bring him down. 

1 hour ago, stealinghome said:

I also thought Grindelwald's refusal to give up the Elder Wand was in part a nod to the fact that part of him still loved Dumbledore, even so many years later and with so much water under the bridge.

Maybe.  I'm on the fence as to whether Grindy ever had real feelings for Dumbledore.  We have so little information about that time that it's possible that he returned them (I have no doubt that we'll get more with the next three).  Right now I'm leaning toward him manipulating Dumbledore like he does everyone else.  I think that he used Dumbledore's feelings against him from the second he noticed them.  He got Dumbledore to make a blood pact which I'm interpreting to be that he saw Dumbledore as a potential enemy and he no doubt led Dumbledore to believe it was a romantic gesture to mask the truth.  Incidentally, that's another thing I enjoyed about Jude Law's performance.  You could see the lingering feelings for the young man he knew when he looked into the Mirror of Erised.  I totally buy that he has to force himself to stay away from that mirror (like he will later advise Harry to do) because otherwise he'll let himself get lost in the memories of that summer.  Jude Law's actually a good argument for remaking the Potter movies.  Let him age up a bit and then he can play old man Dumbledore the way he always should have been.

This is so much fun.  I've missed all the speculating.

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21 hours ago, stealinghome said:

Leta Lestrange was easily the most interesting character this movie introduced...so of course they killed her off.

insert: "I-expect-nothing-yet-I'm-still-disappointed" gif.

https://www.themarysue.com/leta-lestrange-crimes-of-grindelwald/

Literally the only thing/person that might have enticed me to be invested in this series. I knew there was something shady about the lack of promotional material for her. I don't know why anti-blackness keeps taking me by surprise. 

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12 hours ago, johntfs said:

Jacob did want to marry Queenie very much.  However, he even more didn't want her to be imprisoned/tortured/killed by the Ministry because of it.  Jacob didn't want to marry her for her sake, not his own. 

Yes! She is willing to marry for love even though Jacob is not one of them. She does not care but he wants her to take some time and really think through what she is doing. 

8 hours ago, Zuleikha said:

Which emphasizes how offensive this storyline is given that Queenie is actually the Jewish character. I really don't think Rowling through through what it means for her story to have two Jewish sisters involved, and it's just going to get worse as the years of the story get closer to actual WW II.

Something important is that Tina and Queenie are Americans, not German, Polish, or Europeans of any sort (unless you go back a few generations). Unless I missed something big, they haven't renounced American citizenship. The Nazi Nuremberg laws never applied to Americans. My theory is that Tina and Queenie's family is originally from Germany but probably came over sometime between the 1830s and 1850s, so by the time the first movie starts, the Goldstein family has been in the USA for a little less than a century. Queenie wanting to marry Jacob totally fits my theory that Queenie and Tina are assimilated German-American Jews, who would be willing to marry outside their faith or someone from outside the magical world. Interfaith marriage was unusual in the early 1920s in America, but an assimilated Jew with a German background was the most likely candidate. 

6 hours ago, scarynikki12 said:

Aberforth would have been old enough to father a child at the time Credence was conceived, and I'm betting his mother was a Muggle (since no magic was used to save Corvus), and maybe he didn't know or she was American and taking him to meet her parents at the time of the shipwreck. 

I was pretty sure Aberforth was the father, but I like your spin on who the mother might have been. This all works for me. 

4 hours ago, scarynikki12 said:

They have to start doing significant time jumps at some point for the remaining movies if they want to get us to the 1945 duel, so it could be as early as movie 3. 

They can do time jumps between movies but they can also do time jumps within the movie via title cards (X months or years later). 

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5 hours ago, scarynikki12 said:

I'm curious about this too.  They have to start doing significant time jumps at some point for the remaining movies if they want to get us to the 1945 duel, so it could be as early as movie 3.  I'm guessing movie 4 as I think Queenie will see some things in 3 that will start to snap her out of her denial and she'll also need time to start breaking through the Occlumency that Grindy is no doubt using against her.  I'd love it if she becomes a double agent and feeds info to Tina to help bring him down.

You know, after the movie I considered the possibility that the Queenie plotline—more specifically her paper-thin “reason” for turning to Grindelwald—was part of a long con she and Tina are playing that was intended to plant her in Grindelwald’s camp to feed Tina information to begin with. I ultimately decided I don’t think that’s the case, but that’s all to say that I totally approve of Queenie the double agent. Snape 1.0, I suppose, though far less odious. Here’s hoping she meets a better end than does Snape.

I think Queenie probably does see stuff at the end of 3 that makes her question things, and 4 is about her turning back to the light. I also predict that Dumbledore destroys the blood pact medallion right at the end of 4 so he and Grindelwald can fight, gloves off, in 5.

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 Queenie wanting to marry Jacob totally fits my theory that Queenie and Tina are assimilated German-American Jews, who would be willing to marry outside their faith or someone from outside the magical world. Interfaith marriage was unusual in the early 1920s in America, but an assimilated Jew with a German background was the most likely candidate.

We shouldn't be guessing. Rowling should have figured this all out, and it should all be explicit on screen. These are important facets of who these characters are.

Rowling also should be thinking through the symbolic ramifications of the roles that she places her characters in when she's doing a WWII analogy story.

There's no representation when the characters are neither played by ethnically Jewish actors nor have their Jewishness as part of who they are. Why did she even bother to make them the Goldstein sisters?

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52 minutes ago, stealinghome said:

You know, after the movie I considered the possibility that the Queenie plotline—more specifically her paper-thin “reason” for turning to Grindelwald—was part of a long con she and Tina are playing that was intended to plant her in Grindelwald’s camp to feed Tina information to begin with. I ultimately decided I don’t think that’s the case, but that’s all to say that I totally approve of Queenie the double agent.

She did seem to have some kind of brief reaction to the fire but then calmed down when it wasn't hurting her so I think her joining him is supposed to be genuine for now.  Queenie is in the perfect position to play double agent so I hope they go there.  As much as she loves Jacob I think it's Tina who will either get through to her or be the one she can't risk when the time comes.  I'm looking forward to good Queenie/Tina moments down the road.

 

56 minutes ago, stealinghome said:

I also predict that Dumbledore destroys the blood pact medallion right at the end of 4 so he and Grindelwald can fight, gloves off, in 5.

Agreed.  We'll no doubt get several tries and then it will be a big moment to end 4 and get us ready for 5.  If done right it can be an inverse of when Voldemort took the Elder wand from Dumbledore's tomb at the end of movie 7. 

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52 minutes ago, Zuleikha said:

We shouldn't be guessing. Rowling should have figured this all out, and it should all be explicit on screen. These are important facets of who these characters are.

Rowling also should be thinking through the symbolic ramifications of the roles that she places her characters in when she's doing a WWII analogy story.

There's no representation when the characters are neither played by ethnically Jewish actors nor have their Jewishness as part of who they are. Why did she even bother to make them the Goldstein sisters?

From my perspective the fact that they are Americans and not Europeans totally changes for me. Any laws passed in England or anywhere else in Europe will not apply to the Goldstein sisters. Not having thier Jewishness as part of who they are sort of works for me. There are plenty of Jews who are not religiously observant nor does their religion define who they are or have a significant impact on thier identity. To me, Rowling is showing a very specific type of American Jew, but I know we're not going to agree on this and that's cool. 

To go off topic for a minute, I really miss the IMDB boards and this place has been a fantastic replacement, so I wanted to think all of the people out there who make these boards such a wonderful place to comment on TV and Movies.

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11 hours ago, Sarah 103 said:

Something important is that Tina and Queenie are Americans, not German, Polish, or Europeans of any sort (unless you go back a few generations). Unless I missed something big, they haven't renounced American citizenship. The Nazi Nuremberg laws never applied to Americans. My theory is that Tina and Queenie's family is originally from Germany but probably came over sometime between the 1830s and 1850s, so by the time the first movie starts, the Goldstein family has been in the USA for a little less than a century. Queenie wanting to marry Jacob totally fits my theory that Queenie and Tina are assimilated German-American Jews, who would be willing to marry outside their faith or someone from outside the magical world. Interfaith marriage was unusual in the early 1920s in America, but an assimilated Jew with a German background was the most likely candidate. 

Another thing to recall is that the movie takes place in 1927.  While Hitler and the Nazis are making moves to gain political power and influence in Germany, they certainly aren't there yet.

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I don't understand the relevance of the Goldsteins being American or Hitler still being on the rise to power. It reads like you're claiming Jews didn't face overt prejudice in the US or have  a distinctive cultural identity in the 1920s. Neither of those things are true (Especially in  New York!). 

It's also misunderstanding my critique, which is that Rowling isn't showing anything if she doesn't actually show it. Right now, she has non-ethnically Jewish actors playing characters who are literally Jewish in name only. What's the freaking point? That's not representation... That's a form of erasure.

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So, that was...a lot going on. I left that movie feeling like this movie was actually about 20 other movies stuffed into one two hour movie, or possibly an entire TV season. We have the teen romance between Newt and Leta, and how she ended up engaged to his brother, the relationship between the Scamander brothers, the rise of Grindelwald and his relationship with Dumbledore, the magic carnival with the romance between Credence and Nagini, the Lestrange family drama, Queenie and Jacob, the assistant who clearly has the hots for Newt, there was so freaking much going that, that I felt like we hardly even got a real plot for the movie itself. They all seemed like good movies, but I wanted more information! At one point, the whole movie was just one dramatic reveal after another, all about subplots we hardly even know about!

That being said, I did enjoy a lot about the movie. I love Newt, and think he makes for such a great, interesting protagonist. Due to the movie having about a billion other characters and subplots, he didnt have as much to do as in the first one, but I still enjoyed everything we got, and his awkward romancing of Tina, and love of animals. He and Jacob are also a great combination, and make a fun odd couple style dynamic. Speaking of, I freaking love Jacob so much, I love that he is just totally down with whatever. "Immortal alchemist? Wow, you look great for your age!" And, while I wish we got more of the several trillion characters, I liked what we got, especially with Leta and Theseus, and left the movie really wanting to know them better, and being really annoyed that Leta already died. In cannon, didnt she and Newt get married? So, whats up with that?! Also, her backstory was super dark, with her mother being mind controlled and raped, and dying giving birth to the baby. I mean, those implications have always been there in the Potterverse, but this is just right freaking there!

Speaking of, this movie clearly wasn't fucking around. I mean, we get child murder in the first 20 minutes! Like the director is saying "yeah, its that kind of movie! Have fun with this one, parents!" A lot less fantastic beasts this go around, and a lot more child killing and magic rape. I mean, Queenie...using magic roofies on your boyfriend to get him to marry you isnt exactly something that a totally mentally well person would do. I was like "ummmmm, can we go back to OK MOVING ON" during that whole scene, it was all so many kinds of creepy. It did do a good job at showing how desperate Queenie was to be with Jacob (even if he did want to be with her, but was worried about her being arrested) and that she would cross some moral lines to be with her man. I gotta say, that was a pretty shocking development, I didnt see Queenie doing darkside. Again, can we get a bit more on that please?!?

I will say, Johnny Depp wasn't as awful as Grindelwald as I thought he would be. He was at least trying, which is a lot more what he normally does as of late. I think that other actors could have done just as good, if not better, than he did, but he was suitably charismatic, and I can actually buy people following him and thinking that he might be onto something. In many ways, he is a better villain than Voldemort. Voldemort was so over the top evil, with the skulls and the snakes and the robes and the lack of a nose, everyone knew what they were getting the second they saw him. With Grindelwald, you can see how even a person like Queenie could be won over by him, out of a desire for "freedom" and to be able to live their own lives and avoid the upcoming war. I mean, the guy is also pretty obviously evil (I am totes the good guy! Thats why we meet in graveyards and use hookah skulls!), but he can actually come off as a real person who can get people, especially people who are scared or desperate, on his side. He can have rallys and meet with people, and actually sound like he is making sense. Its not like I can imagine Voldemort and the Death Eaters going from house to house distributing pamphlets. 

Also, I continue to question magical law enforcement, and where their priorities are. I mean, did no one call the cops when daddy Lestrange kidnapped Letas mother? Was he THAT powerful? Do they not care that slavery seems to exist in magic carnivals? I mean, they do have the house elf stuff and are generally dicks to anyone not a wizard/witch, so maybe this is all par for the course, but its just like, come on guys! And talk about trigger happy, they straight up killed that woman at the rally! Couldn't have just stunned her? This is why you should listen to Dumbledore! 

So, yeah, a lot to chew on here. And now it turns out Credence is a Dumbledore too? What a twist!

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1 hour ago, tennisgurl said:

didnt she and Newt get married?

In canon

Spoiler

Newt’s wife has always been Tina. Well, she’s been referred to by her full name Porpentina before these movies.

Leda’s never been listed as his canon wife. 

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On 17/11/2018 at 12:45 PM, Zuleikha said:

 

Which emphasizes how offensive this storyline is given that Queenie is actually the Jewish character. I really don't think Rowling through through what it means for her story to have two Jewish sisters involved, and it's just going to get worse as the years of the story get closer to actual WW II.

I don't know if I would call it offensive just yet. After all we know Grindelwald is WizardHitler but Queenie does not. To her he is offering her chance to be normal and be accepted which I suspect is hard for her. I think her gifts make her unusual even among wizards and she hasn't always been treated well. Hence her reaction to being called crazy. So while its easy for us to say she is betraying her people that's not how she sees it. Queenie is an idealist and Grindelwald appealed to that, it absolutely makes sense for Queenie to do what she did. 

I would also like to point out that there were actual Jews who supported and in some cases sided with Hitler. Some who only did so under duress but some like Chaim Rumkowski did so over and above what the Nazi's asked them to do. I don't think Queenie is in any danger of becoming a Rumkowski in fact that's what makes here story so interesting to me going forward. I think its a matter of when Queenie turns back to Team Dumbldore not if.  It makes her much more central to the story than as Tina's sister or Jacob's fiancee. 

I do agree that whitewashed representation is almost worse than no representation. However I'm not sure how the story get's around the universes aversion to actual discussions of religion or race.  It would odd for both the Potter verse and the time period(The American solution to ethnic diversity pre-60's was to ignore it or discriminate against it after all) for Tina to go around casually saying she is Jewish. I can see her bringing it up with Newt if they actually start dating seriously but not really otherwise. 

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1 hour ago, tennisgurl said:

Also, I continue to question magical law enforcement, and where their priorities are. I mean, did no one call the cops when daddy Lestrange kidnapped Letas mother? Was he THAT powerful?

It was understated but there was some fallout.  The Lestrange family are from France originally but it looks like Corvus Sr took Laurena to England when he stole her from her family and then we saw that he sent both Leda and Corvus Jr to America to be hidden.  Well, Corvus Jr was meant to be hidden but I think Leda joining the trip was meant to keep Yusuf and/or Mustafa from using her against Corvus Sr.  After dropping him off with Mrs. Barebone (and I'm going to need some more info there because it's one thing to hide your baby with a Muggle but it's a whole different level to hide him with one who hates magic), Irma and Leda returned to England and she attended Hogwarts.  Leda and Yusuf recognized each other so they had some interactions previously (my guess is he tracked her down a couple of times to find out where Corvus Jr was and she avoided answering because she wasn't yet ready to confess her actions).  I took all of this to mean that the French Ministry did get involved and that's why Corvus Sr fled to England before Leda's birth, as the British Ministry could easily be paid off to keep from sending him back.  Also he seemed to be aware of the Unbreakable Vow, or at least that Yusuf was seeking revenge, since he sent both Corvus Jr and Leda to America undetected. 

The Lestrange family was described in the movie as being a fringe pureblood family so it looks like there few of them left.  In fact, other than Leda, Corvus Sr, and Corvus Jr, the only Lestranges we're ever aware of are Rodolphus and Rabastan (excluding Bellatrix since she's a Black by birth).  This and the way Leda was taunted while at Hogwarts are, to me, indications that Corvus Sr didn't have as much influence in France as, say, the Malfoy family did in Britain.  Corvus Sr definitely had the entitlement of the pureblood supremacists we've seen in the Potter books but he didn't seem to have the same level of influence or else he wouldn't have had to send Corvus Jr into hiding and Leda would have attended Beauxbatons instead of Hogwarts.

I saw the movie again today and I picked up on some things I missed the first time.  When I saw it on Thursday I missed that Grindelwald implied that his visions were of Muggles moving against wizards.  The first time I saw him showing the visions as foundation for Muggle subjugation.  I essentially thought he was saying "this is the kind of shit they're going to do to each other" to start getting everyone in the mindset of being ok with his plans of oppression.  But this time I realized that he's plan is to sell WW2 as Muggles trying to overthrow wizards and I am ready.  It goes with the earlier comment by the Ministry wizard who tells Newt that it had been over a century of peace between Muggles and wizards. 

I also have decided that either Corvus Jr will be shown to be alive or that there will be a female Lestrange who comes forward to continue the line so that Rodolphus and Rabastan can exist.  Rodolphus should be born, or his mother should be pregnant, since he was in Slytherin with Tom Riddle.  I'm leaning toward Corvus Jr being alive since his name was introduced but I'd prefer a previously unnamed female Lestrange coming forward.  They made a point of mentioning that prophecy and, while we know plenty of them don't come true, I feel that it will.  If only to explain what happens to Yusuf with regard to his Unbreakable Vow. 

The Travers character was also a foundation for why the future one would join Voldemort.  This Travers strongly reminds me of Barty Crouch Sr (the real one not the kindly uncle one in movie 4) so I can easily see his son/grandson going the Barty Crouch Jr route and latching onto a more powerful wizard who gives him the time of day and encourages him (to use his powers for evil but still).  Travers Sr is an asshole who uses the power of his office to do whatever he wants and refused to listen to Dumbledore's good advice on how to approach dealing with Grindelwald because he doesn't like him (Dumbledore).  Barty Crouch Sr will later do the same, sending many accused witches and wizards to Azkaban without trial just because he can (sorry Sirius). 

I'm now definitely leaning into Aberforth as Credence's father and that Albus never knew anything about it.  Leda asks him if he knows what it's like to lose a brother, and he responds by referencing only losing Ariana and how he failed at their relationship.  There's nothing to indicate that he's feeling regret over any other family loss.  And his baby nephew dying during a shipwreck would definitely qualify.  I can't decide if I think Aberforth was aware or not, since his relationship with Albus is strained at best, but I think that could go either way.  Fun times. 

2 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

"yeah, its that kind of movie! Have fun with this one, parents!"

Heh, funny you say that because both times I've seen this movie it's been filled with people who would have grown up with Potter or read their kids Potter when they came out.  No children in sight.  I'm sure there are plenty of parents who took their kids without first making sure it's appropriate but it seems that the majority of the audience are old enough for the movie.

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I liked it. Yeah there was a lot going on, but I could follow it fine. But HOLY SHITJKR got dark in this one. Two babies killed, a rape backstory...guess it was rated PG-13 for a reason!

I thought Grindelwald alluded to Creedence/Aurelius being Dumbledore's brother, since he told him at the end that his brother -- meaning Albus -- was trying to destroy him. A girl I talked to at the theater has a theory that he is the result of Ariana's disembodied Obscurus finding a new host. Guess we won't know for sure til the next one. 

Jude Law was fantastic as Dumbledore. I was so freaking happy to see Hogwarts again!

Leta was an interesting character -- an actual decentish Slytherin -- so I too am mad she got killed off. Though her "I love you" to Theseus/Newt made me roll my eyes. I'm madder about Queenie turning to the dark side.

Nagini seems like a cool character so far. It's a pity what's going to happen to her, but there's probably more to the story than we know yet.

Still love Newt and Jacob! Poor Jacob better not get killed off too...I want a happy end for him.

And Depp...he plays creepy and evil quite well. 

In short, while we are all entitled to our opinions, the critics can go jump in the lake with the giant squid.

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I am not happy about Queenie and I think her turn to the dark side makes no sense.  Jacob refused to follow her and she knows that will put her on the opposing side of Tina. I thought her enchanting Jacob was out of character.  I figured it was a one off thing, but then they had her join Grindelwald.  Talk about completing reinventing a character as I could not see Queenie of the first movie doing this. 

I did not find Grindelwald to be charismatic so I am having a hard time believing he can gather this many followers. I have found Johnny Depp to be charismatic in his past roles, but not as Grindelwald and quite frankly I do not feel like he is even trying to be.  

Leta was a surprise for me especially after the way she was described in the first movie.  It was clear she has a conscience so for all her faults I do not think she was a "monster". 

I really liked Jude Law as Dumbledore.  I do wonder if Grindelwald was lying about who Credence is, but there is the issue of the bird at the end which circled back to what Dumbledore said at the beginning.

I like Newt and Tina and wish they had more scenes together in the movie. The few scenes they had showed why they would work as a couple.  Newt asking Jacob for advice on what to say to Tina and trying so hard to follow it near the end of the movie. Tina understanding Newt despite his bumbling. I like the way she looks at him when he is being Newt; like he is just so adorable.

Overall, the movie did not meet my expectations. I felt the pacing was off and things did not pick up until nearly the end.  I was fine with Credence in the 1st movie, but he just fell flat in this movie which was not good as there was so much focus on him.  It was interesting that Nagini tried to stop Credence from following Grindelwald considering who she ends up with later on. 

Edited by miasth
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Got around to it last night and needed some time to process it.

Overall, it was... fine, I guess.  I mean, I ended up being entertained and still enjoy seeing more of this universe and the characters, so I guess it is a success on that level.  But I just kept having the sense that it was capable of so much more, but it didn't get there for whatever reasons.  I'm not saying that the first Fantastic Beasts was perfect, but I thought it had excellent world-building and entertaining characters, and was exited to see where this goes.  But this just made me go "Well, I guess this is competent."  I do think the problem was that this really did feel like a second part of a five film series, because it felt like it was almost all set-up, and not much pay-off.  And some things were so predictable and cliched, while other moments were just so confusing, because it felt like I needed to Wikipedia the entire Harry Potter lore to understand it.  Overall, weird film.

My biggest issue was that I hated what they did to Queenie here.  I'm not against the concept of the whole "Good character gets turned to the dark side", but it just felt so rushed and unearned.  And even looking past that aspect, they just automatically kicked things off on a sour note with her whole "Put a love spell on Jacob to make him want to marry her" bit.  Even though it is clear that he truly loves her, that is just so creepy and invasive, but of course, it was almost played for laughs.  Just left a bad taste in my mouth.  Still, Alison Sudol is such a delight.  And I continue to be amazed over how my I love Dan Fogler as Jacob, since I usually find him so obnoxious in other roles.

I swear, did it feel like Tina got half the screen time she had in the first film?  We didn't even really see her react to Queenie's betrayal.  I understand why they focused mainly on Jacob's reaction, but I would think seeing her sister join the enemy and knowing what this means, would warrant more of a reaction.  Katherine Waterston deserved better.

I still enjoy Eddie Redmayne as Newt, even if I still think he's partially using this as an audition tape for a future Doctor on Doctor Who.

So, after all of the build-up and even having flashbacks, Leta just dies at the end of this?  Lame.  And, of course this is the only role that I actually was impressed by Zoe Kravitz, after mainly finding her boring in the past.  And after all of the controversy, Nagini's whole purpose seemed to be just standing besides Credence and react to things.

Jude Law ended up being a pretty good Dumbledore, and I'm looking forward to seeing more of him.  And, surprise!  Johnny Depp was actually solid as Grindelwald!  I'm not saying it is anywhere close to his best work, but this was a pretty big step up from a lot of his previous work.  Even if it came at the cost of Colin Farrell's superior work in the first film.

Again, it was enough to make me keep watching these films, but still a step down.  Hopefully they get things back together for the third film.

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There were things I liked and things I didn't like. I absolutely loved going back to Hogwarts. I think Jude Law did a great job as young Albus. Loved meeting Nicholas Flamel and his running definitely gave everyone in my theater a laugh. Did anyone else spot the Sorcerer's Stone in his cabinet? I liked hearing the familiar names like Mclaggen, Rozier and Travers. Newt and Tina's salamander conversation at the end was cute. I also liked getting the quick glimpse of McGonagall though I'm wondering if it is Minerva or a different McGonagall. According to canon, Minerva was born in 1935 so she wouldn't be a teacher at Hogwarts in 1927. Since McGonagall is her married name I guess I can handwave that was maybe her husband's mother or aunt.

I wanted to know more about Leta and was mad she died. I didn't really mind Theseus, I assume we're going to learn more about him and Newt's relationship in the next movies. I thought the actor who played young Newt did a great job.

I hated the whole Credence is a secret Dumbledore reveal. The whole drive home from the movie, I just kept thinking how it didn't make sense to me. I've read a few theories now and some make sense and others don't.  Aberforth being his father is a possibility. Did he just assume his wife or gf and child just drowned? And of Credence would be Albus's nephew, not brother. There is also Ariana's Obscurus going into Credence. But how many years are there between Ariana's death and Credence's birth? Where did the Obscurus go in the meantime? Did it live in someone else? Or Grindelwald is lying and Credence isn't a Dumbledore at all. But then how did the phoenix appear? To me it just feels like Jo is trying to make connections where there are none. Instead of expanding the universe, she's making it smaller. 

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18 hours ago, miasth said:

I am not happy about Queenie and I think her turn to the dark side makes no sense.  Jacob refused to follow her and she knows that will put her on the opposing side of Tina. I thought her enchanting Jacob was out of character.  I figured it was a one off thing, but then they had her join Grindelwald.  Talk about completing reinventing a character as I could not see Queenie of the first movie doing this. 

There is the possibility that Queenie might be a double agent. It's a long shot, but we all remember Snape.

However, if that isn't the case...I'm still upset about it, but after some thinking I understand what the story is trying to show how nice, unprejudiced people can get sucked into drinking the Kool-Aid. The Queenie in this movie was lonely and vulnerable after a falling out with both Tina (because she didn't approve of Jacob) and Jacob (because he didn't want ther to get in trouble for marrying him). She knows what Grindelwald is, but when she encounters him at the house, he manipulates her with civility. She gets curious enough to go to the rally.

And we all saw how he plays his base like a fiddle, stoking the fears of persecution by Muggles while maintaining that he doesn't really hate Muggles, he'll just kill the ones that are the "danger". Then he lets the base feel like victims of their government, pointing out how the Ministry has hunted and killed them "for their beliefs." This is another hook to  Queenie, who already feel so vctimized by MCUSA just because she's in love with a Muggle.

The final straw that pushes her over the edge is when she tries to get Jacob to go with her, and he bursts out that she's acting crazy. And like so many before her confronted with that same hard truth, she doubles down on her choice, going for what she WANTS to hear instead of what she NEEDS to hear.

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On 11/18/2018 at 2:07 PM, Zuleikha said:

I don't understand the relevance of the Goldsteins being American or Hitler still being on the rise to power. It reads like you're claiming Jews didn't face overt prejudice in the US or have  a distinctive cultural identity in the 1920s. Neither of those things are true (Especially in  New York!). 

I'm saying that American Jews in 1920s didn't all fit into one category or behave the same way. It's a spectrum. There were Jews who were observant, keeping kosher, and attending synagogue on a weekly or daily basis. There were also Jews who weren't doing much or any of that. I never said that Jews didn't face overt prejudice, unless that was directed at someone else. 

On 11/18/2018 at 2:07 PM, Zuleikha said:

It's also misunderstanding my critique, which is that Rowling isn't showing anything if she doesn't actually show it. Right now, she has non-ethnically Jewish actors playing characters who are literally Jewish in name only. What's the freaking point? That's not representation... That's a form of erasure.

I was thinking about this and had a new thought. What if the fact that Tina and Queenie are Jewish isn't important now, but it will be important in a later movie. Their religion might not matter much in the first or second movie, but maybe it will become significant in the fourth or fifth movie. Maybe they start off incredibly assimilated. Their religion doesn't matter to them and isn't an important part of who they are, but something happens and that changes. 

On 11/18/2018 at 6:03 PM, Emily Thrace said:

However I'm not sure how the story get's around the universes aversion to actual discussions of religion or race.  It would odd for both the Potter verse and the time period(The American solution to ethnic diversity pre-60's was to ignore it or discriminate against it after all) for Tina to go around casually saying she is Jewish. I can see her bringing it up with Newt if they actually start dating seriously but not really otherwise. 

This gets into another theory I'm working on. It's not fully developed and may be more an excuse than anything but here it goes. Maybe the dividing lines of race and religion that are so important in the non-magical world aren't that important in the magical world. The magical world has different dividing lines based on class, (this exists in the non-magical world too, but maybe it's even more important in the magical world) blood status, and the difference between beast and being (the treatment of house elves). I think the prejudice against Hagrid being part troll or Remus being a werewolf would fit in the last category. 

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6 hours ago, thuganomics85 said:

Overall, it was... fine, I guess.  I mean, I ended up being entertained and still enjoy seeing more of this universe and the characters, so I guess it is a success on that level.  But I just kept having the sense that it was capable of so much more, but it didn't get there for whatever reasons.  I'm not saying that the first Fantastic Beasts was perfect, but I thought it had excellent world-building and entertaining characters, and was exited to see where this goes.  But this just made me go "Well, I guess this is competent." 

ITA. Part of my frustration with this movie is that it felt like with just a few tweaks, it could have been so much better. There was a legitimately really excellent movie hiding inside this one, but it got drowned out in all the PLOT PLOT PLOT that they threw at us (much of which was filer).

In contrast, I wasn't a huge fan of the first FB, but I think it did a much better job of achieving its full potential.

1 hour ago, Spartan Girl said:

However, if that isn't the case...I'm still upset about it, but after some thinking I understand what the story is trying to show how nice, unprejudiced people can get sucked into drinking the Kool-Aid. The Queenie in this movie was lonely and vulnerable after a falling out with both Tina (because she didn't approve of Jacob) and Jacob (because he didn't want ther to get in trouble for marrying him). She knows what Grindelwald is, but when she encounters him at the house, he manipulates her with civility. She gets curious enough to go to the rally.

And we all saw how he plays his base like a fiddle, stoking the fears of persecution by Muggles while maintaining that he doesn't really hate Muggles, he'll just kill the ones that are the "danger". Then he lets the base feel like victims of their government, pointing out how the Ministry has hunted and killed them "for their beliefs." This is another hook to  Queenie, who already feel so vctimized by MCUSA just because she's in love with a Muggle.

The final straw that pushes her over the edge is when she tries to get Jacob to go with her, and he bursts out that she's acting crazy. And like so many before her confronted with that same hard truth, she doubles down on her choice, going for what she WANTS to hear instead of what she NEEDS to hear.

I agree that that's what this movie was going for, but it just felt so rushed and out of nowhere--especially given what Queenie knows about Grindelwald's actions in the first FB movie. The Queenie plot in particular suffered from the overabundance of material stuffed into this movie; I think it needed more time and space to breathe to be believable.

I've been thinking about the movie since I saw it Friday night, and I think this is how I would rewrite it, if we're assuming HUGE parts of the story (Leta's death, Credence as magically resurrected/a Dumbledore) have to stay.

Cuts: I would cut Nicolas Flamel entirely (Dumbledore just sends Newt to an empty safehouse), Nagini almost entirely (mostly the carnival sequence--though let's work the huge cat beast in somehow, it was adorable!--we can just pick up with Credence questioning the woman whose name is on his birth certificate if we want to keep Nagini), and Kama and his sworn revenge entirely (though I think you can keep the red herring of Credence-as-a-Lestrange if Credence must be the new McGuffin everyone is chasing--you don't actually need Kama for that). Also don't show Grindy and his followers so much--I know, I know, killing the child was to show that they are The Evil, but I think Grindy might have been more effective as a kind of ghost hovering around Paris after his escape, just about entirely unseen, until his rousing speech. Just have him pop up to creepily speak to Credence and maybe Queenie and that's it. I would also minimize Theseus' cranky boss at the Ministry of Magic. He's just not interesting. Yes, we know the Ministry always sucks because staffed by bureaucrats. Moving on!

Leave unchanged: all Dumbledore's stuff; young Leta and young Newt.

Additions: In addition to SOMETHING for Tina to do (seriously, how many lines did homegirl have? It can't have been many. And she didn't even get to react to Queenie's turn!) and more Leta, I would have devoted more time to Queenie's turn. Don't have her enchant Jacob senseless at the start; just have them arrive in London bickering about whether to get married on the sly in London, and say they left New York because some of the magical population there was starting to give Queenie a hard time about dating a Muggle (Nomaj I suppose). As happened in the movie, it erupts into a full-on fight, and at some point over the course of their big fight have Jacob say something like "well we can't get married until your people relax their laws." Queenie, upset, Apparates away and goes to Paris to seek Tina as happened in canon, but have her see a few examples of anti-Muggle prejudice at the French Ministry (and/or in London) so that she feels especially hopeless/desperate; if you want to be on the nose see them booking a wizard or witch for dating a Muggle. I guess we can keep the bit where she gets overwhelmed by all the voices--I can chalk that up to her being in a really strained emotional state--and have the French Grindy follower lady find her as happened, along with her first meeting with Grindy. But in between the meeting with Grindy and attending the rally, let her see some examples of what she wishes she could have--couples getting married--along with some Muggles being violent in some way, to underscore the idea of Muggles as a genuine threat to wizardkind. IDK, I think I could buy Queenie as an example of a seemingly-good person drinking the Kool-Aid with some reason, but we got pretty much zero reason in the film. It was a lot of telling but not a lot of showing, which is especially a problem when the character has already had a bad run-in with Grindelwald.

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That understanding apparently came directly from J.K. Rowling, as Eddie Redmayne tells Digital Spy that his understanding of the character came from his early conversations with the author. Interestingly, it doesn't sound like Rowling specifically said that Newt Scamander suffered from some form of autism, but she did discuss the character's various qualities with the actor, and he took care of the rest.

"it doesn't sound like Rowling specifically said"

"suffered from"  

**sigh**  

A character can just be autistic.  Also, we generally don't 'suffer' from being autistic, we suffer from the ignorance of others and rampant ableism.  

Quote

The fact that Newt's apparent autism isn't remarked on in the film is actually quite fitting for the time period of the film.

**snort**

It's "quite fitting" for any period if the character is the hero, or anything other than a sad prop for the protagonist.  And while the term 'autistic' might not have been in common use at the time the movie takes place, the promo material is happening now when it very much IS in common use and canon representation matters.  

Link.  The author of the article is trying to be supportive, but it's terrible and the author should have done a bit of actual research before writing that.  Steve Silberman's book NeuroTribes would have been a good place to start.  

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Some good ideas but TERRIBLE execution--the film was incredibly disjointed. Actually kind of a hot mess, really. The core problem, I think, is that this movie wants to be about the adventures of Newt, Tina, Queenie, and Jaco

I completely agree. I just saw it last night. I liked it but there was a lot that was wrong with it. Mainly with how it flows or lack there of. My husband and I found ourselves confused on how the characters got the certain places. Mainly at the end with the cemetery thing.  I didn't like the thing with Queene as it didn't make sense unless he is controlling her somehow. And the Dumbledore thing doesn't make sense unless he's a cousin. I'm hoping it will turn out that he will be lying about this.

 

I personally would have wanted a movie about the four mains from the first one. Hopefully this will be the case for the next one (well with Queene unfortunately being on the other side).

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