The judgments for Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore are in and with critics who share decidedly mixed reactions to the Harry Potter spin-off.
With a tense production affected by Covid-19 and Mads Mikkelsen replacing Johnny Depp in the role of Grindelwald, the third film in the franchise has been long-awaited by fans. The Last Fantastic Beasts Movie Grindelwald’s Crimes, was released in 2018.
Positive reviews have praised the writing The Secrets Of Dumbledore, while negative ones have criticized the plot. Mikkelsen’s performance was universally praised.
Below is a summary of reviews…
The guard – three stars
“By evoking fascism and the approaching world war, the film hints at something overwhelmingly evil, yet by the end you might find that the essentially noncommittal narrative style of franchise filmmaking, with its floating resolutions, counteracts it. .. And what about Grindelwald itself? Is he more or less important and evil than Voldemort? Well, certainly Rowling mapped it all out. It’s good-natured entertainment, although there’s still something weightless and formless about the narrative.
rich – three stars
“The Secrets of Dumbledore doesn’t look quite like Potter – but with solid action and moments of real heart it sheds some light on the darkest hour of the wizarding world.”
Daily Telegraph – two stars
“So much of the sequence here feels like free-floating trailer fodder: overkill for plot requirements, but too expensive to cut. Why do Redmayne and Turner spend about 15 minutes dancing with scorpions in a cave? And what’s the purpose of Law’s duel with Ezra Miller’s antagonist Credence Barebone, who once looked like the tormented linchpin of the franchise but has now been relegated to a grumpy follower?
evening standard – four stars
“Secrets of Dumbledore shows an impressive willingness to play around with the HP formula (and formulas in general). It’s a work in progress and almost fantastic. Note to Warners: Don’t Panic. In terms of box office receipts, dark days could be ahead. But Rowling did and should see her wild experiment through to the end.”
The Hollywood Reporter
“When Secrets of Dumbledore has a reason to exist, it may be evidence of coping with disillusionment. It is difficult to remain fascinated by the wizarding world when its production is mired in controversy and its creator often holds dangerously short-sighted views. This inevitably affects the perception of the work and reveals to this critic, at least, how obsessed these films are with binaries – good and evil, rich and poor, love and hate, light and dark. But life, like storytelling, is far more complicated, and that’s a lesson the franchise should wisely embrace.”
The AV Club
“What’s the saddest The Secrets of Dumbledore is the meaning of what it actually has to say. It’s not just a tale of good versus evil, but a tale of embracing change and progress, accepting blame for wrongdoing, learning from mistakes, and growing as a good citizen of the world in a mad era of ambiguity on both sides.
“Based on the headlines they’ve generated in the four years since the last film, some of its creators may wish to explore these ideas a little more closely in real life. It’s clear on screen that they were too busy digging through a mountain of their own mythology to extract the more relevant lessons beneath.”
Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore hits theaters on April 8th.
https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/fantasic-beasts-3-reviews-critics-b2051414.html Fantastic Beasts: Critics Share Mixed Reactions to ‘Baffling’ Sequel