Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore – An Honest Review

secrets of dumbledore

‘The Wizarding World‘ – sounds larger than life when you think about it. From the perspective of the young, manic potter fan who once thought the world of the Potter universe – and still does, mind you! J K Rowling doesn’t seem to have lost the plot entirely. But then, was it all that much trouble to follow the Harry Potter series and be blown away by it? Even if God forbid, you hadn’t read the books? Nah! But the Secrets of Dumbledore was confusing on so many levels. Despite being a promising sequel to a sufficiently satisfying trilogy (The Fantastic Beasts), it wasn’t captivating enough. And that’s the least we expect from something J K Rowling has come up with.

Anyway, we may not have been fully concentrating when the movie played out on screen. But then again, if you have to stare hard and listen closely to understand what’s happening in a 3D movie, it’s probably already a dud.

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Not a very harsh critique

Fantastic Beasts Secrets of Dumbledore was supposed to unravel some of the mysteries surrounding the great Albus Dumbledore. The man who advocated for the greater good. The secrets of Albus Dumbledore were a point of much contention throughout the Deathly Hallows. And we do get to see some of them come to light. But the rest of the movie feels like a bizarre regurgitation of figments from J K R’s imagination. Harry Potter was a picture-perfect jigsaw puzzle with all the parts, plots, and characters jelling perfectly in with each other. But now, in this part of the Fantastic Beasts trilogy, produced and written by J K R herself, the secrets of Dumbledore screenplay feels like a poor attempt to expand the magical universe.

The magic doesn’t disappoint

And perhaps it’s the only saving grace for let’s say, a clueless movie-goer who hasn’t watched the first two movies in the series. It’s no doubt alluring to see the swishes and flicks of dueling wands and the aura of disapparitions.

A curious jumble of bygones brought back to life

It almost seemed like the moviemakers were desperately trying to hold on to and bring the audience back to the most-loved parts of the Harry Potter movies. Like Hogwarts of course, and the music, the Gemino curse from when Harry and his friends robbed Bellatrix’s vault in Deathly Hallows, the Room of Requirement, and the Monster Book of Monsters.

The not so BIG Secret

It’s disappointing how the entire plot of the movie is all about Dumbledore’s BIG secret which is shamelessly thrown in the first scene of the movie itself when Dumbledore and Grindelwald have a tete-a-tete at a Muggle coffee shop. Dumbledore ‘loved’ Grindelwald. But wait a minute, we already knew that, didn’t we? A million years ago J K R herself revealed on Twitter that Dumbledore was gay and that he loved Grindelwald. So surprise, but no surprise. Not a very convincing secret to look forward to!

Our Review – What happened?

That was our only question when we walked out of the movie theater. What was happening?? Who were the new characters like Yusuf Kama and Lally Hicks? Their introductions were hasty. The magical creatures like the Qilin weren’t magical enough. Grindelwald wasn’t menacing enough. Johnny Depp made for a much more convincing Grindelwald. How does Bhutan of all places come into the picture, out of nowhere? And why were people randomly chanting ‘Santos’? It was all a confusing jumble that left us asking, ‘What did we just watch?’ at the end credits. Well, maybe a few rewatches and we might actually love the Secrets of Dumbledore just like we did Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them and The Crimes of Grindelwald. Sorry JKR!

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