Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is finally out on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital for everyone to enjoy at home. I was sent the Digital version of the movie, which comes with some extras that Wizarding World fans will find exciting. The movie itself doesn't hold a candle to the magic of the Harry Potter films, but it's still an improvement over its predecessor.
In an effort to thwart Grindelwald's plans of raising pure-blood wizards to rule over all non-magical beings, Albus Dumbledore enlists his former student Newt Scamander, who agrees to help, unaware of the dangers that lie ahead. Lines are drawn as love and loyalty are tested, even among the truest friends and family, in an increasingly divided wizarding world in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.
Many have complained about how convoluted the story is getting by the ties being made to the Potterverse. However, it's hard to agree with that when the creator of the entire franchise is the writer of the script for Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. Let's be honest - the Harry Potter films grow increasingly more complex by the time we get to the Deathly Hollows.
After being taken out of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in the first Fantastic Beasts, it was nice to return to the European settings of Hogwarts and France. The New York setting just didn't hold the same escapist vibe the original Potter films did, where you felt like you were transported to another world.
All the actors gave genuine performances and injected a lot of emotion into Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. There are a lot of pivotal moments in the movie, and the cast really pour their heart and souls into those moments. Whether you're "burned" out by him or not, Johnny Depp is deliciously evil and quietly charismatic as Grindelwald.
My main gripe is that the Fantastic Beasts in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald still feel shoe-horned in most of the time. They really only show up to miraculously save the day and then sit around waiting to get pet. I don't really know what else I want them to do, but can't J.K. Rowling figure out how to make them meatier presences?
The CGI and special effects for FB2 look great for the most part. The backrounds, environments, and different types of creatures all successfully put you in the Wizarding World. The only shaky spots were when a human character was riding one of the beasts. It looked sort of off-putting and odd the way the two melded together.
The Digital HD download of the movie comes with plenty of great extras and special features. There are nine featurettes exploring the Wizarding World of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. They cover everything from the making of the film to the characters and beasts we experience. Ten deleted scenes give us a deeper look into J. K. Rowling's latest creation. An extended cut of the movie is included as well.