Awesome / Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

The book:

  • The creation of the book, which was to raise money for Comic Relief.

The movie:

  • Queenie using magic to make the best Strudel (not to mention meal) Jacob's ever eaten.
  • Wizards frequently use Apparition. It's a stark contrast with the Harry Potter films and books where the main protagonists were students and thus not experienced enough to use it liberally.
  • Scamander makes very good use of his Swooping Evil to escape MACUSA with Tina. And to confront Graves as well at the end. It just goes to show that he may be average with a wand, but his command over the fantastic beasts borders on Wrong Context Magic for wizards unprepared for them. And because of this, he manages to restrain Gellert Grindelwald in the climax.
  • Jacob discovers the inside of Scamander's suitcase, which contains a genuine zoo with a wide range of rare magical creatures from the most colorful to the most imposing and majestic.
    • Scamander has a freaking Nundu in his suitcase-zoo, which he had apparently managed to tame to some extent. According to the textbook he wrote, it takes the cooperation of at least a hundred wizards to subdue one.
      • Said Nundu is promptly outsmarted by a family of Diricawls—it snaps at them and they immediately teleport out of its reach.
  • Jacob punching feared gang leader and goblin Gnarlack in the face after he sold them out to MACUSA.
  • Tina holding her own against Graves for a while in a short duel. You see the skills, at least for a moment, that led MACUSA to employ her as an Auror in the first place. Tenfold in hindsight as 'Graves' turned out to be Grindelwald himself in his prime. A platoon of aurors proves to be no match for him at the climax. Dumbledore described Grindelwald as being very nearly on par with him.
  • One for Graves himself. Despite the feats of power he displays, in this fight and the film in general, we never hear him utter a single word. It's impressive to see a character casually pulling off tricks the Harry Potter protagonists would have found daunting during their time as teenagers.
  • Queenie senses that her sister is in trouble and, with Jacob, manages to break into Graves' office, steal back Newt's case and his and Tina's wands, and manages to use the old "woman problems" excuse to absolute perfection. Tina is an Auror, Queenie is not. Apparently just being badass runs in this family...
    • The way Queenie and Jacob get into Graves' office deserves a mention. After Queenie's attempts at unlocking Graves' office door with magic fails, Jacob kicks down the door in. And it works. This may be the first time we've seen the muggle— sorry, the no-maj way trump magic on-screen.
  • Queenie decides "fuck the law" and falls hard for Jacob. And it's implied by the ending that he may even get her in the end!
  • The Obscurial's identity: Obscurials are always destroyed by their own twisted power before their tenth birthday. Credence is eighteen. Newt is flabbergasted by how he must be powerful to live so long, and Grindelwald outright calls him a true miracle.
  • After attempts at Talking the Monster to Death fail, the Obscurus is finally killed when an entire platoon of Aurors unleash a fifteen second blizzard of spellfire that obliterates it.
  • Newt capturing Graves/Grindelwald rather easily after the latter looked ready to sweep an entire room full of MACUSA Aurors and officials.
  • The three way fight between Newt/Tina, Graves (aka Grindelwald), and Obscurus!Credence. Between Graves casting magic on him and Credence causing massive damage to the subway tunnel, Newt seems to handle himself fairly well.
  • Graves fending off the MACUSA Aurors single-handedly before Scamander stops him. Just try to keep up with his wand movements.
  • The release of Frank the Thunderbird to help wipe the memories of everyone in New York of all the magical chaos that has happened over the past few days.
  • The rebuilding of New York City by MACUSA wizards following what the fight between the Obscurus, Grindelwald and Tina/Newt did to it was a sight to behold, especially that one scene where a MACUSA wizard is casually strolling across the steel beams that make up the unfinished skyscraper, putting it back together. For someone who was raised in New York City, that was a The World Is Just Awesome moment.
  • Graves' transformation into Grindelwald (done very well visually, and the accompanying music is so fitting), and the subsequent portrayal of Real!Grindelwald. With two lines and less than a minute of screentime Johnny Depp manages to exude a sinisterness that at least matches, if not surpasses, Voldemort's.

Meta

  • The return of "Hedwig's Theme" for the Teaser Trailer.
  • The fact that J. K. Rowling herself is writing the screenplay for at least the first film.
  • For citizens of New York City, and fans of history, it was absolutely awesome to get to see the City Hall IRT Station in all its glory as the centerpiece for the climax, complete with a perfectly reconstructed version of the street exit. Having the tearful parting with Jacob take place in the latter was quite fitting.

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