Plot: Professor Albus Dumbledore begins his plans to move against Gellert Grindelwald who is one step closer to seizing control of the wizarding world as well as the muggle world. Albus entrusts his plan to Newt Scamander with other wizards and witches along with a muggle Jacob, to bring down Grindelwald's growing legion of followers.
Review: Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets Of Dumbledore can be described as a children's movie with rare moments for adult Potterheads. The audience can totally understand the movie without the context of the previous franchise or the previous two movies and it's a bit alarming. As much as The Crimes of Grindelwald worked its way through the characters and the stories, The Secrets Of Dumbledore simply gives it all away without any charm or mystery at its core.
The film begins with a short scene between Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) and Gellert Grindelwald now played by Mads Mikkelsen in a restaurant. The two who share the blood oath, seemingly are capable of talking to each other in some sort of a mind space. Within seconds, the biggest secret of the film is out, as Albus declares his love for the man across the table by saying "I was in love with you". The scene seemed to have no other reason of existence and is quickly cut to the title and then to Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne)
Magizoologist is then seen helping a rare animal - Qilin give birth. According to Wizarding World lore, a Qilin is a magical creature capable of looking into someone's soul and future. As soon as baby Qilin is born, Credence (Ezra Miller) and Gellert Grindelwald's followers kill the mother and take the baby away. Coincidently just before death, the animal gives birth to another Qilin.
Albus, Newt and their friends including Muggle baker Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler), professor Eulalie Hicks (Jessica Williams), the pure-blooded sorcerer Yusuf Kama (William Nadylam) and Newt's brother Theseus (Callum Turner) plan on stopping Grindewald from misusing Qilin. That is the essential storyline of the movie rest is just plot convenience and great graphics to distract the audience from the loopholes.
The plot is supposed to explore the politics in the international wizarding world, parts of which made it in the previous two movies, but in Fantastic Beasts 3, the sub-plot is reduced down to a tea party and a dinner party with a magical tornado. Instead, the makers decided to focus on episode adventures for each character with negligible big picture impact.
Mads Mikkelsen, though less sinister than Colin Farrell and Johnny Depp, has good chemistry with Jude Law. Their interaction and Jude's heartbreak towards the end of the film is what makes The Secrets Of Dumbledore an enjoyable experience. However, it is not enough to make up for the lack of a thrilling plot. The makers opted for a predictable storyline with only the blood oath at the centre of it, but that too gets only two scenes in the 142-minute runtime.
Mads and Ezra Miller's bold and looming presence in the air takes away winning moments from the other characters and their romantic sub-plots. Jude holds his own with most run time with each character. He is the guiding voice not only for the character in the film, but also for the franchise, holding it together. Without Albus Dumbledore, there wouldn't be much to be excited about the franchise.
The end remains unsatisfying as no big changes are made in the plot, no consequences and nothing to look forward to. Albus and Gellert can now fight each other but that has been a known fact since the early books of the Harry Potter series. However, it does make for a great scene on screen.
Overall, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets Of Dumbledore is a one time watch. Something to get through hoping there are better things the franchise can offer in the final two movies.