"The adventures of writer Newt Scamander in New York's secret community of witches and wizards seventy years before Harry Potter reads his book in school."
Meh, there's nothing too original or exciting in "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them". As many have noticed, it really is like a "Doctor Who" special mixed with "King Kong" mixed with "Pokémon".
The lead who I can't be bothered to look up the name of (Edit: it's Eddie Redmayne) channels Matt Smith so much that he might as well be Matt Smith. He has the same mannerisms, awkwardness, and dress sense. He even has a bowtie, uses his wand like a sonic screwdriver, and carries a suitcase with Tardis properties. I'm not calling J.K. Rowling a plagiarist, but... yeah, this is either plagiarism or a really blatant homage, take your pick.
For those who care, Colin Farrell is more than tolerable, and Johnny Depp gets less than a minute of screen time roughly 5 minutes from the end.
Other than that, and the abundance of CGI, "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" isn't the worst thing I've ever seen. The period setting in New York works well, and I expect American Harry Potter fans will love it. But because I'm not ten years old, and I loathe all things Harry Potter, it didn't do anything memorable for me.
As theatrical family films go, it's okay-ish. The creatures aren't very scary, and the story is easy to follow. It's just so below average in every other way that it's hardly one of this year's "must sees".