Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Fantastic Beasts & Where To Find Them:: Final Trailer Analysis

After months since the very first announcement video last December, we've been inundated with trailers for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Technically 'inundated' constitutes for four [three excluding this one], which really is average for the typical theatrical release, but these alongside the many pieces of merchandise, live stream talks and interviews certainly make a Harry Potter fan feel rather spoiled. After the three trailers Warner Bros had already shared in recent months, the last thing I expected was another; yet the naming of 'The Final Trailer,' just acts as a beautiful reminder that this film is a matter of weeks away. 

Grindelwald? Grindelwald.
First it was Albus Dumbledore getting a name drop, and the internet exploded. Now, it's Gellert Grindelwald. Admittedly, I'm a little puzzled by the choice of mentioning Grindelwald at this point in the series [this is 1926, and Grindelwald doesn't fall until the mid-1940's], but with this mention at the Voldemort's predecessor, the series opens up so many possibilities. The overarching story of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is now more than just finding beasts who have escaped, but has expanded into the rise of Grindelwald and perhaps will lead up to Dumbledore and Grindelwald's final duel, in which Grindelwald is defeated. Who knows. All I know is that I'm excited to see that this trilogy isn't just going to be chasing beasts, but is going to have multiple plots and subplots like the Harry Potter series.

Credence and Graves
Now, I have many many theories surrounding Credence and Graves, but particularly Credence, and this trailer has only gone to spark more and support my ideas. My first is that Credence is a wizard, but as the adoptive son of Mary Lou, he is trying to conceal that, and maybe Graves is helping him to expose that or train him as obviously he won't have attended Ilvermorny. Another is that Credence and Graves are supporters of Grindelwald, as seen in the use of Credence holding a Deathly Hallows necklace in the trailer. Another striking point was in Graves' utteration of the line 'We've lived in the shadows for too long.' Not only is it unsettling to see the coercion of Credence in an alley, because it isn't hard to identify Graves as either being a guider or a manipulator of Credence; but it's also unsettling yet immensely thrilling to wonder if these two characters will reveal dark allegiances and sympathies within this film, and later ones.

Second Salemers
Despite following SpeakBeasty -'s Fantastic Beasts podcast - this is probably the aspect of the film that I know the least about. Once again in the final trailer we see Mary Lou and the Second Salemers campaigning to expose witches and wizards from secrecy and in turn, expose the Wizarding World. It's fascinating to see the lines and similarities being drawn not just in name to the Salem Witch Trials of the 17th Century.

Jacob - the typical newbie Potterhead
'I wish I was a wizard.'
Throughout this final trailer, we see more and more of Jacob [the quartet's Muggle] interacting with the wizarding world. Jacob's enthusiasm. He feels like every new Harry Potter fan when they realise how much they adore and crave this world - both gorgeous and tragic. Parallels can easily be drawn between him and Scorpius Malfoy in Cursed Child from these trailers, but from interviews and articles, it is strongly implied that there's far more to Jacob's character, a war veteran back from World War One, than simply being a muggle in the Wizarding World. 

So THAT'S what's in the Newtcase.
So, it looks like Newt's suitcase has received an upgrade since the first official trailer. Though we have previously seen magical tents and beaded bags with undetectable extension charms placed upon them, this is something else. We've known from the beginning that this suitcase is big enough to house multiple creatures of various shapes and sizes, but I don't think we ever really contemplated going inside the case, given that we're led to believe that the creatures have escaped. From a glimpse at this scene alone, I am reminded of the astonishment I felt and continue to feel every time I see such magic played out in the Harry Potter series. [I also really want a suitcase like this for storage purposes, but that's beside the point.]

Since first starting to write this post about a week ago, the Fantastic Beasts Fan Event happened, in which J.K Rowling announced that this wouldn't be a trilogy but a five-part series. Now having that information, I'm sceptical to see how the points of the first film will expand over the next few years, especially in terms of the Grindelwald/Dumbledore subplot. 

What are your thoughts on the final trailer?  What are your thoughts on this being a five-film series instead of a trilogy? Let me know in the comments.  

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

THE READING LIST - A Levels [Year 2]

When I first received our English Literature reading list for the second year of A Levels, I can't deny that both Amber and I were rather disappointed. However, gradually learning more about the texts we shall be studying next year has slightly increased my interest in their topics. 

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Out of all four texts, this is by far the one I'm most dreading cracking the spine of. Wuthering Heights is regarded in such high acclaim and yet I have little to no interest in the Bronte's and their work, nor do I care for the romanticism that will be found within their gothic pages. The only classic I can possibly consider wanting to study even less than Wuthering Heights, is Jane Eyre; so that speaks volumes. 

Othello by William Shakespeare
Initially, my reasoning for a negative response towards the premise of studying Othello was due to my desire that we would study one of Shakespeare's comedies this year, or one of the many other plays I have compiled on a 'Shakespeare to-read list' featuring King Lear, and Hamlet amongst the range. However since doing more research into the nature of the play, [bursting with debates on race, gender, and social politics] I am astonished by how excited I am to get into reading this.

A Choosing by Liz Lochhead
Until my English teacher emailed my class the Year 13 reading list, I had never heard of Liz Lochhead. Currently in my preparatory research for this year, I haven't quite reached her and her works yet [still looking ploughing through Wuthering Heights research,] but having read some of Lochhead's poems online, I'm certainly intrigued by her discussions of lower social classes coupled with feminism. 

Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
My knowledge of this play cumulates to virtually nothing besides a couple of the themes. My opinions on this are limited due to my perhaps disappointment that we're not alternatively studying Miller's most famous play 'The Crucible.' Nevertheless, I'm happy to go into something different and try something new. As a lover of plays and a prospective Undergraduate English Literature student, I can't help but anticipate this. 

For now, these are just brief questioning thoughts of intrigue, but hopefully by the end of this academic year, my concluding thoughts on this collection of new reads will be positive if not more so than my wrap up of AS Level.

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Dyslexia Awareness Week - Monster Busters by Cornelia Funke

Holly, alive and breathing. Ft. A jumper, a copy of Deathly Hallows, and a University prospectus... basically a material summary of my life right now. 

Normally I wouldn't branch out of YA, classics, or general fiction in my reading, and especially not in my blogging here at Lost in a Library. But when an opportunity arises to explore a different area of literature, and at the same time help raise awareness for an important cause, that was something I couldn't decline. A while ago, I was contacted by BookLife, asking if I'd be interested in participating in their 2016 Dyslexia Awareness Week campaign. 

In case you weren't aware of it, Dyslexia Awareness Week falls from 3rd-9th October this year, and BookLife have partnered with Barrington Stoke to share some well loved stories, especially made, or reproduced with the tailoring for a Dyslexic child. As part of the campaign, I was sent Monster Busters by Cornelia Funke for review. Video review - hence the above....

Monster BustersIt's summer and that means it's time for Rosa and Ivan to visit the fair! The Ghost Train is Rosa's favourite, with ghouls and ghosts and goblins. But when she stumbles across a real monster, it's a job for the Monster Busters!

Admittedly, at first I was apprehensive about what my thoughts would be when it came to reading this, as I don't tend to read books aimed at a younger demographic, but Monster Busters surprised me. Not only is this tale endearing and sweet, but Funke creates situations and speeches that are laugh-out-loud funny. It's amazing the power such a short book [80 pages] can have, but I emerged from Monster Buster with a revitalised love for books aimed at the younger children.

This isn't Roald Dahl, this isn't J.K Rowling, and this isn't like any of Cornelia Funke's other works such as The Thief Lord or Inkheart, but with its creepy twist and turns, its various horrifying and loveable monsters, and its heart, which lies deep within Monster Busters, this book could act as a gateway for dyslexic or reluctant readers into further literature.

I was thoroughly impressed by how Barrington Stoke have crafted this book to aide dyslexic readers. So much care, love and attention has gone into making this not just a book but an experience for any child, especially one who may lack confidence or support in their reading. 

As I said in the video review [which you should watch, by the way, even if it's just for a laugh to see how nervous I am filming,] I would very happily give this to any child regardless of their reading age or ability. Monster Busters is a book that will thrill readers, and has the potential to set someone off on their voyage through literature; a journey which is such a wonderful thing to have in life. 

To find out more about Dyslexia Awareness Week and how these two publishers are contributing to aiding dyslexic readers, then head to the BookLife and Barrington Stoke websites and BookLife's blog