Sunday, November 27, 2016

Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them: The Truth Behind the Hit Movie's Fascinating Creatures.

Earlier this week, I got my inner wizard on when I went to see the new movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The movie, set in the 1920's, follows wizards Newt Scamander, Tina Goldstein, and No-Maj Jacob Kowalski on a hunt for a variety of magical creatures who have been set loose in New York City. I thought the movie was an excellent addition to the vast world of Harry Potter and would definitely recommend it to anyone who is a fan of fantasy movies or the Harry Potter series. That being said, while I was watching the movie, I noticed that there were several magical creatures that reminded me of actual cryptids. So, here are five creatures from the movie that actually resemble real cryptids.

Demiguise

In the film, the Demiguise is an ape-like creature from the Far East. They are known to be very shy and uses their ability to turn invisible to hide from humans. From the first scene that included the Demiguise, I knew it was inspired by the legends of the Yeti from the Himalayas. As everyone knows, the Yeti is a large ape-like creature that dwells in the mountainous regions of Nepal and surrounding countries. Not only is the physical resemblance similar (at least considering the common depiction of the Yeti) between the two, the Demiguise acts quite similarly to what one would assume a Yeti would act. 

Occamy


The Occamy is another creature from the "Far East", but this time it looks like a large, winged serpent. I thought the creature was similar to a Naga. The Naga are serpent deities in some southern, central Asian cultures, particularly the ancient interpretations of the religions of the area. In cryptozoology, the Naga is used for snake-like lake monsters in the area, most notably the Mekong River in Thailand. 

Swooping Evil

In the movie, the mysterious Swooping Evil is used by Newt to get out of some tough spaces. The name is also the subject of a running joke throughout the movie. While the geographical origin of the creature is never really given, the name and appearance of the creature bring to mind images of the cryptid Kongamato. The Kongamato, meaning "breaker of boats," is a flying creature from the Congo of Africa. The creature itself is described as vicious and appears to be reptilian. Many associate the Kongamato with a possible surviving pterosaur. 

Erumpent

Another escaped creature from the movie is the Erumpent. The Erumpent is an adorable rhinoceros-looking creature from Africa. The creature resembles another African cryptid known as the Emela-Ntouka. The Emela-Ntouka is a gigantic creature from the savannahs of Africa. It is said to be about as large as an elephant, but much deadlier. The Emela-Ntouka is identified by a large horn on its snout, resembling that of a rhino's. 

Thunderbird

Finally in the movie we got to see one of my favorite cryptids displayed on the big screen in all its glory: the Thunderbird. In the movie, Newt rescues a Thunderbird who he names Frank, and tries to return him to his proper home; Arizona. Thunderbirds, birds of enormous size from Native American legends, were said to cause thunder and lightning just by flapping their huge wings. In legends, the birds were described to be big enough to blot out the sun, but in modern times the size is described as having a wingspan of fifteen to thirty-five feet.

Well, I hope you enjoyed this rundown of actual cryptids and their representations in the movie. My next post is going to be a couple of book reviews, I'm not sure when it'll be out, but it should be soon. 

5 comments:

  1. This is very interesting. Can't wait to see the movie. Have you ever seen The Spiderwick Chronicles? I'd like your thoughts on that one. I loved it!

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    1. Spiderwick Chronicles were a huge influence on me as a child. I didn't care for the movie but the books were fantastic and are one of the reasons I have such an interest in faeries.

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  2. Thanks for the movie review. I am stoked to see it, now. We love the Potter films. I especially look forward to seeing the Thunderbird, which is one of our favorite cryptids.

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  3. I loved the movie, I loved the creatures, and i loved your breakdown of them. A good read. :)

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  4. fantastic beasts megashare9 and Where to Find Them on los movies is a spin-off of the highly successful Harry Potter-franchise. Naturally, there were great expectations for this first part of a whole new franchise in the J.K. Rowling's wizarding world and I can honestly say that it delivers everything you would dreamed of.
    From minute one the movie gets you on a journey with great visuals, very recognizable music and great performances from Eddie Redmayne and Dan Fogler. From now and then you get the, sometimes funny, sometimes smart references to Harry Potter, but nevertheless is this a movie that can totally stand on it's own.
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