Act one, scene one: The dreamworks logo fades to a view of the stars. The camera drops through clouds, smog, buildings, until it’s looking down into an open dumpster. We hear a rustle, a couple of bangs, then a red fox jumps out with half a hamburger.
“Newt!” Theseus calls. “Newt, you’re missing out!”
Camera pans down the alley to a large metal gate, complete with sign: MACUSA CITY ZOO and, below that, KEEP OUT. A smaller fox stands on his hind legs with his paws against the door, trying to see through the gap above the hinge.
“You think there’s a way in?” Newt asks. “Maybe if I tried the fence again -”
Theseus grabs him by the scruff of his neck and pulls him away from the gate. “The fence is electrocuted.” He drops the squirming fox in front of the hamburger and hops back up into the dumpster. “Eat your dinner and stop trying to get in the zoo.”
Newt dutifully bends his head to the burger, but the sound of an elephant trumpeting makes him scramble back towards the gate. “Did you hear that Theseus, did you hear it?”
“Newt!” Theseus yells after him. “Dammit you flea-bitten limp whisker, get back here!”
The music swells into the main theme as the camera follows Newt to the gate, zooming in on the gap and then through to the zoo at night, with giant letters showing the film’s title:
And for the rest of the film we follow Newt and his ever more ridiculous antics to get in the zoo to meet all the amazing animals there. Unknown to him though there’s disaster brewing as a puffy-faced, weirdly off putting, over-acted warthog attempts to incite rebellion and destroy the zoo; it’s up to Newt, Theseus, and Graves the particularly pissed-off penguin to stop the evil Grindelwald and save the day.
Somehow they pick up Jacob, who runs the doughnut stall and catches Newt stealing from it but is too soft-hearted to stop him, Tina, the head of the conservation and breeding program who is trying to save endangered species through the zoo’s vital work, and Queenie, who doesn’t work at the zoo but is there to support her sister (and fall in love with Jacob along the way) and who at one point knocks out the Grindelwald-warthog with a well placed swing of her handbag.
(Just imagine though, all these high speed chases where Newt and Theseus are legging it and Grindelwald is charging high speed behind them and there’s just Graves toddling along frantically because he doesn’t go any faster, until Newt spins round and runs back for him and Graves isn’t sure how it happened except now he’s basically riding Newt like a jockey and it’s fabulous)
(Oh, and the scene in the marine exhibit where Grindelwald has managed to recruit the leopard seals - and Graves, he’s doing his thing, he’s swimming rings round these fuckers and while he’s doing it he’s darting over here to press this button, and over there to guide the seals into this part of the exhibit, and whoopsidaisy loop the loop and - bam, the seals are trapped, it’s amazing, he’s amazing, Newt, Newt did you see that, Newt. Newt.
And there’s this dark, reddish shadow against the bottom of the tank and Graves never even thought about the fact that Newt couldn’t swim, and he fucking rockets down and grabs Newt, paddling up to the surface like his life depended on it, and there’s Theseus trotting round the corner with his tail high, did it work, did the cage get them, did you do it - and then Theseus sees Newt, this damp scraggly piece of fur that’s his little brother, just lying there on the rock, and Graves kind of just curls over him and doesn’t say anything, and, and, and.
And Tina storms on the scene because she spent six years studying to be a vet before she retrained in conservation, there’s an emergency clinic round the back of the main building, we’re breaking in - Queenie, disable the alarm - and you’re not dying on me fucker, not tonight
And when Newt wakes up, there’s a neat row of pebbles laid out next to him and no one will tell him where they’re from but for the rest of the film, every time Newt goes to sleep he wakes up to find more pebbles. It’s not until right at the end of the film that he pretends to be asleep and manages to catch Graves in the act.
But just imagine, if you will, that this is a disney film and therefore Graves is singing a soft and gentle love song as he places each particular pebble just right.)