WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, in theaters now.
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is the second installment in a series of five prequel spinoffs showing the early days of the Wizarding World, decades before the birth of Harry Potter. As such, the film sets up a multitude of plot threads for the remaining three installments to explore as the ongoing adventures of Newt Scamander and his friends against the evil wizard Gellert Grindelwald escalate to their final conclusion.
In the film's climax, the titular villain makes an impassioned speech to an assembled gathering of pure-blooded wizards and aurors sent by the Ministry of Magic to hunt him down. Grindelwald shares visions of the future, including the upcoming Second World War, with its mass destruction and witches and wizards being sent to concentration camps by non-magic users during the conflict.
Grindelwald argues that for their own self-preservation, the magical community must band together and strike first, telling his followers to spread the word. In the face of this prophecy and Grindelwald's own overwhelming power, a handful of Newt's supposed allies join the rogue wizard's cause, including Tina's younger sister Goldie.
As Grindelwald makes his fiery escape, Leta Lestrange sacrifices herself in a bid to save Newt, his older brother and her fiancé Theseus. Newt's Niffler, meanwhile, steals an amulet containing the blood vow between a younger Grindelwald and Albus Dumbledore, ensuring that they would never harm each other.
As he makes his exit, Grindelwald takes the Obscurus-empowered Credence Barebone with him to a remote Austrian castle.
The inevitable sequel to The Crimes of Grindelwald would see the far-reaching implications of Grindelwald's Parisian rally as his followers would recruit more wizards and witches to their cause to prepare for a coming war against the non-magical world, if not already beginning one from the shadows.
And with loyalties already shifting, there is bound to be further intrigue and betrayal within the Ministries of Magic around the globe as the battle lines continue to be set between Newt and Dumbledore against Grindelwald.
Fortunately, the heroes aren't without tricks of their own, with Newt giving Dumbledore the amulet containing the professorial wizard's blood vow with Grindelwald. Dumbledore resolves to find a way to break his youthful pact of non-aggression against Grindelwald, which, as Harry Potter fans may know, will lead to a final showdown between the two men in the midst of World War II.
And with Newt and Theseus hungry for revenge against Grindelwald after Leta's death and Tina trying to redeem her sister, the fight is about to get a lot more personal.
Of course, Grindelwald has his own plot to circumvent the blood oath preventing him from fighting Dumbledore directly. With Credence now under his wing, the evil wizard reveals that the Obscurial is, in fact, Dumbledore's long-lost younger brother Aurelius. This certainly explains Credence's vast, natural magical ability and his connection to the phoenix that has protected the Dumbledore family for generations.
However, Albus' previously established brother is named Aberforth, meaning either Credence takes on the new name and joins forces with his brother or is an entirely new Dumbledore sibling entirely. Either way, Grindelwald has begun to groom his new protege with the intent to kill Albus for him.
With a coming civil war looking to grip the international magical community, a sequel would most likely see Newt and Albus Dumbledore struggle to keep up with Grindelwald while Tina and Jacob Kowalsky try to reach Queenie and bring her back to the light.
Just as The Crimes of Grindelwald explored the hidden history of the Lestrange family, future sequels would delve into the Dumbledore family history while expanding on Albus' role in the conflict, as well as his past relationship with Grindelwald.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them established the Wizarding World of the 1920s, as well as the threat of Grindelwald and the destructive potential of Credence. The Crimes of Grindelwald shows the earlier timeline's villain unleashed in full as he rallies followers to his nefarious cause while continuing to evade the magical authorities.
Now with the world and its characters established, the remaining installments of the spinoff prequel series will go deeper and wider with its story; pitting its extensive cast against each other, the tenuous peace between the magical and non-magical worlds will presumably be shattered in a global conflict.
In theaters now, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is directed by David Yates from a script by J.K. Rowling. The film stars Eddie Redmayne, Jude Law, Johnny Depp, Katherine Waterston, Alison Sudol, Dan Fogler, Ezra Miller, Zoë Kravitz, Fiona Glascott, and Callum Turner.