I must admit, I entirely did not understand why

Queenie

chose to join Grindelwald at the climax of The Crimes of Grindelwald. She seems like the least likely, given her relationship with

Jacob.

Can anyone explain?

  • 3
    I had this discussion with someone the other day, I was unable to come to a conclusion as to whether she was persuaded or Grindelwald had enchanted her. – TheLethalCarrot Nov 20 at 20:43
  • @TheLethalCarrot I also thought she was enchanted (it would be appropriate turnabout for her actions earlier), but why would G want to enchant her specifically? – Azor Ahai Nov 20 at 20:44
  • Specifically he doesn’t. He just wants to get as many followers as possible. – TheLethalCarrot Nov 20 at 20:45
  • 6
    @TheLethalCarrot - She's an incredibly gifted witch with a power of legilimency unlike any we've seen. She would be an enormous asset to any rebellion – Valorum Nov 20 at 20:45
  • 3
    @AzorAhai If I recall correctly, Grindelwald discovered she was a natural Legilimens in the first movie. This skill proves useful almost immediately after she joins him, when she is able to read Credence's mind and provide useful emotional information to Grindelwald. I find the notion that he bewitched her in some way far more convincing than her deciding to join with the darkest wizard of all time in the span of a single day. – TylerH Nov 21 at 14:49
up vote 35 down vote accepted

At the start of the film we see that Queenie is struggling with the idea that Jacob can't/won't marry her because she'd become an outcast in wizarding society (essentially exiled from her home country) and he'd either be killed or obliviated.

JACOB: Okay, wait. We talked about this, like, a million times. If we get married and they find out, they’re gonna throw you in jail, sweetheart. I can’t have that. They don’t like people like me marrying people like you. I ain’t a wizard. I’m just me.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

When she meets Grindelwald, not only does he not turn out to be the psychopathic monster she's been told he is, but he also spins her a convincing lie about being free to love and marry muggles after the rebellion's completed.

GRINDELWALD: I would never see you harmed, ever. It is not your fault that your sister is an Auror. I wish you were working with me now towards a world where we wizards are free to live openly, and to love freely.

What's not clear (and may be explained later) is whether he's merely highly persuasive or whether his "silver tongue" is literally a form of magical enchantment. Either way, she makes her choice as a result of this conversation.

QUEENIE: [a decision] Jacob, he’s the answer. He wants what we want.


In an interview, the actress who portrays Queenie Alison Sudol says that it breaks down to three main elements; That those close to her don't value her magical gifts, that she feels abandoned by her sister (and by Jacob) and that Grindelwald appears to be promising a world in which those with her kinds of views will be valued.

“I feel like in some ways she’s too there and that’s part of the problem. She’s tapping into all human beings at all times and that’s a lot for one person to hold and everybody closest to her is always going, ‘Don’t read my mind.’ So she has a huge power and yet is made to feel like she’s nothing and that’s bad. That could make anyone feel crazy. And women historically have this huge intuition and have been punished for that intuition forever. How many women have been in a mental institution because they’ve been called crazy when they’re just not allowed to be honest or be who they are?”

“Jacob doesn’t come with her,” she explains. “It’s not so much about Jacob not coming with her to the dark side, it’s like, ‘Jacob, walk with me, we’re in this together.’ And she doesn’t have those two, so who does she have? Newt’s kind of betrayed her — he called her out, it was embarrassing. What does she have?”

“I still believe in her heart of hearts she’s going over to fight what she believes in,” Sudol says. “Grindelwald is saying, ‘we’re creating a different world’ and the world that she is in is broken. I don’t believe she’s turning evil. It’s more like she’s trying to find somebody who is giving her an option. He’s manipulating her but he’s manipulating everybody. He even did that with Dumbledore.”

EW.COM - Interview

  • 3
    Is it a lie? Grindelwald obviously wants wizards to rule everyone else, but he hasn't seemed too worried about blood purity the way Voldemort was. – Adamant Nov 20 at 21:45
  • 5
    @Adamant - He's the ultimate blood purist. He's planning to utterly subjugate muggles. One of his followers is even keen to simply exterminate them – Valorum Nov 20 at 21:48
  • 10
    @Adamant - Since he's basically "wizard Hitler", I doubt if his goal is peaceful co-existence. That's just a line he feeds willing patsies. – Valorum Nov 20 at 22:08
  • 17
    @Adamant - GRINDELWALD: We don’t say such things out loud. We want only freedom. Freedom to be ourselves. ROSIER: To annihilate non-wizards. GRINDELWALD: Not all of them. Not all. We’re not merciless. The beast of burden will always be necessary.. Since he views muggles as little better than cattle and that his plan is to kill them by their millions, I find it very hard to believe that he's going to be especially pro-wizard/muggle marriages. – Valorum Nov 20 at 22:13
  • 5
    I think an important part of Queenie's decision that could be added to this answer is at the start when she says to Jacob that one of them has to be brave and if its not going to be him then it has to be her. We can see this as being her reasoning at the end as well. She goes with Grindelwald even though Jacob doesn't want her to go which might seem illogical, but from her perspective one of them has to be brave and actually do something to make a change and so she'll do it even if he won't. At least that's one interpretation – Rhys Nov 20 at 23:45

SPOILER ALERT

An obvious reason (properly described by @Valorum) is being able to marry Jacob. It's her greatest desire, and she sees Grindelwald's way is the only way to achieve that. It's like the last resort for her: either that or nothing. She doesn't seem to think deeply about the possible consequences.

But there is more to it.

She really shares Grindelwald's views, though in a more naive way.

Although Queenie looks like a nice person, she already showed that the idea of using magic over muggles "for greater good" is fine with her. She put a spell on Jacob to make him stay with her, which is a pure violation of an individual's free will, but she thought she had the right to decide what is best, exactly because she had the power to benefit them both (as she saw it). Apparently using such methods on a no-maj seems legit to her, though she would probably think twice if Jacob was a wizard himself.

She also doesn't ever seem to think she should limit her mind reading to respect others' privacy. It's quite straightforward for her: you've got the power, you use it. If you are a good person, then everybody will just benefit from it, right?

Queenie is shown as a sweet, but rather naive person who does not think deeply about a problem, which makes her see right and wrong in a very narrow way. That's also the reason she can be easily persuaded. It didn't seem to take much effort from Newt to persuade her she shouldn't have put the spell on Jacob; in the same way, it was easy enough for Grindelwald to persuade her into his ideas.

So it is possible Queenie genuinely shares Grindelwald's views that wizards are allowed to use their powers if this is for "greater good."

When Queenie met with Grindelwald earlier in the movie, he swayed her by hinting that the current laws banning marriage between Muggles and Wizards/Witches would no longer exist and that if she were to follow him, that she would be free to marry who she wished.

Because she heard what she wanted to hear

To avoid a spoiler-formatting "hell", this post contains unprotected spoiler information

In Crimes of Grindelwald

Queenie

join forces with Grindelwald at the end.

As others have suggested before, Queenie was in love with a Non-Wizard and by the standards of the late 20's Wizarding Society, marrying between Muggles and Wizards was considered a taboo; maybe it was also forbidden.

Quoting a dialogue from the movie,

JACOB: Okay, wait. We talked about this, like, a million times. If we get married and they find out, they’re gonna throw you in jail, sweetheart. I can’t have that. They don’t like people like me marrying people like you. I ain’t a wizard. I’m just me.

-Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Script

For this sole reason, at the beginning of the movie, she left him and throughout it, she seemed to be deeply affected by her choice. Later, when she met Grindelwald in Paris, she surrendered all her defenses. She heard what she wanted to hear. Of a world that she can leave freely without the "limitations" of the past.

Grindelwald, after all, is mentioned to have been an extremely charismatic man, who not only persuaded thousands to join him, but persuaded none other than Albus Dumbledore himself in his quest to rule Muggles for the Greater Good. If Albus Dumbledore was deceived that easy, what chances did poor Queenie had?

The real question would be why Grindelwald was so hesitant in making her join him. For that I guess, we will have to wait to find out.

It’s unclear exactly but it would appear to be either because Grindelwald persuaded or enchanted her. I’ll detail reasons for both below:

Both

Grindelwald is described as being very persuasive and having a silver tongue. This could be a reason to say he is either very persuasive or is enchanting people.

PICQUERY It was necessary. He’s extremely powerful. We’ve had to change his guard three times—he’s very... persuasive. So we removed his tongue.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

SPIELMAN No more silver tongue, eh?

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

Persuasion

Grindelwald appears to have persuaded Abernathy to join his cause, this shows how persuasive he is and lays some foreshadowing down for persuasion, like he does to Credence at the end of the film too.

GRINDELWALD appears at the door and nods to ABERNATHY. He throws the door open so the water pours out—along with the two remaining AURORS. GRINDELWALD clambers inside and retrieves the vial from ABERNATHY’S mouth by the chain, casting a spell that grants ABERNATHY a new forked tongue.

GRINDELWALD You have joined a noble cause, my friend.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

NAGINI grabs CREDENCE and tries to drag him away with her, but he is staring at GRINDELWALD.

CREDENCE He knows who I am.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

Like with Credence, Grindelwald says what Queenie wants to hear to get her to join him. Here he picks at her wanting to marry Jacob, a Muggle, which is currently illegal.

QUEENIE Oh well, you know, she found out about Jacob and I seeing each other and she didn’t like it, ’cause of the “law.” (miming quotation marks) Not allowed to date No-Majs, not allowed to marry them. Blah, blah, blah. Well, she was all in a tizzy anyway, ’cause of you.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

GRINDELWALD I would never see you harmed, ever. It is not your fault that your sister is an Auror. I wish you were working with me now towards a world where we wizards are free to live openly, and to love freely.

GRINDELWALD’S hand touches her wand-tip and lowers it.

GRINDELWALD You are an innocent. So go now. Leave this place.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

QUEENIE (a decision) Jacob, he’s the answer. He wants what we want.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

Enchanted

Of course earlier on we have the foreshadowing of people being enchanted when Queenie has enchanted Jacob.

NEWT (V.O.) (speaking telepathically) You’ve enchanted him, haven’t you?

QUEENIE (reading his mind) What? I have not.

NEWT Will you stop reading my mind speaking telepathically) Queenie, you’ve brought him here against his will.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

It would also appear that Jacob believes she is enchanted, however, this could just be in desperation.

ANGLE ON QUEENIE AND JACOB, who are pressed up against a different stretch of wall.

JACOB Queenie. You gotta wake up.

QUEENIE (a decision) Jacob, he’s the answer. He wants what we want.

JACOB No, no, no, no, no, no.

QUEENIE Yeah.

JACOB No.

[...]

ANGLE ON QUEENIE AND JACOB.

QUEENIE Walk with me.

JACOB Honey, no!

QUEENIE (screams) Walk with me!

JACOB You’re crazy.

She reads his mind, turns, hesitates, then walks into the black fire.

JACOB (desperate, disbelieving) No! Queenie, don’t do it!”

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

  • 3
    I was under the impression that they showed Jacob 'enchanted' (and basically drunk) in order to show that Queenie had been legitimately convinced without magical involvement – Valorum Nov 20 at 21:20
  • @Valorum I suppose like a lot of the stuff it can be interpreted both ways. – TheLethalCarrot Nov 20 at 21:21

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