Movie Review – ‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’

Hello everyone! 🙂

Welcome to ‘Bradley’s Basement’ blog and I’m Tim Bradley!

On the last day of April, my parents and I saw the film ‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’ on Disney+. This was a 2016 fantasy film released by 20th Century Fox and it was directed by Tim Burton. The film is based on a 2011 novel of the same name (which I haven’t read) by Ramson Riggs.

Tim Burton is an acquired taste of a film director. Sometimes he works for me as a film director, sometimes he doesn’t. I really love his 1989 ‘Batman’ film and he did do a decent 2005 film adaptation of ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’. But there are some of his films that miss the mark for me.

This includes ‘Batman Returns’ which I don’t think is as good as the first ‘Batman’ film he did and then there’s ‘Edward Scissorhands’ (although more people enjoy that film than me, including my Dad). What does that say about ‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’? Did I find it very good?

Well, actually, to be honest….yes, I found it quite good! I don’t think it’s one of Tim Burton’s best films and it did receive mixed reviews at the time. But honestly, I found ‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’ is a decent film effort by Tim Burton. I found myself enjoying the film quite a lot. 🙂

That might have to do with me being able to follow the story easily enough, even though there are a few complicated bits to get your head around involving time bubbles and that’s mostly done in the film’s climax. There are also some horrific moments featured in the film that put me off quite a bit. 😐

This included a lot of eyes and people eating them as well as the monstrous Hollows which had tentacles coming out of their heads. There are also the skeletons that appear in the film’s climax. I’m not sure if this is meant to be a kids’ film, especially since there are certain children characters here.

But if I was to judge this film in an evaluative manner, I would say the film was very fascinating and intriguing to follow. I haven’t read the original book by Ransom Riggs, but I’d like to think Tim Burton did a decent job adapting it to the screen. He may have taken artistic licence, but that’s nothing new.

The story follows a young boy named Jake who used to have stories told to him by his grandfather Abe about monsters and Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children at Cairnholm, an island off the coast of Wales. One sad day, Jake finds his grandfather dying and with his eyes horrifically removed.

Jake is told to go to the loop of 1943. He soon travels to the island of Cairnholm and investigates the children’s home which was destroyed. He soon meets the children from Abe’s stories and goes through a portal where he ends up in 1943. Jake soon meets the titular Miss Peregrine at the home.

Miss Peregrine and her children have been hiding in this time loop of 1943 to avoid persecution for being Peculiars. But it isn’t long before the evil Mr. Barron, who has been trying to extract the location of Miss Peregrine’s loop, causes trouble. Will Jake get to rescue his new-found friends here?

There are elements of the X-Men, ‘Sky High’ and Harry Potter involved in the film. There are also apparently sequels to the original book by Ransom Riggs. So far, the sequels haven’t been made into films like the first book. I wonder if the film’s box office jeopardised that from ever occurring here. 😐

The film’s cast are very good in the film. Eva Green stars as the titular Miss Peregrine. There’s also Terence Stamp (who’s pretty well-known for playing General Zod in the ‘Superman’ films) as Abe Portman, Jake’s grandfather; and there’s also Judi Dench playing Miss Esmeralda Avocet in the film.

Asa Butterfield stars as Jake Portman, the young male hero of the film. There’s also Ella Purnell as Emma Bloom, who can float in the air and breathe underwater by creating liquid bubbles of air. I did like the sweet love story that was forming between Asa and Emma when they interacted in the film.

There’s also Finlay MacMillan as Enoch O’Connor, Lauren McCrostie as Olive Elephanta, Cameron King who voices the invisible Millard Nullings, Pixie Davies as Bronwyn Bruntley, Georgia Pemberton as Fiona Frauenfield, Milo Parker (who would later go on to play a young Master in ‘Masterful’ by Big Finish), Raffiella Chapman as Claire Densmore, Hayden Keller-Stone as Horace Somnusson, Joseph and Thomas Odwell as the Twins and Louis Davison (one of Peter Davison’s sons) as the dead Victor Bruntley.

The film also features Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury in the ‘MCU’) as Mr. Barron, the evil shapeshifting leader of the Wights and Hollows. Allison Janney as Dr. Nancy Golan and Rupert Everett as John Lamont are two of Barron’s disguises. There’s Chris O’Dowd as Frank, Jake’s father; Kim Dickens as Maryann, Jake’s mother; and O-Lan Jones (who was in ‘Edward Scissorhands’) as Shelly in the film.

‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’ is a very entertaining fantasy film. I enjoyed watching it. I was able to follow it through easily enough and the performances of the cast are good. There are a number of horrific moments to get over, but the film should be worthy enough to brave through. 🙂

Thanks for reading!

Bye for now!

Tim. 🙂

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