Based on the novel released in 2011 by Ransom Riggs, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children tells the story of Jake, a teenager that just doesn’t fit in. Early on in the film Jake’s grandfather, Abe, dies a gruesome death leaving Jake struggling to make sense of life without the man who he has always looked up to. When Jake seeks the help of a therapist called Dr. Golan, played by Allison Janney, she rather easily convinces his parents to let him go to Wales with his bird watching father to explore the reliability of the story’s and tales Abe told to Jake as he was growing up. Unsurprisingly, Jake discovers more than he intended to. Jake stumbles upon Mrs. Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, just like his grandfather said he would. After meeting the house’s inhabitants, they give Jake information that will take him on a time-traveling, dangerous, and emotive journey that will shape his past, future, and change his life forever.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is everything people have come to expect from a Tim Burton film. A creepy house that is the home to a group of weird and creepy children on a creepy island where there’s a love story and mid-20th century clothing. The film although be it rated 12A is actually rather intense, dramatic, and has quite a bit of gore at times. One example of this is Samuel L Jackson’s character Barron, a shapeshifter that uses tentacles to gouge out the eyes of peculiar children to maintain his immortality. Yes, before you ask, every detail is shown. However, the gore is only one detail of a film that is marvelously engaging. The characters are colourful and the settings are perfect for the tone of the film.

Eva Green’s portrayal of Miss Peregrine was masterful to the point where it could be argued that she could become Burton’s go to female lead instead of Helena Bonham Carter. She was such a convincing caregiver for the children that after seeing the film I find it hard to imagine her in her more scandalous roles in films such as 300: Rise of an Empire and Sin City. Asa Butterfield gives his best performance since The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas with a great showing as main character Jake and fits the ‘awkward lost teen’ stereotype down to a tee. The children are all loveable and cute (even if some of the actors that portray them are near 20) even with their weird quirks; you know, the ones where one has a mouth in the back of her head etc.

This film is a great standalone feature and I only hope Burton doesn’t decide to bring the rest of the novels to screen. I feel as if every film nowadays has to have a sequel or a series and that is not the case. Jake’s journey is a gripping story that is unique and exciting. I wouldn’t have dared to leave my seat for the fear of missing something. Tim Burton has made a film that is not like the hit or miss ones he has been releasing over the last 10 years, and instead made a film that is unique and entertaining. The only downfall is the number of plot holes resulting from some poor script writing from Jane Goldman. They range from small things that may go unnoticed like being able to swim while wearing lead shoes, to massive parts of the story being left wide open. Jake’s dad is last seen in the film chasing him down a beach just about at the half way mark of the film. We have no idea what happens to him afterwards. He just vanishes it seems. One or two inconsistencies I could let slide but it takes more than one hand to count the amount of issues in this film and ultimately this is what holds the film back. The first three quarters of the film were near faultless. Solid story, strong character building, the complete package. But the final forty-five minutes are jumbled and messy. It’s constant chaos and you don’t really have time to think about what just happened before another scene is slapping you in the face with a fight or monologue.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children is a hit, it truly embodies a classic Tim Burton film and keeps viewers engaged right through. The visuals are vivid and engaging, the acting is marvelous, and the story has some fabulous moments. However, I feel that the relaxed rating and the inconsistent plot leaves much to be desired.

Movie Review: Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children
3.0Overall Score
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