Well, I promised I’d have this out and here you are. (Little late, sorry) Finally! A Tim Burton movie without Johnny Depp or Helena Bonham Carter!
I’m a big Tim Burton fan…of most of his work. I find I tend to like his work better when it’s not based on a larger franchise. The only exceptions I’ve seen to this are his Batman films and Sweeney Todd. I haven’t seen Big Eyes, Big Fish, or Sleepy Hollow yet, but I’ve heard good things. Personally, I think my favourite of his films outside of the Batman ones might be Beetlejuice. I also love the cartoon.
I haven’t read the original book, but I do own it.
When Jacob Porter was a little boy, his grandfather, Abe, used to tell him stories of the wonderful children’s home in Wales where he grew up, filled with the most extraordinary children, called Peculiars, with amazing abilities and run by the time bending Miss Peregrine, played by Eva Green and not Helena Bonham Carter like many first thought. After his grandfather is killed, Jake discovers that the children’s home, which he had long since written off as a bedtime story, actually exists and journeys to Wales to find it and to learn about his grandfather’s heritage. But something evil is lurking in the shadows, waiting to get its claws on the children’s home and its inhabitants.
Wow, decent child acting is hard to find. I think they pulled it off. I mean it’s not great, but it’s better than most. That’s the kid who played Ender as Jake. I’ve never seen Ender’s Game (Don’t really want to), but his acting’s fine. Eva Green and Samuel L. Jackson probably gave the best performances, motherly and smart yet mysterious and stern and creepy and diabolical yet charismatic and witty respectively. No real problem with the acting.
Like I said, I never read the book, but I do like this story. The trailers didn’t lie. It really is a mixture of Harry Potter and X-Men. As a massive fan of Harry Potter, I do like those better, but I think I like this over what little I’ve seen of the X-Men franchise outside of Deadpool. It still has the classic ‘boy who has The Special’ story, but there’s no prophecy so that’s nice. The kids’ powers are mostly unique compared to a lot of superheroes from comics and it’s cool to see.
I love Tim Burton’s style and it’s in full force here. The creature designs in this movie are terrifying, honestly reminds me as a mixture of a monster from Code Lyoko and a hidden secret from Undertale plus maybe Venom. The effects are spectacular and the sets, when they’re supposed to be, are dark and spooky. Otherwise, it’s Florida and it’s just there. Samuel L Jackson’s character as the main villain is worth the PG 13 rating on his own, holy crap!
The pacing in the Florida bits have some problems and go pretty fast, but once they get to Wales they’re fine. That’s really my only problem with the movie. It’s not perfect and I can’t tell you if it’s a good adaptation, but it’s a good movie.
This is not Tim Burton’s best work. It’s not one of his better ones, but compared to his other adaptation works, it may as well be up there under the Batman films and Sweeney Todd, I’m not gonna say Tim Burton’s back on track in terms of filmmaking. There are some places where he pulls his punches, but where he hits the nail, he hits the nail. It’s nice to see a Burton film without his usual cohorts and he can make good films without them. I say go see it. Like it or not, it’s better than Dark Shadows.
Also, there is one point in the film which will make Doctor Who fans go “Are You My Mummy?”.
Next week: Summary of New York Comic Con 2016. It’s Quickies Time again!