Saturday, 7 July 2018

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

If you love Tim Burton, you'll love this potpourri of fantasy, love, mystery, monsters, baddies, goodies, magical powers, dark humour and time travel! Ready? Once upon a time...

...It's centred around a children's home in Wales stuck in a time-loop for reasons that become apparent and a bunch of children with all sorts of peculiar powers (different one for each) and the quest of one American grandson hurled into the loop, driven by desire to discover and save grandpa. What happens thereafter is a pure magical mystery tour of all of the above.

I haven't read the Ransom Riggs book which came from an idea centred around a collection of oddball Victorian photos, but it seems clear from the DVD extras that he was as wow'd as anyone about the way in which Burton has taken a fine story and idea, added his magic and embellished it into a visual feast.

The cast are clearly having much fun with the filming. Fine performances by the central leads of Asa Butterfly and Ella Purnell are supported by stars with a differing range of screen-time including Samuel L Jackson, Terence Stamp, Judi Dench, Eva Green and Rupert Everett, with a distinct lack of the Usual Suspects such as Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham-Carter et al.

The settings are of course gorgeously dark, as are many of the characters - a gothic tinge injected, reflecting Burton's influence. Make no mistake, it's a fantasy Sunday afternoon kind of film to digest after a large roast dinner, but it's full of interesting ideas and diversions, which I recommend highly.

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