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Fantasy - Magic Realism

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (2016)

Duration2h 7m
RatingsUK: 12A, USA: 
Source of storyA novel of the same name by Ransom Riggs, 
DirectorTim Burton
Writers/ScriptJane Goldman,
StarringEva Green, Asa Butterworth, Samuel L. Jackson, Judi Dench, Rupert Everett, Allison Janney, Chris O’Dowd, Terence Stamp, 
RatingsIMDb: 6.7 by 154,796 people. Rotten Tomatoes:  64% by 249 critics.

Elevator Pitch: Jake is young man in Florida, inspired by his grandfather to search out a “time loop’ in Wales, populated by the eponymous Miss Peregrine. He goes to Wales, and finds the home, now destroyed by a German bomb, and is taken back through a portal by the children. Now in 1943, with the home intact he meets Miss Peregrine and the children who include a young woman who has to wear heavy boots to keep her down, another who has to wear gloves because she sets fire to things with her hands, another who is invisible, etc. Miss Peregrine is a “Ymbryne” who can transform in a bird. Jake’s ability is to see “hollows” who are scary monsters who, if they can steal the eyeballs of a Peculiar, will transform into sort of humans – Wights. Jake falls for the air girl, Emma, but their whole existence is under threat. 

Content: The film has a sort of innocence but actually parents should take into account the fact that the ”hollows” are very scary monsters with sticklike arms and legs, no eyes and a mouth full of teeth, from which tentacles writhe. They are also invisible to all except a few Peculiars. There is a shape shifter involved, Mr Barron, who has appeared in various guises to Jake to encourage him to find Miss Peregrine. Jake and Emma find a sunken ship, later used to transport the children to a time loop at Blackpool. There are scenes in Blackpool tower. 

A View: This was a very expensive film, but it made some money. It was moderately well liked by the critics but many thought it was not up to the standards of other Tim Burton stuff. Some thought there were plot holes. Of course mariners will find the voyage of the ship, brought to the surface by Emma, problematical. As usual it is managed with no crew. If you can do that why bother with a ship at all. So just maybe a watch for Tim Burton fans. Parents see the Content.

Additional Info: Just a bit curiously Cornwall in the southwest of UK stood in for Wales.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels

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