When Jacob discovers clues to a mystery that stretches across time, he finds Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. But the danger deepens after he gets to know the residents and learns about their special powers.
When Jacob discovers clues to a mystery that spans different worlds and times, he finds a magical place known as Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. But the mystery and danger deepen as he gets to know the residents and learns about their special powers... and their powerful enemies. Ultimately, Jacob discovers that only his own special "peculiarity" can save his new friends. Written by
20th Century Fox
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Could've been a great film. Despite some intriguing story elements and a promising first act, it sadly ends up being OK.
Just to clarify one thing: I don't hate Tim Burton at all. In fact, I kinda love his work. He has a very unique and imaginative vision, seems to have a tasteful choice for actors (besides Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter), and can really pour his heart and soul in some of his films like "Edward Scissorhands", "Corpse Bride", and "The Nightmare Before Christmas". But, just like any director, he has his missteps also. Some of his recent work is very lackluster and, at times, flat-out bad (Planet of the... BLAHK!).
But I was still excited for this particular project of his. I haven't read the book, or knew much about it, but when I saw the trailer I got my hopes up. Maybe this will be his big comeback! Asa Butterfield is an actor I like, the imagery is appropriately dream- like and the source material seems to fit his style perfectly. It even has the screenwriter from X-Men: First Class!
So I went to see the film with a few of my friends in a theater of around 15 people and 25-30 recliner seats. I couldn't wait to see another great Tim Burton movie!
And for the first half of the film... I genuinely enjoyed it! Sure, it does take some time for Jacob to reach Peregrine's home, but once he does... I couldn't help but smile like an idiot. The world that Jacob enters is fascinating, the visuals are exceptional, and every one of the peculiar kids are very interesting side- characters. I wanted to learn more about the girl that could lift boulders over her head! There is also this kid that can project his dreams into film... how cool! The first act always left me with questions that I was excited to hear about when the plot kicks in.
And then the plot kicks in...
That is where the movie starts to run out of steam.
I could tell there were a lot of story elements in the book just from watching the movie, because in the second half a lot of it felt crammed in. Whenever I try to follow the story as best as I can, there's always this one subplot that makes precious little sense. It also doesn't help that the villain is weak and his motivations are somewhat vague.
The climax is pretty abrupt and Burton sadly delves into a few clichés that aggravate me. A lot of it felt by-the-numbers at that time, and I was sorely disappointed.
That's not to say that this was a bad film, because it isn't. The acting (especially from Eva Green) is competent, the whole film is imaginative in its story and visuals, and somewhere buried beneath lies a great film with lots of creative ideas and appealing whimsy. But the plot is messy, the main character is bland, the pacing is at times uneven and, in the end, it's just another average YA adaptation that had loads of potential.
+ Visuals + Well-cast, especially for Eva Green + Imaginative + Sense of wonder in the first act + Solid directing + Interesting side characters
Villain - The hero is underdeveloped - Plot is messy - Pacing is
uneven - Unconvincing love chemistry
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