Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children ****

Running time 124mins Cert: 12A


Synopsis:When his beloved grandfather leaves Jake (Asa Butterfield) lues to a mystery that spans different worlds and times, he finds a magical place known as Miss Peregrine’s School for Peculiar Children. But the mystery and danger deepen as he gets to know the residents and learns about their special powers – and their terrifying enemies. Ultimately, Jake discovers that only his own special peculiarity can save his new friends.

 Based on the book series by Ransom Riggs, Director Tim Burton tries his hand at the Young Adult adaptation.

The material appears to be ideal to the auteur’s sensiblities with a blended mixture of emotional drama and eccentric horror. He brings his unique visual and quirky performance lead style to make probably the best film he has done since the underrated ‘Sweeney Todd’.

Even although Butterfield is the main protagonist and gives a highly likable performance, it is really, Eva Green who is the scene-stealer as the mysterious, Mary Poppin’s inspired Miss Peregrine. The thought of Sam Jackson in a tim Burton movie seems like an odd concotion, however he makes a hilarious and delightfully creepy villian, in which he appears to be physically chewing the scenary in every sequance.
The supporting cast of peculiars, however apart from Emma Bloom (Ella Purnell), a teenage girl who defies gravity and wears metal shoes in order to stop floating away) are not as established as the rest of the characters. Some of these characters are more visually striking in concept than others.The little screen time that they have makes the audience have less empathy.

The script by ‘Kickass’ screenwriter Jane Goldman is a faithful adaptation apart from the final act in which things  go a little crazy, but make for a fun  climatic act set in the picturesque and exciting destination of Blackpool. It has to be seen to be believed.

It isn’t Burton’s most ambitious or rousing work to date but it is great to see the director back to his darkly comic roots.
Reviewed by Paul Logan

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