And the first thing I said after watching this movie was "......what?"
Honestly, what did I just watch? I might honestly go into another Tim Burton break after this because I'm once again unimpressed. I don't know how to describe this story. I really don't. And it's not that I wasn't paying attention, it's just that this movie seems to explain its own rules, before throwing them out the window completely. I didn't expect time travel to be a factor in this movie, but it is kinda, and it creates one of the most confusing movies I've ever seen, and has left me in a thorough state of....ehh. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't good either. It was...adequate. It was an adequate mess. Autumn movies this year's aren't starting out so hot, are they.
One thing Burton did nail as he usually does however, is the visuals. Credit where credit is due, there is some lovely, lovely visuals that will please the Burton fans. Wanna see it in 3D? I'm sure you'll get your money's worth. Some scenes are absolutely gorgeous, such as the underwater scenes. They're gorgeous. And though there's extensive use of CGI that can stand out, it's still done in a rather fun way. The visuals once more carry this film in ways that nothing else can. But I'm willing to bet that this trump card for Burton will wear off before too long.
The story focuses on a boy names Jake whose life is just one big joke to Peru much everyone in this film. No kidding. Literally everyone around him, except his grandfather, is a complete jerk. In ways that seem almost completely childish. Send Jake off the road so that he steps in a mud puddle and loses a shoe. Ha ha ha! We're assholes! It needs to be said that no one in this movie is developed enough for me to really connect with them. That's not to say that no one is interesting. Ask the children in this movie with these peculiar abilities are fun to watch in their own ways. And unlike other films that would have a lot of characters like this, each contribute a lot with their power. It's very fun to watch. More on this shortly. But as far as overall personality is concerned, I didn't exactly get a whole lot of development. The two main emotions that people seem to portray in this film, are worry/feelings for Jake, or straight up jerk personas, also aimed mainly at Jake. Would it kill someone to act...ordinary in this film? Not even Jake's parents seem to act loving of their son. His father is a complete jerk (I know I'm saying this a lot but it just happens so much in the movie), and his mother seems so very absent. Like what did she do in this movie? I guess I shouldn't question this too much since the parents in this film are dropped from the film like a dozen eggs.
The story is so convoluted and all over the place, that it's hard to follow. In fact, I genuinly don't understand why things were as they were. So much of this film is unexplained, that by the time the end rolls around, you're left with more questions than you want. Why does Samuel L. Jackson's character HAVE to eat eyeballs? How did he discover this? Why does it need to be eyeballs? Honestly I think Burton wanted an excuse to film someone eating eyeballs. It really makes no sense. On the subject of Samuel, you can tell he is having a lot of fun with his role. And though the film's climax is about as ransom and jumbled, and adds more unanswered questions to the unanswered questions pile, there is a charm in how very awkward, yet action packed it is. What I mean by awkward is that this huge fight involving monsters takes place in broad daylight in London, 2016. A battle involving cotton candy, snowballs, and powers the children have. It's absurdly kinda cartoonish now that I think about it. All set to this awkwardly played techno soundtrack. It's a mess I had a little fun watching. Even though the forced romantic ending is one I don't care for. Again, our characters weren't developed enough for me to care. In fact the ending is so clunky and rushed that it actually kinda annoyed me.
All in all this film is likely to please that peon of Burton fans who just go to the theater to see something weird. The film has Burton's name all over it. From the strange sets, to the eccentric characters. It's a big ball of weird that does have its moments, but not really enough to make me wanna recommend it to anyone else.
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children earns a two out of four stars for me. I almost gave it a two and a half, but the more I think about what I just sat through the more I just keep questioning it. As bad as the Magnificent Seven was, it did tell a coherent story. One I could follow. The only thing it did wrong was tell it as terrible as it did. This film has a story, but it doesn't seem to focus on it. It just jumps all over the map and hopes you can keep up as it dazzles you with peculiar characters and nice imagery. Unfortunetaly, that's not going to help float the boat for me. Tim Burton's a wonderful visionary, but his stories need work, and this probably shows that more than any of his other recent work.
Please feel free to request and movie you'd like me to take a look at. Leave a comment down below existing your own thoughts on the film, and as always, thanks for reading.
Final Verdict: 2/4