Miss Peregrine’s Projects Stunning Visuals

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is an interesting movie based upon a teen book.

Photo by Emily Wang

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is an interesting movie based upon a teen book.

By Emily Wang, Features Editor

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“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children”, another popular young adult novel turned movie, has outdone “Deepwater” and “Masterminds”, trumping both with a box office opening earning of $28.5 million Sept. 30.

Set in the alternating times of WWII Wales and the present, “Miss Peregrine’s” is a dark gothic adventure worth watching.

Director Tim Burton is renowned for his creepy and rather quirky films, and “Miss Peregrine’s” is no different.

The plot follows the general outline of a seemingly ordinary boy finding himself in the middle of an extraordinary world. Jake Portman (Asa Butterfield) finds his beloved grandfather, Abe (Terence Stamp), with him eyes gouged out and dead in the forest behind his house. After the traumatic experience, Jake decides to visit the Welsh orphanage in which Abe grew up in order to try and find a way to accept his death. There, he meets the “peculiar” children Emma (Ella Purnell) who manipulates air, Enoch (Finlay MacMillan) who can bring things to life using hearts, Millard (Cameron King) who is invisible, Olive (Lauren McCrostie) who manipulates fire, and many more. Together, they all live under the care of Miss Peregrine (Eva Green) a special type of “peculiar” called an “Ymbryne” who can create time loops.

However, life in the repeating time loop is not as idyllic as it seems, and the threat the peculiar world is linked to Abe’s mysterious death.

Due to the complex nature of the plot, an excessive amount of time is dedicated to the exposition and only a short span to the conclusion, lending the movie to feel too front heavy and rushed.

In the visual department, Burton does not fail to deliver. The use of contrasting color schemes to differentiate between time periods and the beautiful backgrounds create a classic Burton masterpiece.

The film also includes many stellar casting choices, but a few performances delivered were particularly uninspiring. Specifically lead actor Asa Butterfield’s acting as Jake is passable at best, but overall lack-luster. Butterfield does not display nearly enough emotion during crucial scenes, and his facial expressions are painfully forced.

On the bright side, counterpart Ella Purnell plays her role splendidly, showing just the right amount of emotion and adding great inflection to her voice. And Eva Green’s Miss Alma Peregrine is slightly bird-like, overly concerned with punctuality, but carries the perfect combination of love and madness.

The movie deviation from the novels and may anger avid novel fans, but the changes pan out well. For example, Emma and Olivia’s peculiarities of fire and air are switched in the movies while the multiple book villains’ roles are combined into the Dr. Barron. Yet, this deviation from the novels is what allows the actors to create their own versions and tell a new fresh tale as opposed to merely repeating the book.

The ending does not seem to leave room for a sequel, so do not pine for the rest of Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children novels to be made into movies.

Overall, the movie is lacking in emotional stakes, but delivers overwhelmingly in the department of stunning visual effects, garnering a 3.5/5.