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Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children Review (2016) | Fantastic Plot

Tim Burton‘s knack for the queer continues. This time he picks up Ransom Riggs‘s Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children off the shelves. But the big question is he able to deliver a proper literary adaptation? The answer is not quite. I would say Miss Peregrine ends up becoming a tad unremarkable for its remarkable tale. However, its story can’t be overlooked either. If you pay heed to the plot of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, you will realize that it takes one hell of an imagination to think something so beautiful! For that I can’t thank Ransom Rigg enough.

Plot of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Spoilers Ahead)

If you take the beautiful plot of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children into account, you will be surprised to know how intriguing its story-line is. It skims on the surface of time loops that is an adventurous topic per se. Jake, played by the meek mien of Asa Butterfield, is visiting his grandfather Abe who used to babysit him when he was young.

Grandfather Abe

Abe would tell him stories about peculiar children showing him photographs that would tingle his senses. In his story a Lady Peregrine, who could turn into a bird (Peregrine good guess there!), used to take care of the children with strange mutant like abilities in a huge house. However, growing up, Jake came to believe, all his stories were nothing but sham. Lost faith in his Grampa’s vision, he ends up going aloof from him.

still of the peculiar children in miss peregrine movie

Once when paying his Grampa a visit, he encounters a strange man standing in the middle of the road, some blocks ahead of Grampa’s abode. Clueless he moves on. On reaching there, he finds his grandfather dead and without his eyes. Before dying Abe asks Jake about a bird, a loop and the year 1940. Confused Jake fails to understand, when he finds a gargantuan tentacled beast in the woods. Aftermath, he ends up in therapy.

Visiting Cairnholm Island

His constant struggle with what his grandfather was trying to tell him, compels him to visit an island called Cairnholm to look for clues. He coaxes his father into taking him there. Jake finds the house of the peculiars there, however it’s in tatters owing to a certain German bomb attack that had burnt the house to cinders in 1940. Trying to satiate his curiosity, the bold Jake ventures in to have a look. He finds photos of the children that confirms his Grandfather’s stories. But then out of the blue he finds them all alive. Scared he tries to run, but ends up knocking himself out.

Brilliance of Time Loops

That’s when the plot of the story starts shaping up too. On waking up, and realizing they were for real he follows the children to a cave. Unknowingly, he enters a time loop that takes him to 1940. He finds the Peculiar Home intact. That’s when he gets to meet the gorgeous Peregrine lady played by Eva Green. Miss Peregrine is an Ymbryne who can manipulate time. She has, along with her children, taken refuge in a time loop that she had created moments before the bomb attack.

still of eva green as miss peregrine in miss peregrine's home for peculiar children

The beauty of this very concept lies in its surreal poetry. Every single day living the same life over and over again, knowing everyday is going to end with that same wretched bomb dropping from the sky. Every single day goes by without them ageing, in constant fear of being discovered, and trying to hide under the blankets of time. Such a beautiful thought! But unfortunately, Tim Burton doesn’t milk this enough. The beauty of its poesy disappears along with its constantly running frames. You can’t help but blame the movie’s sped up editing for it.

Dark Antagonists

Like any yarn, galloping towards a direction, we are introduced to elements of perversion here as well. They are called Hollowgasts or simply Hollows, people who became monsters as a result of an experiment gone wrong. Misshapen they can’t be seen with naked eyes (unless you are Jake or Abe of course). Hollows hunt for peculiars as that’s their only chance to become a tad normal. They are known as Wights. Barron is the head of the wights who has been trying to hunt down more Ymbrynes to continue his experiments of immortality.

still of a hollowgast or hollow in miss peregrine movie

The real tension begins when Mr. Barron follows Jake to their timeloop who is then followed up by a ghastly Hollowgaust. Tim Burton uses peculiar children’s abilities to help each other out from that situation. A bomb drops and their loop forever shuts down.

It is then when Jake and the other peculiars decide to save Miss Peregrine and other Ymbrynes from the clutches of the evil wights. That becomes the sole theme of the movie afterwards.

You can pre-order Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar children here:

Major Drawbacks

The first obvious one was Shelly, the non-peculiar. Her reaction when she finds oddity going on in the real world is not what we expect. It is as if Tim Burton has taken it for granted that everybody is okay with a tinge of eccentricity. I mean, if I was there, I would have first freaked out. The abnormal absent reaction of Shelly will make you think,

“Is she for real?”

Then moving on to Miss Peregrine’s character. To be really candid, Eva Green wasn’t really fit for the role. Okay, she does bring a rare sense of grandeur to her character but was that really enough? Her portrayal was very unconvincing and forgetful. Could it be because of the limited screen-time she had?

There was nothing motherly about her portrayal, if she was supposed to be the caretaker of those children. Somehow I felt a stronger character was supposed to be the call of the hour that no one took. The script demanded someone powerful like Helena Bonham Carter, Meryl Streep or Emma Thompson for that to matter.

Burton’s Bleak Time Loop Representation

With time loop being one of the major driving forces of the tale, Burton’s depiction ends up becoming really bland. Tim Burton’s loops are empty. They come and go at odd hours without packing in much theatrics which ebbs its colossal import. At a time where the ending fight should have mattered the most, the backcloth score of a carnival makes that huge showdown a laughable affair.

Samuel Jackson plays a non-serious villain trying to introduce some humour through his acts. He is alright actually. He makes himself less scary even though he looks terrifying. The Whites of the Wights ( their eyes) were enough to terrorize little kids who had come thinking it was a Disney movie.

still of Samuel Jackson as Baron in Miss Peregrine

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children isn’t really dark. But there are dark elements in the tale nevertheless that are trying real hard to throw in different angles. But the depiction of it all ends up becoming more fun than gloomy. What makes it so is not only just the odd placement of music by Matthew Margeson and Michael Higham but also its less terrorizing banal acts. You can also count both stop motion animation and the CGI of the movie in whilst judging it.

The Final Verdict

To drop the final gavel on this, I would say it is an enjoyable ride nevertheless. However I do wish to see a perceptive TV series made on Ransom Rigg’s book, to capture the beauty of its ravishing story in pensive time frames.

Having trouble understanding the time loops in Miss Peregrine movie? Read our article on: Miss Peregrine Movie Explained

Check out the trailer of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children here:

Batman The Killing Joke Review (2016) | Phenomenal stories | Found Paris Franz

Batman The Killing Joke walks in with that same old stunning Joker lore with a bit of Barbara’s emotional turmoil hooked to it. We find Paris Franz here, another badass villain that talks through the smug of a pyscho, and you can’t help but wonder about the similarities he shares with Batman’s archenemy Joker himself.

It’s like he’s fallen off the face of the Earth.

There are two main stories galloping here. Halfway through the movie, you can’t stop yourself from appreciating what you are served – extraordinary psychopathic Paris Franz story with Barbara’s constant battle with herself to confess her love for Batsy. But then the later half gradually degrades, without a strong cemented backbone to uplift the story. No doubt The Joker was magnificent as ever, but the story falls down in respect to Joker’s evilness as it reaches climax.

Stories in Batman The Killing Joke (SPOILERS)

There is an ambiguous disconnect between two main story-lines, that seem to work in different parts of Batman The Killing Joke. We have an exciting, ballsy, different and emotional tale to the Batman-Batgirl relationship that continue with Joker shenanigans that try to rampage past human sanity.

The First Plot: Paris Franz Quandary

Batman The Killing Joke starts off with a diegesis of sorts, Batgirl narrating her story beautifully. Animation keeping up with her as she scales down the city explaining rare accounts from her head. This side of the vantage is well thought of and well written. It engulfs you almost instantly.

Still of Batgirl and Batman in Batman The Killing Joke

I realize this is probably not how you thought the story would start, not with a big shiny moon or a city that or me.

A smug introduction to a titular Paris Franz character compels you to ponder upon those rare shades of psychopaths that the city of Gotham houses. He pulls off the villainy fairly well until he is battered down by the decimating Batgirl fury, which was actually nothing but a vent from her relationship trauma. You will see how smug Paris Franz is, and how cool he behaves even when there is someone breathing down his neck. That rare air of confidence helps Paris Franz to ace perversion in a way it never has been before.

Still of Paris Franz in Batman The Killing Joke

Batman’s portrayal will bring all those memories back from the past. The way he puts it:

You haven’t been taken to the edge yet. The abyss, the place where you don’t care anymore. Where all hope dies.

Barbara’s Mindset

Barbara’s constant reasoning with herself to win a dead man’s love will have you feel sorry for her. Her emotions are so real that it beats the inanimate off the CGI. Her incessant scrimmaging with herself to prove herself, to prove her love for Batman, is as gorgeous as she looks in Batman The Killing Joke.

still of barbara gordon in batman the killing joke

The beauty of it all as they make love right underneath a Gargoyle silently watching on a rooftop, is so poetic that you can’t help getting mesmerized by its sheer description. Brilliantly pulled off!

As she describes it:

It was fantastic, like fireworks.

The aftermath – the avoidance, brims her up with thousand questions. There is poetry everywhere. When she sits amongst pigeons like a delicate bird she is, for hours thinking about him. It is an enchanting frame.

still of batgirl sitting with birds pigeons in batman the killing joke

Maybe it was too soon, even after all this time.

Unfortunately she ends up getting devoured by the ugly side of insanity, and makes one of the most difficult choices of her life. Leaving Batman, one true person she wanted to be with, as she decides to get out.

still of barbara gordon with batman in the killing joke

I saw that abyss you spoke about, very scary, but so tempting. I don’t know how you resist it. I don’t think it’s humanly possible.

The Second Plot

Batman the Killing Joke moves on to a different enclave altogether after leaving the Batman-Batgirl story right there. Enters the main event after which the moniker finds its meaning. Joker is absolutely stunning with that wicked gleam in his eyes, and the delivery Mark Hamill brings home is simply majestic.

still of the joker with gleaming eyes in batman the killing joke

You see this rare side of Batsy who tries to reconcile with Joker too, trying to squeeze in a reason for him to hold on to.

How can two people hate so much without knowing each other?

Joker’s Insane Ride

Joker’s madness is drenched in stark psychosis. He does a loony song too to pull Gordon towards the ugly clutches of insanity. His take on memories, his past and craziness is so brilliantly written that is hard not to applaud him for his ingenious comportment.

Remembering’s dangerous. I find the past such a worrying, anxious place. Yes, memory is so treacherous. One moment you’re lost in a carnival of delight, childhood aromas, the flashing neon of puberty, all that sentimental candyfloss. The next, it takes you somewhere you don’t want to be. Somewhere dark and cold, filled with damp, ambiguous-shaped things you’d rather forget. Memories can be vile, repulsive little brutes.

At one point, you see Batman hunting down Joker and ends up facing Maroni. He puts Joker’s perversion in perspective with:

We might be scared of you, but we are terrified of him.

As if those stories weren’t enough, there is another backdrop side-plot that oscillates occasionally to and fro, taking you to the Joker’s past every now and then. If only they were shown at junctures worth revisiting, it would have been perfect.

still of batman and joker laughing in the end of batman the killing joke

The final bits are left for viewer’s interpretation. It is actually a nice way of leaving the story like that. You can’t help but wonder if Batman might have killed Joker in the end or if he might have taken him to the Arkham Asylum yet again, overlooking his horrific deeds to prove he doesn’t win.

Things That Don’t Work Out

Given the colossal theme of the movie, we expected something much more exhilarating eventually. Climactic bits wizen down gradually during the final bits, as Batman hunts down Joker to a Carnival. Gordon fails to succumb to the insanity Joker had planned for him. Given the monstrosity of Joker’s villainy the tale ends quite stale, leaving us with a weird sense of disconnect, as it fails to merge with the leftovers.

I’ve demonstrated there’s no difference between me and everyone else. All it takes is one bad day. That’s how far the world is from where I am, just one bad day.

The Final Verdict

Batman The Killing Joke is different, yes, no doubt. Screenplay absolutely brilliant! Story wise, I am afraid I liked the Barbara story more. Music is just as gorgeous, forever complementing every single frame. The movie also pays homage to a lot of previously depicted materials that will at once throw you into pits of nostalgia.

Whilst Batman The Killing Joke might not be the best of Batman Joker movies, it certainly stands in the vanguard as one of those rare movies to serve us a breathtaking glimpse into their enmity-inevitability. Also, it poses a daunting question out at the end. What did Batman really do?

Check out the trailer of Batman: The Killing Joke here: