Are you ready for some whimsy? Tim Burton‘s got whimsy for days. How whimsical is his newest effort, an adaptation of Ransom Riggs’ 2011 novel Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children, going to be? If the trailer that surfaced earlier today is any indicator, the upcoming picture will be whimsical as hell. Whimsy, gettin’ turned up to 11. Whimsy like you can’t even believe.
Burton’s each new project a more densely concentrated shot of Burtonian flights of fancy, the trailer for Miss Peregrine’s features topiary gardens, a girl who’ll simply float away without metal shoes to weigh her down, a apple-cheeked moppet with a ravenous maw on the back of her neck, and the piece de whimsical resistance, Eva Green turning into a bird. Green portrays Peregrine herself, the director of an Xavier School-esque facility for what she refers to as “peculiar” children, who have been blessed/cursed with extraordinary powers. Because society can never accept them as they are, they must take refuge among one another, and learn to harness their abilities for the good of all mankind. However, their freakish idyll is threatened by an encroaching danger of glowy-eyes Samuel L. Jackson, who may or may not also have a many-tongued knife-arms demon at his disposal. Eva Green, now a bird, is nowhere to be found when the chips are down, so it’s up to young Jacob Portman (Asa Butterfield, of Hugo and, less so, Ender’s Game fame) to defend the adorable freaks of Miss Peregrine’s. Chris O’Dowd, Allison Janney, Terence Stamp, Judi Dench, and Kim Dickens fill out the cast.
Those who have accused Tim Burton of descending into hollow spectacle in recent years may get plenty of ammunition with this film upon its release on September 30. But surely there will be others who find great charm in the restlessly imaginative whimsy that flourishes in every scene. At the very least, those creepy twins in masks won’t leave moviegoer nightmares any time soon.