Sunday!

Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children is one of those movies that is loosely based on a children’s book (of the same name) that, mostly, gets the gist of what the book was going for. I guess.

The books had a delightful conceit where they constructed a narrative around a bunch of snapshots taken a hundred years ago that Ransom Riggs, the author, collected from swap meets and other places where you find Victorian-era pictures of children. He wanted to put together just a coffee table book but an editor told him to maybe put a narrative together around the pictures and the book took off (and had a couple of sequels).

Of course they wanted to make a movie about it and of course Tim Burton was the only guy who could have directed it. And then they switched these two characters, added a couple, toned some of the other characters down, made sure that the main romantic characters didn’t have any chemistry, and, voilà.

Don’t get me wrong, the movie is visually stunning and it’s kind of a child-friendly, if ersatz, X-Men (with Samuel L. Jackson playing a much, much, much creepier Magneto-type). It’s just that the story strikes me as one that would be exactly as interesting if the sound were off as it is when you can hear what the characters are saying.

Plus a couple of the added characters, at the end of the film, reveal what their power is and it’s a power that would have changed the story.

And that always drives me bonkers.

But if you’re looking for a kid-friendly super-hero adjacent movie with gorgeous set pieces and, hey, Terrance Stamp, you could do a lot worse than this one.

So… what are you reading and/or watching?


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Jaybird is Birdmojo on Xbox Live and Jaybirdmojo on Playstation's network. He's been playing consoles since the Atari 2600 and it was Zork that taught him how to touch-type. If you've got a song for Wednesday, a commercial for Saturday, a recommendation for Tuesday, an essay for Monday, or, heck, just a handful a questions, fire off an email to AskJaybird-at-gmail.com

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7 thoughts on “Sunday!

  1. Sci-fi. I’ve been on a wonderful sci-fi binge for better than a year since my wife bought me a Kindle Fire for Christmas (’15). My TV consumption basically went to heck when I started driving back in ’98 so I’m doing a lot of catching up. Like Star Trek I have never seen, that far back. Fringe, Falling Skies, Eureka, Warehouse 13, Firefly (meh), as well as current stuff.

    In my estimation the best of the new stuff is The Expanse. Good science, no techno-magic like warp drive, pretty realistic extrapolation on tech, normally fucked up human politics. Gorgeous visuals. Highly recommended.

    Did you start up with Ash? Hilarious, but not for the squeamish. Every B-movie horror/slasher trope cranked up to utterly ridiculous. And the blood, great spouting rivers of blood. So much blood it cruises right past gross to just… red. Weirdly artistic.

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  2. I saw Hidden Figures yesterday and it was good but like most movies of the sort suffered from what might as well be called “truthiness for maximum emotional effect.”

    It is true that Mary Johnson needed to petition a judge in order to take graduate level classes at night at the all-white Hampton High School. It is true she was encouraged to do so by a Polish engineer. But she did this in the 1950s and was promoted to engineer at NASA in 1958 and not during the early 1960s at the time of the Mercury Program. Also the Polish-engineer in question graduated from the University of Alabama in 1939 and as far as I can tell, he wasn’t Jewish and did not have parents who died at Auschwitz.

    John Glenn was a natural democrat and did ask for Katherine Johnson to double check the IBM computer in real life but for some reason the movie made him a fresh-faced and exceedingly handsome 25 year old instead of the 40 year old WWII and Korean War vet that he was at the time of the Mercury Program.

    Dorothy Vaughan was already a supervisor at NASA in the early 1960s as well I believe an an expert in FORTRAN.

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  3. It was a pretty movie, but they clearly didn’t want to make a sequel. My wife and I had the same thoughts about the added characters. I wasn’t entirely surprised by plot changes as the books are pretty dark and the second one gets even darker.

    I’ve been playing a lot of Diablo 3 on the xbox one lately. My wife plays with me, or I’ll play solo (my witch doctor is sooooo op). It’s good mindless fun.

    Seeing the praise for the new Zelda has me desiring the new nintendo. I’m glad they’re not in stock.

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