We have added screencaps of Ella from both an on set interview and a featurette promo to the gallery…
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children Is Tim Burton’s Best Film in Years!
With the right strange, spooky material, a beloved director finds his way again.
By my count, it’s been nine years since I liked a Tim Burton movie (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street), and a whopping 20 since I loved one (Mars Attacks!). I had begun to think that I’d lost all affection for this talented, wayward director, who conjured such bountiful, weird visions earlier in his career, and then seemed to get blinded by the empty gleam of studio C.G.I. What a nice surprise, then, to watch Burton’s new film, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, and feel a stirring of that old Burton love—to find his dark whimsy (which had begun to seem a bit faux-dark of late) fresh and vibrant again. There’s the old Tim Burton we all used to root for, amiably wandering out of the woods like he hasn’t been lost for a long time.
Which, yes, is probably a pretty condescending way to start a review. But Burton’s artistry has been so misplaced for so long that it’s just really nice to thoroughly enjoy a movie of his again.
Miss Peregrine is based on the popular novel by Ransom Riggs. It proves to be ample, sturdy source material—full of visual wonder and intriguing narrative loops—for Burton to build one of his big, multifaceted curios atop. The film is essentially the story of a teenage boy, Jake (Asa Butterfield, monotone but effective), who travels to an island off the coast of Wales to investigate his beloved late grandfather’s (Terence Stamp, playing sweetly against type) past at the titular home for children. But hidden within that traditional-enough narrative is an arresting, Burton-y brand of spiky melancholy, a wistfulness laced with menace that is equal parts shivery and poignant.
Miss Peregrine is plenty silly, for sure. As the film goes, it builds toward yet another over-the-top climax full of goofy villains and unpleasant C.G.I. That sequence works, only barely, because Burton’s witty choreography manages to keep it aloft. But much of what comes before that bulbous (but still fun!) final stretch is grim and clever and, quite simply, vastly entertaining—just what one hopes for from a Tim Burton movie. As Jake gets to know the peculiar children of this peculiar house, led by the peculiar Miss Peregrine (Eva Green, masterfully doing her usual Eva Green thing, only flecked with a little more warmth and sadness), the film explores its terrain inventively. Burton’s hand is delicate here—each oddity and ability possessed by the children is presented with restraint. Miss Peregrine is big and busy, but it only rarely feels over embellished. The film mostly stays focused on its interesting story, with occasional digressions or pauses to appreciate some canny little flourish.
Aside from the supernatural elements, Miss Peregrine serves as a decent, if rudimentary, coming-of-age story: Jack comes into himself in Wales, after living a muted, lonely life in Florida with his parents. The film is also a quietly perceptive look at a prickly father-son dynamic, with Jack joined on his trip by his uninterested father, played with a curious accent but a good deal of insight by Chris O’Dowd. There’s a nice little budding romance when Jack falls for one of Peregrine’s wards, Emma (the promising newcomer Ella Purnell)—who also, at one point, was the sweetheart of Jack’s grandfather. Yup!
You see, Miss Peregrine is, most strikingly, a story about time and memory and the bittersweet process of growing up. Which are all big, broad, bleary themes that tend to work very well on me. With its crafty, if a bit confusing, use of time travel, Miss Peregrine meditates on an idea of arrested adolescence that is both appealing and tragic, a nifty notion of perpetual youth that begins to seem more grotesque the more the film forces you think about it. There’s a maturity, and a respect for the audience’s maturity, in the way Burton handles this double-edged topic. We’ve not seen that from him in some time—not even in his last film, the for-adults drama Big Eyes. Miss Peregrine has a genuine emotional intelligence to it. Burton casts his gaze largely on people and pathos while employing his usual elaborate, special-effects-laden kookiness to embolden the humanity at the film’s core. Which is kind of the opposite of what he’s mostly been doing for the last 20 years.
I don’t want to oversell Miss Peregrine as some sort of ruminative mood piece about the human experience. It’s not. It’s a kid’s film, co-starring Samuel L. Jackson as an eyeball-eating mad scientist. But it’s the rare kid’s film that has a sense of risk and stakes and tension to it, that admirably dares to be violent and unsettling and sad. Those qualities have long been Burton’s bailiwick—but here, he finally synthesizes them together in a way that’s coherent and thoughtful. Miss Peregrine is a testament to finding the perfect material to match a director’s tastes, rather than trying for some hideous compromise, like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory or Alice in Wonderland. As Tim Burton’s best film in almost a decade, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children has an exciting air of rejuvenation about it. It’s confident and judicious with its peculiarities, while letting its heart and intellect—not Johnny Depp in a bad wig—be its stars.
Source: Vanity Fair
We have added x04 new stills for Ella’s upcoming movie, Access All Areas which will be released next year.
We have added x03 new photos of Ella on set and filming Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children …
When I was little there were loads of things I wanted to be. At one point it was an astronaut and then I think I wanted to be an orange – just because I thought I could be actually anything!” says 19-year-old actress Ella Purnell. Thankfully her ambitions changed somewhat over the ensuing years, in large part due to acting workshops that a shy Ella went to as a child to make friends. “When you’re a kid it’s fun, it doesn’t feel like a job. Acting was always just something I did because I enjoyed it.”
Ella’s first role, playing a young Keira Knightley in Never Let Me Go, marked a turning point and all thoughts of astronauts (and oranges) disappeared from her mind. Critics and casting agents alike sat up and took notice, and a then 13-year-old Ella caught the acting bug big time. “It wasn’t until around this time that I thought about acting as a real job,” she says. She clearly had a knack for it, though, because more ‘youngers’, as she calls them, followed – there was a young Angelina Jolie in Maleficent that was filmed days after Ella came out of hospital with appendicitis, and this year a young Margot Robbie in The Legend of Tarzan. So with a healthy CV of ‘youngers’, is Ella now itching to escape the label?
She’ll have to put youngers on hold for the moment though, because next up is Ella’s biggest role to date, the part of Emma Bloom in Tim Burton’s Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children, which was – at least according to her brothers – a dream role for her to nab. “They’d read the book and they were obsessed with me getting the role. They wrote me good luck cards for the audition, even though they’ve never paid attention to my work before!” she says. “For me though the biggest pull was Tim Burton; he’s the number one director that I’ve always wanted to work with.”
And it seems that Tim Burton lived up to his reputation – according to Ella there were many peculiarities on set, including the mystery of the five-foot carrot that sat outside the director’s trailer for weeks and caused much confusion among the cast. “Just an average day in Tim Burton’s world!” Ella says, laughing.
Following the film’s release, Ella is planning to dive head first into her acting career, but after listening to her animatedly chatting – about everything from fashion to dance classes at Frame and a renewed love of playing piano – you get the feeling that this is only one of the many strings to her bow. “I’m open to everything. I want to write, I want to direct, I want to make music,” she enthuses. “And I’ve also just set up a charity with my friend, called Educate2Eradicate, so I want to dedicate time to that too. I just want to keep my head down and keep carrying on!”
One of the biggest questions from Ransom Riggs fans was why the characters of Emma Bloom and Olive Abroholos Elephanta were swapped for the film adaptation of “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.” Olive (Lauren McCrostie) is supposed to have an air peculiarity, but on screen she has fire. “I’m really glad you asked that because it’s something I do enjoy addressing,” actress Ella Purnell, who plays Emma, said during an interview.
“Obviously, the decision did not come from me, it came from [screenwriter] Jane Goldman and [director] Tim [Burton] and the producers, and when I first read it I was kind of bummed because I wanted to be the fiery, badass character, like every girl does,” she recalled. “Every girl relates to her because you want to be Laura Croft. But when I sat down and thought about it, I was actually really glad that they gave me the opportunity to create a whole new character because if you try to exactly replicate a book as well-loved as this book, you will never please everyone. So you might as well make an adaptation of the book.”
Emma and Olive aren’t the only differences from page to screen: Purnell noted how the ending is completely different, while Samuel L. Jackson plays an amalgamation of characters from the book in the form of Mr. Barron.
“There are several reasons why I’m happy that they [made the change],” Purnell continued. “First of all, I got the opportunity to create a new [character]. Second of all, I didn’t try to go near fiery Emma. I created a whole new character. I didn’t even read the books before I felt like I actually had an idea of who movie Emma was. Third of all, I think it’s much more common to see girls playing with fire, boys playing with fire. You see it quite a lot on the big screen, but how often do you see a girl being dragged along by a rope? That’s so rare, and that’s so Tim Burton. Fire isn’t that Tim Burton, but a girl with these big gothic, lead shoes? That’s very Tim.”
She concluded, “Fourth of all, I think, from an actor’s standpoint, emotionally it gives me somewhere to go. If she’s already really, really strong at the start — I mean, I suppose that’s a whole other emotional storyline that I haven’t thought about. But for me, it made much more sense to start a little bit damaged, a little bit hurt. She’s been betrayed, she’s lost her trust, and she’s been dealing with these feelings of hurt and betrayal and sadness for 60 years, and she goes on this whole journey where she steps into herself. She becomes slightly more confident, she becomes slightly more protective of her younger siblings, and she grows into herself a little bit. She may be thousands of years old, but, at the end of the day, she’s a 16-year-old girl. She wants a boyfriend. No, I’m joking.”
“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” is in theaters everywhere.
Ella Purnell attended the Miu Miu show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2017 today (October 5, 2016) we have added a few photos to the gallery..
A little candid video has surfaced too…
We have added some photos of Ella from Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children Press Conference on September 21st 2016