Peter Rabbit Review – Spoiler Free
Peter Rabbit is a film which comes directed by Will Gluck who some may know as the director of Easy A (2010) or Annie (2014). The film stars James Corden, Fayssal Bazzi, Domhnall Gleeson, Sia, Colin Moody, Sam Neill, Margot Robbie, Elizabeth Debicki, Daisy Ridley and Rose Byrne. The film is a retelling of the classic Peter Rabbit stories by Beatrix Potter. The film is about a mischievous rabbit which consistently breaks into a farmer’s garden and eats his food.
When first seeing the trailer for this Peter Rabbit version, I thought maybe it would be a little fun to go and see it. I’ve known Peter Rabbit for a long time and have watched many of the different versions of the rabbit growing up. But now there’s this new film for Peter Rabbit and I was expecting this very sweet, kind little Rabbit which is what I know the character to be. However when I went and saw this movie, that was not the character I saw at all. Instead we have this little rabbit which only looks sweet, but throughout most of the film is a mischievous, thieving brat and general nuisance.
I suppose the filmmakers decided to change the character a little to make him a little fresher for the modern audience, but this is not the Peter Rabbit I know, or maybe I just remembered him wrong, I’m not sure. But nevertheless the story in this film is basically that Peter Rabbit and the rest of his rabbit friends are short on food and an old man farmer (Sam Neil) who is I guess Peter’s enemy has sealed up his farm and puts a massive effort into keeping the rabbits out. If it wasn’t for Bea’s insistence of harmony, the poor farmer would probably kill these little rabbits. It’s also let known that he ain’t that kind a farmer in that he’s the one who caught Peter’s father and put in him a pie and ate him. Which I think is major reason that Peter Rabbit himself has turned out to be such a nuisance for the man.
Basically the story is that Peter Rabbit bothers the farmers who live in the house, Bea tries to stop them and only sees Peter as innocent but he really isn’t all that innocent and it goes round in circles for a long time like this. There’s also quite the love story put into the film between Bea and Thomas Mecgregor which I think sort of keeps the film interesting. It’s a strange movie to watch because it’s sort of a nice story, but there’s also so many acts of violence, pranks and even death spread throughout it that it makes it an odd film to watch. There’s also some themes about country life and city life thrown into it too.
As a children’s movie, I do find it maybe to be a little violent for some kids who maybe will get a bit uncomfortable if they’re younger than 6. The reason I mention this is because I think that Peter Rabbit was always a story for people younger than 6 so to change him in a way that he is now a character to appeal to older young people is a big thing. As a new sort of story, I guess it works and the kids will laugh at Peter throwing food at the farmer or his various other activities. In a way he’s like a Looney Tunes character. You can get some laughs from this, but the Rabbit is certainly not a good example for kids and maybe is one they need to learn from as to not what to be like.
The voice acting is fairly good. I thought that James Corden was the perfect choice for this version of Peter Rabbit and seemed to fit the character maybe too perfectly. I also enjoyed both Rose Byrne’s performance as Bea and also Domhnall Gleeson’s performance as Mcgregor. There’s also some voice acting in this from Margot Robbie and appearances from Sam Neil. The acting and the voice acting was definitely the highlight of the Peter Rabbit film experience.
The special effects are well done. I felt that the animation of Peter Rabbit and the rest of the farm animals was well executed and presented well on screen. The brightly coloured world and the sets gave the film a positive vibe to it and this helped to keep things feeling happy and fun.
Overall this is an okay new film to watch. It’s a very different Peter Rabbit to what I was expecting, but I didn’t leave the cinema hating it at all. Sure Peter Rabbit is a nuisance and I’m still not sure if I like the character or not, but as a character to discuss and even think about after watching this film there’s a lot there for me and I like that about the film. The film actually does have some depth to it and the themes of survival, family, love and community are quite strong. The voice acting is definitely the highlight and both Rose Byrne and Domhall Gleeson are a delight. For kids I think they’d need to be at least 6 or 7 or above to go and see this one as it is a bit violent, but other than that older kids will probably laugh at this mischievous Peter Rabbit. Happy to recommend seeing the film and it has a few good moments of fun, but just keep in mind it’s a bit different to the Peter Rabbit you might remember.