Courtney Howard is a LAFCA, OFCS and AWFJ member, as well as a Rotten Tomatometer-approved film critic. Her work has been published on Variety, She Knows and Awards Circuit.
Courtney Howard // Film Critic
Look, I love Peter Rabbit. Like LOVE HIM. I grew up with this iconic character adorning my clothes and material possessions. In fact, I still own a Peter Rabbit wind up music box stuffed animal from my childhood. He was my first literary love. I’ll always have a soft spot for him in my life.
That said, this trailer for the live-action-CGI-animated film… well… I’m not sure it entirely plays to my nostalgic senses.
Welp, they’ve turned him into a goofy buffoon rather than a loveable scamp. This new Peter hardly bears any resemblance to the one I grew up reading. Beatrix Potter’s creation runs sorta amok here, going too far, trying desperately to be more modern in order to appeal to kids, thus alienating adults like me. Listen, it’s totally possible this is just a poorly cut teaser. However, I’m not so sure the filmmakers have adapted the right tone of Potter’s material.
According to wikipedia, Potter was approached by Walt Disney in 1936, when he was interested in turning Peter into a feature. She refused and didn’t give him the rights. Though i assume her estate had to approve this iteration, it does makes me wonder if she would’ve personally bought director Will Gluck’s (FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS) take on the much beloved character.
Here’s the official synopsis:
Peter Rabbit, the mischievous and adventurous hero who has captivated generations of readers, now takes on the starring role of his own irreverent, contemporary comedy with attitude. In the film, Peter’s feud with Mr. McGregor (Domhnall Gleeson) escalates to greater heights than ever before as they rival for the affections of the warm-hearted animal lover who lives next door (Rose Byrne). James Corden voices the character of Peter with playful spirit and wild charm, with Margot Robbie, Elizabeth Debicki, and Daisy Ridley performing the voice roles of the triplets, Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail.
Does this still appeal to me? Yes, mainly for the Domhnall Gleeson factor. Do cute, furry animals still float my boat? Yes, of course. Will I bet there on opening day? You bet your cottontail I will!
PETER RABBIT opens on February 09, 2018.