PLOT- Peter Rabbit ( James Corden) and the other local wildlife are thrilled when old Mr. McGregor (Sam Neill) suddenly passes away. They now have safe access to gorge themselves in McGregor's garden and they quickly take over his former home. The party is short lived, when the new owner of the home, Mr. Thomas McGregor (Domhnall Gleeson), the senior McGregor's nephew, takes up residence in his uncle's home. Like his uncle, the new Mr. McGregor will pull out all of the stops to keep critters from entering his garden.
McGregor's becomes smitten with his next door neighbor, Bea (Rose Byrne) who has a soft spot for wildlife, especially the rabbits. Peter, who has lost his parents, views Bea as a mother figure and he rallies the other animals to start a war against McGregor in the name of saving both their garden and their beloved Bea.
LIKE- Dan and I had seen the Peter Rabbit trailer for months and every single time, we laughed. We had planned to see it on Valentine's Day, but couldn't make it happen. Luckily, we were able to catch it during our March trip to Washington. I'm happy to report that the trailer did not give away all of the best parts and we were laughing from start to finish. I'm fairly certain that we enjoyed it more than the kids in the audience, although this is certainly a great pick for a family film.
Normally, I don't like slap-stick and Peter Rabbit is filled with slap-stick. However, there is something about slap-stick with woodland creatures that's hilarious. It works because the writing is sharp and none of the action is gratuitous. Corden makes me laugh and he is perfect as Peter. I didn't realize until I saw the credits, but several other stars lend their voices, including Margot Robbie, Sia, and Daisy Ridley.
I like how they've turned Peter Rabbit author/illustrator Beatrix Potter, into a character. In the film, Bea is a painter and her main subjects are the rabbits. A wonderful and sentimental nod to Peter Rabbit's creator. Bea's paintings are in the same style as Potter's original illustrations and may even be the originals. The film does a great job at blending classic and modern elements.
The antagonist, the young McGregor, has a sympathetic side. Prior to learning that he has inherited his uncle's home, he learns that he was passed over for a much deserved promotion at Harrod's, where he works in the toy department. Devastated, he has a mental breakdown, quits his job, and moves into the country home that he has inherited. McGregor is the opposite of Peter. Where Peter likes to take risks and live for the moment, McGregor is a planner, he plays it safe. Quitting his job was probably the biggest risk that he has ever taken and clearly out of character. Peter likes to get rewards through risks, while McGregor sees rewards coming from hard work. Rabbit and human aside, these are two very different men. McGregor is certainly the antagonist, but he's also a likable character. The ending comes with both Peter and McGregor coming to terms with their own flaws and working together for the greater good that is the love of Bea.
As a bonus, it's primarily set in England's Lake District, which is a beautiful part of the country. It's a visually pretty film.
DISLIKE- Nothing. I throughly enjoyed Peter Rabbit, it far exceeded my expectations, which were already somewhat high.
RECOMMEND- YES!!! Dan and I have already decided to buy a digital copy of Peter Rabbit when it is released. It will be watched many times in our household. I also recommended it to a friend who has a nine year old daughter. Peter Rabbit is a great family film, one that is enjoyable for both adults and children.