Visionary director Tim Burton deploys his super-powered goths to surprisingly good 4K effect
With its imaginative story, genuinely creepy bad guys, dark humour and fun turns by a watchable cast, it's a shame this Tim Burton fantasy flick went mostly under the radar. Okay, so it feels a touch languid in its first half and too rushed in its second, and there's an over-reliance on CGI during the finale, but it's hard to imagine anyone coming away from Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children feeling in any way short-changed. If you've ignored Burton since the dismal Dark Shadows (and we certainly wouldn't blame you), maybe it's time to re-embrace him.
Picture: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children delivers some of the most beautifully crisp and detailed imagery the shiny new world of Ultra HD Blu-ray has given us to date – despite 'only' being filmed at 2.8K and then rendered as a 4K digital intermediate.
The UHD presentation makes outstanding use of high dynamic range and wide colour technologies. There's a luminous, painterly, almost poetic richness to the imagery at Miss Peregrine's hostel that you scarcely even pick up on with the 1080p Blu-ray. Meanwhile, the film's night sequences enjoy some of the deepest, richest black levels around, right alongside peak whites and colours that ooze intensity. The expanded colour and light palette also does a sterling job recreating the way Burton uses light effectively to create different moods.
The only issue with the largely immaculate transfer is that CGI elements – almost certainly rendered in HD – look softer than the live action footage, and even a touch cartoon-like at times.
Picture rating: 5/5
Audio: The 4K Blu-ray bags a Dolby Atmos mix, while the Full HD Blu-ray only gets a DTS-HD 7.1 MA track – and this turns out to be a massive plus point for the UHD incarnation. The film constantly enhances its off-beat atmosphere with clever and imaginative use of effects in surround and height channels, while the hypnotic score also proves particularly effective in Atmos mode.
Audio rating: 4.5/5
Extras: Although lacking in imagination, the extra features (all found on the Full HD BD) are extensive. Highlights include an hour-plus feature focused on the casting and creation of the different 'peculiars', and a look at the genesis of the production and locations through the eyes of author Ransom Riggs.
Extras rating: 3/5
We say: Tim Burton's best film in ages is also an audio-visual treat on Ultra HD Blu-ray.
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, Twentieth Century Fox, All-region UHD BD & Region A/B BD, £34
HCC VERDICT: 4/5
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