Hop away: Review of Peter Rabbit by Rashid Irani
Blending live action with state-of-the-art animation, this big-screen adaptation of Beatrix Potter’s classic children’s picture book is, at best, fitfully amusing.
Set in present-day England, the update reimagines the long-standing feud between the titular bunny (voiced by James Corden) and a mean-spirited Londoner (Domhnall Gleeson) who has inherited his late uncle’s cottage and his hatred of rabbit-kind.
The battle escalates when the rascally Peter, accompanied by his family and furry friends, encroaches on the property to feast on vegetable garden.
Slapstick routines abound but some of the more violent interludes including electrocutions, psychotic rants and beatings with garden rakes may not be suitable for the impressionable young target audience. Worse, there are some blatant product placements and plugs for the London department store Harrods.
The sap quotient is provided by an animal-loving neighbour named Bea, in an obvious nod to the author, played by Rose Byrne.
The wee ones might relate to the rabbit shenanigans, but overall, Peter Rabbit falls short.