Peter Rabbit film review: laugh out loud moments


Peter Rabbit voiced by James Corden.
Peter Rabbit voiced by James Corden.

HAVING trouble getting your children to eat their vegies?

Peter Rabbit might just be the most effective way to get them to eat healthier since the two fruit five veg campaign.

When cranky old Mr McGregor (Sam Neill) built his cottage in the countryside of England he cut into the natural habitat of local wildlife, including the mischievous, rebellious and orphaned Peter Rabbit (James Corden), and tried to keep them out.

Peter and his mates try tirelessly to take vegies from his patch but one particular confrontation ends with Mr McGregor dying of a heart attack.

The battle for fresh produce continues when long-lost relative and hoity toity London retailer Thomas (Domhnall Gleeson) inherits the property and moves in, sparking a courtship with friendly neighbour and animal ally Bea (Rose Byrne).

There are undoubtedly some mixed messages going on in this big-screen adaptation of the beloved children’s books written by Beatrix Potter.

Peter and his friends trespass and steal and it is played for laughs, but one prank goes too far when Peter dangerously force-feeds an allergen to Thomas in an act of one-upmanship.

This particular moment should have been scrapped, with so many children facing life-threatening allergies.

It does not detract from the film being Paddington levels of delightful (minus the social and political subtext), with the infectiously adorable furry characters, not only in their design but personalities, eliciting some real laugh out loud moments.

The rooster is a highlight.

The humans are an equal match – Neill and Gleeson are delightfully over the top and Byrne oozes charm so effortlessly.

There is ultimately the strong positive message about eating healthily – how often do we see movies where the characters go to crazy lengths to eat their vegies?

Peter Rabbit could be a blessing to parents in this department.

THE ESSENTIALS

Peter Rabbit (PG)

Directed by: Will Gluck

Starring: James Corden, Rose Byrne, Domhnall Gleeson

Four stars

Review by: Julian Wright

In cinemas now