aka The Frazzled Mom
Under protest, I went to see Pan with my family. I say that because I view the story of Peter Pan quite differently than most. I attribute that to my “realistic” (aka, pessimistic) attitude towards life.
The highlight of the film, for me, was Hugh Jackman. I know, I know…it’s ’cause he’s on my favorites list. While that may be true, I really enjoy his acting. He doesn’t take himself seriously. As Blackbeard, you got a glimpse of the theatrical, a bit of Jackman’s singing, and just fun “piratey” acting. I heard my son exclaim in awe when Blackbeard jumped onto the railing. He knew that was the guy that played Wolverine, but easily forgot that in this movie. Jackman’s portrayal wasn’t supposed to be historically accurate, so don’t go looking for lit fuses in his beard. I’m assuming they used Blackbeard from J.M. Barrie’s brief mentioned regarding rumors of Hook’s past. It made no difference to the story.
As for Peter Pan and James Hook? After they got to know each other, didn’t you hear? They became the best of friends. Hook was his mentor, encouragement, and sarcastic sidekick with snark. That same snark that managed to get him into a heap of trouble. My son kept asking why Hook was always getting hit in the face. Because he couldn’t keep his mouth shut. Let that be a lesson to you. 🙂
Speaking of Hook…
Hook: So pirates are afraid of Mermaid Lagoon?
Tiger Lily: Because of crocodiles.
[Hook quickly sticks his hand out of the water] – Yes, it was his RIGHT hand. 😉
Maybe I misheard, but I swear Blackbeard said he pulled kids from all over the world and eras. Would have been an interesting idea, to kidnap children from different time periods. Might have explained why Hook sounds and acts different from the other miners. Meh.
Sadly, I think I, once again, could relate better to Hook than any other character in the story.
So perhaps I’m a tad bias when it comes to reviewing this movie.
For me, Pan was okay. But I groaned internally when my son said we should get the DVD when it comes out. Not only was the relationship between Peter Pan and James Hook a bit off. There was also the budding romance between Hook and Tiger Lilly. Um, what? So as the story concluded to a happily ever after, how exactly will it explain how Hook loses his hand? This young boy, Peter, who fought to protect the fairies and every other living creature on Neverland. How will this lead to him cutting off Hook’s hand? Hook, who sacrificed his freedom to return and fight along side Pan and Tiger Lilly.
It would have made more sense for Hook to have been in the place of Blackbeard. That Hook had a romance with Peter’s mother. And that she ran away with another man and had a son, Peter. And that Hook would have been responsible for the death of Peter’s mother. This would have set up the rivalry between a man constantly reminded of the infidelity of the one he loved. And Peter would make it his life’s ambition to bring bitterness and pain to the man who took everything from him (namely, his mother).
Okay, I’ll be nice and give a little for this movie.
-I’ve already praised Jackman, but I’ll say it again, he’s just pure fun.
-But how about the pirate ships? Those were cool. The method of travel from the orphanage where Peter lived to Neverland was a fun ride. Lots and lots of CGI silly goodness.
-The Neverbird was slightly fun and creepy. Okay, I’m stretching here.
-Tiger Lilly’s make up, I really liked it.
-I enjoyed some of Hook’s snark. I prefer him that way over sniveling and cowering. Still, the actor seemed to have some difficult with
what type of Hook he was playing. At times, he sounded like Christian Slater/Jack Nicholson and other times, more like Heath Ledger’s Joker. I’m not doubting his acting ability, but I wonder if he was given much direction at all or just told to “wing it”.
It was an okay movie for me. But quite honestly, my 9 year old enjoyed it. I wouldn’t say he “loved” it, but it was fun for him. My 6 year old was bored in parts, but the movie tended to pull her back in with the action. I asked what her favorite part was and she said “everything”.
Warning for those with kids:
-there’s a brief scene as to the pixie dust being used as a drug (Blackbeard uses it like a Vicks inhaler)
-there’s some language, such as “darn” and “heck” with maybe one slightly harsher word. I noticed Hook mouthed damn, but it sounded like darn. Perhaps last minute editing?
-there’s a lot of lying going on! Peter lies, Hook lies, Tiger Lilly lies. Apparently, its a thing in this movie. Characters are rarely truthful at the start.
-Nirvana?? Smells Like Teen Spirit isn’t something I’d expect to hear in Neverland, but hey, at least I got to hear a little of Jackman singing. 😉
So there you go. If you’re a parent, you may have to grin and bear it, but your kids will have fun. So do yourself a favor: grab a snack you enjoy, sit back, relax and don’t expect much from this movie. Think of it has something to do together with family. And that can be a rarity at times.