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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Pan is one of those films where it's hard to pinpoint what is wrong
because the answer is basically everything. I'm confused as to how they
managed to turn such a simple story into such a convoluted mess.
At his core, Peter Pan is just a boy who escapes to a magical fantasy land because he doesn't want to grow up. In Neverland he leads a crew of similarly disenfranchised kids, plays games with Indians, swims with mermaids, and fights pirates.
Simple right? Well not according to Joe Wright and the producers of this film. For some reason they felt the need to cram in every single cliché possible in order to 'modernize' the story despite the fact that the themes in Barrie's stories were already timeless.
Levi Miller stumbles here and there but he was well cast as Peter. However the script doesn't support the role. At certain points he becomes secondary in his own story. His desires don't move the plot forward and after the first 20 minutes he has very little to do except "learn how to fly". We never seem him turn into the character we know as Peter Pan except for the fact that *spoilers* he flies at the end. And don't even get me started on 'The Chosen One' thing.
Tiger Lily, played by Rooney Mara, is bland, and I'm not talking about the color of her skin. She's your typical warrior princess and for some reason they try to set up a possible romance between her and Hook. She's basically around to be walking talking exposition.
Jackman also does a good job, but his character, Blackbeard, isn't interesting. His motivations are paper thin. He wants to mine some fairy dust in order to live forever which doesn't even make sense because Neverland supposed to be a place where people don't age. Blackbeard is just shoehorned in there so they could have a villain other than Hook.
This brings me to one of the most pointless things in the film: Hook being Peter's ally. It doesn't amount to anything. You never get a sense of conflict between the two. You keep waiting for a point when Hook is going to betray Peter but it never happens. You want to see that scene where Peter cuts off his hand and feeds it to the crock, but it never happens. Hook's only motivation in this film is to escape and go home. He doesn't seem like he could turn into the devious Captain we know. At the end of the film, Hook and Pan are still friends and they just hint at a possible conflict in the sequel with a throw away line. Also, if you're a kid and this is your introduction to the character of Hook the 'twist' will go right over your head.
And why is Hook American? Who made this decision?
Another problem with Pan is the over-use and reliance of CGI. It looks fake, especially Peter's flying. Peter Pan was better animated in 1953, not in terms of graphical fidelity, but in motion. He had weight, he had grace, and he was agile. In Pan he just kind of floats like he's being dragged by a mouse cursor.
When you stretch the rules of reality too far it becomes unbelievable even in a world like Neverland. You have to have rules. In Pan there are flying pirate ships. Why? How do they fly? It's never explained. The ships can fly both in the real world and Neverland. There is no consistency.
I'm giving this film a 1 out of 10 because they squandered so much potential. The source material is so rich and this is the best they could come up with? I think a live action Peter Pan film could be successful but if they ignore the themes that make the story interesting in the first place it just won't resonate with the audience.
Pan bears a lot of similarities to other adventure films, family
animation and even role-playing games. It packs myriad of visual antics
across the journey of self-discovery. However, it's also painfully one
dimensional and predictable, using the "chosen one" plot to a fault.
While it's admittedly aesthetically pleasing, this is not the
innovative origin story it's advertised to be.
In a world tormented by pirates, one child must discover his destiny. You've seen this before. Some angles have been changed, but this is typical Peter's adventure to Neverland. It's so overused, one might find half the script in Final Fantasy games. Not to mention it's riddled with fantasy genre cliché and uninspiring romance subplot.
To their credit, the actors do a fine job. Hugh Jackman as Blackbeard is a good antagonist, he looks the part by carrying the character with ominous charisma, either it's by his flamboyant dialogues or even timely singing. He can appear funny yet still threatening. Well, as threatening as a villain in family flick can be.
While Blackbeard looks fit for Hook's replacement, Hook himself is played by Garrett Hedlund, who ironically tries too hard to be young Hugh Jackman. His delivery is forced to create a suave persona, but most of the times he just looks out of place. Levi Miller as Peter handles himself pretty well. The story focuses heavily on this boy's fate, and although he can seem rough at some scenes, he brings a commendable performance as the lead.
Graphical prowess plays important role, almost too much, and on its better parts Pan definitely has the stylish charm of fantasy vista. Setting is filled with colorful designs and details, although CGI takes the helm on most cases. Its soundtracks are splendid, it simply doesn't let go. From subtle chimes, loud symphony and even shanty version of popular songs, the audio is brilliant.
Pan would've been great if it didn't copy so many elements from other movies. In nearly every scene, there's a hint of Pirates of Caribbean, Mad Max and multitude of classic Disney flicks. The straightforward plot doesn't help either, it's tedious to see the predictable developments ahead. Ancient prophecies, letter from the past and hidden power manifestation are tired gimmicks. Please, you know he's gonna fly at some point.
For a movie that looks so appealing, Pan never really takes flight. One might find happy thoughts on the visual and songs, but the CGI charm and adventure gimmicks will not last through its boring plot.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Upon seeing the trailer I was hesitant that it might be good but I
decided to give it a shot and watched it during its premiere.
And boy, was I surprised!
I absolutely loved the simple things that foreshadow the events of the actual story: James Hook using a hook in the mining scene, the ticktock of the bomb that he placed to set Peter free, Tiger Lily scaring Hook with the crocodile and many more. I have to give credit to the writer with his different take on the Peter Pan story.
Also, the friendship between Hook and Peter was great, they got each other's backs, with Hook saving Peter and vice-versa, kinda sad that they'll eventually end up as enemies since this movie established that relationship.
Everyone was right for the role, Hugh Jackman was amazing as the villain, how he looked here made me forget that he is Wolverine. Rooney Mara was dashing in her Tiger Lily role and performed well even though she was Caucasian in contrast to the natives. Garrett Hedlund played this cocky, playboy-type, off-character Hook who always provides the laughable comebacks. Levi Miller was great as Peter, that dude's going places.
Although, I have to note the lack of battle between Peter and Blackbeard, since the prophecy stated that the former will defeat the latter. They should have put at least a short duel between the two because that'd be amazing.
All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed the film, I don't care what the Rotten Tomatoes rating or critics say!
I took my nephew and niece to see this movie this past week, and one
thing was clearly noticeable. The movie is a bit to overwhelming for
However, if you don't go to this movie to see a funny and uplifting 'Hook' remake, but instead go to see a more deep and thrilling retelling of a childhood tale, you will be most pleasantly surprised. The movie, from this point of view, is fantastic.
I feel bad that it has received such harsh reviews from parents that apparently took their small kids to a movie without first at least watching the trailer. Its a bit darker then its predecessors, but is clearly shown that way through the trailer.
Let me put it this way, if the trailer looks like a movie you want to see, you will not be disappointed here.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I loved this film! I loved the creative twists and turns, the
unexpected friendships and the ability to lose myself in a story from
my childhood. Rejuvenated to allow my imagination to explore a timeless
plot running down a new path. The acting was good enough for me to
believe in the characters and want to see what will happen next. (I'm
hoping for a sequel!) For me it's not about the special effect or the
perfect screenplay. it's about wanting to immerse myself in the story
and keep watching! I liked that it resembled other story lines (Hook
was another of my favorites!) That made it comforting and familiar, yet
new and exciting! I'm just a person....a grandmother that likes to
share an experience with my grandchildren....a mother that still wants
to phone my kids and say wow you have to watch this!.....A professional
who likes to write in our company newsletter a "not to be missed"
For whatever reason technical or otherwise that you didn't like this film. I don't pretend to understand why? But if like me you just want to sit with a bucket of popcorn and get lost in the fantasy...Then go watch this.....and just lose yourself for a little while!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I admit, Peter Pan is one of those stories that just draws the child in
me to it. Who doesn't want to learn to fly, be friends with pixies, or
never grow up and have all the anxieties of life? And whenever a new
Peter Pan story is made into a film, I generally wind up seeing it. At
last count I've seen Disney's animated Peter Pan and Return to
Neverland, Mary Martin's Peter Pan, Cathy Rigby as Peter Pan, Hook,
Peter Pan (2003), Peter Pan Live!, and now Pan and read Peter Pan in
Kensington Gardens, Peter Pan and Wendy, Peter Pan in Scarlet, and
Capt. Hook. So you might say I am an old hand at this...
Pan is a lively, different take on the tradition of Peter Pan...not quite as bizarre or hilarious as Hook and not as accurate to the original story as Peter Pan from '03. But what I know from having read about Mr. Barrie's life was that he edited Peter Pan numerous times when it was on stage and was always looking for a way to liven things up...so this Pan keeps with that tradition! It is a fun, rollicking adventure about a boy with a destiny, a savvy yet heartfelt pirate tag-a-long, and a warrior-princess...all battling the despotic Captain Blackbeard.
SPOILERS AFTER THIS: There is something absolutely charming about this version of Hook who is given the full emotional treatment of a person with an actual past, not just a guy missing a hand who wants revenge. Mr. Hedlund was the ideal casting choice because he can be gruff and still very likable.
And for all the complaints about Tiger Lily NOT being cast as Native America, might I suggest an alternative view for this? There is no way to give viewers a 100% authentic, First-Nations approved version of Tiger Lily. Why? Because the way Barrie wrote them was racist and you cannot escape from it...ever. But if you decide to make them Native-Neverlanders instead you remove what could be insulting by making them a new group of people that has no connections on earth. Instead, the Native-Neverlanders were a beautiful, eclectic tribe of people living in the trees like wood-elves (!) in bright tents and clothing, with skilled warriors and artisans. There was never a moment of disrespect to other cultures that I found and it this movie set apart from the others. Rooney Mara was a solid choice for Tiger Lily, enjoyable, spunky and given some really cool fighting scenes.
Blackbeard is a great villain with a purpose and Hugh Jackman was remarkable in the role, per the usual. His clothing and hair was flamboyant but not out of place in a world that is rather flamboyant and imaginative...and yes, he can be cruel and vicious. This is not a film for little wee-uns, as Blackbeard does kill children (implied, no impact seen).
And Peter Pan himself is a pretty brilliant marvel. Zachary is a newcomer but a fine young actor, quite likable and holds an impressive array of emotions. Peter is his usual self, albeit in a slightly different story, marked by determination and ability to lead. Unfortunately, this story did kill a little of the child-like wonder and glee Peter usually has but then...so did the film Hook.
I am giving it 8 out of 10 stars because the casting is very solid, character development is good, setting is spectacular, and plot is mostly sound. The only things I didn't like were the sorta Oliver Twist beginning (with mean nuns, which has been done to death, folks) and the plot hole of what happens to all those men and boys in the mine? Did Peter just leave them there or did he return them home? You decide.
But I recommend it wholeheartedly, just beware that it can be a bit scary and some smaller children may not do so well. On the scale of favorite Peter Pan films, it ranks just behind Cathy Rigby as Peter Pan and Hook, which isn't bad at all! It keeps Barrie's fun story alive for a new generation...until the next one is made! See you at the movies!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
How dumb do you have to be to misunderstand a movie like Pan? Because
this movie has generated some of the dumbest review comments I've ever
seen. "There's no Wendy." Because this is a PREquel. Look up "pre" in a
dictionary. "It's dark." All fairy tales are, and their modern
imitations like Peter Pan or Pinocchio have to be, too, to remain true
to the genre. Fairy tales originated in a time when meeting wolves and
bears in the woods was all too likely, and they weren't cute and
anthropomorphic, either. And the original Grimm stories, unlike their
sanitized modern retellings, carried the clear message that Awful
Things happen to Naughty Children Who Don't Obey The Rules. The prize
comment was someone complaining that a flying pirate ship over WWII
London was unrealistic. So name some historical periods when it WAS
Overall it's a satisfying action story, and wholly undeserving of the scorn some reviewers have dumped on it. The weakest links are Garrett Hedlund as Hook (still a good guy at this point) and Rooney Mara as Tiger Lily. Hedlund tries to be Harrison Ford, complete with Indiana Jones' hat and Han Solo's flying off to save his own skin but coming back to save the day, but he just doesn't have charisma. Neither does Tiger Lily, who's pretty but bland, and goes through life with a deer in the headlights expression. They're both stiff and lifeless.
I had low expectations for this movie seeing the low review scores but
I just saw Pan and really enjoyed it. It was above all a visual
stunning movie. We saw it in 3d and Neverland really came alive. The
story is thin but OK enough to keep the movie going. It reminded me in
a way of Mad max. Also visual stunning, lost of action, with duels,
fighting, etc but with a razor thin story line. Above all my kids of 6
and 7 enjoyed it very much. It was kind of the first time that they saw
such an action movie. It can be a little bit frightening sometimes for
kids but not too much.
I would recommend seeing the movie with your family. If you are a real movie buff you better skip it.
When this was first announced they sold it as being different and man
the tone of the early trailers just really made me feel like they were
going to go deep and abstract. The trailer song made me shiver. My dumb
ass thought it might even be something like "The adventures of Baron
Munchausen" full of metaphors and abstractions like "What dreams may
come". Like it was going tell a more emotional story about the
relationship of the main actors.
Nope boring run of the mill peter pan adaptation with a couple characters swapped to claim uniqueness. Damn I just rewatched the first trailer and it totally sold me on a different story.
What makes matters worse is the world is very well designed and there's several hints at what could have been a really trippy adventure, but for some reason they went incredibly cheap on the CGI which in several spots is just unbearably bad.
The story doesn't really make any sense. "chosen one"? For what? and what exactly does he provide? He can control fairies? but the fairies were perfectly capable of throwing a couple pirates around. The relationship between Blackbeard and his mother was really dumb and illogical, there's so much more they could have done with that. In general it just felt crap and plodded along and then just rolled over at the end.
Man I'm just so angry. I would have killed to have Terry Gilliam to do this, or David fincher, Darren Aronofsky. It sucks because Hugh Jackman was wasted. Thats the one thing they got right. The design and portrayal of Blackbeard was cool, but his story was so Blasé. I liked the inclusion of modern music but instead of making it a theme with a story nope you get one cool song and then generic music for the rest of the film.(I know there was another one but it sucked)
Damn you Warner Bros for greenlighting this garbage.
Im giving this a 1/10 because of how insultingly wasteful they were with such a great idea. I've seen better execution of concepts like this out of 50k indie movies. When we talk about twist of fairy tale concepts I have to give the nod to Maleficent. Again the trailer was chilling and though the movie had innumerable flaws it was the mature emotional experience we were looking for. Guess now were just going to have to wait for the Fables trilogy they'll inevitably screw up.
I found the movie enjoyable and new. Sure there were the same
foundations as any Peter Pan movie, but it was a new turn. If you like
Maleficent you'll like this too. I am a die hard fan of anything Peter
or Neverland related. I have read review on other sites and found the
The reason Tigerlily (Rooney Mara) is white is in the original plot of Peter Pan she was a blonde native princess. She is meant to be Neverland's native not anything to do with the real world. The director made the tribe multicultural and I found it lovely.
And some found that Blackbeard (aka Hugh Jackman)was over acting. Have they not seen any pirate movies? Have they missed the Disney Peter Pan movies? Hook in Disney's animated version is a very dramatized character so why wouldn't Blackbeard and Hook be a bit over the top in this movie.
This movie left the child inside me (19yo) delighted and my sister (5yo) and brother (10yo) both loved it.
Was worth buying and watching again. I hope and look forward to the possibly of a second one. And I hope there are more people voicing my opinion also so the idea can get to whoever sees to production and release of the next one will actually film another one!
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