Peter Pan (2003)
Peter Pan is a 2003 American fantasy adventure film directed by P. J. Hogan from a screenplay by him and Michael Goldenberg. It serves as a film adaptation of the 1904 play and 1911 novel Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie.
Wendy Darling often tells her brothers John and Michael stories about Peter Pan, the Boy Who Never Grows Up. Her father George thinks it's time for her to grow up, but fearing to do so, Wendy goes to Neverland along with her brothers when Peter Pan comes one night and invites them to come with him, as Peter and the Lost Boys need a mother. Meanwhile, Captain Hook, Peter's archenemy, is planning an scheme to finally get rid of Peter once and for all.
Why It Rocks
- Good grasp of the source material. Indeed, the film is to be fair the most faithful adaptation to J.M. Barrie's original novel.
- Good acting, especially that of Jeremy Slumpter as Peter Pan and Jason Isaacs as Captain Hook.
- The film also keeps the tradition to have the same actor who plays Captain Hook to also play George Darling, with Isaacs playing the two characters.
- Great visuals.
- Some funny moments, like when John and Michael tell Smee and one of the pirates that they will not ask for mercy, but do so seconds later.
- The fighting sequences are great.
- It corrects some of the mistakes the Disney classic animated film had, regarding the controversial characterizations of the Mermaids and the American Indians. Here, the Mermaids are depicted as monstruous and the American Indians are depicted in a decent way.
- The message that it's normal to fear growing up but it's nothing wrong is a good moral.
- Many likeable characters, like Wendy and Peter.
- Aunt Millicent is an original character created for the film, but she does serve a purpose in the story and doesn't feel like filler.
- The climax is amazing.
- "I do believe in fairies, I do, I do."
- The film can be a little bit dark, especially when the Mermaids snarl at Wendy or when Captain Hook kills a fairy by denying the fairy's existence and also killing at least 5 pirates.
- While the film explores Wendy's sexual maturity in a subtle way, this can be difficult for children to understand and it's not something they should know at a young age.
- Captain Hook's lack of respect to personal space while facing Wendy and Peter can come off as creepy to some viewers.
- The film originally included an epilogue featuring an adult Wendy meeting with Peter Pan again when he comes to ask her if he can bring her daughter Jane to Never Land, but it was cut despite being faithful to the novel.
Critical reception to Peter Pan was fairly positive. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a rating of 76%, based on 144 reviews. The site's critical consensus reads, "Solid if far from definitive, this version of Peter Pan is visually impressive, psychologically complex and faithful to its original source". On Metacritic, it received a score of 64 out of 100, based on 33 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews". To date, the film is singled out for being one of the most faithful film adaptations of a classic children's novel.
The movie was unfortunately a box office bomb as it earned $48,462,608 at the box office in the United States and another $73.5 million outside the US. It brings the worldwide total to nearly $122 million, whereas its budget was of $130 million. The film's failure at box office was given because it competed against from the highly anticipated The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, which was released the week before, and Cheaper by the Dozen, which was released on the same day.