“Peter Pan & Wendy” Doesn’t Soar

by Christian Ramos on May 9, 2023

in Print Reviews,Reviews

[Rating: Minor Rock Fist Down]

Now Streaming on Disney+

Disney, Disney, Disney. What are we going to do with you? If you’re not making actually good movies that people want to see and yet don’t see (looking at you Strange World), you’re throwing some mediocrity on the streamers for people to remember you made, but not watch because of the thousands of options. Disney’s latest remake in their list of running out of ideas is Peter Pan & Wendy. A re-telling of the 1953 film for a new generation. But in all honesty, who really cares anymore. 

Peter Pan is the classic story of the boy who won’t grow up and his adventures in Neverland. Our Peter (Alexander Molony) takes the Darling children Wendy (Ever Anderson – daughter of Paul W.S. Anderson and Milla Jovovich), John (Joshua Pickering) and Michael (Jacobi Jupe) to Neverland. Along with Tinker Bell (Yara Shahidi) the story pretty much doesn’t change from what you already know. Lost boys (and a whole plot point of Peter having girls in the group too), Tiger Lily (Alyssa Wapanatâhk) and of course Captain Hook (Jude Law) seeking his revenge on Peter. 

We’ve seen it, read it, experienced it, believed in it all before. Nothing new. 

What is new is a bit of the take on the story. As stated before the Lost boys are a mix of young boys and girls and Tiger Lily is actually not played by a white woman (much like Pan in 2015) but instead an Indigenous actor. Peter is also a bit defenseless and pushed toward the back of the story to make Wendy more of a heroic figure than a damsel in distress. She holds here own toward a melancholic Hook who gives a bit of backstory over why he hates Pan despite taking his right hand. 

With all that said, it’s fine. I wasn’t captivated because I grew up with the 1953 classic. Despite its NUMEROUS flaws, it’s a childhood fave. Not to mention the superb 2003 Peter Pan that I grew up with and adore. This was fine. I wasn’t enchanted by anything. Director David Lowery helmed the 2016 Pete’s Dragon which I wasn’t a huge fan of. For one thing, when I think of Neverland, I think of a bright magical place. This film was so dark, I had a hard time watching this during the day. Neverland has its life sucked out of it to keep it brown and gray colors. It needs a little pixie dust to give it some life. 

Disney needs some fresh ideas. They don’t listen to fans as long as they have money in front of them. The constant live action remakes are getting old as the second they started. We audience members have more and they’re just going to get worse and lack the life and joy the animated films provide. 

Christian Ramos is a classic film fan, having had the dream to host Turner Classic Movies for years now. He also has a large amount of Oscar trivia in his head, remembers dressing as Groucho Marx one Halloween, and cherishes the moment Julianne Moore liked his tweet.


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