Directed By: Steven Spielberg
Written By: J.M. Barrie (novel), James V Hart, Nick Castle, and Malia Scotch Marmo
I once heard the hosts of my favorite morning radio show, Two Guys Named Chris, criticizing this movie and suggesting that it was a stain on Spielberg’s career. I was shocked because I was under the impression that everyone loved this movie. Although maybe that is just because I have grown up loving this movie and still do. I was seven years old when it came out and I was exactly who the movie was made for. I supposed it seemed silly to adults then and probably does now as well but through a seven year old’s eyes it just doesn’t get any better than this. Hook was made for young kids and it was made by a director with a reputation for getting through to kids. This movie is dear to me for many reasons and it is one that I look forward to watching with my children one day.
If there is a stain on Steven Spielberg’s career it’s Indiana Jones 4 or the re-editing of E.T.. I say if for the simple fact that Spielberg’s career has been so distinguished that it’s easy to overlook the minor lapses like the aforementioned. I hardly think this movie was bad though, it might fail in comparison to some of his other work but I think it had a real special quality to it. Spielberg used his talents to get great acting out of a group of young kids and paired them with a group of seasoned and talented actors. Robin Williams was on the rise in the early 90s and I think he was great as the grown up version of Peter Pan. Dustin Hoffman was fantastic as Captain Hook, his wardrobe and stylist had a lot to do with that but he was really terrific. As I got older and saw more Dustin Hoffman movies I could never believe that he was the guy that played Captain Hook. The guy that I saw in those other movies just didn’t look the same. It’s because Hoffman wasn’t Hoffman in this movie, he was Captain Hook in this movie. I think his performance makes the movie memorable as much as anything else does. I am not usually a Julia Roberts fan but I think she was great as Tinkerbell in this movie. It was a role that I don’t think will ever be matched with that character. Roberts looked so great in that little outfit too, she has great legs. Though I read that she was so difficult to work with on set they nicknamed her “Tinkerhell.” Bob Hoskins is great playing the part of Smee, but I think he is too lovable as the character. Hoskins is at his best when he is the mean and nasty villain, but I like the diversity we see with this character.
I also think a good argument against the critics of this film is the simple fact that it is a good idea. I like the idea that Peter Pan decided to leave Neverland and grew up in the real world. That he forgot all about who he was until the day that he had to return to Neverland. The Lost Boys have had to learn how to survive without him and they turned to a new leader, one who isn’t keen on the idea of turning leadership back over. When I was a kid I thought Rufio was the coolest guy I had ever seen. I desperately wanted to have my hair done in that crazy multi-mohawk thing he had going on but my mom wouldn’t allow it. She was protecting me from reality though really, it never would have worked with my hair and I would have looked ridiculous. I also like the idea that Neverland as a place can start to change who you are, just as the real world did for Peter Pan. We see this with Peter’s son played by Charlie Korsmo. By the time his father has regained his persona he barely remembers who his father even is, and he has become the protégé of Hook.
The battle at the end of the movie is epic and fulfilled all my wildest expectations out of a movie at seven. It was big and exciting battles like this that influenced and developed my love for these types of scenes in movies today. The all-in fighting and swordplay was so exciting, and then the tragedy makes it all real before the ultimate and final showdown between Pan and Hook. I also like that in the end Hook isn’t finished off by his greatest enemy, but by the creature he feared the most. There were many themes I related to as a kid watching this movie. Such as having a father that spent the majority of his time at work and missed things. It was a movie that gave me comfort at the time because there was so much excitement and everything worked out happily in the end.
This movie may have been hated on by plenty but I doubt I am the only person of my generation that has sentimental feelings for it. It’s that movie we all loved during the same age range and we remember the feelings it invoked within us. I would recommend this as a good movie you could watch with your kids and one that if you take it for what it is you will enjoy yourself. This movie is worth your time and I hope I have convinced you to give it a chance.
I remember watching this movie as a kid and loving it. I still love it. I think it especially special to kids who grew learning about the Peter Pan story. This is a real-life version of it including some popular people in the cast. I think Robin Williams makes a good Peter Pan, and in my book Julia Roberts is Tinkerbell.
I don’t hate this poster, but I don’t love it either. I think it is a little done over and over, this use of old paper and torn edges. This poster reminds me somewhat of the Goonies style poster. The characters are in a painting style, which I feel leaves Robin Williams looking way younger than he actually is in the movie. The font choice is perfect; it’s my favorite thing about this poster.
NEXT MOVIE: Hostel Part 1 & 2 (2005 &2007)