on 23 November 2007
I remember my fifth birthday more vividly than any other from my youth. It was on that birthday my godmother bought me peter pan and snow white on VHS. To watch this movie again is like revisiting so many happy memories of wishing peter would come and take me away. It is true Disney magic. It has all of disney's trademarks from the time, beautiful hand drawn animation (that has been colour graded to make it look even better) and catchy songs that have become part of everyday cultural knowledge. I would advise anyone to get this for their child or teen or better yet buy it for yourself and relive days gone by like i did.
This classic cartoon movie was made when I was five years old. Watching it at the local cinema is one of my earliest memories and now my grandchildren are watching it! And me only 27!
This is still a very famous story; probably all English-speaking children have heard of Peter Pan, Wendy, Captain Hook, Tinkerbelle and the Lost Boys. The more recent versions of the story, made in 1991 and 2003 have made it popular again, but this older version still holds up very well indeed, especially for younger children. It was, of course, based on the stage play of the same name, written by JM Barrie. It was the last film on which Walt Disney's 'nine old men' - the nine original animators who worked with him and were acknowledged as a dream team - all worked together, so it is classic and classy Disney.
The film opens as Mr and Mrs Darling decide that Wendy is now too old to share a room with her brothers. That night, while their parents are at a party, Wendy, John and Michael are visited by the Boy Who Refused To Grow Up, Peter Pan, who has arrived to get his lost shadow, just in time to save Wendy from being forced to grow up. Helped by the fairy, Tinkerbelle, he sprinkles Wendy and her two brothers with magic dust and they are able to fly away with him to Neverland. So the adventure begins; they meet the Lost Boys and learn that a pirate ship is moored off the shore of Neverland, commanded by Captain Hook, Peter's sworn enemy...
Like many older productions, the film is not entirely politically correct, especially in its portrayal of native Americans - or Red Indians, as they are called in this film. Apparently, the Disney organisation acknowledge that they would not represent native Americans like this today. However, the film is a product of its time - I remember lots of cowboy movies of the fifties that portrayed them as cruel savages, ignoring the injustices that they had suffered at the hands of 'white' men. Despite this limitation, this is a lovely and very enjoyable film which deserves to be loved by many more generations of children.
on 19 February 2010
How great to be able to get a 1953 Disney classic updated on DVD! It seems as fresh and bright as it did when I saw the original film as a small boy (yes, I'm that old). A splendid purchase at a very reasonable price, this film is now preferred viewing for my grandchildren - well, second only to Wallace and Gromit!
The portrayal of the Red Indians seems very non-PC now, I must admit. Also, I seemed to detect a bit of editing-out when Peter finds Tinker Belle fading away in a cave. It's the bit of the original stage presentation when the audience have to clap to signify their belief in fairies.
It's over 100 years since the original story was written, so some of the ideas need explaining to youngsters: Nanas and nurseries, for example, are unfamiliar to 21st Century children. Even a ticking crocodile is so out of date now!
I'm still very pleased I found it: Recommended!
on 4 February 2009
We bought it for a xmas present as we had been to see Peter Pan in panto, and it has been a huge hit with my 4 year old boy. He has watched it over and over and over again and is a mesmersied as the first time he saw it. Such a lovely film, just the right length to keep little ones captivated without too much fidgeting! A wonderful and much loved classic.
A few of the most recent Disney blu-ray releases - The Rescuers, 101 Dalmations, Aristocats amongst them - have got bad reviews for less than pristine blu-ray transfers. Whilst I agree that the video on those releases wasn't close to Disney's best, I think the cause was more the era those classics originate from (cheap 'rough-pencil' era) than Disney's blu-ray conversion.
The good news is that, as an older movie from Mr Walt Disney's time at the helm, Peter Pan is a beautifully drawn animation movie and the blu-ray transfer is absolutely stunning and looks as though it was drawn yesterday. The colour is clear and vibrant and there is no noticeable blurring or distortion. The sound is equally majestic and the surround sound is brilliant, particularly for the background music.
The even better news is that Peter Pan is one of Disney's best classics, with a great story, fun characters, a brilliant larger-than-life villain and more than a few laughs! This is one of Disney's absolute must have blu-ray releases!
NOTE: As of this moment, the Two-Disc Platinum Edition of Peter Pan is in limited distribution (I have seen it) and most of the reviews that appear now refer to an earlier version. The Two-Disc Platinum Edition version can be pre-ordered from Amazon and Borders and offers new special features which include a restored original theatrical soundtrack all-new digital restoration with enhanced picture and sound, "Camp Never Land: Explore Never Land" with all-new multi-level games, deleted songs, a feature during which Walt Disney explains "Why I Made Peter Pan," "The Peter Pan Story: 1952" featurette, a sneak peek of the all-new Tinker Bell movie, another feature "You Can Fly: The Making of Peter Pan," a T-Squad music video: "The Second Star to the Right," a Peter Pan virtual flight, Peter's Playful Prank DVD storybook, and a never-before-seen alternate opening.
Over the years, I have seen various versions of this delightful film and enjoy it at least as much now as I did when it was first released in 1953. On several occasions, I have also visited Disneyland and vividly recall the excitement of the ride when my companions and I departed the children's bedroom and flew above London at night en route to Neverland. The so-called "magic kingdom" is more a state-of-mind than a location because the genius of Walt Disney and his associates is that, in ways and to an extent no one else ever has, they activate and engage imagination. This is especially true of this film that, unlike most of the other animation features, involves a journey by air as well as by land. Literally, one's imagination soars above and beyond human concerns, at least for 77 minutes.
Unlike other Disney villains (e.g. Honest John and Stromboli in Pinocchio, the Queen/Witch in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), Captain Hook is at least as amusing as he is threatening. The fate of the Darling children is never really in doubt. We know that eventually, theirs will be a safe return to their home and family. (I had no such confidence - as a child -- when first viewing Dumbo, Pinocchio, and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.) Although for most of us, "there is no place like home," we enjoy and appreciate opportunities to travel far and wide - at least in our imagination - and become involve in adventures of various kinds, as the Darling children do.
Those who already have an earlier version of Peter Pan can continue to enjoy it, of course, but at least some of them will welcome this Two-Disc Platinum Edition because of all of its special features, previously unavailable. I only wish other DVDs offered special features of comparable variety, quality, and entertainment value.
on 25 February 2009
My 4 year old son has absolutely fallen in love with this film. Despite the success of introducing him to more complex and intricate CGI animated films (Walle, Kung Foo Panda, Toy story etc) his ultimate favourite is this old fashioned cartoon 2D sketch animation from the archives of Disney. Thus proving that they don't make em like they used to. The themes from this film (sense of family, adventure of childhood) are still as relevant today as they have always been.
Well, this is the last of the ''old'' Disney classics (pre-1960) to be given the blu-ray treatment.
The list that includes golden memories such as 'Snow White' 'Fantasia' 'Pinocchio' 'Cinderella' 'Sleeping Beauty' 'Bambi' 'Alice in Wonderland' 'Dumbo' and 'lady and the tramp' .....of course----many gems to add to the list since.......'Disney just keep delivering the magic.
This film tells the story of 'Wendy Darling' who tells her younger brothers 'Michael' and 'John' stories of 'Peter Pan' unaware that 'peter' often listens too.
'Peter' and petulant pixie 'Tinker Bell' fly the children to 'Neverland' a place of wonder and adventure, where nobody ages at all.
the adventure begins........
'Hook' and his pirates are allways ready to do battle with 'Peter' and the 'Lost-Boys'
With 'Indians' and 'Mermaids' along with a 'Ticking' Crocodile ( who wants a little more of 'Hook' ) are all resident in 'Neverland'
it makes for a heap load of fun, with the usual mix of songs, much humour and tremendous cartoon imagery, I think this is probably my favourite 'Disney' movie..
Fairly recently a 'u.s' mini series 'Neverland' was released telling of how the characters arrive there, the prequel though not written by 'J.M.Barrie' (author of 'Peter Pan)' is well worth viewing.
This presentation is 4.3 screen ratio...........picture and sound quality ...very good.
enjoy the disney magic.
on 12 October 2009
This film was made the year I was born, and yet over fifty years later it still has a timelessness that works even though cartoon films have advanced so much over the years with pixar and soundtracks and storylines.
A classic story of childhood and dreams and adventure and all packaged in Disney's memorable fashion that brings all the film flooding back to you even though you may not have seen it in years.
Definitely one to add to the collection.
on 23 July 2012
Having had the opportunity to watch ALL the DVD versions of one of absolutely fantastic animated classics from Disney and as a former (now retired) member of Disney Management staff, it is strikingly obvious that the charm and production of how we (of a certain age) remember so fondly the animation, and it is somehow lost that in the newer Disney releases, albeit digitally remastered, with the loss of widescreen vision, the over emphasis of sharp lines, etc.
Buy the Original Release if possible - you will not be disappointed.
It is a GREAT Story, timeless and for all ages.