By Ranny Levy – Founder/president of KidsFirst!
Warner’s latest prequel to the classic, Peter Pan, features 12-year-old orphan Peter spirited away to the magical world of Neverland, where he finds both fun and dangers, and ultimately discovers his destiny — to become the hero who will be forever known as Peter Pan. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Brandon C., age 15, comments, “Pan will revive the child in all of us, for sure! Before I delve into just how great this film is, I have to say that I was completely blown away by it!” Nathaniel B., age 9, adds, “Pan is a beautiful film full of fun and adventure – giant crocodiles jumping high into the air, beautiful mermaids gliding through the water and pirate ships sailing through the sky. It all looks so real and the colors are so rich. I enjoyed every bit of it and think you will too!” See their full reviews below.
By Brandon C., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15
Video review in Spanish:
Pan will revive the child in all of us, for sure! Before I delve into just how great this film is, I have to say that I was completely blown away by it! My original thought was, “Oh it’s just another Disney movie. Meh.” But, as soon as Blackbeard and Hook are introduced, my inner child leapt out and said, “This is awesome!”
Pan is the new revision of the classic Peter Pan story, directed by Joe Wright and featuring a host of very talented actors including Levi Miller (Peter), Garrett Hedlund (Hook) and Hugh Jackman (Blackbeard). The film follows the story of Peter, an orphan who gets abducted by Blackbeard and his pirates.
Every character, even the villain Blackbeard, is likeable and fun to watch. For a kid just learning about the story of Peter Pan, this movie is a good start. For someone like me who grew up with the story, the movie is perfect. Joe Wright brilliantly teases moments here and there that setup for the story to continue. My favorite is when Hook puts his hand into the river only to pull it out when someone starts talking about crocodiles.
As far as the visuals go, there are awe-inspiring visual effects, especially in the beginning of the movie. Every background is created with incredible detail. Speaking of detail, the costumes are also perfect in their minute details. Lastly, the score is outstanding. The action scenes tie all of these technical aspects together to produce a truly wonderful experience.
Are there any negatives in this movie? Not really. The relationship between Tiger Lily (played by Rooney Mara) and Hook seems just a bit forced. Also, I felt that the ending could have been expanded further to include Hook. Then again, I am a Hook fan through and through. And that’s part of the experience that Pan creates for the viewer. When I saw Hook for the first time, I flashed back to when I was a little kid when I first became a HUGE Captain Hook fan. Heck, I got nervous just before I met someone dressed as Captain Hook on a Disney Cruise. Those memories and emotions re-emerged when I saw this film.
I very much enjoyed the message of the film. I believe Pan hammers the point home about always being brave and sticking to your friends and family. As a final point, I have to commend Joe Wright for staying true to the characters and story of the original Peter Pan story. I enjoyed seeing my old favorites like Hook and Peter and even Smiegel (SMIEGEL!) make appearances.
In conclusion, everyone has to see this movie. Pan really is fun for the whole family. It has elements for both younger and older audiences to love. So, I give Pan a whopping 5 out of 5 Hooks for its fun and entertaining story, great visuals, spectacular score and awesome characters. Pan opens in theaters October 9 so mark your calendars.
By Nathaniel B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9
“Sometimes, to truly understand how things end, you must first know how they begin.”
Pan is a beautiful film full of fun and adventure – giant crocodiles jumping high into the air, beautiful mermaids gliding through the water and pirate ships sailing through the sky. It all looks so real and the colors are so rich. I enjoyed every bit of it and think you will too!
This Warner Brothers live-action feature, Pan, is an amazing film that is a great prequel to Peter Pan. This story starts when infant Peter (Levi Miller) is dropped off at a boys’ orphanage by his mother. He grows up with his friend Nibs (Lewis MacDougal) and is raised by evil nuns. One night, 12-year-old Peter and Nibs get taken away to Neverland by pirates in flying boats. Nibs escapes from the boat by jumping onto a roof. Peter and the other kids from the orphanage have to mine fairy dust for the evil Blackbeard (Hugh Jackman) in order to survive. He meets Hook (Garrett Hedlund) in a mine chamber while they are going to sleep. The next day he finds fairy dust but a man steals it from him and Blackbeard makes him walk the plank. When he gets kicked off the board, he flies before he hits the ground, surprising himself and everyone else. Peter’s adventures in Neverland are full of many more surprises, epic battles and answers to many of the questions he’s always wondered about.
The incredibly talented Hugh Jackman is completely unrecognizable as Blackbeard. He’s ruthless but has an oddly compassionate side. He sends Peter to his death and, when he survives, he lets him live. He tells Peter, “We have an ancient prophecy that tells of a boy, a boy who would disappeared from his world until he was old enough to return and lead an uprising against me. A boy who could fly…
To find the right actor to play Peter, the filmmakers looked at thousands of kids in the UK, the United States, Canada and Australia before finding Levi Miller. I think he does a good job playing this mischievous boy who wants to know where he comes from and where he’s headed.
Pan is suitable for ages 8 to18 because there is some violence but it’s not gory. I give this film 5 out of 5 stars. Check it out in theaters October 9.
Ranny Levy – Founder and President
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