“To die would be an awfully big adventure…”
I don’t know if after eking out 2000 words about Peter Pan for Uni that I just have Neverland fatigue or whether this adaptation really is rubbish but it is safe to say that I did not enjoy P.J. Hogan’s 2003 retelling of J.M. Barrie’s famous play. Sure Peter Pan ticks all the boxes. We have a camp and cunning Captain Hook, an adorable but murderous Tinkerbell and Peter Pan doing that weird Peter Pan pose he always does when he holds his hands up at his waist but where is the heart? The excitement? The adventure?
I’m not going to relay the plot again here because we all know it and honestly, this version of Peter Pan brings absolutely nothing new to the table. I would love someone to have a crack at the ultra dark epilogue When Wendy Grew Up in which we discover that Tinkerbell is dead, Peter can’t remember either Tink or Hook and Wendy is all grown up with a child of her own. Barrie added this ending four years after the original play was released but it has never made it to the big screen. Instead of taking any kind of risk however, Hogan plays it ultra safe with a bland and forgettable cast, and a dull, sentimental script.
Bizarrely, this version is considered to be the best Peter Pan adaptation by seemingly all the academics I am studying at the moment despite it already being a pretty strong favourite in the field of most tedious film I will endure in 2018. I absolutely did not see the appeal. Jason ‘Lucius Malfoy’ Isaacs does a decent job as Hook but that is the only praise I am willing to lavish on this forgettable disappointment.
It is strange that my English Literature tutor insisted that I must watch this version of Peter Pan. She obviously hasn’t seen Hook. But then neither have I for that matter…