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Return to Neverland My little one absolutely loves the original Disney animated Peter Pan, so it seemed fitting to purchase the sequel to the much loved classic; Peter Pan in Return to Neverland. Return to Neverland came out on DVD in 2007, though originally came out a few years beforehand. Unlike other Disney sequels, Return to Neverland even debuted in cinemas. In the sequel, we are transported back to London in the original home of Wendy, who is now married and has two children. Whilst her little brother loves hearing the tales of Neverland from his mother, Jane (Wendy's sceptical daughter) feels that she has outgrown the stories of flying with Peter Pan, wrestling with pirates and fighting Captain Hook. That is until one night, amidst the blasts of World War II in the air, Captain Hooks ship appears in the night sky and carries Jane off to Neverland where she discovers that Peter Pan, Neverland, Tinkerbelle and all the magic is real and Captain Hook is still seeking revenge on Peter Pan. Only Jane can help Peter Pan and Neverland, and she must call upon all her faith and trust with a little bit of pixie dustto help them fight Peter Pans old enemy. Sequels are rarely as good as the first, especially with such a classic such as Peter Pan, and although Return to Neverland is not as great, it certainly gives for great viewing among the old and young alike. It takes the original and flips it on its head providing more magical entertainment for the next generation. The only thing I disliked was due to the amount of years in between the first and this film, the voices are different, though you soon get used to this as the story takes you back to your childhood! My little one, as myself, really enjoyed this sequel. In fact, it seemed as though my youngster preferred this one to the original. I myself preferred the first film, though I have to admit that even I felt entertained by this sequel. This is a one-disc film with a number of small extras which include a 'rescue the lost boys' adventure game, a Disney storytime feature, an Art Attack special on how to make your own island as well as deleted scenes and a music video by Jonathan Brooke; I'll Try. This DVD can be picked up on Amazon between the prices of £4.00 - £22.00 which the later is too expensive in my opinion. A great animated sequel to a brilliant classic. Fully recommended!
The magical world of Disney can pretty much do what it wants, I suppose, and get away with it. They have a plethora of classic animated feature films, and Peter Pan is one of the more timeless and magical of them all. Many of these sorts of films have had the sequel treatment, no doubt making enough money to at the very least cover the costs, as well as making sure that there is enough to keep its longevity once it goes onto TV. This is, in part, where the Disney channels come into it. Peter Pan's sequel treatment, Return To Neverland, released in 2002, is somewhat reminiscent of the 90s film Hook, the real life film starring Robin Williams as Peter Pan who has grown up and has to relearn how to be a kid and have fun again. This film reminded me of this, as it features a grown up Wendy (the girl of the original film) whose daughter, Jane, gets kidnapped by the evil Captain Hook and whisked off to the magical world of Neverland. He believes her to be Wendy, not realising time flies in the real world, and wants to use her to capture his nemesis, our hero Peter Pan. This sequel features some exciting moments as overly mature Jane has to learn how to be a kid, believe in fairies, and work out who is the hero and who is the villain of the film. We get to experience the ever exuberant and youthful Peter Pan using his pixie dust to fly around, as well as fairy Tinkerbell, the Lost Boys, and Hook, Smee and the pirates once more. However, although many of the successful components of the original film return in one way or another, the reality is that it doesn't quite live up to the magical expectations this first film sets. Jane is no substitute for a hero(ine) and pales in comparison to Peter Pan, and I think the comparison between the two films is best summed up by Hook's fear of animals. One of the classic moments of the first film is the crocodile who swallowed a clock and cost Hook his hand, and who haunts him whenever he hears the clock. Here, the substitute is nowhere near as menacing: a pink octopus that is far too cartoony to seem to pose any threat. It's not a bad film, though, and is rather entertaining. It doesn't dawdle or hang around unnecessarily and does fill its hour and a half length with fun moments. The voice actors are decent enough, even though there are no big names to speak of. This tends to be the case with most sequels to Disney's films, although the original Peter Pan film didn't rely on voice stars for its magic. This is a recommendable film, for sure, and kids are likely to enjoy the occasional comedy in it as well as the fun and action it brings. Disney is stamped all over it, and although it's not a patch on the original film, it's still well worth it for the kids. It shows quite regularly on the Disney channels.
'Return to Neverland' is Disney's sequel to 'Peter Pan'. Being the massive Disney fan I am, I don't usually say a word against any of the films that they produce...BUT...recently, Disney have been releasing lots of sequels to their real classics. For example, 'Lady and the Tramp 2', 'The Little Mermaid 2' and 'Cinderella 2', all of which have gone straight to video. The sequels are, I hate to say it, pretty bad. The animation isn't as slick, the characters aren't as exciting, new and magical and the stories are no where near as good as the originals. 'Return to Neverland' made it to the cinema, although it didn't have the usual Disney hype build up, except a couple of McDonald's TV promotions. Obviously, I had to go and see this film...it didn't have alot of showing times at my local cinema so I ended up going at about 4 in the afternoon - the latest showing there was. The place was packed out with kiddies, what with it being a kid's film and it being Easter holiday's too. Disney's last release, 'Monsters Inc' was more suitable for other age groups too, whereas 'Return' is really just for little kids. The film opens on to a night time London sky with characters silouttes emerging from the clouds...quite artistic really...makes the opening credits a bit more watchable. Once the action starts you realise it is set in the time of the Blitz in London. You meet a family of four, Wendy (the little girl from 'Peter Pan') and her husband and their two children, Jane and her little brother, Danny. Jane (who you can quickly tell is the sort of heroine of this story) and Danny wave goodbye to their father who goes off to war. Her father tells her to look after her mother and Danny and Jane takes this literally and bustles around constantly being very adult and mature. When Wendy tells little Danny stories about Peter Pan, Neverland and Captain Hoo k, Jane scoffs...she feels that she is too old for silly stories like that. The night before the children are due to be evactuated to the countryside, something happens in Jane's room...the window bursts open and Captain Hook bundles her in a bag and rushes her off to Neverland, mistaking her for Wendy! His plan it to use Wendy (Jane) to capture Peter Pan. Jane doesn't really believe it all at first...she thinks she's dreaming. And even when she realises it is all real...she doesn't want to hang around. She builds a boat. She doesn't like Neverland at all and nearly kills Tinkerbell by saying that she doesn't believe in fairies.. But slowly, thanks to Peter Pan and the Lost Boys, her mind does change. Of course, there's a happy ending and Jane's tough exterior is softened by her Neverland experience and she learns to be a child again. And their father comes home too...ahhhh! Musically, the songs in the film are not very good...not at all memorable. But at least it had music...when 'Atlantis' was released and it didn't have any songs, I was so dissapointed! Songs and music really complete a good Disney film. Unlike past Disney films (Monsters Inc, Beauty and the Beast...), the cast of 'Return to Neverland' is not littered with stars. Harriet Owen voices Jane, Blayne Weaver voices Peter Pan - obviously he didn't do the voice in the original! Corey Burton provides the voice of Captain Hook...he's donw ALOT of voice work for Disney, most recently being the voice of Gus in 'Cinderella 2'. My all time favourite Disney character is without a doubt, Tinkerbell. Even though 'Peter Pan' isn't my favourtie film, I've always like Tinkerbell because she's so sassy and cute and has such a good character, even though she doesn't say anything. She nearly dies in 'Return to Neverland'! Oh no! Jane is a god character too...not your usual girl, she's very strong minded and independant - especially for a 12 year old. Peter Pan is as feisty and adventurous as ever and as always, he has a very childish attitude to everything! Instead of the crocodile as Hook's fear now is a goofy octopus which doesn't have the same fear factor as the crocodile did. The octopus is much more friendly looking and cartoony, which isn't really a bad thing but he's not in the old crocs league!! It is a good film, though it's nowhere near in the same league as the first. The thing I liked most about the film was the fact that you got to see lots of Neverland...all the Mermaids in the Lagoon and the pirates and all of the forest...it's like being in an adventure land! Some bits in the films are quite artistic...for example when Captain Hook kidnaps Jane, you travel through a sky which has a kaliedascope type of effect. The animation isn't a good as a major Disney film...probably because they thought it would be a straight-to-video project. The Jolly Roger ship isn't as detailed and magical as the it was presented in the first Peter Pan release either. It is an amusing and entertaining film. Because it's only 90 minutes, you can't really get bored because it's fast moving action. In a way, it comes to an end a little too quickly. I definatly say that this is a film for younger kids. Overall, for a sequel I would say it was very good. The story had sense to it...it was an adventure in itself and not just a continuation of the first. Disney really should stop making sequels though and start producing some good new material, like the classics they used to make!