CHRISTMA 2017 REVIEW: THE SNOW QUEEN

 

CAST

Jessica Straus (Little Big Panda)
Doug Erholtz (Dijimon)
Cindy Robinson (Sailor Moon)
Marianne Miller (Zebraman)
Wendee Lee (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers)
Kirk Thornton (Naruto)
Christopher Corey Smith (Attack on Titan)
Erin Fitzgerald (Batman: Year One)

The Snow Queen covered the world in ice. Only Master Vegard stands in her way, whose mirrors reflect not only appearances but also souls. One day the polar wind takes away Vegard and his wife Una, but they hide their children Gerda and Kai. Years later, the Snow Queen’s servile troll Orm (who can shapeshift into a black weasel) locates Kai, who is deemed Vegard’s successor, at an orphanage. After a tangle between both siblings and Orm, Kai is abducted by the polar wind to the Snow Queen’s palace. Gerda embarks on a journey with Orm and her pet white weasel Luta across the icy lands to rescue her brother. They first enter a garden dome run by an old lady who seems nice, but her true intentions are to drug and enslave Gerda to grow and sell flowers. Orm and Luta catch wind of the scheme and thwart it, but the lady sends out her carnivorous plant, Ivy, but the trio make their escape. Meanwhile, in the ice palace, Kai arrives and the Snow Queen leads him to her throne room. The Queen’s mirror, after examining Kai, reveals that Master Vegard has two heirs. Kai tries to hide the truth, but the Snow Queen reads it in his heart and sees Kai’s painting of Gerda.Gerda thanks Orm for saving her life and they begin to warm up to each other. Then the three stumble into Imana’s caves, the birthplace of trolls. Orm briefs about how the trolls’ age of peace was tainted by the Snow Queen and turned their clans to fight each other, until only the cowardly Orm survived, and the souls of the trolls remained trapped in the lake Gow. While Gerda and Luta look around, Orm is contacted by the Snow Queen with orders to bring Gerda to her. Orm helps Gerda and Luta cross the evil lake Gow and Gerda avoids its curse, much to Orm’s amazement. Outside the cave, the trio encounter a king on a royal hunt. The king tries to hunt Orm (in weasel form) and Luta, but he bumps into a tree. The trio are escorted to the king’s castle. The king has had a trouble in which his children have literally half-shares in his property after the Snow Queen split the castle in half and Queen Anself was lost. The king takes Gerda as his prisoner, until she shows compassion for her brother. The king and his children have an argument and start a fire but Gerda saves them. As a reward the trio are given a sleigh for their journey.The trio are captured by pirates and taken to their ship, but Gerda is able to persuade them to let them continue their quest, and the captain’s daughter gives them a reindeer for the journey. Meanwhile, in the Snow Queen’s ice palace, Kai is frozen by the Snow Queen. Gerda meets the Lady of Lapland in a tent, who recounts the Snow Queen’s origin. As a girl, Irma, who had a gift of magic, was ostracised and went to Imana’s caves where her ill wish upon the people, granted by the lake Gow, turned her into the Snow Queen. The Lady of Lapland grants the trio a snow boat and sends them to the Snow Queen. Orm tries to protect Gerda and make her change her mind, but Gerda is determined. Inside the ice palace, Gerda finds her brother frozen then the Snow Queen appears. Orm turns down his reward to be free and beseeches the queen to spare Gerda. Since the queen will not listen to reason, Orm ceases to serve her. The Queen summons ice trolls and giants, but Orm transforms into a polar bear to defeat the monsters and allow Gerda to reach the throne room. But both Orm and Luta are cornered by the polar wind.Gerda finds the queen’s mirror and walks through it, entering the mirror realm. The Snow Queen tries to freeze her heart but, guided by the spirits of her family, she regains hope and retaliates with the magic mirror. The Snow Queen’s curse is finally broken, Irma is transformed back and Gerda banishes the evil curse from returning. Irma revives Kai, Orm turns back into a troll and Luta wakes him up and the eternal winter is finally ended. With that Gerda, Kai, Orm, Irma and Luta all set off home. And Gerda and Orm finally accept each other as best friends.Sq-queenA more than acceptable version of one of Hans Christian Andersen’s best stories. In detail it sticks much more faithfully to the story than Disney’s Frozen did, though that film had more polish and magic from personal opinion, and it has that mysterious and poignant spirit of the original story if not its darkness, understandably. Some of the story here did have a slightly rushed nature to it pace-wise, maybe part of the reason for some skim-the-surface character development, the characters are very recognisable and have personality but lack dimension(rather archetypal in a way)in places. The dialogue also can sound cheesy and not as flowing as it could have done. However, much of the story does work, the latter parts of the film do pack a powerful punch, it always did engage me at least and there is some nice messaging. The heart-warming and tense parts are done well as well. v1.bjs1MjU4O2o7MTc1NTA7MTIwMDsxMDI0Ozc2OAThe animation is very well done, it doesn’t try to do too much and it looks completely natural from the smallest details to bigger effects like snow fall and the lake reflections. Everything moves smoothly and the colours are very lavish and atmospheric, the characters look good and match their personalities fine. The music added a lot to what was going on, the scoring was beautifully melancholic, hauntingly powerful and any tense parts to the music were done very rousingly and enough to make you bite the nails. The voice acting is more than serviceable with everybody playing with heart and commitment, with only Gerda’s voice actress having occasional unevenness, big emphasis on occasional because she did do a good job. Overall, not a definitive version, though it never intended to be and I wasn’t expecting to be either, but a good one. The original story is a classic and while with some obvious foibles The Snow Queen does very little to disgrace it.

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REVIEW: JACK THE GIANT SLAYER

CAST

Nicholas Hoult (X-Men: First Class)
Eleanor Tomlinson (The White Queen)
Stanley Tucci (The LVoely Bones)
Ian McShane (Hercules)
Bill Nighy (Underworld)
Ewan McGregor (Big Fish)
Eddie Marsan (Sherlock Holmes)
Ewen Bremner (Wonder Woman)
Warwick Davis (Leprechaun)

In the Kingdom of Cloister, Jack, a young farm boy, is fascinated by the legend of Erik, an ancient king who defeated an army of invading giants from a realm in the sky by controlling them with a magical crown. At the same time, Princess Isabelle becomes fascinated with the same legend.Ten years later, Jack goes into town to sell his horse to support his uncle’s farm. There, Jack spots Isabelle and becomes enamored with her after defending her honor from a group of hooligans. Meanwhile, Lord Roderick returns to his study, only to find that a monk has robbed him. The monk offers Jack some magic beans he stole from Roderick as collateral for Jack’s horse. Back at the castle, Isabelle quarrels with her father King Brahmwell as she wants to explore the kingdom, but he wants her to stay and marry Roderick. Likewise, Jack’s uncle scolds him for being foolish before throwing the beans on the floor and leaving the house.Determined to be free, Isabelle sneaks out of the castle and seeks shelter from the rain in Jack’s house. As it rains, one of the beans takes root and grows into a massive beanstalk that carries the house and Isabelle into the sky as Jack falls to the ground. Jack, Roderick, and Roderick’s attendant Wicke volunteer to join the king’s knights, led by Elmont and his second in-command, Crawe, and climb the beanstalk in search of Isabelle. As they climb, Roderick and Wicke cut the safety rope, intentionally killing some of the knights. At the top, they discover the giants’ realm and decide to split into two groups: one with Jack, Elmont, and Crawe, and the other including Roderick and Wicke, but not before Roderick forcibly takes the remaining beans from Jack (although Jack manages to save one for himself).Jack’s group is trapped by a giant, who takes everyone prisoner except Jack. Meanwhile, Roderick’s group encounters two other giants; one eats Wicke, but before the other can do the same to Roderick, Roderick dons the magic crown. Jack follows the giant to their stronghold, where the two-headed giant leader, Fallon, has killed Crawe. Jack finds Isabelle and Elmont imprisoned there. As the giants prepare to kill their remaining prisoners, Roderick walks in and enslaves the giants with the crown. He tells the giants they will attack Cloister at dawn and gives them permission to eat Isabelle and Elmont. Jack rescues Isabelle and Elmont as one of the giants prepares to cook Elmont as a pig-in-a-blanket. The trio makes for the beanstalk, where Jack causes the giant guarding the beanstalk to fall off the realm’s edge. Seeing the giant’s body, Brahmwell orders the beanstalk cut down to avoid an invasion by the giants.Jack and Isabelle head down the beanstalk, while Elmont stays to confront Roderick. Elmont kills Roderick, but Fallon takes the crown before Elmont can claim it, and Elmont is forced to escape down the beanstalk. Jack, Isabelle, and Elmont all survive the fall after the beanstalk is cut down. As everyone returns home, Jack warns that the giants are using Roderick’s beans to create beanstalks to descend down to Earth and attack Cloister. The giants chase Jack, Isabelle, and Brahmwell into the castle, where Elmont fills the moat with oil and sets it on fire. Fallon falls in the moat and breaks into the castle from below. As the siege continues, Fallon captures Jack and Isabelle, but Jack throws the final bean down Fallon’s throat, causing a beanstalk to rip apart his body. Jack takes the crown and sends the giants back to their realm. Jack and Isabelle marry and tell the story of the giants to their children. As time passes, the magic crown is crafted into St Edward’s Crown and is secured in the Tower of London.This was a lot better than I was expecting, so that was quite a pleasant surprise.  I was prepared to make an early exit from watching the retelling of another favourite fairy tale. But it was actually done very well, with a wonderfully impressive CGI beanstalk and superb giants. All in all, it was a very enjoyable film to watch.

 

REVIEW: HAPPILY N’EVER AFTER 2: SNOW WHITE: ANOTHER BITE @ THE APPLE

CAST

Helen Niedwick
Cam Clarke (The Avengers: EMH)
Kirk Thornton (Blue Exorcist)
David Lodge (Power Rangers)
Cindy Robinson (Naruto)
Doug Stone  (Mapple Town)
Doug Erholtz (Dinozaurs)
Lex Lang (Skylanders)
Kate Higgins (Cowboy Bebop)

Snow White and her family Queen Grace and King Cole are going around the city waving at people. Queen Grace shows Snow White how to help peasants. In her room, Queen Grace quotes “Remember, the mirror tells half the story” as “beauty is given by helping others”. Queen Graces coughs badly in front of Snow White and the king fears that Queen Grace had gotten ill. One day, Queen Grace’s hand falls as a sign that her heart had stopped and that she is dead. Since Queen Grace died earlier when Snow White was young, she had never taught Snow White how to help peasants. Since then, Snow White turns into a misguided teenager who only likes to hang out with her friends: Goldilocks, Little Bo Peep, and Little Red Riding Hood than help peasants instead. When Snow White visits an orphanage, she decides to go to a joust party instead. Her father tells her that she must return before morning. Snow White accepts but she has to wear the royal robe.Although in the party, she takes it off and leaves it in the limo and also cuts in line. She meets this handsome man and she falls in love with him. Although, he doesn’t seem to fall back in love because Snow White doesn’t help like he does. When Snow White returns, her father seems to be upset because she did not wear the robe (he found out on the newspaper). Snow White weeps about him being unfair and runs to her room. Her father notices her misguided side and decides to find a wife like Queen Grace to show Snow White how to become a proper lady. His assistant goes to the Fairy Godmother for help, where she begins a marriage service.Meanwhile, Lady Vain goes to her magic mirror and becomes into Queen Grace by the figures. She goes to the marriage service and the king accepts her not knowing that Lady Vain is truly a horrible scheming witch who wants to rule the kingdom. Snow White is a thorn to Lady Vain’s side and she wants Snow White to be gone from the kingdom. When Lady Vain has Rumpelstiltskin (who seems to have become evil again due to the scales) give Snow White a fake make-over, they give her an apple that makes her say the rudest things she had ever thought to the whole town, including the king. Snow White wakes up not remembering what had happened or what she had said and decides to visit her friends.The major gossip is around town forcing Snow White to leave and runs to the forest. She enters a house and eats and then falls asleep on seven small beds. When she wakes up, she finds the Seven Dwarfs completely enrage of her coming inside without permission. One notices her to be Queen Grace’s daughter and they make a plan to turn Snow White like her helping mother. Snow White agrees to do whatever the Dwarfs tell her to do without questioning them or whining back. They go to help rebuilt the Three Little Pigs’ homes after being blown by the Big Bad Wolf. She also helps a lady to turn into the most beautiful woman ever. And she helps babysit her children.During baby-sitting, Snow White sings to her children the same lullaby her mother used to sing to her when she was young and realizes that helping others makes her and them feel good. With that, she starts her own Snow White’s Helping Business. The Seven Dwarfs are nowhere to be found after that. Meanwhile, at the kingdom, everyone is excited to meet Lady Vain, who’s wedding with the king will begin at midnight. She hires two bodyguards because she’s “not used to be around with people”. Sir Peter, who is one of the bodyguards, finds out about Lady Vains’ planning of getting rid of Snow White forever and runs to the woods to find her. He finds her reducing Pinocchio’s nose and rebuilding Humpty Dumpty. At first, Snow White does not want to go, but soon she agrees. They make it just in time thanks to the help of Mambo and Munk and enters the wedding. Without being noticed, Snow White goes in front of the altar and tells her father that if he wants to marry Lady Vain it is his choice and not hers. Her father responses “All I want is my daughter back” as the crowd awes. Lady Vain, who is disgusted and doesn’t want Snow White back, says that Snow White is still the horrible misguided teenager and has not changed at all.The peasants who Snow White helped appear to save Snow White. Lady Vain starts to get the magic mirror into zapping the people but the zap gets zapped back to the magic mirror breaking the spell of Lady Vain’s beauty making her ugly again. Before the guards could take Lady Vain away, Snow White comes to her and tells her “You don’t need a magic mirror to be beautiful,” and the Seven Dwarfs come to take her away instead. The film ends with Snow White, Peter, and her father dancing.Happily N’Ever After 2 is an underrated animation with a funny and entertaining story that gives positive messages in a modern way to children.

 

REVIEW: HAPPILY N’EVER AFTER

 

CAST

Sarah Michelle Gellar (Cruel Intentions)
Freddie Prinze, Jr. (Scooby-Doo)
Andy Dick (Dude, Where’s My Car?)
Wallace Shawn (The Princess Bride)
Patrick Warburton (Family Guy)
George Carlin (Dogma)
Sigourney Weaver (Alien)
Michael McShane (Office Space)
John DiMaggio (Futurama)
Tom Kenny (The Super Squad Show)
Kath Soucie (Rugrats)
Tress MacNeille (The SImpsons)
Kevin Michael Richardson (The Cleveland Show)

The story begins with the idea that the Wizard (George Carlin) controls all of the fairy tales and maintains the balance of good and evil in Fairy Tale Land. With the help of his assistants the uptight Munk (Wallace Shawn) and the decidedly goofy Mambo (Andy Dick), the Wizard is checking to make sure that all the fairy tales under his care are “on track” to have their traditional happy endings. As we meet him however, the Wizard is leaving for Scotland for a long-overdue vacation. He leaves the kingdom in the hands of Munk and Mambo.Ella is a girl who is better known as Cinderella (Sarah Michelle Gellar). She lives as a servant to her step family, dreams of the Prince (Patrick Warburton) who will sweep her off her feet. Her best friend at the palace is Rick (Freddie Prinze, Jr.), the palace dishwasher. Rick takes it upon himself to deliver the invitations to the royal ball to Ella. Ella sees Rick only as a friend, but Rick secretly loves Ella, although he is too cool and proud to admit it. Rick can’t really understand what Ella likes about the Prince. Rick’s Three Amigos, the comic chefs (all voiced by Phil Proctor, Rob Paulsen and Tom Kenny) in the palace kitchen, believe that Rick has a bad case of “Prince envy”. The Prince does everything by the book, and plans to meet his maiden at the ball.However, things don’t go as planned at the ball. Thanks to the assistants, Ella’s evil stepmother, Frieda (Sigourney Weaver) gains access to the Wizard’s lair during the Prince’s ball. She manages to chase off Munk and Mambo and tip the scales of good and evil, causing a series of fairy tales to go wrong and have unhappy endings, including Jack getting stepped on by the Giant (John DiMaggio) yet surviving, Rumpelstiltskin (Michael McShane) winning his bet with the miller’s daughter (Jill Talley) and taking her baby, and the unseen demise of Little Red Riding Hood. She summons an army of Trolls, witches (Tress MacNeille and Jill Talley), three Big Bad Wolves (Jon Polito and Tom Kenny), the Giant (John DiMaggio), and Rumpelstiltskin to her castle. Ella finds out and escapes to the woods where she meets Munk and Mambo. The trio set out to find the prince who has goes looking for his maiden (not knowing it was actually Ella) in hopes that he will defeat Frieda and save the day.Together, they flee to the Seven Dwarfs (all played by Tom Kenny and John DiMaggio) home. Witches and trolls led by The Ice Queen attack them. The Seven Dwarfs hold off the trolls, while they flee with the help of Rick who had stolen a flying broom. Frieda decides to go after Ella herself. She succeeds in capturing her and returns to the palace, with Rick, Munk and Mambo in pursuit. Frieda tortures Ella because if the story had run its course she would have married the prince while Frieda would never get anywhere in life. Rick, Munk, and Mambo slip into the castle and attack Frieda. During the fight, Frieda generates a pit in the floor. Mambo knocks her in, but she uses her staff to fly back up again. After a short battle, in which Rick takes a blast meant for Ella and falls into a deep sleep, Frieda creates a portal by accident. Ella knocks Frieda back and punches her into the portal. Rick awakes from the spell and he and Ella kiss, finally admitting their feelings for each other.Ella and her true love Rick decide to choose their destinies in a world of happy endings and get married. Rumpelstiltskin has shown throughout the movie that he has come to care for the baby and the miller’s daughter lets him stay in the castle as the baby’s nanny. The Wizard returns from vacation where he wasn’t told about what happened while he was away. In the final scene, Frieda is shown trapped in the Arctic surrounded by elephant seals.In an animated movie where fairy tale characters run amok, the movie coasts along without much madness infused. But definitely easy enough for its intended target audience – the children – to understand and enjoy.

REVIEW: PAN

CAST

Levi Miller (Jasper Jones)
Hugh Jackman (Logan)
Garrett Hedlund (Tron: LEgacy)
Rooney Mara (Side Effects)
Adeel Akhtar (The Dictator)
Nonso Anozie (Dracula)
Amanda Seyfried (Jennifer’s Body)
Kathy Burke (Flushed Away)
Lewis MacDougall (A Monster Calls)
Jack Charles (Tom White)
Cara Delevingne (Sucide Squad)
Paul Kaye (Game of Thrones)

Newborn Peter (Levi Miller) is left by his mother Mary (Amanda Seyfried) on the steps of an orphanage in London, an establishment under the care of Mother Barnabas (Kathy Burke). Several years later, during World War II, upon learning that Mother Barnabas is hoarding food for herself, Peter and his best friend Nibs (Lewis MacDougall) try to steal it to distribute amongst themselves and the other orphans but they are caught. In the process, Peter finds a letter written by his mother, declaring her love and assuring Peter they will meet again “in this world or another”.In retaliation for the boys’ mischief, Mother Barnabas summons pirates who kidnap Peter, Nibs and several others. Nibs manages to escape but Peter does not. He is captured and taken aboard a flying pirate ship. Following an aerial battle with several Spitfires the ship takes Peter to Neverland, a magical realm beyond space and time, where he is forced to become a slave laborer and mine for Pixum (crystallized Fairy Dust) on behalf of the terrible pirate Blackbeard (Hugh Jackman) who uses it to prevent himself from aging. Peter befriends another miner, named James Hook (Garrett Hedlund). After insulting Blackbeard’s men, Peter is forced to walk the plank over the deep mine, but survives by flying. Blackbeard then tells Peter about an old prophecy that a boy who could fly would one day kill him, but Peter refuses to believe he is that boy.Peter joins Hook and his accomplice, Sam “Smee” Smiegel (Adeel Akhtar), stealing one of Blackbeard’s flying ships and escaping into the forest. There they are found by the native chief’s daughter Tiger Lily (Rooney Mara) and nearly executed but when the natives Chief Great Little Panther (Jack Charles) notices Peter’s pan flute pendant, left to him by Mary, and said to belong to their people’s greatest hero, the legendary Pan. With the Memory Tree, Tiger Lily tells Peter that many years ago when the natives and the fairies united to fight together against the pirates, the Fairy Prince and the love of Blackbeard’s life, Mary fell in love but when Blackbeard discovered them, the Prince took human form to rescue Mary. But as fairies could only live in the form of a human for one day, the Prince sacrificed his life for Mary. Mary was then forced to hide their newborn son Peter in the other world and seek shelter in the Fairy Kingdom when she and the fairies had to retreat. As part of his heritage, Peter has the ability to fly, but is unable to do so because of his lack of faith.Fearful of Blackbeard’s punishment, Smee betrays the natives’ location to him, and in the ensuing battle, Chief Great Little Panther is murdered by Blackbeard, who also reveals that he killed Peter’s mother. Peter is hurt to learn that Tiger Lily had lied to Peter, telling him his mother is alive but she explains that he would have walked away from his destiny if he knew the truth.Peter, Hook, and Tiger Lily escape in a raft and head to the Fairy Kingdom to enlist their help in defeating the pirates. Along the way, Peter falls into the river and is nearly eaten by giant crocodiles before being rescued by the mermaids, after which he has a vision of Blackbeard accidentally killing Mary as she defended the Fairy Kingdom from his offensive. Despondent over their chances, Hook leaves while Peter and Tiger Lily arrive at the Fairy Kingdom only to be ambushed by Blackbeard who plans to use the fairies vast amount of Pixum to live forever. Blackbeard takes Peter’s pan flute pendant, which is the key to the fairy kingdom, opens their gates and launches an attack.Peter escapes and befriends one of the fairies, named Tinker Bell. Together, they rally the rest of the Neverland fairies to fight the pirates while Tiger Lily duels Blackbeard. Hook returns on the stolen ship and fights Blackbeard’s right-hand man Bishop (Nonso Anozie) until the ship tips over, sending both falling to their deaths. Peter conquers his fears and flies to save Hook, while Blackbeard and his men are overpowered by the fairies. Forced into an abyss, they subsequently fall to their deaths. Smee is the sole survivor having fled during the battle. Peter then sees a vision of Mary, who reaffirms him to be Neverland’s savior: Peter Pan. Shortly afterwards, Peter and Hook, now the captain of the Jolly Roger, return to London to rescue Nibs and the other orphans, who become part of Peter’s crew, the Lost Boys. In the final scene, Peter and Hook reaffirm their friendship, certain that nothing will ever go wrong between them.A totally different side of the Peter Pan story. Unique and imaginative. Non stop action packed and Hugh Jackman like you’ve never seen him before. A talented cast and brilliant production.

REVIEW: PETER PAN (2003)

CAST

Jeremy Sumpter (Excision)
Jason Isaacs (Fury)
Rachel Hurd-Wood (Dorian Gray)
Lynn Redgrave (Kinsey)
Richard Briers (Murder She said)
Olivia Williams (An Education)
Ludivine Sagnier (The Young Pope)
Saffron Burrows (Deep Blue Sea)
Bruce Spence (Mad Max 2)

In the nursery of the Darling home located in Edwardian era London in 1904, Wendy Darling tells her younger brothers John and Michael stories about a boy called Peter Pan and his fairy friend Tinker Bell. Life is disrupted when their Aunt Millicent intervenes. Judging Wendy to be an “almost” full-grown woman, Aunt Millicent advises Mr. and Mrs. Darling to think of Wendy’s future, saying that Wendy should spend less time in the nursery, and more time with herself, to become a grown woman. The very idea terrifies the children.

Wendy daydreams about having seen Peter in the night, and along with the family’s “nurse” dog Nana, embarrasses her father in front of his superiors. As a punishment, Mr. Darling chains Nana outside and declares it time for Wendy to grow up. Peter visits the nursery again looking for his shadow, which Nana had bitten off, and introduces himself. After being acquainted, Wendy sews his shadow back on and is enchanted by Peter’s tales of his adventures in Neverland. She asks Peter if she can kiss him, but because he does not know what a kiss is, ends up giving him a thimble instead. He returns the “kiss” by plucking an acorn from his shirt and giving it to her. Peter invites her to be “mother” to his gang of Lost Boys. She asks to bring her brothers, John and Michael, to which Peter agrees. He grabs Tinker Bell and shakes fairy dust on the children and tells them to think of happy thoughts. Nana, having escaped her chain, leads Mr. and Mrs. Darling back home, but they arrive too late to stop the children.

The Children fly over London and then to Neverland. They spy on Captain Hook’s(Isaacs) ship from a cloud. The pirates spot them and attack with their cannons. One knocks Wendy far away and the other causes Michael and John to fall towards the island below. Peter tells Tinker Bell to find Wendy and take her back to the hideout while he gets the boys. But Tinker Bell reaches the hideout without Wendy and out of jealousy, tricks the Lost Boys into shooting Wendy with an arrow. The boys learn the truth and confess to Peter but Wendy is revealed not to have been killed as the arrow hit the acorn necklace hung around her neck. Angry, Peter banishes Tinker Bell and ends their friendship. When Wendy finally awakens she finds the Lost Boys on their knees begging her to be their mother, which she accepts. They blindfold her and lead her to their hideout, and she finally realizes her brothers are missing. Michael and John stumble across the crocodile that ate Hook’s hand then encounter the Native American princess Tiger Lily (Carsen Gray). All three are then captured by Hook and taken to the Black Castle to use as bait for Peter Pan. Wendy and Peter visit the mermaids’ lagoon to ask the dark and mysterious creatures to help in locating John and Michael, and learn that Hook has her brothers. Peter and Hook engage in a duel but it is stopped when the ticking crocodile arrives and tries to eat Hook, allowing the children to all escape.

That night, after a celebration at the Indians’ camp, Peter shows Wendy the fairies’ home and the two share a dance. Hook spies on the two and soon comes across Tinker Bell, who is still hurt and upset from being banished, and charms her into telling him more about Peter and Wendy. Peter becomes upset with Wendy after she tries to get him to tell her if he loves her in return and tells her to go home and grow up if she’s not happy. Wendy, hurt, leaves to be alone. Hook has the sleeping Wendy carried to his ship. There, he entices her to become a pirate but sends a spy to follow her to the Lost Boys’ underground hideout afterwards. Wendy soon comes to her senses and tells her brothers that the three of them will be going home, which upsets Peter. The Lost Boys ask if they can go too, upsetting Peter even more. Wendy tries to say goodbye to Peter but he turns away in sadness. She leaves him a cup of medicine and tells him not to forget to take it.

The pirates capture the boys outside and Hook goes down into the tree and puts a drop of poison in Peter’s medicine. He is about to drink the medicine, but Tinker Bell stops him and drinks the poison herself. Peter telepathically reaches out to children sleeping around the world, the Darlings, Aunt Millicent, the Lost Boys, and even the pirates to assert their belief in fairies, which brings Tinker Bell back to life. Peter and Tinker Bell save Wendy and the boys from walking the plank by making the pirates think the crocodile is on board, and a battle soon breaks out. Hook sprinkles himself with Tinker Bell’s fairy dust and fights Peter in a duel while flying. Hook taunts him about Wendy abandoning him and forgetting all about him when she grows up. Weakened by those thoughts and unable to fight, Peter gives in to his inevitable death. Seeing this as goodbye, Wendy gives Peter her hidden kiss, which gives him the strength to recover. Peter re-engages Hook, who loses his confidence and falls into the waiting jaws of the crocodile.

With the ship covered in fairy dust, Peter flies Wendy and the boys back to London. Mr. and Mrs. Darling are overjoyed at the return of their children, and adopt the Lost Boys. Slightly, who got lost on the way to London and arrives at the house too late, is adopted by the lonely Aunt Millicent. Peter promises never to forget Wendy and to return someday before heading back to Neverland with Tinker Bell. According to the adult Wendy, she never saw Peter again, but she continues to tell his story to her own children and grandchildren so that his legacy will last forever.

Hogan and company have brought the Barrie work to the screen and have rightly restored to it a child’s sense of awe and wonder, of both beauty and terror co-existing side by side and for this reason alone it is the definitive film version of Peter Pan

REVIEW: ENCHANTED

CAST

Amy Adams (Man of Steel)
Patrick Dempsey (Transformers 3)
James Marsden (Westworld)
Timothy Spall (Harry Potter)
Idina Menzel (Frozen)
Susan Sarandon (Tammy)
Julie Andrews (The Princess Diaries)
Rachel Covey (Duane Hopwood)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk Vs)
Tonya Pinkins (Gotham)
Michaela Conlin (Bones)

In the animated fairy tale kingdom of Andalasia, the evil Queen Narissa schemes to protect her claim to the throne, which she will lose once her stepson, Prince Edward, finds his true love and marries her. She enlists her loyal henchman Nathaniel to keep Edward distracted. Giselle, a young woman, dreams of meeting a prince and experiencing a “happy ever after”. Edward hears Giselle singing and sets off to find her. Nathaniel sets free a captured troll to kill Giselle, but Edward rescues her in time. When they meet, they instantly fall in love and plan to get married the following day.
Narissa, disguised as an old hag, intercepts Giselle on her way to the wedding and pushes her into a well, and she is magically transformed into a 3D live version of herself and transported to a manhole in New York City’s Times Square. Giselle quickly becomes lost. Meanwhile, Robert, a divorce lawyer, prepares to propose to his longtime girlfriend Nancy, much to the dismay of his daughter Morgan. Robert and Morgan encounter Giselle on their way home, and Robert begrudgingly allows Giselle to stay the night at their apartment at the insistence of Morgan, who instantly trusts Giselle.
Pip, Giselle’s best chipmunk friend from Andalasia, had witnessed Giselle’s exile and alerted Edward thereafter, and both embark on a rescue mission to the city, where they too are turned into 3D versions, but Pip is instead in the form of a real chipmunk – therefore losing the ability to speak. Narissa sends Nathaniel to follow and impede Edward. In a restaurant, Narissa appears to Nathaniel in a soup pot and gives him three poisoned apples to murder Giselle. Pip eavesdrops but is unable to communicate with Edward, as animals cannot speak outside of Andalasia. Nathaniel keeps Pip silenced by imprisoning him in various containers. Meanwhile, after Giselle summons vermin to clean Robert’s apartment, Nancy arrives to take Morgan to school. She meets Giselle and then angrily leaves assuming Robert was unfaithful. Robert is initially upset but spends the day with Giselle, knowing she is vulnerable in the city. Giselle questions Robert about his relationship with Nancy and helps the pair reconcile by sending Nancy an invitation to the “King and Queen’s Costume Ball” at the Woolworth Building. She also begins to win Robert over with her sunny disposition and optimism, even inadvertently helping one of his clients reconcile with his wife.
After searching throughout the city, Edward finally locates Giselle at Robert’s apartment. While Edward is eager to take Giselle home to Andalasia and marry, she insists that they should first go on a date to get to know each other, still conflicted about her feelings. Giselle promises to return to Andalasia after ending their date at the ball, which Robert and Nancy also attend. Narissa, who has been spying from Andalasia, decides to follow and kill Giselle herself after Nathaniel failed to poison her twice. Robert and Giselle share a dance with each other, with both Edward and Nancy noticing their obvious attraction to each other. Giselle and Edward then prepare to leave, but Giselle feels sorrow at leaving Robert behind. Narissa appears as the old hag and offers the last poisoned apple to Giselle, promising “sweet dreams and happy endings.” Giselle takes a bite and falls to the floor unconscious.
Narissa attempts to escape with Giselle’s body but is stopped by Edward. Nathaniel, realizing Narissa was using him and never loved him, reveals her plot. Robert realizes that true love’s kiss (something Giselle often discussed) is the only force powerful enough to break the apple’s spell. After Edward’s kiss fails to wake Giselle, he prompts Robert to do so instead. Robert kisses her just as the clock strikes twelve, Giselle awakens and the whole crowd cheers, with everyone else believing that the situation is a staged event for the ball. Narissa, however, furiously transforms into a giant blue dragon and takes Robert hostage, prompting much panic throughout the crowd. Giselle takes Edward’s sword and pursues Narissa to the top of the building. Pip, who was freed by Edward, helps Giselle successfully defeat Narissa, who falls off of the building to the ground and explodes into magic glitter on impact.
A happy new life unfolds for everyone, showing Edward and Nancy – now animated – marrying in Andalasia; Giselle running a successful fashion business and forming a happy family with Robert and Morgan; while Nathaniel and Pip each become successful authors about their personal experiences in the real world, leaving everyone with their own “happily ever after”.There was also enough humor to keep the older viewers entertained from hilarious allusions to popular fairy tales and even some “adult” themes insinuated, while still keeping the film Disney clean. Overall I completely enjoyed this movie and recommend it to all families.