Review of “Peter Pan” (1953)

A person narrates the story of the Darling family. The boys, John and Michael, are fighting with swords, pretending to be in Neverland, a place where children never grow up.

Wendy, the oldest sibling, is offered her own room, which displeases her. She wants to continue sleeping in the playroom because she doesn’t want to grow up.

After their parents leave for a formal event, the legendary Peter Pan arrives at their home. He tells them that in order to fly, they have to think of the happiest things. After that, Peter and the Darling children fly out of their home to Neverland.

They encounter amazing wonders, such as a mermaid lagoon and an Indian tribe. However, a bunch of pirates are out to get the kids, with their leader, Captain Hook.

The Darling siblings meet the lost boys, all of whom are orphaned. They see Wendy as a motherly figure.

Despite the wonders the kids experience, they also have to watch out for the pirates, especially Captain Hook.

The movie started out a little bit boring since there wasn’t a lot of conflict. But more stakes rise as the story progresses. 

One aspect that I appreciate is the characters and their relationships to one another, especially Peter and Wendy. They didn’t fall in love, but they did care for each other, especially their feelings.

Wendy also defined what a mother was to the lost boys, even in song. It was a beautiful song, stating that a mother is someone who cares for you, loves you, and will be there for you in need.

Although odd, but not surprising, she didn’t reveal what a mother actually is–probably so that the movie could get the G-rating.

Despite the rating, the film is blocked for anyone under age 7 on Disney Plus due to its racist portrayal of American Indians. The song, “What Makes the Red Man Red” is quite insensitive.

When Peter and the other kids tapped their mouths and made high voices, that displeased me.

One moment that I admired was how Captain Hook feared crocodiles, and Peter would call him a codfish. That made him more believable than a stereotypical villain who isn’t afraid of anything.

But a part that surprised and dissatisfied me was at the beginning of the film, when Mr. and Mrs. Darling told Wendy that after that night she’d have her own room. Despite the reason, I would have expected her to be happy, as any girl her age would. And not just be glad… but also relieved.

As always, twists and turns occur throughout the story.

I enjoyed some of the songs, except “What Makes a Red Man Red.” They include:

  • “You Can Fly! You Can Fly! You Can Fly!”
  • “A Pirate’s Life”
  • “Your Mother and Mine”

In spite of the perks, the fact that the first half of the movie had too little conflict and the movie, overall, didn’t engage me a lot.

I rate Peter Pan 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Published by Sunayna Prasad

I enjoy writing stories, creating artwork, watching movies and TV shows, cooking, and traveling. These are the topics of my posts. I also publish books, where you can learn about them on my website, Be sure to copy and paste the link and subscribe to my newsletter on the email list button on the homepage.

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