Disney's RETURN TO NEVER LAND, the animated sequel to its classic PETER PAN,
is direct-to-video material that is being released to the theaters during
competition-free February. Everything about it from the bland songs to the
colorful but flat drawings is completely serviceable and quickly
forgettable. The story itself is such a rehash of the original that it
feels more like a remake than a sequel.
Set during the World War II blitz of London, the movie starts with a grownup
Wendy (Kath Soucie) about to have to send her kids off to the safety of the
country. Captain Hook (Corey Burton) comes back to kidnap Wendy but takes
Wendy's daughter Jane (Harriet Owen) by mistake. Once in Never Land with
Peter Pan (Blayne Weaver) and the Lost Boys, Jane goes on to have similar
adventures to the ones that her mother had a generation earlier. Jane even
makes the same mistake about admitting to not believing in fairies, which,
again, almost puts Tinker Bell's light out forever.
To be fair, today's kids have never had the treat of seeing PETER PAN on the
big screen. Although RETURN TO NEVER LAND is almost an acceptable
substitute, a re-release of the original would have been preferable.
RETURN TO NEVER LAND runs 1:12. It is rated G and would be acceptable for
My son Jeffrey, age 12, gave it ** 1/2. He said that it was okay but wasn't
for his age group. My niece Liana, age 5, who watched it quite attentively,
said that the movie was "fine" and "funny." My nephew William, age 7, who
laughed frequently and loudly, said the movie was "great." Neither William
nor Liana wanted to assign stars to their opinions.
Copyright © 2002 Steve Rhodes