Some folks never want
to grow up; they want a perpetual childhood full of candy, ice
cream and making fun of kindergartners. They believe it's the
only way to avoid hurt. Well, you get hurt like skinned knees
or broken ribs when that asshole on the corner puts you in an
old truck tire and rolls you down the hill and into Ralston Creek.
But kids don't ever feel the bitter sting of rejection and failure.
The little punks just aren't capable of feeling those deep wounds,
except, of course, those eight year olds who commit suicide. That
shit's just fucked up.
I suppose an everlasting
childhood sounds appealing to folks who've fucked up their lives
and liked it better when someone else was responsible. Me, I wanted
to bust out of my childhood as fast and violent as shit from my
ass after lunch at the Country Buffet. Being a kid sucked corny
It wouldn't have taken
much to make my childhood a happier time. If my parents had paid
more attention to me I could have avoided a lot of my misery and
ache. I just wish my mother and father would have taken the time
to say the little things to me more often. I spent my entire childhood
wishing I would hear just one little, simple phrase at the right
times: "Honey, don't eat that." I wanted to hear them just once
say, "Don't eat that, it goes on the lawn," and "Don't eat that,
it's not food." But they didn't, and I spent more time having
my stomach pumped than I did in third grade.
I guess all those people
whose parents kept them away from the snail pellets had a pretty
fucking good time as kids, though, and now they wish they were
kids again. Be careful what you wish for is the theme of Peter
Like all versions,
the new movie (including Candy Bottoms' unforgettable Peter
P-anal) Peter Pan is the story of a boy who never does
grow up. He has no mother, no responsibilities and no deep feelings.
Unlike previous versions, this one is sexed up enough to have
the entire membership of NAMBLA circle-jerking to it during matinees.
Peter (Jeremy Sumpter)
lives in Neverland (this is, I would guess, where hack assholes
insert their Michael Jackson jokes), a fantasy land among the
stars created to fulfill young boys' fantasies of adventure. Where
I grew up, we had a park called Adventure Playground, a former
landfill where the city dumped a ton of plywood, filled a hole
with mud, charged kids 50 cents, handed out nails and hammers
and let us go at it. Neverland is even better.
Sumpter's Pan wants
a mother, so he cons limey child Wendy Darling (Rachel Hurd-Wood)
and her two brothers into following him to Neverland to mother
he and his band of Lost Boys. At the time, she's feeling particularly
vulnerable because she is about to be kicked out of her family
nursery and into miserable, bodiced, "polite society" adulthood.
In Neverland, Sumpter
and the Lost Boys are at endless war with pirate Captain Hook
(Jason Isaacs). He hates Pan, jealous as a eunuch at a swimsuit
shoot because this Pan kid is so happy and carefree. When Isaacs
learns of Hurd-Wood mothering the Lost Boys, he wants to kidnap
her to use as bait, luring Sumpter to his death. Meanwhile, the
children slowly forget about their parents, who are patiently
waiting for them in the real world. Hurd-Wood realizes that, as
much fun as it is to stay a child forever, she wants to grow up.
She wants to be able to love, which is something Pan can never
Peter Pan can
be a children's story and it can be an adult's story. It is, superficially,
about Peter's adventures. I mean, what kid doesn't love a world
of savage Indians, secret hideouts, vengeful pirates and no parents?
That part of the movie is pretty damn good. However, the parts
that Director P.J. Hogan tries to make adult movie are about as
lame as a donkey's dick after the last show in a Tijuana nightclub.
Pan is tragic, never
growing older, never falling in love, never having any real feelings.
Sure it hurts like hell to have your heart busted, but it's probably
worth risking for the rare chance that a lover doesn't rip it
out of your chest and beat it with a sledgehammer. For me, Mrs.
Filthy has made me feel complete and loved, plus she does care
enough to tell me what not to eat. Worse than never loving, is
that when you can't grow up and love someone, the people who try
to love you are fucked. They don't even get a fair shot. In the
book, poor Wendy grows older and even though Pan swears he'll
never forget her, he does. Every year. He returns to her sporadically
and Wendy falls in love with him anew, and then he goes and breaks
her heart all over again. And then he does it to her daughter,
This Peter Pan
doesn't have the balls to be that sad. While it makes Pan wistful
and wishing he could have a mother, the hurt he causes others
is ignored. What's worse is that anything set in the real world
is sentimental and stagey. It's dripping with phony nostalgia.
No, it's not nostalgia, but something like that, a Wal-Mart version
of Dickens, full of stiff caricatures, gruff bosses and eccentric
family members who are a little too lurid and loud. The sentiments
come off cheap and artificial, as though it's being overacted
for the "special education" kids in the crowd. I felt patronized,
and seeing how I've got the intellect of a six-year old, the kids
probably feel the same.
While those scenes
are condescending and sentimental, Neverland isn't. Isaac's Captain
Hook is the kind of pirate that is genuinely creepy and mean.
In Neverland, Peter Pan doesn't play dumb and sweet, assuming
kids can't handle a vicious villain ad his peg-legged parrot.
This movie gives kids exactly the kind of bad guys that'll entertain
and scare them enough to remember. And the battles the pirates
have with Peter Pan are good shit. There is real peril, and people
die, like candy kids crave but parents won't give them.
Neverland looks as
though someone finally gave Sid and Marty Krofft a real budget.
It's all fake, but elaborately so: plastic trees, plastic leaves
and papier mache caves full of moldering skeletons. The result
is a land that any kid not raised on Tinky and Winky will want
to visit. It's scary enough to be interesting, not necessarily
safe enough for parental approval.
The kids can't act
worth shit, except for Hurd-Wood, who is pretty good but mostly
just dopey smiles as Wendy. Otherwise, the Lost Boys are like
local children's theater actors doing "Godspell". Probably they
enjoyed dressing up, though. Sumpter is a truly dreadful Peter
Pan. He is constantly confused, over his head trying to be ambiguously
sexual, sorrowful, defiant and ten years old. Peter Pan
asks him to reflect emotions that at his age he can't possibly
understand. Hey, Sumpter, try doing it again after the first girl
you love dumps your sorry ass and you'll get closer. After the
thirtieth one, you should have it nailed.
jealous fairy who wants his heart before Wendy can have it, is
an embarrassing mime performance by Ludivine Saignier. She's the
hottie from Swimming Pool, but here she's just a hammy,
shrill little character that is supposed to be comic relief. I
liked her better naked. Her performance also pales in comparison
to Candy bottoms' Tinkerbell, who was able to crawl her way into
the smallest of human orifices.
for Peter Pan, but I'd say show up a half hour after it
starts. NAMBLA members add two fingers, and go fuck yourself.
Filthy || Want to tell Filthy