Thursday, January 28, 2010

Those who sign without delay will get a free tattoo

Poll results! Out of 13 votes, 7 people said that they imagined dresses to be different colors while 6 imagined the dresses in shades of black, white, and gray. Thank you so much to all who voted!

Second order of business, the movie review chain. Thank you for all the lovely comments so far! For those of you who have added the movie to your to-watch list, I hope you enjoy it! I just want to note that nobody has made a bid for the next link in the chain. You don't have to be an expert on films to write a review, you just have to love movies! So, if there's a movie you love with a member from the cast or crew of Monkey Business or a similar theme, then feel free to snatch up the next link!

There are some fantastic giveaways right now! And they're all so exciting. There are two that I am particularly excited about because they're from two of my very favorite blogs:
Emma is letting her readers pick a song sketch for her to cover - which is so neat!
And Spiffy has a Forever 21 gift card - which would be so nice to have!
Hooray for giveaways!

Now, for my Old Hollywood/New Hollywood segment! One of my favorite Disney films (and I confess, I have several) is Peter Pan (1953). I was talking to my sister today and we were discussing how wonderful Peter Pan (2003) is when the conversation started to take a dangerous turn towards possible heated debate. You see, she doesn't like Wendy in the Disney version, whereas I think she's adorable. I love Peter Pan. I love the character, the book, the movies, the world, the storyline. A few years ago (I think when the Disney version was released on DVD), I went into a complete Peter Pan phase and I'd make a near-daily double-feature of the cartoon film and then the live-action. It's actually a fascinating way to watch the films and I do recommend it. All this to say, I love both movies - for different reasons. (Please forgive me if this post is a little disjointed. I discovered as I started writing that I'm tackling a pretty hefty subject. I could honestly write a paper on this topic!) Here we go!

Peter Pan (1953)
In the book, Peter likes Wendy but he also seems to like many different girls (Tink, the mermaids, Tiger Lily) and he seems rather oblivious to the fact that all of the girls like him and are jealous of each other for his sake. The Disney version emphasizes this aspect of Peter's character - which explains Wendy's character in this version a bit more as well, as she's always competing with different girls for Peter's attention. The fact that the movie is animated is a significant factor. When the characters fly, they really seem weightless and carefree. I love the way Peter sits on the back of the chair, or steps across thin air. He does more than just fly. It's wonderful! Hook's villainy has a different dimension in the film as well. Hook's unfulfilled ambition is to kill a young boy, which, I think, makes him a tricky character for a kid's story. He also nonchalantly kills his own men - making his villainy both humorous and chilling. The cartoon version makes Hook pretty silly and his cold-blooded killing is relatively light ("Shooting a man in the middle of his cadenza?"). Now, the fact that the movie was made in the fifties is pretty evident with such things as the unfortunately catchy tune, "What Makes The Red Man Red?" and Wendy being commanded to "get 'em firewood." Overall, the movie is light. There is very little sadness or darkness in the whole film - which is sometimes exactly what you need! For example, Peter's battle with Hook is humorous and the only moment of tension, when Peter promises not to fly, passes relatively quickly.

Peter Pan (2003)
This version taps into different aspects of Peter's personality. His character is more sympathetic as he finds himself torn between his longing for eternal youth and his love for Wendy. On the other hand, some of his more frustrating traits in the book are pulled into the movie - such as his dismissal of John and Michael. In the book, Peter's youth does entail some immaturity. He's forgetful of other people, slightly dictatorial, and makes light of the Darlings' fears. Wendy's character changes a good deal in this movie. A more modern heroine, she weilds a sword, challenges Peter, and even considers piracy. I think that this change in Wendy's character is due to her contemporaryism (is that a word?). After all, I imagine many girls have read the book and thought, "I could fight with the Lost Boys" or "I would rather be a pirate." Hook's character is a bit darker in this version than in the cartoon version. He kills his men a little more ruthlessly, we see his wrist sans hook, and he has an unusual fascination with Wendy. Now, I kind of like the changes in Hook's character. It's interesting to see Hook have a Happy Thought and the changes also allow us to see what an incredible actor Jason Isaacs is. This film is more of an emotional rollercoaster than the Disney version - which is sometimes a good thing. I love the depth brought into the movie with the darker elements. The cinematography and music are beautiful and add to the emotional effect. On the other hand, the more emotionally charged elements cause the movie to end on a relatively sad note. This is more in line with the book, but it makes for a bit of a downer on an otherwise feel-good film. (I'm including a picture of a battle between Peter and Hook. You can definitely see the difference, in the photos alone, in the emotional energy of the two movies and their overall feel)

Phew! What do you think? I'm going to post a poll about this: which version do you prefer? I'll add a C All of the above type answer as well.


  1. I actually think the Disney Peter Pan is quite underrated, so it's great to read so much about it! I've never seen the 2003 version, although I was curious when it came out. Great post!

  2. The 1953 version is definitely my favorite, but the live action film has some great parts two.

    Great post!

    P.S. I like your new profile pic!

  3. Gosh! So difficult to choose - but I do love old Disney so I think I'd have to go with that! Awesome post!! P.S. Is that Fred and Ginger up top? Love, love, love F & G!

  4. I did like the live- action one when I saw it but I've never really wanted to rewatch it because of its emotional heaviness.
    Plus the cartoon one does have fabulous music. Gets my vote!

  5. Oh, I'm always up for discussing Peter Pan!

    I can't tell you how happy it makes me -- or at least, how much it makes me smile -- to see another Peter Pan fan out here. :)

    I went through a big Peter Pan obsession, aunt died in June 2008, and the same day, my daughter came home with a copy of Disney's Peter Pan on dvd. I had never really watched the whole thing, so we watched it...once a day, every day, for nearly a month.

    Huge impact on me. The book, the character, the idea of Pan.

    I did watch the 2003 version later that year (2008), and I liked the first part of it, and I loved the boy who played Pan! -- Both Wendys are fine by me; but I probably prefer Disney's Wendy -- but the last half of the film really messed it all up. I did like the final scene, though. Or how it ended, I guess. Thought it was a nice way to put it...

    Still, though: I prefer the Disney version times a million!


    Good post. :)

  6. I cannot go pass a classic Disney cartoon, so it's definitely the 1953 version for me!

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  8. Thank you for visiting my blog :)
    The 1953 Disney version is by far my favorite. I did enjoy the 2003 live action film, though. Have you ever seen Peter Pan performed on stage? It's an absolute delight. The 1960 film adaptation of the play was a favorite of mine growing up!

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