November 25, 2004

Finding Neverland

neverlandThis year's Thanksgiving movie at Jersey Gardens, Elizabeth, NJ was a delightful movie about family, imagination, and inspiration. J.M. Barrie (Depp) finds the inspiration for his masterpiece Peter Pan by immersing himself in the imaginations of four brothers and their widowed mother (Kate Winslet). Finding Neverland also restores the respectable reputation of Barrie's play from the juvenile clutches of Walt Disney's slapstick cartoon. After the debut performance of Peter Pan, an elderly patron points out to Barrie that the crocodile with the alarm clock is a symbol of time chasing each of us, i.e., mortality. This is the kind of mature, adult symbolism that Walt ignored in favor of a silly chase sequence.