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Finding Neverland

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
This dramatized account of how Sir James Matthew Barrie came to write his beloved play Peter Pan is itself magical, not to mention poignant. Finding Neverland begins with playwright Barrie beautifully played by Johnny Depp fretting over his latest opus, the failure of which has cost his producer Dustin Hoffman dearly. While lounging on a park bench, he takes an interest in four boys, the sons of recently widowed Sylvia Llewellyn Davies ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
This dramatized account of how Sir James Matthew Barrie came to write his beloved play Peter Pan is itself magical, not to mention poignant. Finding Neverland begins with playwright Barrie beautifully played by Johnny Depp fretting over his latest opus, the failure of which has cost his producer Dustin Hoffman dearly. While lounging on a park bench, he takes an interest in four boys, the sons of recently widowed Sylvia Llewellyn Davies Kate Winslet. These lads, especially the soulful young Peter Freddie Highmore, stimulate Barrie's creative juices and give him an idea for a new play. But his relationship with the Davies family sets idle tongues wagging and imperils his marriage. Director Marc Forster Monster's Ball avoids depicting anything untoward, although in later years some biographers have suggested that Barrie's interest in the Davies boys was not entirely wholesome. As played by Depp, the playwright only attempts to keep alive his own youthful sense of wonder while nurturing the concept that eventually becomes Peter Pan. The performances are all above reproach, with Academy Award nominees Depp and Winslet receiving excellent support from Julie Christie as Sylvia's domineering mother and Radha Mitchell as Barrie's frustrated wife. Also notable is Highmore, whose unmannered portrayal of Peter Llewellyn Davies is one of the best turns we've seen from a child actor in years. Brilliantly conceived and flawlessly executed, this charming period picture will affect even the most cynical, skeptical viewer -- and it will delight those who cherish the notion that a Neverland might actually exist.
All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
The modestly scaled Finding Neverland is a marvel of tone -- it is an emotional film that never feels melodramatic or manipulative while offering some wonderfully charming and funny moments. Serious emotional pains are felt throughout the film, from the death of a parent to the death of a marriage to the death of a child. Director Marc Forster never flinches from the truth of that pain, but allows J.M. Barrie to share his fantasy world with the people he loves in order to make the pain more tolerable. Considering the wildly melodramatic sections of Forster's previous film (Monster's Ball), it is surprising that he would be capable of such subtlety. Johnny Depp usually gets his most impressive reviews for playing larger than life eccentrics (Captain Jack Sparrow, Hunter S. Thompson, Edward Scissorhands, Ed Wood). One of the pleasures of Finding Neverland is watching him play an eccentric on a human scale. His James M. Barrie is prone to daydreaming, but these moments arise out of mundane, everyday activities. As Barrie watches the four children jump on their beds, he imagines them flying out the window, and the moment has a sense of wonderment about it because the audience shares Barrie's pleasure in the image. Forster allows the audience to see the world as Barrie sees it, and Depp grounds the performance in reality, making it easier to accept the intricate daydreams and pretend worlds. Finding Neverland wants little more than to allow the audience to learn the same lesson that Kate Winslet and her boys do, and it succeeds with charm, warmth, and sensitivity.
All Movie Guide
The modestly scaled Finding Neverland is a marvel of tone -- it is an emotional film that never feels melodramatic or manipulative while offering some wonderfully charming and funny moments. Serious emotional pains are felt throughout the film, from the death of a parent to the death of a marriage to the death of a child. Director Marc Forster never flinches from the truth of that pain, but allows J.M. Barrie to share his fantasy world with the people he loves in order to make the pain more tolerable. Considering the wildly melodramatic sections of Forster's previous film Monster's Ball, it is surprising that he would be capable of such subtlety. Johnny Depp usually gets his most impressive reviews for playing larger than life eccentrics Captain Jack Sparrow, Hunter S. Thompson, Edward Scissorhands, Ed Wood. One of the pleasures of Finding Neverland is watching him play an eccentric on a human scale. His James M. Barrie is prone to daydreaming, but these moments arise out of mundane, everyday activities. As Barrie watches the four children jump on their beds, he imagines them flying out the window, and the moment has a sense of wonderment about it because the audience shares Barrie's pleasure in the image. Forster allows the audience to see the world as Barrie sees it, and Depp grounds the performance in reality, making it easier to accept the intricate daydreams and pretend worlds. Finding Neverland wants little more than to allow the audience to learn the same lesson that Kate Winslet and her boys do, and it succeeds with charm, warmth, and sensitivity. Perry Seibert

The modestly scaled Finding Neverland is a marvel of tone -- it is an emotional film that never feels melodramatic or manipulative while offering some wonderfully charming and funny moments. Serious emotional pains are felt throughout the film, from the death of a parent to the death of a marriage to the death of a child. Director Marc Forster never flinches from the truth of that pain, but allows J.M. Barrie to share his fantasy world with the people he loves in order to make the pain more tolerable. Considering the wildly melodramatic sections of Forster's previous film Monster's Ball, it is surprising that he would be capable of such subtlety. Johnny Depp usually gets his most impressive reviews for playing larger than life eccentrics Captain Jack Sparrow, Hunter S. Thompson, Edward Scissorhands, Ed Wood. One of the pleasures of Finding Neverland is watching him play an eccentric on a human scale. His James M. Barrie is prone to daydreaming, but these moments arise out of mundane, everyday activities. As Barrie watches the four children jump on their beds, he imagines them flying out the window, and the moment has a sense of wonderment about it because the audience shares Barrie's pleasure in the image. Forster allows the audience to see the world as Barrie sees it, and Depp grounds the performance in reality, making it easier to accept the intricate daydreams and pretend worlds. Finding Neverland wants little more than to allow the audience to learn the same lesson that Kate Winslet and her boys do, and it succeeds with charm, warmth, and sensitivity. Perry Seibert
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/15/2011
  • UPC: 031398137450
  • Original Release: 2004
  • Source: Miramax Lionsgate
  • Region Code: ABC
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Language: English
  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Sales rank: 6,550

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Johnny Depp James Barrie
Kate Winslet Sylvia Llewelyn Davies
Julie Christie Emma du Maurier
Radha Mitchell Mary Ansell Barrie
Dustin Hoffman Charles Frohman
Freddie Highmore Peter Llewelyn Davies
Kelly MacDonald "Peter Pan"
Ian Hart Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Eileen Essell Mrs. Snow
Paul Whitehouse Stage Manager
Joe Prospero Jack Llewelyn Davies
Nick Roud George Llewelyn Davies
Luke Spill Michael Llewelyn Davies
Toby Jones Smee
Technical Credits
Marc Forster Director
Tracy Becker Associate Producer
Nellie Bellflower Producer
Gary Binkow Executive Producer
Stuart Brisdon Special Effects Supervisor
Alexandra Byrne Costumes/Costume Designer
Matt Chessé Editor
Matthew Collinge Sound/Sound Designer
David Crozier Sound/Sound Designer
Kate Dowd Casting
Michael Dreyer Co-producer
Richard N. Gladstein Producer
Martin Harrison Asst. Director
Neal Israel Executive Producer
Gemma Jackson Production Designer
Jan A.P. Kaczmarek Score Composer
David Magee Screenwriter
Peter Russell Art Director
Roberto Schaefer Cinematographer
Michelle Sy Executive Producer
Harvey Weinstein Executive Producer
Bob Weinstein Executive Producer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 49 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(40)

4 Star

(7)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 49 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    They got the story wrong!

    I loved the movie - as a movie - but since it's supposed to be about REAL lives and facts regarding J.M.B.'s relationship to Sylvia and the children I would have preferred that they'd used the TRUE story. For instance; J.M.B. knew both Sylvia and her husband prior to the first Peter Pan on stage (both were living!), and J.M.B. was of a great help to the family while Arthur was ill, and the performance at the house was actually done for Michael who was home ill and could not make the performance at the theatre. Ugh!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    Good family film

    It may seem a little slow in intially, but this is a wonderful, innocent family film about becoming an adult but not growing up.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    I hated it

    ...when I saw it when it first came out. Then I grew up (not meaning to object to Mr. Barrie's notion). Part of the reason I hated it was because I thought it would be about Peter Pan. Don't be mislead. Go into it as if reading a biography. Finding Neverland is extremely compelling and highly emotional. If you do not appreciate the classics then, hesitantly, I do not recommend this to you. If you hated this movie as I did, then being more prepared you need to give it another chance, because it is now one of my all time favorite movies. It's one of those movies I wouldn't - couldn't - change anything about. (However, I do not commend James' behavior in that he was clearly having an emotional affair throughout, but this is the history of one of the greatest stories ever imagined and how it was born into this world.)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    I thought it was great!

    This is one of those movies where you will either love it or hate it - Johnny Depp plays the guy who writes the play 'Peter Pan' and movies is about how he met this family of four little boys and how they have inspired him to write the play.
    It really is heart warming and I really don't understand why people find it boring or whatever - I thought it was a great movie and how can you resist Johnny Depp with a scottish accent?!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    BORING!!!!

    that was the worst movie i have ever seen. it is boring and could put you to sleep. when you go watch it, take a blanket and pillow

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    this movie is great!

    Finding Neverland is one of the best movies I have ever seen. I've watched it 28 times and I think it's impossible to get bored of it. Everything is wonderful about this movie, including the music. Also, I think Johnny Depp is one of the most talented actors in the world. He can play just about any character given to him. I respect him as an actor and a person.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    simply magical

    i loved this film, well anything with johnny depp is great. i think he creates films and kate winslet is fab. its a rollercoaster of good times and bad, i would watch it again and again.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Fantastic!

    This movie was absolutely outstanding! I have no comlaints at all. It was a beautifully heartwarming story of love, tragedy, and hope. I loved every minute of it!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Imagination becoming to real life

    When watching this movie I was quite amazed on how much a person can imagine. With Johnny Depp's talent, of actually being the character, really made the movie great. I do have to admit, to understand and enjoy it, you must not think logically. It's better to have your mind open to many things and not just one.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    It made me cry

    This was so touching! It made me remember sad things and glad things.It made me really THINK. Johnny Depp did a wonderful job, and I didn't even figure out that it WAS Johnny Depp for a while, that brouge was good enough. I liked all the children. They were amazing. Mrs. Davies was also good. This has the qualities I look for in movies: it makes you want to laugh and cry and sing... all at the same time.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Magical and sorrowful

    Finding Neverland was a magical movie full of hope and imaganation. It should've won best picture but didn't. It won Best Picture for the National Board of Review. The movie truly was a gem, a magical movie that had great talent, including Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet, Dustin Hoffman and Freddie Highmore. If you want to cry and feel glowing like the sun, then buy this movie, or rent it, and make it believable.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    You can be an adult without being a Grown Up

    Wonderful work. Johnny Depp did an excellent job in this film. It made me laugh and cry. It is one I will watch again and again.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    An Inspirational Masterpiece!

    I really enjoyed Finding Neverland because it told me the story behind creating “Peter Pan.” I have always loved “Peter Pan” in books and movies and this was a neat chance to see how J.M. Barrie came up with the clever idea of the boy who never wants to grow up. Johnny Depp also starred as the successful author. I think that watching him on screen is so exciting. In Finding Neverland Johnny Depp gave an awesome performance of how J.M. Barrie may have really been. I went with my friend Jean to the Senator, and we will both agree that Finding Neverland is a depressing, but an inspirational film. This film has inspired me to collect memories to write a story one day, and to always believe in “Peter Pan.”

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Truly One of the Best Films of 2004

    J. M. Barry lost his inspiration after the flop of one of his plays. He is in a park one morning, and meets the Llewellyn-Davies family who reignite what he had lost. This is one of my favorite films. Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet did an amazing job and the film spurs our imagination and inner child.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Journey to Neverland.........

    This movie is a real treat for those who wanna go beyond this mundane life.........! I am amazed at the acting abilities of Kate Winslet,Johnny Depp,is his usual,standing as an epitome as an actor. Though a bit slow,it surely will entrance you guys...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A beatifull and wimsical experience

    I had never even seen a preview for the movie however my sister and I were dieing for a night away from the kids. This movie stole my heart. It is both beautifully done with color and amazingly origianl camera shots. The story made me appreciate the lighter side of life, and to keep life imaginative and inocent for my son as long as possible. I relived many of my own childhood fantasies through this film. Definatly a must see.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT!!!!

    Johhny Depp and Kate Winslet as two of my favorite actors create magic together in this film. I didn't get to see it in the theaters but bought it the day it was released. A beautiful story that everyone should take to heart.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A Beautiful Movie

    Johnny Depp is starting to become one of my favorite actors of present day. Between Pirates of the Caribbean and Findinfg Neverland, he is remarkable. I have to go back and see his earlier works. This is a magical story, with beautiful set design, and a compelling cast. The children steal your heart. If you don't get moved by this story while watching this movie, you either have too many distractions around you at home or your heart needs a bit of mending. Trust me, you'll love it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Real Story Would Make A Better Movie

    FINDING NEVERLAND is a perfectly respectable piece of filmmaking. The acting, directing, cinematography, costumes and music score are all excellent. What is lacking is a great screenplay to bring the film to life. Director Marc Forster and scenarist David Magee opt to tell a fanciful tale of eccentric playwright J.M. Barrie's relationship to Sylvia Llewelyn Davies and her four young sons. The problem is that there were five boys in real life and the true story of Barrie's involvement with the Llewelyn Davies family is far more compelling and dramatic than anything this genteel film has to offer. Johnnie Depp cuts an imposing figure as Barrie but there is almost nothing of the dark side of the playwright's personality in his portrayal. The film's highlight is the opening night of Barrie's play PETER PAN. In reconstructing that 1904 premiere, the movie successfully conveys the excitement of an unsuspecting audience discovering an immortal classic for the first time. Would that the rest of FINDING NEVERLAND were as fascinating.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A Great Movie

    This movie is wonderful, it is presented very well. The camera shots are wonderful and the acting is superb... Johnny Depp is a genius actor.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 49 Customer Reviews