I rarely do a post specifically as a review of a movie, but this time I need to. I have been on a quest to see all the Oscar nominated films before the Oscars. I was really slacking this year and didn't see many in the past couple months, so I have my work cut out for me. But Tuesday night I saw Finding Neverland
. I wasn't expecting all that much from the film. I will gladly go see a Johnny Depp movie, but the last one I saw was Secret Window, which I was not enthralled with. And Kate Winslet has bothered me ever since she had a sour look on her face when she didn't win the Oscar for Titanic. But knowing they are both good actors, I thought I would give it a try anyway.
I saw it at the Angelica Movie Center in Plano
. It is a wonderful place to see a movie. Not only is it a new theater and thus has comfortable seats, but it feels artsy. It almost feels like you are going to The Theater not just a theater.
But back to the movie. It is set in Edwardian England, and recounts a fictionalize tale of how James Barrie created Peter Pan. The best I have determined is Barrie was in fact inspired by the Davies family. Llewelyn Davies was a widow after her husband died of cancer and she was left to raise her four boys on her own. Barrie met the family and began a relationship that forever changed all of their lives, inspired Peter Pan, and helped to destroy his marriage. That much I gather is true. And that much is all that really needs to be. The details of their relationship need not be accurate for this to be a good movie.
The movie courses through Barrie's struggle to write a decent play and the inspiration he finds in the four boys who are so desperate for a father. He teaches them to play, to dream, to imagine whatever world they want, and through their time together Barrie concocts a fanciful world of fairies, pirates, nanny dogs and flying children.
This is a beautiful movie full of the elaborate and colorful sets we have come to associate with a Johnny Depp film. The scenes skip seamlessly between Barrie's imagination and reality offering us glimpses of what might have been the catalysts for different parts of Peter Pan.
Johnny Depp's youthful persona is a perfect fit with this character who sees the beauty in never growing up. He plays a fanciful part seriously, and the character pops off the screen with the vivacity a story like Peter Pan deserves.
Kate Winslet, playing a mother of four, still coping with her husband's untimely death and an overbearing mother, offers us a strong performance without revealing much about her character. Her personality is learned through her actions rather than her words as she interacts with Barrie, her mother and the children.
This movie swept me away. It was fast enough to keep me from looking at my watch but never felt rushed. I would definitely recommend this film.
I am feeling better today. Between the support of several people, definitely to include my Cousin Rob (see the comments section of my depressed post) and a conversation I had last night, I am feeling better. I am sure I am not 100% yet, but I am feeling better about what is going on in my life right now, and I am trying to let some of the pressure off myself. Everyone, just keep telling me I am being ridiculous and eventually it will be engrained and stick. I just crashed and burned for a few days. But I'm not one to stay down for long. If anyone tells me they are suddenly engaged or about to run a fortune 500 company or go on a Mediterranean cruise I might lose it again, but I think we are safe for a while. And even better, as of today, I do not have a single wedding to go to this summer! Wow! Just realized that! Hmmm....maybe I can take the money I would have been spending on weddings and use it to go on the Mediterranean cruise!! Now that may just be a plan!! :)