Pan

Picture
3D-ness
Sound
Extras
Peter is an orphaned 12-year-old whose rebellious ways constantly have him in hot water with the nuns running his orphanage. Although he’s never met his mother, he knows there’s something special about himself, and he dreams of a better life. One night, he’s whisked away to Neverland where he finds adventure, danger, and the mystery of his mother’s heritage. With the help of the warrior Tiger Lily and his newfound friend James Hook, Peter must overcome the meddlesome Blackbeard in order to save Neverland and fulfill his destiny.

Origin stories aren’t new to Hollywood, and when I first heard that J.M. Barrie’s classic novel was going to get one, I was intrigued. Skewered by critics, Pan was rushed to Blu-ray less than three months after its theatrical debut, which is never a good sign—but how bad could it really be? It turns out, pretty damn bad. The first 15 minutes showing Peter’s life in the orphanage are quite interesting, but as soon as he’s kidnapped for his journey to Neverland, the production falls off the cliff. The acting is horrendous: Hugh Jackman (Blackbeard) and Garrett Hedlund (Hook) should be in the running for Razzies.

I watched the movie in both 2D and 3D, switching about halfway through and then watching key sequences again in the alternative format. Both provide strong presentations, which is saying something considering the film was converted to 3D in post-production. Director Joe Wright shot many of the sequences with 3D in mind to help in the translation. Black levels are rock solid, and the vivid colors of Neverland pop off the screen.

The Atmos audio is very impressive in its immersive qualities. Dynamics are particularly strong, with crisp highs and deep lows, the dialogue is always intelligible, and directional queues whizz throughout the room based on the action on the screen. Scenes to demo include the first journey to Neverland, which takes place during a German air raid on London, and the climactic battle at the end; both show off the benefits of object-audio.

Supplements include a commentary by Wright, a featurette on the history of J.M. Barrie’s original writings, and three behind-the-scenes featurettes. Additionally, there’s a DVD and UV Digital Copy.

What started out as a promising back story of the legendary Peter Pan turned into a colossal waste of time. Thankfully, the audio and video are excellent and are the production’s only redeeming qualities. Caveat emptor.

Blu-Ray 3D
Studio: Warner Bros., 2015
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Audio Format: Dolby Atmos/True HD 7.1 core
Length: 126 mins.
MPAA Rating: PG
Director: Joe Wright
Starring: Hugh Jackman, Garrett Hedlund, Amanda Seyfried

COMMENTS
hk2000's picture

I did not see it but have seen many bad reviews for it, so If the movie stinks to high heaven, why do you bother reviewing it? If you can have a system that enables you so see the most realistic picture of the most disgusting things in the world you can imagine, would you want to see them? I know I wouldn't. I'd rather see a 240P picture of a really good movie over even an 8K UHD picture of a lousy movie, and its not even close!!!

David Vaughn's picture
HK2000....we reviewed it because sometimes the press for a movie is worse than the actual movie. Take "Waterworld," while not the best movie, it wasn't nearly as bad as the press made it out to be. Sometimes there's an audience for these films and in this case, the A/V quality is quite good and a parent may endure the film with their kids (whose tastes in movies are a lot less stringent) in order to hear a great Atmos soundtrack and be visually stimulated, even if they have to turn their brain off to get through the third act.
hk2000's picture

Thanks, I guess you have a point. you see my point though? As technology advances to the point where the AV experience approaches reality, The actual programming approaches the the abyss in catering to low life tastes that you end up having a choice between extremely boring or extremely disgusting, often times BOTH!!

David Vaughn's picture
I completely agree. I'll take a great movie with an average presentation over a crappy movie with an excellent presentation. Ideally, I'd like to have a great presentation and a great movie, but that only happens a few times a year. Hollywood is in a major slump.
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