Wendy Poster

Wendy (2020)

Rayting:   5.8/10
Country: USA
Language: English

Lost on a mysterious island where aging and time have come unglued, Wendy must fight to save her family, her freedom, and the joyous spirit of youth from the deadly peril of growing up.

Director: Benh Zeitlin Writer:

Stars: Devin France, Yashua Mack and Gage Naquin

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User Reviews

almariekat25 27 July 2020

Cried my eyes out! This film was gorgeously made, thrilling beautiful sad and inspiring. A great artistic spin to the timeless tale of Peter Pan

laurajaneturner 15 August 2020

Wendy is a visually stunning film, flawlessly combining the beauty of the natural world with mystical creativity.

The young, ensemble cast find a brilliant balance of playfulness and authenticity - and if you watch Devin France carefully throughout the film, you can see the subtle (but incredibly intelligent) shifts she makes as an actor.

It's fantastic to see a reimagining of this story from Wendy's perspective.

aslisonceley 24 May 2020

This rethinking of the Peter Pan tale must be appreciated for its stylistic choices and social commentary.

The children are not ripped from their wealthy, white privileged three-story houses but from humble circumstances and hard working families, from lives that don't seem to leave much room to adults for dreaming. In Peter's world, instead of polished palms, the magic of flight, there's mud, dirt, and rust that ground the story world in somewhat of a realistic background. The same magic of natural nature that Ben Zeitlin captured in The Beasts of the Southern While, in the hurricane devastated New Orleans.

What really captivates me are layers and layers of deep commentaries on race in Peter's character, on climate change and human impact exposed through the plastic covered beach, the rusty old "over-fishing" boat, and the Mother, a creature made of Earth's core and the dying coral reef.

Ben Zeitlin's effort achieves to capture the soul of the Pan's story better than any Hollywood studio production. Perhaps this is not the cup of tea of audiences who expect to see an action-packed flick where we can easily point to the villain, root for the hero, dream of flying, and believe in magical creatures. I'm proud of Zeitlin for taking the hard route in weaving complex dynamics, and grounding the story's metaphors down with the contemporary dilemmas of our time.

A timeless piece of art that would be studied in film classes. Bravo!

jdesando 10 March 2020

One of the best literary allusions is for someone to be a "Peter Pan," a Pollyanna who refuses to grow old. Benh Zeitlin, writer and director along with writer Eliza Zeitlin, remakes that story into Wendy about a wandering girl and her pre-teen friends. Zeitlin's love of nature and kids is evident as it was in his acclaimed Beasts of the Southern Wild, which garnered multiple Oscar nominations.

The emphasis on her (Devin France) is a timely take on a little girl who runs from home and returns, always the mistress of her own heart even when she's following charismatic troublemaker Peter (Yashua Mack). Although the shots of mountains and sea are almost too many, they and the kids are lovingly and powerfully rendered in a satisfactory allegorical sense.

Although the fantasy has a few too many episodes that steal from potentially longer character-making scenes, I still get it-you can't, even on a magical island, evade forever the demands of aging. Sophisticated audiences will immediately see a serious Disney-like philosophy at work, its emphasis on dealing with old folks and facing your fate with equanimity. You might lose an arm, but you'll still make it through if you believe in the goodness of life, especially of mother be she your own or a giant loving fish.

While the allegorical implications of this rugged, romantic, and lyrical adventure could fill a book, here it is necessary only to praise the sumptuous seas and mountains of Neverland, scenery J.M. Barrie would wholly approve. The eye-piercing beauty of the magical island, teeming with geysers of enigmatic steam, strikes the right balance between the beautiful dreams of children and the realities that bite them at the same time. Sometimes the tableau-like shots of nature are overwhelmingly sumptuous, just as the underwater world of the giant mothering fish is dark and foreboding.

At no point do the filmmakers create overly-colorful, unreal images that could lead a child to believe that life is easy. Here it is work just to survive and beauty when you realize where the real beauty is-in loving fealty to friends and family.

Even the story's Captain Hook must admit that love is the salvation and sometimes you can't go home. Fortunately for our little band of adventurers, they can become adults and realize that growing up is the greatest adventure of all.

hollandnigel 19 April 2020

Fantastic movie!! Enjoyed every moment, ignore the negative reviews and make your own decision. It's NOT 'Peter Pan', it's 'Wendy', if you open your mind, use your knowledge of the previous Peter Pan stories but remember it's not about Peter Pan, you can easily enjoy it

ferguson-6 12 March 2020

Greetings again from the darkness. When you think of Peter Pan, you likely envision either the 1953 animated Disney film classic or the writings of J.M. Barre, who first introduced the character in his 1902 adult novel, "The Little White Bird." Whatever your impressions and memories of Peter Pan, they likely differ from those of filmmaker Benh Zeitlin, who was Oscar nominated for his stunning 2012 film, BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD.

The story begins at a small town greasy spoon diner nestled along railroad tracks. Birthday boy Thomas (Krzysztof Meyn) is devouring a plate of bacon and taking ribbing from the locals who are teasing him with tales of his future working at the diner. He storms out yelping "I ain't gonna be no mop and broom man". Toddler Wendy watches as Thomas jumps on the passing train and disappears with the wind. A few years later, Wendy (newcomer Devin France) and her older twin brothers James and Douglas (Gage and Gavin Naquin) are awakened by a passing train and spot a giggling Peter (Yashua Mack) running along the top of the cars. The siblings climb out the window and leap to join Peter. Soon, they are on an adventure to an island (we assume is Neverland) which seems to be populated with kids who run and jump and play all day. Among them is Thomas, who hasn't aged a day since his birthday bacon.

Any re-imagining of a classic comes with risks. Messing with people's childhood memories inevitably leads to push-back. Benh Zeitlin gives the impression that he's a passion-project only type of filmmaker. This interpretation means something to him, and it's obvious in the detail and creativity. The similarities in visual style to his previous "Beasts" film are obvious, and render quite a different look and feel than we are accustomed to with fantasy movies. But then, this is not a Peter Pan for kids. It's really a philosophical analysis of life. Everything is an adventure for kids, and then somewhere along the way, we lose ourselves and start the 'adulting' portion of life - leaving our childhood dreams behind.

Buzzo represents the once young boy who lost faith. He's now an old guy dreaming of recapturing his youth. Mr. Zeitlin's film, which he co-wrote with his sister Eliza Zeitlin, includes magical elements, fantasies, realism, life lessons, hardships, and the importance of personal connections. The score from Dan Romer is exceptional, as are the performances from youngsters Devin France and Yashua Mack. It was filmed on the volcanic island of Montserrat, and thanks to the mythical "Mother" who lives underwater, it becomes a fable about keeping the faith and never growing old. J.M. Barre's famous first line was "All children, except one, grow up." Are you that one child, or have you lost faith?

blackcherry-26470 23 April 2020

One of my favorite movies I've ever seen. Gorgeous, visually stunning, experimental, different, so strange and beautiful.

Sparse dialogue, incredible score, and the backdrops and cinematography were absolutely jaw-dropping for me. It felt like reading a breathtaking poem and brought me back to the days when I was young and had the wildest imagination.

I can see why it may not be a film for everyone, it doesn't fit together like your typical movie, but I was completely enthralled.

annieonu 23 April 2020

Great story telling and acting from the Wendy character..but other than that the movie was boring and really over stretched and most times movies like this keep you glued hoping for a turn around but it didn't ..I doubt it would appeal to any audience but that's coming from someone who tried and got to an hour of this because I really wanted it to work but it was sort of exhausting, I'm not a fan of camera close UPS on actors in scenes of movies, I like to see the scenery, reactions, conversations which lacked and stressed me alot watching this..so it was a no for me!

nighttimesketch 17 April 2020

In my opinion it's gives fresh (good) look to the story. The visual and music combination make your arms chill. I don't know if it's only me as othere reviews are quite harsh, but i enjoyed every minute of this masterpiece.

trinaboice 1 March 2020

IN A NUTSHELL: This beautiful film has rich detail and emotion as a re-imagining of the timeless tale of Peter Pan and his relationship with Wendy. Directed by Benh Zeitlin, the movie feels real and charming at the same time. While the film is mesmerizing to look at, the story is a bit messy and even boring at times. It is both sad and hopeful as it reminds to look for the magic in our lives. The theme of the movie is growing up and, ironically, it took 7 years to make the movie.

TIPS FOR PARENTS: Some profanity uttered by kids. As a parent, you'll want to talk to your kids about NOT just taking off on an adventure without you! A boy gets his hand chopped off and you see some blood and a stump. Ick. Talk of farts (of course, since there are kids in the movie). Some kids (and adults) will be bored. There is a lot of talk about mothers. If you're a mom, use this opportunity to remind your kids how much you love them.

THEMES: The joy of childhood and the pain of growing up Time Making your dreams come true As long as you retain your sense of wonder, you will never grow up. Losing yourself "You can't lose hope. That's what's making you old." - Wendy (Devin France) "You have to use your imagination." - Wendy (Devin France) Life is an adventure. There is magic everywhere.

THINGS I LIKED: The movie was filmed in Montserrat, an island south of Antigua. They had a terrible volcanic eruption there in recent years, so the majority of the people who lived there left. I heard that the shooting location was actually quite dangerous, so only essential crew were allowed to go there. Because there wasn't any electric power for large lighting set-ups, 16mm film was used. The child actors offer fresh faces to Hollywood and were all totally adorable. The director had to teach them how to act and even how to swim. The metaphor of a train is perfect to illustrate the ride we take on our lives from childhood to adulthood. The strange sounds throughout the film made you feel like you really were in some adventureland. I would have loved to hang out in that Neverland when I was a kid. Well, probably for just a couple of days. There is a creative, new take on Captain Hook and the pirates.

THINGS I DIDN'T LIKE: As a mother, I was worried about these child actors in dangerous situations the entire time! I also really wanted to give those kids a bath. ha ha A lot of scenes are super dark at nighttime, which will make it hard to see what's going on if you watch this on small monitors and devices once the movie goes to streaming. There's definitely a Lord of the Flies element to this telling.

INTERESTING LINES: "The more you grow up, the less things you get to do that you wanna." - boy "What's your stop?" - kid "This is an adventure. There are no stops!" - kid "Never slow down." - Wendy "When sad thoughts come to your mind, let them whiz out the other ear and be gone." - Wendy "The only reason you know you're old is cuz no one will talk to you no more." - Buzzo "A mother will always come for her children." - James (Gavin Naquin) "When you're a child, they don't tell you everyone you love can disappear and you'll never get them back. Take care of your tribe." - Wendy

You can watch the rest of my review on my Movie Review Mom channel on YouTube!

alan-warden 18 April 2020

A complete re-imaginig of the Peter Pan story, completely devoid of any of the original stories'charm. Poor acting and slow, ponderous pacing made me switch this off after a laborious 30 minutes so I can't comment about the rest of the film. It was just too depressing and boring to continue watching. Even the kids gave up long before the end !

ivo_shandor 2 September 2020

From director Benh Zeitlin, of Beasts of the Southern Wild, is one of the most intense and beautifully crafted versions of Peter Pan you'll see. Most adaptations go for the broad stroke version of Pan, the basic story of a boy never growing up, pirates and mermaids, and imagination. Wendy gets down to the raw, emotional core of the Peter Pan mythos, creating a dark, even scary, but incredibly heartfelt interpretation. From wanting to feel young again, to losing hope, to living life, it goes into the deep heavy themes with such full forward momentum, that you're just there watching captivated the entire time. Incredible cinematography, wonderful music and visuals to match, wonderful acting from adults, and especially from the kids, come together to form a beautiful painting of emotions. It has the best scenery and locations of any adaptation of Peter Pan I've seen, and it's all real places that live and breathe a fantasy picture. It goes for the heavy stuff right away and it doesn't stop for anything. It might go on for too long, and you might be confused by its symbolism and interpretation, but in the end it gets you by the heartstrings. Like looking at a piece of art in a museum, it's all there on the canvas waiting for you to appreciate it.

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