Hook, Line and Sinking

Finding Neverland, like little boys, has its charms, but it never grows into a fully fledged film

Movie watching makes children of us all. The infant it locates within every viewer is sometimes aggressive (when action films delight in breaking their expensive toys), often rude (when comedies exult in wisecracks and flatulence) and, once in a while, awestruck by the splendor of the imagination. Films that aim honorably at evoking childlike wonder are so rare, so vulnerable, that one wants to clap three times and shout, as kids do seeing Peter Pan, "I do believe in fairies! I do, I do!"--until the drab reality of a botched movie shakes an audience to its senses.

The urge to awe...

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