Peter Pan


Walt Disney Records, 1998

REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


One of the best things about being a parent is that I now have a legitimate reason to start watching all these old Disney movies. It's easier walking up to the counter at Blockbuster with a copy of "Lady And The Tramp" with a toddler in hand than if I were to go up alone. ("Uh, I'm babysitting...")

Although my daughter and I are slowly plowing through the Disney catalog (we keep getting stuck on "Winnie-The-Pooh" and "Mulan" - "Watch it again, Daddy!"), we haven't gotten to all the movies just yet. One of those on the short list to watch is today's soundtrack review, my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Peter Pan.

I've said this in many reviews of Disney soundtracks, and I'll say it again: You don't really need to have seen the movie in order to understand how the plot is going thanks to the way the music is structured. I can almost see Tinkerbell and Peter Pan peeking into the nursery to watch Wendy; I can see them all flying through the air, singing, "You Can Fly! You Can Fly! You Can Fly!". And, daring to be politically incorrect, I can see the "war dance" going on during tracks like "What Made The Red Man Red" and "Big Chief Flying Eagle". (Save the flames; I didn't write the friggin' tracks.)

After multiple times listening to Peter Pan, I still don't understand why the song "Never Smile At A Crocodile" didn't make it into the film. It's a bit quirky, especially with the rambling conversation that closes the track, but it's still a fun song to listen to. Likewise, "The Boatswain's Song" - complete with an "error" that the producers chose to leave in for historical purposes - is a fun number, and one that could have easily found a home in this film.

To be honest, either of the tracks would have been better than "Following The Leader," a song that I'm sure appeals to the kids more. I guess that it would be a fun song to have them march around to (maybe why it was included in a different version on Disney Babies - Playtime), but it just isn't one of the best songs I've ever heard on a Disney soundtrack.

Like any good soundtrack, the mood of Peter Pan rises and falls with the corresponding action onscreen, and the listener can sense the times that Peter is being lured into Captain Hook's trap - and when Peter saves the day for Never Land.

Even with the odd weak spot, this soundtrack is a nice addition to your collection - and has almost guaranteed that my daughter and I will be watching the movie this weekend. Winnie-The-Pooh needs a brief vacation, anyhow, to stock up on honey.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


© 1999 Christopher Thelen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Walt Disney Records, and is used for informational purposes only.