Movie review by
Matt Springer, Common Sense Media
Neverland Movie Poster Image
Decent Peter Pan prequel has some fantasy violence, scares.
  • NR
  • 2012
  • 169 minutes

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 4 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Even in extraordinary circumstances, loyalty and bravery are held in high regard. The show's heroes defy amazing odds to help one another.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Although the show's heroes are depicted initially as small-time crooks, they eventually learn to demonstrate admirable traits such as self-sacrifice and bravery.


Steady fantasy violence throughout, in keeping with the Peter Pan story's backdrop of swashbuckling swordplay. Occasional serious wounds inflicted with swords but no blood shown. Supernatural elements occasionally handled in a suspenseful way -- for example, the slow approach of a crew of wood sprites arriving to kidnap the lead characters.


The relationship between two of the lead villains evolves into an occasionally suggestive one, with sexually-themed banter and onscreen kissing.


Very occasional use of "hell" or "damn," and occasional derogatory banter between characters.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

The show's pirates are occasionally depicted as drinking and smoking in custom with their traditional onscreen persona.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this live-action miniseries takes the Peter Pan stories, as retold in the famous Disney animated film, as its inspiration. However, the edges here are slightly harsher -- although the violence is swashbuckling fantasy, there are moments when characters are bloodlessly stabbed or killed. There is also some mild sexuality between two of the show's villainous leads. Although the series does tend toward overexplaining some of the more mysterious elements of the classic stories, older tweens and teens who enjoy fantasy films, books, and video games will probably appreciate the alternate take on these characters.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bywhatmynameis October 26, 2012

Disturbing - NOT suitable for children.

This movie is not suitable for children in my opinion. I was shocked to see so many children being stabbed to death in this movie and as such is not suitable AT... Continue reading
Adult Written byRhea34 July 22, 2019

An exciting fantasy prequel to a classic tale

This is a favorite in our house, but we are fans of fantasy and adventure. There is violence and a couple scenes where sex is implied, but no graphic sex scenes... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written bysmile08 June 16, 2012

wonderful fantasy

Being a Peter Pan fan, I LOVED it!!! I thought it was a really good portrayal of Peter Pan. The action is ongoing and you really feel for the characters. Kid... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written bygilly_boy February 27, 2012

Worth the watch.

It is a good show, although not perfect. I consider myself as a Peter Pan expert and he shouldn't have his memory at the end. When Peter lost his memory in... Continue reading

What's the story?

The backstory leading up to Peter Pan's great adventures is covered in NEVERLAND, a four-hour miniseries film. As the story begins, Peter is a young street urchin under the tutelage of James Hook (Rhys Ifans), a well-known thief with a soft spot for helping orphans. Meanwhile, 100 years in the past, a pirate crew sails the seven seas under the command of Captain Elizabeth Bonny (Anna Friel). These disconnected figures find themselves mystically transported to the realm known as "Neverland," where circumstances slowly drive them into the familiar roles established by the original Peter Pan stories.

Is it any good?

Neverland doesn't hold a candle to the classic interpretations of the original Peter Pan story, but that doesn't mean it fails to entertain. The big question with any prequel, though, has to be this: What's the point? If there's no good reason to learn more about the unexplored pasts of these characters and this story, then why are we even bothering?

Syfy's miniseries Neverland doesn't end up having much of a point, but the cribbed elements from other popular fantasy TV series, movies, and books are mixed together in an entertaining way, which makes the enterprise definitely watchable. It's somewhat like Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings films filtered through the familiar tropes of Peter Pan. It's not as though anyone ever really wondered what was beneath the brooding brow of Captain James Hook, but if nothing else, Rhys Ifans and the writing here give us some impulse to be curious. The movie is full of decent action and a sense of familiar discovery as well-known characters (Tiger Lily, the Lost Boys, Smee) each take their stroll across the stage.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the show's fantasy violence. Was it appropriate as part of the story being told?

  • Did you recognize all the elements of the Peter Pan story? What was missing? Did you like this interpretation?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love fantasy

Themes & Topics

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