Cast: Bobby Driscoll, Kathryn Beaumont, Hans Conried (VOICES)
Release Date: June 5, 2018
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Disc Rating: 9/10
In “Peter Pan,” fantastic adventures await the Darling children—Wendy, John and Michael—when Peter Pan, the hero of their stories, whisks them away to the magical world of Never Land. After flying with Peter and the delightfully impish Tinker Bell past the “second star to the right and straight on till morning,” they explore the enchanted island and Peter’s secret hideout with the Lost Boys, and leap into high-flying battles with swashbuckling pirates and the infamous villain Captain Hook.
Disney’s timeless animated adventure ‘Peter Pan’ returns home on Blu-ray in time to celebrate its 65th Anniversary. Marking the seventh entry in the Walt Disney Signature Collection lineup, this famous magical tale follows the Darling children who are whisked out of their nursery window one crisp London night and thanks to a little fairy dust soon find themselves flying off into untold adventures with the legendary Peter Pan and his lost boys including facing off with the dastardly Captain Hook and his swashbuckling pirate crew. Originally released in February of 1953, ‘Peter Pan’ still holds up in almost every important way six and a half decades later; ready to offer its magical adventure and sense of wonder to yet another generation.
One of my personal favorites in Disney’s massive catalog of animated classics, ‘Peter Pan’ returns home on Blu-ray once more as the latest entry in the ongoing Walt Disney Signature Collection lineup. Celebrating its 65th anniversary this year, the latest release of this magical adventure on Blu-ray delivers wonderful high definition video and audio presentations of the film, including three different ways to view it, in addition to a solid collection of supplements including a number of brand new extras exclusive to this edition such as ‘A Darling Conversation with Wendy and John – Kathryn Beaumont and Paul Collins’ and more (more detailed information regarding the bonus content can be found in the special features section of the technical specification coverage below) which should certainly make this new Anniversary Edition Signature Collection release a definite must own for any fans that don’t already own a previous Blu-ray release of the title. Those who happen to own the Diamond Edition Blu-ray for instance and aren’t diehard Disney collectors who make a point of purchasing each and every new edition of their favorites on the other hand will want to be absolutely sure the few new extras justify coughing up the funds for a double dip on the title before buying, especially as there is no mention of new video and/or audio presentations which usually means that the odds are pretty good that it’s the same transfer included on the last Blu-ray release; although one can’t really blame them considering it looks and sounds marvelous and is definitely far from lacking.
Overall, fellow fans of Disney’s unforgettable animated classic ‘Peter Pan’ who don’t already own a copy of the film on Blu-ray will definitely want to make a point of picking up this new 65th Anniversary Signature Collection release to add to their collection. It offers fantastic high definition video and audio presentations of the movie, along with three ways to view and a noteworthy collection of extras that features some new and exclusive bonus goodies. Those fans that already own the Diamond Edition Blu-ray on the other hand and aren’t avid Disney collectors intent on owning every single release will want to be absolutely certain that the few new extras make double dipping worth the cost because they probably won’t for most casual fans.
The 65th Anniversary Signature Collection Blu-ray release of ‘Peter Pan’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 1.33:1 4X3 Aspect Ratio (aka the ‘Original Theatrical Version’). The release also offers the option of 2 additional ways to view the film, either in ‘Sing Along Mode’ or via a ‘DisneyView’ presentation which fills in the black spaces on the left and right of the screen with original artwork from artist Cristy Maltese. I personally opted for viewing the Original Theatrical Presentation which looks nothing short of wonderful. While I’m unable to personally compare the presentation to any other releases of the film on Blu-ray, it should be safe to assume it utilizes the same HD presentation as the previous release such as is usually the case with the Disney Signature Collection releases. Regardless, the video presentation included here delivers a sharp, clean and richly colored presentation from start to finish that doesn’t disappoint in the slightest and should easily thrill fans of the film who don’t already own it on Blu-ray. Overall, this is a wonderful high definition video presentation that looks consistently fantastic from start to finish.
The Signature Collection Blu-ray release features a lossless 7.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack, along with the alternate option of viewing with the film’s restored original 1.0 soundtrack. As is usually the case, I went with the 7.1 channel DTS-HD MA soundtrack which sounds great; frequently taking advantage of all seven available channels in order to immerse the viewer within the unforgettable songs, in addition to sending a good share of additional audio activity throughout the various speakers when appropriate, and never causing any dialogue or other audio elements that might be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible. Overall, this is a fantastic 7.1 channel DTS-HD MA soundtrack that perfectly complements this timeless animated classic and should easily put a smile on the face of any fan.
The 65th Anniversary Signature Collection Blu-ray release of ‘Peter Pan’ includes a healthy collection of bonus content which features a number of brand new extras that are exclusive to this release, in addition to a notable chunk of extras from prior releases of the film. Included on this release is ‘Stories from Walt’s Office: Walt and Flight’ (running approximately 4 minutes in length), in addition to ‘A Darling Conversation with Wendy and John – Kathryn Beaumont and Paul Collins’ (running approximately 8 minutes), plus ‘“You Can Fly” – Oke’ (2 minutes) and ‘”Never Smile At A Crocodile” – Oke’ (2 minutes). Also included on the release is a bunch of previously released extras under ‘Classic Bonus’ which includes an ‘Audio Commentary Hosted by Roy Disney’, along with ‘2 Deleted Scenes’ (10 minutes combined) and ‘3 Deleted Songs’: “The Pirate’s Song” (2 minutes), “ Never Smile At A Crocodile” (2 minutes) and ‘The Boatswain Song’ (3 minutes). The Classic Bonus also offers a number of Behind the Scenes Featurettes and other fun videos such as ‘You Can Fly: The Making of Peter Pan’ “(approximately 16 minutes), Tinker Bell: A Fairy’s Tale’ (8 minutes), ‘The Peter Pan That Almost Was’ (21 minutes), ‘The Peter Pan Story’ (12 minutes), ‘Growing Up With Nine Old Men’ (41 minutes), ‘”Never Land”: The Lost Song’ (3 minutes) and ‘In Walt’s Words: “Why I Made Peter Pan”’ (8 minutes). A ‘Song Selection’ and ‘2 Music Videos’: ‘”Never Land” Performed by Paige O’Hara’ (3 minutes) and ‘”The Second Star to the Right” Performed by T-Squad’ (1 minute) are also included.
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray and resized. They additionally will suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on this Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.
Disc Rating: 9/10
Disney’s ‘Peter Pan: Anniversary Edition’ is Now Available to Own On Blu-ray & Digital as part of The Signature Collection from Walt Disney Home Entertainment