Movie Defense Force: Hook

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People disliked this movie? That's news to me. I loved this movie when it came out.

I never stopped liking Hook, even though I stopped liking Robin Williams.

And, y'know what? Screw Rotten Tomatoes. That crap has never been in line with my tastes... not really. When I heard that it even HAD a rating, my first thought was "Who the hell do they think they are reviewing a movie that came out long before the website existed." But I went and looked up some of these reviews. Most of them are roll-your-eyes trollish piles of garbage:

"Hook breaks the cardinal rule of J.M. Barrie's timeless fantasy -- it grows up."
"Bottom of the barrel Spielbergiana"
"It should have been great but it just doesn't have enough magic dust to fly."
"No matter how much cash Hook earns, it will take more than pixie dust to fly this overstuffed package into our dreams."
"Spielberg gives in to his worst tendencies, and turns Peter Pan into a day-glo mess."

I hate most movie critics but this is stupid at best. Rotten Tomatoes is only good for telling us which movies are prime oscar bait.

Where was I two decades ago? Probably in my bed in my diapers due being about 3 years old.

I quite liked this movie when it came out. There's some stuff I still don't love about like Jim mentioned. Julia Roberts in this... bleurgh. I remember feeling some of the movie seemed a bit soft too... but I haven't watched it in ages (we're talking 10 years or so), so being a young teenager parts of it were probably not "cool" or gritty enough for me at the time.
It's a fun movie all in all and the sets are indeed pretty damn impressive.

I actually liked it enough to then buy the Amiga adventure game based on the movie which also had a lukewarm reception, but which I again quite liked.

Wanted to add my voice, too. Like everyone else here, I also really enjoyed the movie.

I actually liked it enough to then buy the Amiga adventure game based on the movie which also had a lukewarm reception, but which I again quite liked.

I know what you mean MonkeyPunch, and for me it was the GameBoy version that I ended up playing. Here's a link to one of the songs - some really neat and catchy 8-bit chip-tune pirating goodness. Enjoy!!

I wasn't alive Jim. That's where I was. However, it does startle me that people actually hated this movie. Merely had lukewarm feelings toward, sure, but hated? That's ridiculous. Sure, some of it is terrible, but most of the child actors are okay, Rufio is the 90's-est thing that can exist and not be terrible, and it is one of those really great dad movies, which kids and parents can both love. I actually appreciate it more now because of that, since I can see both messages rather than just the whole "never lose your inner child" thing. It may not be perfect, but it is far from hatable.

I love this film, hell, I even liked Julia Roberts... cause I thought her tomboy look was adorable.

Did Hook really need defending? I applaud the video for feeding my nostalgia but think you guys should step out on the thinner ice of defending the other Robin Williams movie Toys.

I like how Jim spent three and a half minutes defending Hook and then shows a scene that pointedly illustrates just how terrible the movie was.

Yeah, "this didn't need defending", because there's nothing to defend. It's awful. I watched it as a kid, and I actually credit it with being the first movie to make me think about whether what I was watching was any good.

Really? To me that is one of the best scenes in the entire film. Hook is a broken man A man with nothing left but his vengence and then he discovers that the enemy he has spent his entire life plotting to defeat has in fact moved on and forgotten all about him He has NOTHING.

He'd been trying to off himself for years up to that point but this is it he really would have killed himself is Smee hadn't stepped in.

Hook was considered bad, at the time?
Ok, you learn something new every day.
Thank you Jim for educating me.

Where were we in 1991? In elementary school or not even born yet, most of us.

I loved this film as a kid. Still do. Wasn't aware it was poorly received. It's my favourite version of Peter Pan. Then again I was born in 1991.

Rufio, Rufio, Rufio....

Isn't Hook one of Nostalgia Critic's favorite movies?

Lunar Templar:
Where was I Jim?

Not giving a fuck and enjoying Hook for the fun movie it is, that's where I was.

Same here. I loved this movie. It was enjoyable and Dustin Hoffman basically stole the show.

Okay, now I kinda wanna watch the movie...

in my opinion, the critics lambasting it some twenty two years ago would have given it high praise if only they could see the dross that comes out of theaters nowadays.

It's kind of hard to defend a movie... when you're one. Still loved that shit, all I could remember is that stared Robin Williams.

"Bullshit! This doesn't need defending! It's a great movie and everybody loves it!"

"Great" and "Love" are a bit much, but it surprises me that this isn't better liked than it appears to be. I remember critics bashing it at the time for its use of actors and budget or something like that, but it came off as snobbish, even to my 11 year old self.

It doesn't work.

Yeah, much of what Sterling says is true. The set and prop and costume design is all terrific. Hoffman does a really good Hook, and Hoskins does a terrific Shmee. Williams I can take or leave, and I can see why people would feel either way, but that leaves me free to say that it wasn't a bad performance. I feel much the same way about Roberts, though her character's whole presence seems kind of perfunctory; a third hand stapled on during later surgery because for some reason we had to have Tinkerbell.

But on an underlying level, it just doesn't work. When you have people throwing pies on one plane and getting into utterly real and lethal sword battles on another plane of the same fight- seriously, [email protected]$% whatever kind of so-called "whimsy" that allows anyone to witness that and not go "what the hell is wrong with you people?!" It. Does. Not. Work.

Barrie's Peter Pan and Captain Hook were locked into an eternal struggle that worked because they were something like mythical archetypes, dream-shadows of childhood- the evil pirate versus the mischevious, never-aging trickster. Even the maiming that gave Hook his hook was something that happened long-ago, somewhere offstage. It was a backdrop that allowed stereotypical Indians, fairies, pirates, and man-eating crocodiles that pursued their quarries across the ocean to co-exist without a second glance.

Hook tries to extend that sense of disbelief to "logical" real-world conclusions and falters.

Where was i? In the cinema, watching it.

Likewise. And then I had it on VHS. And I think between those two points I had rented it. Well, my family did, I mean. on account of my age at the time.

I also have it on DVD.

I honestly didn't know that this movie was looked ill upon. I freakin' love Hook and Hoffman's portrayal of the titular captain is, in my mind, the go-to template for the character.

Yeah I wasn't overly fond of Roberts as Tinkerbell, but I'm not overly fond of anything Julia Roberts does so I can't really blame Hook for that.

Hell, if I'm being perfectly honest I think Rufio's is quite possibly one of the more powerful on screen death's of my childhood. Bambi's mom and Old Yeller be damned.

As for where I was...I was 11 years old at the time, back off!

"where were we?"
I was 10!

I was going to say, the fact that critics didn't like this movie rather surprised me. I watched this movie a few times growing up and I really liked it. :D


...Post number 20...It took...19 goddamned posts...for someone to finally mention Rufio...Escapist, I am disappoint.

And SHAME on you, Mr. Sterling, for having the golden opportunity of mentioning the red-feathered-hair gloriousness that is Rufio and completely ignoring it! For shame, Mr. Sterling; FOR SHAAAAAME!

Also, I loved numerous parts of this movie, especially the imaginary dinner and the sword fights. A lot of it was really silly, though; still, it's quite an enjoyable little flick. Like many, I couldn't believe it needed defending. Great vid.

I loved this movie when I was a kid, I was 9 when this came out. It's a lot of fun and well put-together.

You are right about Julia Roberts not being able to act her way out of a paper bag, but it's not like her character is important to the movie.


This movie is glorious. Everyone I've talked to about it had nothing but bad things to say, so its nice to see Jim come to its defense.

I was actually surprised to see this movie here. Never knew it was a flop and honestly enjoyed it.
As to where was I... well my family owned the VHS and enjoyed it. Not much more any consumer can do.

one advantage of the days really before the net took off was apart from usually the odd review in a newspaper or magazine most of the time you could go enjoy a film and make up your own mind. these days everything is over rated and hated

this was one of those films i watched over and over again as a kid. i love the fights scenes between the pirates and lost boys. i cried everytime rufioh was died, even though i knew it was coming. i loved the world they built.

i never caught onto the "adult" things until years later (for obvious reasons), but when i was old enough to understandthe things like Peter's negligence (that he lost sight of what was important because he was busy, not because he didn't care) or Hook's dissatisfaction with himself, it made the movie a million times better. the poor reviews are a testament to the 90s not being all that great.

It is just asinine that anyone would think HOOK was a bad movie. It's still freaking amazing because of Spielberg, and he knows that the best kids movies are the ones that are still fun to watch as an adult. And Smee? I remember that and the ladies love them some Smee! I forgot about Captain Hook attempting to blow his own brains out, but I remember the tic-tock croc, being turned into a clock.

wow. i havent seen this movie since i was a kid. so that would be nearly 20 years ago. i dint know it was received poorly. i actually enjoyed it and now i like to see it wonder you defended it.

The most surprising criticism I saw against it was that it "didn't do anything new for the Peter Pan mythos."

I always thought this was a classic film, I had no idea it was panned when it first came out. Early 90s film reviewers and their retroactively bad reviews, I suppose.

I didn't realize this movie was critically panned. I love it. Hook is one of the most memorable and awesome villains. And yes, Crocodile Clock Tower is so cool!

Where was I? Probably lying in some contraption made for babies given that I was only 3 months old. I didn't see the movie until I was 5. I remember loving it then and I still think it's a great movie now.

Completely off topic: Why are my captchas all for Mastercard and all in a different language? It just annoys me, doesn't really make me want a Mastercard

God damn it, Jim!

I come to The Escapist and I see Robin Williams' goofy mug staring at me from out of the front page? That should be banned for being a crime against humanity. Couldn't you have covered it up by something less offensive, like hardcore bestiality porn, or an image of Mother Theresa being gnawed apart by rats?

Good form, Jim.

Substitute Chemistry teacher.
(Come on, Rufio - hit him back!)

Where was i? In the cinema, watching it.

I was there too. Then I was at home, watching the tape over and over and over and over..

I recall the over-all theme of Hook was repellent. It was a baby boom generation in love with itself and paternally patting itself on the head.

With Peter out of the picture, Pan goes to an powerless Rufio who

The new Pan becomes someone even less likely to truly fill Peter's shoes.

That written, Rufio and the setup of the film are pretty worthy. But a bad message can burn even great art and I think this, "we are the baby boomers and we will never be really matched" message off-putting.

Watch the Disney cartoon instead.

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