End Of The Week Shorts #10 extract: Hook (1991)
The gold standard of the family fantasy film. Whilst it has faults and its fair share of cheese, Hook is a brilliant film. The script is perfect, Spielberg's direction is on-point and the performances by Hoffman and Robinson (Hoffman in particular) are stellar
The main flaws with this movie are technological and have ties to Julia Roberts', Tink. In short, the special effects (of which there aren't too many) haven't aged too well and there is an inescapable artificial aesthetic imbued into the sets through the flashy cinematography that is sometimes a little too vibrant and colourful for its own good. Added to this, the insertion of Tink into this narrative is pretty essential, but simply isn't executed very well. Giving edge on the technical front, you can still criticise Roberts' performance as well as the direction in her sequences - and let's not forget the questionable plot beat that has her explode into a human-sized fairy.
With all of that said, the best family films will have an inevitable hint of cheese and artifice to them and the fact that Hook manages these elements so well to provide an enormous amount of joy and fun makes it one of the greatest ever made.