Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast
This precocious film, though aimed at a younger audience, proves enjoyable for all ages through its genuine, likable and well-developed story and characters. This is the seventh film in a series following Tinkerbell and the Fairies of Pixie Hollow, set in the wider world of Neverland before the arrival of Peter Pan. Tinkerbell may be the title character, but this film focuses on her friend Fawn, an animal fairy who has a tendency to follow her heart while ignoring her head – something that tends to endanger not only her but Pixie Hollow as a whole. Through her friendship with the Neverbeast and her close-knit fairy circle, she develops from blindly following her impulsive nature to learning to think things through, bringing her heart and head into alignment.
Visually striking, close attention to detail creates a very realistic Pixie Hollow. The buzzing of fairy wings, and consideration to the texture of the movement of the fur of the animals enhances the viewing experience as every decision is deliberate. The Neverbeast is heavily animalistic in movement and thought. For a character with no human speech, he manages to evoke a range of emotions – betrayal, hurt and love – using just facial expressions and his large green eyes. The film has a stellar voice cast of established performers, including Ginnifer Goodwin (Fawn), Rosario Dawson (Nix), Raven Simone (Iridessa), Lucy Liu (Silvermist), and Angelica Houston (Queen Clarion), to name a few. It is no surprise, then, that it feels surprisingly mature and earnest in its delivery.
The soundtrack by Joel McNeely is well thought out and frames the film perfectly. The theme Float is sung by Kate Nash; it feels like an Irish folk song mixed with African beats and is full of hope and excitement and immediately sets a merry tone for the film. It’s in keeping with the feel of the rest of the music, which borrows from several tribal traditions blended to reflect the harmony of Pixie Hollow.
With over-used themes such as the importance of friendship, the idea of following your heart or listening to your head, and betrayal, it could easily have become clichéd. Yet Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast is funny and charming enough to deal with these themes in an imaginative and exciting way that feels fresh and original, and in a way that children will love.
Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast is released nationwide on 12th December 2014.
Watch the trailer for Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast here: