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Hook

Year: 1991
Production Co: Amblin
Studio: Columbia
Director: Steven Spielberg
Producer: Kathleen Kennedy/Frank Marshall/Gerald Molen
Cast: Robin Williams, Dustin Hoffman, Julia Roberts, Bob Hoskins, Maggie Smith
Spielberg's first stumble, and proof that there's no sure bet in Hollywood. It had everything going for it; big stars, including one of the biggest comic actors alive, a massive production budget and a director seemingly perfectly aligned with the story of the boy who never grew up.

An erstwhile sequel to Peter Pan, it sees a grown up Peter (Williams), now a neurotic corporate lawyer who's forgotten his origins fighting Hook and living in Neverland.

When he visits London to see his old Aunt Wendy (Smith), Hook (Hoffman) strikes in an attempt to get revenge by kidnapping his children, and it's up to Tinkerbell (Roberts) to convince him to return with her to Neverland to save them.

Trouble is, he's forgotten how to fly, how to fight and how to be a kid, so the Lost Boys welcome him back into their fold to train him up and set him loose on Hook's band.

Everything about it revealed a hotshot director given too much money and too much freedom. Spielberg, production designer Michael Kahn and the scriptwriters were given a budgetary Neverland to play with, and play is all they did, producing a plodding mishmash of Spielberg's absent parent themes, over the top set pieces and corny writing.

It was also the first major stumble for the until-then golden girl Julia Roberts, with gossip about her ridiculous demands and difficult to work with plaguing the shoot. Together with her impending marriage to Kiefer Sutherland collapsing and her subsequent descent from movie star to gossip mill grist, she wouldn't get back to the top until My Best Friend's Wedding years later.

And watch for the pirate who gets locked in the scorpion chest - it's Glenn Close in a ridiculous moustache.

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