A young girl goes for an adventure like never before in this wild fantasy starring Jason Momoa as her guide through the titular area.
Nemo is a young teen whose life has been near a lifehouse along with her father Peter. When Peter goes off to sea and has been revealed to accidentally drown, Nemo is devastated. What she misses is the stories her father used to tell about him and Flip in the realm of Slumberland. When Nemo goes to live with her uncle Philip, she moves to the big city, where he works as a doorknob salesman. She goes to school, and yet she still remembers Slumberland and she decides the only way to escape her new life is to sleep and wake up there.
Upon her waking up, she meets Flip, the mysterious half-human her father would go on adventures with. Flip is at first reluctant to have Nemo join him as he feels she will be just another distraction. However, when he tells her of a mystical pearl that will allow Nemo to make one wish. There is only one catch. The pearl is located in the Sea of Nightmares and the only way to get there is to go through each area of Slumberland. However, with reality as well as a dream bureau agent after Flip, this is going to be one adventure Nemo will never forget.
Inspired by the comic, video game, and animated adventure Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland, this fantasy adventure comes to life in a gender-reversal of the hero Nemo, and yet it still does a great job of bringing the adventure to life. While there are emotional moments, especially when Nemo’s dad meets his fate, there is still plenty of fun to be had in this film all thanks to a wild and fun performance by Jason Momoa as Flip, the half-human hero who has a love-hate relationship with Nemo, played with a mix of raw emotion and fun by Marlow Barkley.
Chris O’Dowd does well playing the humdrum Uncle Philip, who knows nothing about raising a child but does what he can to make Nemo feel at home. Weruche Opia, sporting a 70’s style afro and clothing, plays quite the antagonist in Agent Green, who will do whatever it takes to make Slumberland a normal place for dreamers to go and not let people like Flip ruin it. In an exchange in the elevator, her mocking of Flip with his reaction is quite hilarious to see because he’s not mad at all. As a matter of fact, it’s the complete opposite.
During the adventure, while there are fun moments, there are moments that are both nightmarish and extremely emotional. They transfer to reality with a major twist in the story that will guarantee to possibly shed a tear or two. Especially in the last ten minutes of the movie and the movie ends up becoming a feel good fantasy for the family.
Slumberland is an fun and at times emotional adventure for the family with Jason Momoa clearly having fun in the film as Flip and a star-making performance by Marlow Barkley as Nemo.
WFG RATING: A-
Netflix presents a Chernin Entertainment production. Director: Francis Lawrence. Producers: Francis Lawrence, Peter Chernin, and Jenno Topping. Writers: David Guion and Michael Handelman. Cinematography: Jo Willems. Editing: Mark Yoshikawa.
Cast: Jason Momoa, Marlow Barkley, Chris O’Dowd, Weruche Opia, Kyle Chandler, India de Beaufort, Chris D’Silva, Yanna McIntosh.