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osewalrus's Narnia Review

osewalrus has an excellent review of the Narnia movie here:

Narnia is one of the rare occassions where the movie takes advanatge of being a different medium to enhance the book considerably. This enahncement worked on multiple levels and was clearly done by a director and screenplay writers familiar with original and determined to stay close to the intent of the author. Notably, unlike Peter Jackson's modernist retelling of the Lord of the Rings, Narnia remains emphatic about the glory of war for good and the need for good to have the same terrible and awful powers as evil....

Comments

That sounds pretty accurate...the movie is definately an ehancement of the book, but if you haven't read the book it still feels confusing and shallow. Next step: get my hands on those books!

Re: Confusing and Shallow

I was just about to say that I, having not read the books, definately felt like the movie lacked depth. I don't think it was due to an uninteresting or confusing story, though, simply that the film demanded absolutely no involvement on the part of the audience. The only character I felt got any development was the dark haired brother, the one who liked turkish cakes... and his character arc felt cut short by a quick line from Aslan.

Also it was a bit dated in it's portrayal of the children. The boys only communicated or expressed their affection through sort of back handed scolding or sarcasm. And the girls were left out of the battle almost entirely, with the exception of one arrow.

Back to Aslan, as Christ, he puzzled me. Now, I understand him being a general of sorts, and being noble and grand. Lewis said that Aslan is not meant to represent Christ, but that Alsan IS Christ come to Narnia, in the form that it needed. I can't remember all of my head tilting moments from the film, but my biggest moment of "huh?" was...

MAJOR SPOILER!!!! During the climactic battle, when instead of Aslan helping the children to overcome their enemies, and showing them their inner strength... he just sort of ate the Witch. So... hold Christ in your heart and... he'll... eat people for you? Is that what happens in the book? SPOILERS OVER!!!!

Any clarification on those points from the experts in the crowd would be appreciated.

Other than those problems, Weta did an absolutely mind-boggling job with the effects and props, and the cinematography and voice-acting were top notch.

Re: Confusing and Shallow

There have literally been reams of scholarship about Aslan and the Christian allegory that Narnia represents.

I'm not an expert on any of this, but the very short version as I understand it is that Lewis wanted to tell the story of how Jesus might have presented himself to a different world. And in the battle, Aslan basically kills the Witch, who is an evil despot. It's more like, believe in Aslan and he will defeat evil for you.

he'll eat people for you

Jesus ate my friend-- now I've got a friend in Jesus!

Re: Confusing and Shallow

I'm not sure how Jackson's LotR was "modernist" as compared to the books, except if the reviewer meant updates like dwarf-tossing jokes. Both versions portrayed (defensive) warfare as horrible and glorious by turns.
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