Monday, May 19, 2008

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian

We saw the movie on opening weekend, which is what we wanted to do this time. And I can tell you the movie did not disappoint. The movie is very different from the first--which was more magical. This movie is very earthy and is about the continuing battle of good and evil as well as delving into the pitfalls of pride.

As the children are recalled to Narnia because of a crisis, they immediately resume their roles as kings and queens of Narnia without fully realizing the changes which have occurred in the intervening thirteen hundred years. Peter believes he is the natural and rightful leader and trusts in himself and his abilities. In his mind he is Peter the Magnificent and therefore because he believes it, it is or should be. His pride in his leadership abilities results in a failed assault which costs nearly half of the Narnian forces. It is not until he realizes his weakness that the story begins to turn.

The story is magical and it is violent. It has medieval sword fighting scenes—which are a bit long. There could be more interaction between the main characters, but the primary focus in on the competition between Peter and Prince Capsian. The bond between the brothers, Peter and Edmund, has developed and grown as each realizes the strengths of the other. The relationship between the sisters, Lucy and Susan, have developed a stronger bond too although it is Lucy who remembers the mystical side of Narnia and retains the strongest link to Aslan, the Lion.

The New York Times reviewed the movie with this statement: "So “Prince Caspian” is quite a bit darker than “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,” both in look and in mood. It is also in some ways more satisfying. Its violent (though gore-free) combat scenes and high body count may rattle very young viewers, but older children are likely to be drawn into the thick political intrigue. The relative scarcity of digital effects in the first part of the movie allows the director, Andrew Adamson, and the director of photography, Karl Walter Lindenlaub, to explore the beauty of the Narnian landscape by more traditional cinematic means. Its lush glades and rocky escarpments provide a reminder that the supernaturalism of fairy tales originates in the magic of the natural world."

I felt that this movie is an excellent sequel to the original. It was thoroughly enjoyable, very watchable and I did not want the movie to end—it leaves you wanting more and wanting to remain for just a few minutes longer in the magical land of Narnia to enjoy the peace and prosperity which will be the inevitable result of the defeat of the forces of evil.

Rating: This is a must see—multiple times. Buy the DVD when it comes out. Suitable for pre-teens.

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