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Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian

It's easier on my eyes to watch movies than it is to read so I've logged three new movies in the past two weeks. I normally do movie reviews on the weekends, but I wanted to post them while they're still fresh in my memory.

I thought I would start with the one I liked the least.

After reading reviews from a number of blogs and newspapers, I'm beginning to wonder if we saw the same film.

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian was terribly dull.

The kids are back, older and more mature looking. It felt like they had a lot of back story that wasn't brought out in the film.

They are summoned inadvertently by Prince Caspian as he tries to evade assassins. The kids (the kings and queens of Narnia) fight to restore Prince Caspian as the rightful heir to his throne.

The CGI was spectacular as always, but it almost felt canned. Once you've seen one phenomenal creature, the rest seem a reconstitution of the first. Perhaps that says more about me than the movie that I can be so quickly jaded by special effects.

The fight scenes were well choreographed, but hardly credible. There is a point where Peter, the eldest of the children fights an older, seasoned fighter. They do show the kid has more stamina, but you'd be hard pressed to convince me a teenager can outfight a veteran soldier. The other obvious flaw is that they rarely showed blood or gash wounds when a blade hit flesh. I don't care for gore, but at least stain the fabric red.

I was rather annoyed to be put into Prince Caspian's story since I felt the kids were more interesting. You suspect that their lives are humdrum and irritating to them. In the last film they grew up on Narnia before being transported back to their own world. Yet it's obvious they don't fit in. I wanted to know more about their troubles in merry old England. I don't know that I'd be too happy having been a queen in another world and then forced back into WWII England --as a kid again no less. (One childhood is enough. Thank you.)

There was also a forced romance between Caspian and the older girl, Susan. They should have either made it more pronounced or done away with it. I dislike being teased.

If you like the Lewis stories, by all means see this film, but don't expect it to be like the original. It's not.

Aslan and the White Witch have precious little to do with the story and I felt they were included in an attempt to make it stronger. I think this alone proves that the story on its own was not carrying its weight.

Fine for a rental. At least you can save money on popcorn.

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