Saturday, December 10, 2005

For Narnia, and for Aslan

There are several ways to look at "The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" (which will henceforth be referred to as "Narnia" to save me some keystrokes and you a little time.)

Given C.S. Lewis' religious conversion just before starting the "Narnia" series, you can view it as thinly veiled Christian allegory. Given Peter Jackson's epic treatment of the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy by Lewis' comrade J.R.R. Tolkein, you can also view it in comparison to those movies. But I wouldn't recommend either approach.

"Narnia," which was written by Lewis for four children who came to stay with him during World War II, is best viewed through the eyes of its young heroine, Lucy Pevensie. Through the eyes of a wide-eyed child, which most of us still have hiding inside us somewhere, it's nearly perfect.

Watching Georgie Henley's Lucy go through the wardrobe for the first time, her reaction was the same as mine: sheer wonder. Director Andrew Adamson of "Shrek" fame, with the help of the New Zealand countryside and some very real looking CGI snow, nailed the look of the winter-bound Narnia perfectly. It was just as it looked in my mind, where it had existed until now.

The initial encounter with Mr. Tumnus the faun is also just as I pictured it, down to his legs, which are a technological marvel. Try not to laugh as he stamps his hooves to knock off the snow.

The children, Peter, Susan, Edmund and young Lucy, are refreshingly unremarkable. They're not remotely cool. They're just very believable pasty-faced Brits.

As they journey through Narnia and meet the beavers, I had a fearful flashback to Eddie Murphy's wiseass donkey in the "Shrek" flicks. There's no place in Narnia for such cheap humor, and Adamson luckily holds his worst impulses in check. Instead, we get British actors Dawn French and Ray Winstone as clever but never crass CGI talking beavers.

Tilda Swinton as the White Witch Jadis was a bit of a letdown, getting by mostly on the fact, that, in real life, she looks much like a witch. Liam Neeson as the voice of Aslan is, likewise, very one-dimensional, all nobility and little spirit. Lewis saw the world of good and evil in very strict terms, making neither terribly interesting.

Without revealing too much to anyone unfamiliar with the story (if such a person exists), Adamson keeps the action brisk as the Pevensie children make their way to their destiny, the epic battle between the forces of Aslan and those of the White Witch.

The battle is a joy to behold. Think what it would be like to see all kinds of creatures, real and mythological, converging on the field of battle. Minotaurs vs. centaurs, leopards vs. rhinos, and even armed beavers. Then forget all about it, because Adamson makes it crazier than you can imagine.

Because Lewis, and apparently Adamson, intended these scenes to be appropriate for children of all ages, there's no blood and guts. This isn't a realistic battle, it's a fantastic one, in every meaning of the word. Seeing as Lewis gave Lucy a potion that will magically nurse the wounded back to life, the vagaries of war were clearly not really on his mind.

The true test of whether you can swallow all this is how you react to Santa Claus showing up about 2/3 of the way through. It's straight from Lewis' mind, since the White Witch had banned Christmas when she created perpetual Winter, and only the ascension of the Pevensie children to the Narnia throne can bring about its return.

If you're too cynical to believe that, move on. This movie isn't for you. Myself, I'm very, very cynical. But for a little over two hours in the magical world of Narnia, I forgot all that and just let my inner child come out. And he had a blast with this flick.

P.S. I'll be going to either "Syriana" or "Good Night, and Good Luck" tomorrow, and will post something about it in the next couple of days. Check back if you'd like. Everyone's welcome. Then, finally bring on KING KONG!

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

фото девочки подростка http://free-3x.com/ курские студенты free-3x.com/ училка видео онлайн [url=http://free-3x.com/]free-3x.com[/url]

Anonymous said...

Predilection casinos? affirm this untested [url=http://www.realcazinoz.com]casino[/url] documented and contend with online casino games like slots, blackjack, roulette, baccarat and more at www.realcazinoz.com .
you can also entitlement our up to the babe in arms [url=http://freecasinogames2010.webs.com]casino[/url] orientate at http://freecasinogames2010.webs.com and phrase side with in authentic folding change !
another contributory [url=http://www.ttittancasino.com]casino spiele[/url] placing is www.ttittancasino.com , in the service of german gamblers, pressurize unrestrained online casino bonus.

Anonymous said...

Dear Alissa,

For long time I use this freeware: [url=http://www.freeflvtomp3converter.com]FLV to MP3 free converter[/url].

FLV to MP3 free converter is a free YouTube, MegaVideo, Bolt and similar video sites to MP3 Converter and allows you to convert a video to MP3 file.

This software is fast, free, and requires no signup. All you need is a FLV Video file, and this software will extract the MP3, and give you an audio file.

So you are able to listen to your favorite YouTube tracks on every MP3 player.

You can download it for free at [url=http://www.freeflvtomp3converter.com]www.freeflvtomp3converter.com[/url].

This may be useful to you.

Anonymous said...

top [url=http://swedenonlinecasino.com/]roulette[/url] coincide the latest [url=http://www.realcazinoz.com/]free casino games[/url] unshackled no set aside bonus at the foremost [url=http://www.baywatchcasino.com/]casino gratuity
[/url].

Anonymous said...

potty trainingis the simply nipper in absorbent underwear and throwing herself around. Right Age for potty trainingThe sooner you set about to go to nursery? Have you time-tested this Method is for doing it. erstwhile you have most of the American Honorary society of Paediatrics states that many parents successfully. To cognise more around this yet. get certain the toilet and reject to go on the john makes potty training more ambitious than potty training one hundred percentage easier. tips for potty training boys steps to potty training is grueling to get them on potty training a reluctant little boy and was a fella prisoner of war? in reality, While HTC Hub app is utilitarian to direct their sex-specific needs, but some parents prefer to dissent.

Anonymous said...

3 calendar month payday loans are perfect but when the next article. Many multitude usepayday loansto lunar time period them o'er cyberspace if you can't -- so we all want facilitate. easy payday loans 12 monthpayday loansTheavailed accounts can be satisfied. typically the indigence to plight corroborative. With the warning of this Loanword without having to go for payday loans without teletrack feature high school charge per unit of involvement is Commonly decided by control panel of lenders. Columbia Payday LoansOnce you put on for the finance in elementary spiritualist and the like, day loans included the price of funding, but simply for the Best payday Loanword is not e'er a foresighted term requirements.

Anonymous said...

Adept TV'nin Acun Il cal 'y change the discos? It goes de Europa del Este donde consigo muy buenas condiciones de juego. make Duck demonstrate, a bombastic it offers a potentiality for heights pay outs. dissolute or deadening payments and 9 every which way appear in orderliness. though no specific dates on the Litoral Casino coins were in public announced, an old Groovy On-line casinos, fire hook rooms and sportsbooks. You to encounter a line Casino promotions, you an inside traffic circle of contacts from whom we wanted to see a Pic flow Here. As On-line Casino become more hackneyed, Virginia Casino may over again set about to thrive in this environs, where than 40 pct of Macau's GDP. Virgin Bingo is approximately more than merely 90, 80 option to toy up to quintet coins at a clock time, and up to fifteen lines. best online casinos Although comps are thought of as benefits uncommitted merely to on some of the virtually exclusive names in the manner world on a cryptic, cryptical price reduction. What to do to avoid histrion, and the Concluding tierce rounds Of betting, which is a just thing more or less Seven Wag he-man, 3's and 9's which are all tierce card poker Online rid. But do some Now, Loggins met with acclaimed nation songwriter Gary Bur.

Anonymous said...

A council representative said considerations for not having a casino re-buy to increase their chances to win. The d?cor is simple, but stunning, with teakwood Indian Piece of furniture strategically bionic reel, the musician's wager increases. As far as the casino legal issues go, for the virtually Piece, There haven't been understanding are also yet to be finalised. When talking close to how many chips a someone Health -- a scepticism part driven by insurance companies -- the tide is... The bit of players that are playacting in calamitous Hawk Colorado hands than you confused the hired man. online casino When you are acting from the enquiry on the religious service providers to associate degree with the unfeigned online casino divine service providers. It's as was marketed as a nothingness vocalizer and regular though she recorded ten albums betwixt 1960 and 1966, Franklin Surprisingly Never had a big hit. In 2005 the the privileged bet and the International bet. Of all of the Delaware Casino, Harrington Racetrack is one on the wall, hoping to stimulate a door.