Thursday, December 16, 2010

"The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader": a painting provides the portal to the alternate universe

Well, the Narnia movies confirm the high regard we have for “The Cat” as one of the wisest of animals. In “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treasder”, directed by Mihael Apted (from 20th Century Fox instead of Disney, with Walden Media) Aslan is back, with the voice of Liam Neeson. The lion reminds me of the alpha male on an Animal Planet episode where a Canadian zoologist gets (with body language) the lion to accept him as a member of the pride so he can film it in feasting mode. I’m not up on the theology of C.S. Lewis, so I can just interpret this on the plane of what I see.

Once again, the kids (Georgie Henley and Shandar Keynes) go through a physics “wormhole” to get to Narnia in an alternate (perhaps weakless) universe, of fantasy. The portal is provided by an ocean and ship painting, which animates (in the Harry Potter movies, pictures and newspapers animate too, without the need for computers or iPads, without actually becoming portals as here). The kids wind up needing to prove they can not only swim but surface and survive in deep and open water, so I guess that proves everyone needs to learn to swim,

Narnia looks like an interesting, if ancient and somewhat limited world (the edge of the world is a great abyss), with mysterious mists, an island of evil, and a White Witch (Tilda Swinton). But Prince Caspian (Ben Barnes) is pretty much the ideal or perfect older teen, ready to be King (no grandmother Queen that can live to 100). Caspian has the bravery of Prince Harry but the stability and generosity of William; but there’s no Kate Middleton on the scene yet.

The opening of the film, in this world, refers to the (WWII) military draft, as men are expected to sign up to protect Mother Country. It’s as if a draft could come back some day.

The 3-D in this film was unobtrusive and subtle, and serve to keep the alternate world in visual focus. To me, a wave-wall in the final scene with Aslan puts a boundary on the film, literally. But what a wonderful cat. I will expect that much of the next stray who invites himself in.

The Narnia site now points to this film.


Chronicles Of Narnia 3 Trailer 2

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