Sunday, December 09, 2007
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Extended Edition Review
Like most kids, I read The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe when I was young, and though I don't remember much of it, I do remember it with simple, childhood fondness.
After the shear ecstasy that was The Lord of the Rings, I've also been looking for the next big fantasy epic, the next genre defining film. I missed out on seeing The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe when it hit theatres, however I did get to see the Extended Edition at a buddies place last night.
So, what do I think of this classic now that it's in cinematic form?
Meh. It's not The Lord of the Rings.
That's not to say that the production values of The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Extended Edition weren't impressive, they certainly were. The effects and CG characters were well done, the score was touching and fun, and the actors certainly portrayed their roles well, but when all is said and done it's the actual subject matter, the base material, that I had a problem with.
Like the Harry Potter films, The Chronicles of Narnia is written for children, whereas The Lord of the Rings is for adults, and the themes and tone of the story certainly reflect this, and I simply couldn't get around it. There were too many convenient fanciful things that would delight children, but had me shaking my head, like when Father Christmas (James Cosmo) showed up giving the kids their weapons, or how said kids were immediately experts with their weapons and leading armies.
I'm not going to go into the details of the story as that's part of the fun of watching a fantasy flick like this, so I'm going to keep this review very, very brief.
If you've romanticized about seeing the books brought to life, here you go, and its done very well. If you've read the books and remember them well but have since evolved your taste, looking for a film that offers drama and conflict, well, you won't find it here. For me, it's a pass like the Harry Potter flicks, but I can see why many people would enjoy The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.