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The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Review written on: December 9th, 2005

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Review

From the first scenes of Luftwaffe planes dropping bombs on London to the final epic battle between good and evil this movie pulled me in and had me hooked. I haven’t read the books, so I can’t say whether the movie does them justice. The acting was great, better than I would have hoped for from young, little-known actors. Their portrayal of the Penvensie children was flawless and genuine, especially Henley, who played the youngest child, Lucy Penvensie. Her role demanded a wide spectrum of acting talents, and she was convincing at all times.

Because this is a fantasy movie, it does have magic, walking/talking animals, and other fantasy creatures. The whole talking animal thing usually doesn’t do it for me, but I can say that it did not hurt this movie at all. It is a testament to the caliber of the film that not only did I not scoff at the fact that the Pevensie children received help from a talking beaver, I was actually genuinely concerned with what said talking beaver had to say. Also, Aslan the rightful king of Narnia is a talking lion (voiced by Liam Neeson), but again I had no problem accepting this, and was as concerned for the welfare of the lion as for any human character. The lion and the Pevensie children are battling against the White Witch, who claims to be Queen of Narnia. Swinton was an excellent choice and plays a cold, psychotic queen who I found myself distrusting from the moment I saw her.

One part of the buzz that has surrounded this movie is the question of whether Narnia is just one big religious allegory. I purposely went to the movie trying to take as just a movie, because I felt picking it apart to see the religious undertones would ruin it for me. If you are going to see it for the symbolism, I’m sure you’ll find it, because even without looking for it, I found a few very obvious examples. Whether you want it to be a classic for the entire family or a religious experience, I think that you’ll enjoy Narnia.

A few people I saw Narnia with compared it to Lord of the Rings. The comparison could be made, especially with the epic battle between good and evil fantasy creatures, but I was not a huge fan of LOTR, and actually liked Narnia better.

 

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