The failure of Narnia

Merry Xmas.

Watched Narnia a few nights ago, and it was draggy and underwhelming. They should have released it way before LOTR, because it just looks illogical, poorly directed and incoherent. Where did they get those toothy kids anyway? They have very little acting chops for a big-scale movie…in fact, they looked really frightened of acting, not of the evil monsters in the movie.

What is really surprising is how many churches are treating this as an outreach sort of event.

Unfortunately, Narnia (the movie) fails as a Christian allegory because the actual story of Christ is so much more exciting. And Christ is not like a lion that comes and goes as he pleases. Christ is here, there and everywhere, only that we choose not to see him. Christ experienced humanity in all its depravity, and didn’t go around with a feline strut. The danger of referencing Christ with a lion is that kids may actually like the lion better!

Also, trying to fit the story of God’s creation into a fantasy setting is doomed to fail because you keep referencing the original story…only to find the allegory falling short at all counts.

For one thing, I kept wondering how come the Judas-like character (Edmund) gets off scot-free with a lecture from Aslan. The actual Judas got so depressed about betraying Christ he hung himself and (it’s not really clear here but) apparently his body burst open and his intestines fell out.

But even as a fantasy movie, Narnia remains a yawn because there are no characters that you really want to root for with. The kids are just kids pretending to be uppercrust Brits, and there’s a whole bunch of animals that talk only for the sake of talking. Tilda Swinton as the White Witch actually pales in comparison with her ruthless portrayal of the evil angel in Constantine (see below). The nail in the coffin is when the teenager tries to fight the ancient and powerful Witch with less than 20sec of screen time rehearsals and one heavy sword.

Tilda in Constantine

What poppycock! Narnia needed a visionary director who could transform Lewis’ story into something better paced, more relevant and actually heart-wrenching to watch.

The best entry point to the really good story? Start here…

The Word Became Flesh

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

He was with God in the beginning.

Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

In him was life, and that life was the light of men.

The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

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2 Replies to “The failure of Narnia”

  1. That’s unfortunate.. I really liked Narnia.. was it supposed to be an action flick? I guess, the movie had some characteristics of previous Disney movies – scraped the surface kind of feel good feeling and a little bit more.

    cat!

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