The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Movie Information

The Story The two younger Pevensie children are whisked back to Narnia for further adventures. The Lowdown: Dull adventure, debatable religious themes and childish fantasy are doled out in massively halting slabs in this third installment in the Narnia series.
Score:

Genre: Allegorical Fantasy
Director: Michael Apted (Amazing Grace)
Starring: Georgie Henley, Skandar Keynes, Ben Barnes, Will Poulter, Gary Sweet
Rated: PG

Despite the trailers and despite a complete lack of interest in these C.S. Lewis film adaptations, I held out some slim hope for The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader—owing to the fact that it was directed by Michael Apted. It didn’t take long for that hope to disappear entirely as I slogged my way through this morass of mediocrity. It’s not the worst movie I’ve seen this year, but it may be the most tedious, clunkiest and dullest. OK, once again I should clarify that the source books were not a part of my childhood, and I find the whole crypto-Christian aspect tiresome, simplistic and of dubious theological value. In short, I am not the audience for these movies. I loathed the first one, but I didn’t really mind the second one. This one is kind of back to square one, though I’m hard-pressed to work up the energy to actively loathe it. Let’s say I passively dislike it and let it go at that.

This time—presumably following the dictates of the books—the older children in the Pevensie brood have been packed off to the U.S. for the duration of World War II, leaving smugly pious Lucy (Georgie Henley) and the more tractable Edmund (Skandar Keynes) in England. The blitz may be bad, but their cousin Eustace (Will Poulter, Son of Rambow) is worse. He is not only irritable and rude, but he has no imagination whatsoever, which, in terms of these movies, means he has no belief. And as the film insists, “Without our belief, we have nothing.” Naturally, Eustace has a lesson to learn. And that’s going to happen when he and the younger Pevensies are somewhat arbitrarily whisked back to Narnia and hauled out of the ocean by Prince Caspian (Ben Barnes), who is aboard the good ship Dawn Treader.

The plot moves in fits and starts—which is actually the way the whole movie works—but essentially involves Caspian and his English comrades heading out to collect seven swords that have to be placed on Aslan’s table. Why seven? In keeping with the mystical seven, I guess: seven days of the week, seven deadly sins, seven voyages of Sinbad, seven brides for seven brothers etc. (Bonus points for getting the reference.) And why do they have to be laid on Aslan’s table? Maybe he needs them for a dinner party. In any case, collecting these pig-stickers is the plot.

Now, since that’s not much of a plot, it’s fleshed out with Lucy and Edmund being tempted to stray from the path. In Lucy’s case, this is some kind of sexual awakening where she wants to be her more attractive sister. In Edmund’s, it’s occasional visions of the White Witch (Tilda “Just sign my check” Swinton) tempting him to eat her Turkish delight (so to speak). Then, of course, nasty Eustace has to learn the errors of his rational ways, which consists of having him turned into a ho-hum CGI dragon and bonding with the CGI rodent named Reepicheep from the previous movie (here voiced by Simon Pegg rather than Eddie Izzard). It’s about as exciting as it sounds—maybe less so.

What’s it all in the service of—apart from setting up the next entry? Well, I’m not entirely clear on that. When Aslan (Christ as a CGI lion) shows up at the climax, he tells Lucy that the whole reason for all this is so that she will understand that in her world he is “known by another name.” If that’s what this was all about, there must have been an easier—certainly less lengthy—way to convey it. When all is said and done, Narnia isn’t a terribly compelling world and its inhabitants are either ridiculous (the race of one-legged whatevers) or alternately annoying or cloying (Reepicheep). Worse, the story this round has the huge drawback of lacking a solid villain at its center. This latest entry is the kind of movie that plays like a spoof of its own genre. Unfortunately, there aren’t many laughs—intended or otherwise. Rated PG for some frightening images and sequences of fantasy action.

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About Ken Hanke
Head film critic for Mountain Xpress since December 2000. Author of books "Ken Russell's Films," "Charlie Chan at the Movies," "A Critical Guide to Horror Film Series," "Tim Burton: An Unauthorized Biography of the Filmmaker."

39 thoughts on “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

  1. Bert

    I’m a fan of the books, but these are dull, lifeless adaptations. But the books are magnificent fantasy, far more literarily engaging than the Potter books. One can dislike the Christianity, but ideology is irrelevant to art. I don’t like the idea that the ancient gods will awaken and murder us, but I’ll nonetheless argue that Lovecraft is a genius. Lewis’ true Oedipal heir is Philip Pullman. But Hollywood is too cowardly to do him justice.

  2. once again I should clarify that the source books were not a part of my childhood
    They were a part of mine, and I enjoyed them for Lewis’s prose style, but I have zero desire to see the films.

    But if they ever make a movie of THE SCREWTAPE LETTERS, point me to the multiplex.

  3. Ken Hanke

    But the books are magnificent fantasy, far more literarily engaging than the Potter books.

    I can’t argue their literary merit, but if the movies evidence any connection to the fantasy elements, I’d say Rowling wins in the imagination department.

    One can dislike the Christianity, but ideology is irrelevant to art.

    Setting aside disliking Christianity (which I don’t as such), I’d agree with that statement as long as the art isn’t driven by the agenda of that ideology. Whether by accident (as Lewis seems to want us to believe) or design, the books are a pitch for his faith. I have no idea if they’re as smug and sanctimonious about it as the films are, but it is an agenda and that makes it relevant to the work.

    I don’t like the idea that the ancient gods will awaken and murder us, but I’ll nonetheless argue that Lovecraft is a genius.

    While I think genius is a little strong, the comparison doesn’t work for me because it never entered my mind that Lovecraft was trying to sell me on anything — or expected me to actually believe any underlying theme.

    Lewis’ true Oedipal heir is Philip Pullman. But Hollywood is too cowardly to do him justice.

    A better comparison since Pullman (who I have read) has a kind of anti-Lewis agenda. (And I found those wheeled creatures in his last book about as foolish as the unidexter sub-Hobbits in Dawn Treader.) While Hollywood softened The Golden Compass, the themes were still there. Of course, it hardly mattered since the movie tanked anyway. (My biggest problem with it was the fact that the lead was the dead spit of a girl I cannot abide, which was unfair, but impossible not to be distracted by.)

    http://www.mountainx.com/movies/review/golden_compass

  4. Ken Hanke

    I have zero desire to see the films.

    What is so detrimental to the films is how cheesy, wooden and silly they are in comparison to the Harry Potter movies.

  5. Dread P. Roberts

    The plot moves in fits and starts—which is actually the way the whole movie works—but essentially involves Caspian and his English comrades heading out to collect seven swords that have to be placed on Aslan’s table.

    The funny thing is that (as far as I recall) this silly ‘seven swords’ plot device wasn’t in the book at all. In the book, they are on a quest to locate the seven lords, but there’s no inexplicable magic power thing created from combining pig-stickers on big cat Jesus’ random forest banquet table. Oh, and there’s no stupid evil ‘green smoke’ in the book either. Is that really supposed to be creepy? Really?

    They’ve really done a number on the story for this one. Chopping the book to bits. Removing any sense of epic scope. How can we, the viewer, appreciate a journey that is made to look so easy and harmless? They skip from island to island in what feels like a weeklong family vacation. Boulderdash!

    Whether by accident (as Lewis seems to want us to believe) or design, the books are a pitch for his faith.

    I highly doubt that Lewis ever expected/wanted the crypto-Christian aspect to look like an accident. The way I see it, he’s trying to make an interesting/entertaining sermon on Morals and Christianity for children, by putting it into an epic, metaphorical fantasy world. He’s written several, blatantly Christian books for adults. From what I’ve read (including the Narnia books as a child) he’s an excellent writer. One doesn’t have to agree with his obvious agenda in order to appreciate him as an intelligent, professional writer. However, it should also be noted that no matter of appreciation for Lewis as a writer, will ever merit any desire to read his work, when you don’t agree with his agenda.

    What is so detrimental to the films is how cheesy, wooden and silly they are in comparison to the Harry Potter movies.

    I’d also add that Walden Media’s “family friendly” attitude dilutes any sense of terror and dread in these kiddy-fare, fantasy flick flops. It’s so irritating that they don’t (or don’t know how to) include even the slightest bit of horror. This annoyance is only made worse when compared to Potter.

  6. Ken Hanke

    One of the biggest problems with Dawn Treader in terms of menace is that it has no central villain — and neither green mist, nor a flash or two of Tilda Swinton really makes up for that. It doesn’t help, of course, that it’s all rather silly.

  7. [b]seven brides for seven brothers etc.[/b]

    Now I’ll have “Those women were sobbin’….” in my head the rest of the day. That’s worse than Ben Barnes’ sideburn/beard/whatever it is in that pic.

  8. Ken Hanke

    Now I’ll have “Those women were sobbin’….” in my head the rest of the day. That’s worse than Ben Barnes’ sideburn/beard/whatever it is in that pic.

    Quite true, but it’s not quite the reference in question, though the reference is grounded in it.

  9. Dread P. Roberts

    One of the biggest problems with Dawn Treader in terms of menace is that it has no central villain

    I don’t know, maybe it’s the fact that I haven’t actually read the book since I was twelve, but I seem to recall a decent amount of underlying menace established with the whole “facing your worst fears” aspect (which is, of course, handled differently in the book). I tend to think that menace can be established perfectly well without a main villain. I think this film could have established that, if done right. Look at Spirited Away, for example; a kids film without a central villain, and yet plenty of menace. Right now I tend to think the blame is either on poor direction, or fear of possibly alienating/upsetting their main audience. Maybe both.

  10. Ken Hanke

    I tend to think that menace can be established perfectly well without a main villain.

    Possibly, but the whole thing feels like a Fu-Manchu movie made by someone who thought people read the books for Nayland Smith.

  11. Dread P. Roberts

    Possibly, but the whole thing feels like a Fu-Manchu movie made by someone who thought people read the books for Nayland Smith.

    That’s funny. I don’t think I would’ve ever thought of that, but I agree.

  12. Sean Williams

    Removing any sense of epic scope.

    Funnily enough, I’ve always thought that the problem with these Narnia movies is that they’re trying too hard to be epic, which is (1.) something they can’t really do within the constraints of a PG rating and (2.) something I don’t think the source material can sustain. Lewis’s work frequently inspires awe, yes, but it’s never very plot-driven. Dawn Treader in particular is widely regarded as the best Narnia novel specifically because it’s a parade of sensuous wonders without a clearly defined story.

    In terms of Lewis’s literary merits, I feel obligated to plug for the Cosmic Trilogy, which is simultaneously less overtly Christian and more spiritually engaging than the Chronicles of Narnia. More to the point, it features some of the most lavish and most convincing (I might go so far as to say the only convincing) depictions of alien worlds that I have ever read.

  13. Dread P. Roberts

    I’ve always thought that the problem with these Narnia movies is that they’re trying too hard to be epic

    Yes, that’s true. But the failures of their efforts are only exeplified by trying so hard to be something that they aren’t. I agree with you, but I still feel that it’s worth noting how completely un-epic it is, when it’s so painfully obvisous they think that’s what type of movie they’re making.

    Dawn Treader in particular is widely regarded as the best Narnia novel specifically because it’s a parade of sensuous wonders without a clearly defined story

    Not that it matters, but I always preferred The Horse and His Boy and The Magicians Nephew. The former is my favorite Narnia story, and the latter is what I’d consider to be the most wonderfully creative. In an ideal world, Guillermo del Toro would direct The Horse and His Boy, and perhaps Michel Gondry would do The Magicians Nephew. (Yes, I realize how much of a dork I sound like right now.)

  14. Bert

    With Lovecraft, I don’t think he’s ever gotten a first rate movie adaptation. Probably because the stories lack dialogue and female characters. But I think if a director like Del Toro were to devote the care and budget necessary, a story like The Dunwich Horror would be a huge movie. When he’s on his game, Lovecraft is as terrifying a horror writer as can be found.

  15. Ken Hanke

    (Yes, I realize how much of a dork I sound like right now.)

    Well, if I had a clue about these stories I might dork out with you. Unfortunately, if it means reading Lewis, you’re gonna have to do some sales job.

  16. Ken Hanke

    But I think if a director like Del Toro were to devote the care and budget necessary, a story like The Dunwich Horror would be a huge movie.

    Well, theoretically, he’s doing At the Mountains of Madness. While I like Lovecraft, most of his stuff is just too short to make a feature. They may not be first-rate in a lot of ways, but I have no problems with Re-Animator and From Beyond.

  17. Bert

    Re Animator is good, I’m just hoping for a big budget thing like Jackson did with Tolkien. I had no idea Del Toro was doing ATMOM. The production values of Pan’s Labyrinth brought to that story could be amazing.

  18. Chip Kaufmann

    Regarding H.P. Lovecraft adaptations, don;t forget Roger Corman’s THE HAUNTED PALACE (1963). The title may be Poe but the movie is a pretty good version of Lovecraft’s THE CASE OF CHARLES DEXTER WARD which is long enough to sustain a film.

  19. Dread P. Roberts

    I just want to say that I love how the message board for a C.S. Lewis Narnia movie, evolved into a discussion about H.P. Lovecraft films instead.

  20. Ken Hanke

    I just want to say that I love how the message board for a C.S. Lewis Narnia movie, evolved into a discussion about H.P. Lovecraft films instead.

    Hey, it works for me.

  21. EmilyAnne

    Its really unfortunate that they’re butchering the series, this one in particular. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (the book) is the most interesting in the literary sense. As a picaresque novel, its more concerned with the individual, segmented tales (neatly set up with a series of islands)than any central plot. The obvious Christian allegory the other books have are worthless within the frame of this one, creating vastly more interesting situations and moral dillemas. If you think the Christian allegories of the others are obvious and dull at best (the last battle anyone?) then this one would be your favorite. Its also the most interesting to compare to Tolkein and the Lord of the Rings.

  22. Bert

    Lovecraft and Lewis: wildly different personal beliefs but their love of fantasy fiction isolated them from mainstream literature. In that sense it isn’t off kilter to bring them up in the same discussion.

  23. Ken Hanke

    Lovecraft and Lewis: wildly different personal beliefs but their love of fantasy fiction isolated them from mainstream literature

    There’s nonetheless a pretty big difference between pure fantasy fiction and horror fantasy fiction.

  24. bob

    I would say this movie is not as good as the last two. My main problem was the rushed beginning (five minute till Narnia, three more minutes till launching off to the quest . . .) and the fact that, unlike the first two, there isn’t any major conflict, but just a series of adventures.

    Nevertheless, once I settled into the action, I enjoyed it very much. Eustace, who is SUPPOSED to be annoying at first, was a welcome new character.

    And, gee, I dunno, it was nice for once to have ONE fantasy this year that was, hmmm, like, FUN and ENJOYABLE, versus the overheavy darkness and oppressive dreariness of HARRY POTTER 7, IRON MAN 2, and TRON: LEGACY . . .

    Cheers to the filmmakers for one of the few FUN and MAGICAL movies of the year!

  25. Ron

    “In short, I am not the audience for these movies.”
    I was wondering whether to take the family to see Dawntreader, and turned to my trusty Hanke for direction. I’m afraid I still don’t have direction.
    If the genre, the religious metaphors, the fantasy style are repulsive to the reviewer, how can one write a fair review?
    Once in a while, a reviewer might recuse themselves from a film, and this might have been that opportunity.
    I do have to say that having followed your reviews for years, I knew what to expect; a blunt unfettered subjective opinion, and that’s what I got, and that, frankly is what I love about your reviews. I just need to get another opinion as well, on this one.

  26. If the genre, the religious metaphors, the fantasy style are repulsive to the reviewer, how can one write a fair review?
    I don’t think it’s fair to characterize Ken as repulsed by the fantasy genre – he gave very positive reviews to all the Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings films, for instance.

  27. Ken Hanke

    If the genre, the religious metaphors, the fantasy style are repulsive to the reviewer, how can one write a fair review?

    By stating plainly that I am not the target audience. In fact, that is the only fair way to review it, which is precisely why I pointed it out. However, it isn’t the genre I object to, nor religious metaphors, but the style of the film (which I couldn’t know without seeing it) and the ham-fisted nature of the religious — let’s be honest — propaganda. “For these movies” didn’t mean the genre, but rather the specific Narnia series.

    Once in a while, a reviewer might recuse themselves from a film, and this might have been that opportunity.

    This is an idea that comes up usually when a movie someone likes has been given a bad review. Taken to its logical conclusion what you end up with are non-reviews. I actually know magazines and websites that go out of their way to only assign reviews to people who like the movie being reviewed, because they’re afraid the studios won’t advertise with them if their product gets trashed. Those aren’t reviews, they’re disguised sales pitches.

    I just need to get another opinion as well, on this one.

    I’m of the opinion that you should always get more than one opinion — unless you and the critic have a long history of always being in accord. Even then, I’d suggest more than one.

  28. Commonlogic

    I thought it was a great movie. The best of the 3 in my opinion. I’m glad they made it PG so younger children can enjoy the fantasy and it’s amazing visuals. Let’s get some perspective here. Again, these are PG movies. Potter and Lord of the Rings are PG-13 and this makes a big difference in how scary, nightmarish and evil you can make your villians appear and how horrible the suffering they inflict is visually represented. Think about all the PG movies we’ve had this year, other than a couple decent fully animated ones. This one is at the top. By the way, though the first weekend was slow because of utterly dismal promotion, the box office numbers have been doing quite well since and I believe this has to do with word of mouth. Reviewers have been split 50/50 or so on it, but most, 80% or so, who go and see it, like it a lot.

  29. Mik

    I don’t think anyone who wasn’t brought up on these books has any business reviewing these movies. Like it or not, anyone who finds anything about the books “tiresome” would obviously carry over that point of view to viewing the movie. In just the same way I (and many others) who hate the Twilight book series would be loathe to give any credit whatsoever to the movie franchise, anyone who is annoyed by the Narnia books will take the same stance at the cinema.

    Narnia gave a lot of hope and faith to its readers, even those not raised in Christian homes. The movies have a lot of the same heart and I for one am glad to see them. They might not be “The Black Swan” but certainly not everything needs to be. There is a place for these movies – leisurely, relaxing, and nostalgic, as well as hopeful – as well as those that are more thrilling, upsetting, or edgy.

  30. Commonlogic

    Good post Mik.

    “There is a place for these movies – leisurely, relaxing, and nostalgic,…”. Exactly! It wasn’t meant to be a “sitting on the edge or your seat, action packed thriller”. For me it was “leisurely, relaxing, nostalgic,” enjoyable, and visually captivating.

    I don’t see this in Ken, but in many “expert” reviews I detect a anti-christian bias when reading between the lines.

    For 18 days since release, box office numbers are holding up. Not great, but much better than was expected after the dismal openning weekend. Over 66 million domestic; over 231 million worldwide. Production budget was 155 million.

  31. Ken Hanke

    I don’t think anyone who wasn’t brought up on these books has any business reviewing these movies.

    I’m sure Walden Media would be happy with that idea, but then again some of the movies’ biggest detractors have been people who fit that description. But it is seriously wanting to stack the deck. What is the need for reviews that endorse your own opinion? Would they make the movie better? Would they validate your opinion in some way? I simply don’t understand it. It can’t be the belief that bad or tepid reviews are keeping moviegoers away. It’s the kind of movie that’s pretty much critic proof.

    In just the same way I (and many others) who hate the Twilight book series would be loathe to give any credit whatsoever to the movie franchise

    Believe it or not, it’s quite possible to hate the movies without having read the books.

    leisurely, relaxing, and nostalgic, as well as hopeful

    It may be all those things — and those are not inherently bad things — but really this is promoted as an exciting fantasy adventure. I don’t really line that up with “leisurely” or “relaxing.”

  32. Ken Hanke

    I don’t see this in Ken, but in many “expert” reviews I detect a anti-christian bias when reading between the lines

    Let’s be clear. I am not a Christian. I’m essentially agnostic, but I am not anti-Christian. In fact, I tend to be fascinated by movies that are Christian allegories in nature. My problem with the presentation in these films is that I find it all heavy-handed and off-putting. The pompous, humorless lion and the often santimoniously smug Lucy are not only not persuasive to me, they’re counterproductive to the aim.

    Over 66 million domestic; over 231 million worldwide. Production budget was 155 million

    OK, without factoring in the advertising and print costs, that still means it needs to gross about $310 million to get into the black.

  33. I don’t think anyone who wasn’t brought up on these books has any business reviewing these movies.
    Why? He’s not reviewing the books. He’s reviewing the movies.

  34. Sean Williams

    I hope I’m not diverting the topic too much, but I find it interesting that C.S. Lewis has become the go-to apologist for American fundamentalism, since he believed in evolution and in the salvation of non-Christians. Mind you, I don’t think that those positions are in any way incompatible with Christianity, but I think they would alarm many of his modern disciples.

    (Yes, I realize how much of a dork I sound like right now.)

    Not at all — actually, I quite agree that The Magician’s Nephew is the best of the series.

    While we’re producing imaginary blockbusters, I think I’ll tap del Toro for The Silver Chair. I’m also looking forward to Miyazaki’s adaptation of the Book of the New Sun with Nicol Williamson as the voice of Doctor Talos.

  35. Ron

    Ken wrote: “It isn’t the genre I object to, nor religious metaphors, but the style of the film (which I couldn’t know without seeing it) and the ham-fisted nature of the religious—let’s be honest—propaganda.”
    and “In fact, I tend to be fascinated by movies that are Christian allegories in nature. My problem with the presentation in these films is that I find it all heavy-handed and off-putting.”

    ~This intrigues me. What I love about the Narnia series is that it does not come across as ham-fisted to me. Having grown up in a Christian family and community, I and many others are repulsed by ham-fisted heavy handed Christian propaganda. We are Christians, and find that Truth stands on its own and doesn’t need a ramrod to find hearts, or for hearts to find Truth. Jesus used parables, not powerpoint. “The Kingdom of God is like a mustard seed, the smallest of plants…”

    So what we love about Narnia is the way it comes across fresh, fun, and downright good imaginative fantasy. Parables if you will. Tolkein and Lewis were great friends and shared their work often. Tolkein stepped a step or two further from Lewis’s more traceable theology loaded fairy tales. But Gandalf, Aragorn and Bilbo and Sam are very Christian, and the selfishness of the Ring is a great allegory to the fallen human condition.

    The word “Propaganda” tends to come off negative. Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech could be called propaganda. But most think it was positive and had good results. The Sermon On The Mount with Jesus could be called that too. “Blessed are the merciful, blessed are the peacemakers..”

    Many great movies could be called propaganda. Anything with a message in fact.

    So do you mean propaganda in a negative way, or just that the movie has a message?

    I and most Christians would agree with the turn off from heavy handed ham-fisting. This delightful tale of children, adventure and dragons, and a loving omnipotent lion, don’t come off that way to me. Many people read and see Narnia and have no clue it has anything to do with God, Man, and a Savior. That’s how Lewis intended it. A parable to figure out on one’s own. I think he succeeded admirably. Other examples of his use of allegory to avoid ham-fisting are his “Mere Christianity” which quotes no Bible verses, and “The Screwtape Letters”.

    And I think your honesty and fascination with all this is also admirable.

    All the best,
    Ron

  36. Ken Hanke

    This intrigues me. What I love about the Narnia series is that it does not come across as ham-fisted to me.

    Understand that I am only in reference to the films. I have no basis on which to judge the books since I haven’t read them. To me, the films are ham-fisted and they come across as propaganda in the negative sense for me. I find little evidence of love in the lion as he — or He — is depicted in the films. And I find Lucy, especially in the second film, completely insufferable. But all in all, I think one man’s “message” is another man’s “propaganda.” I know Christians who do not consider things like Fireproof ham-fisted propaganda and I don’t see how it can be called anything else. But then it doesn’t endorse my beliefs.

    Having grown up in a Christian family and community, I and many others are repulsed by ham-fisted heavy handed Christian propaganda.

    Well, I grew up in a family of lapsed Methodists, so lapsed that it hardly mattered in the main. I wasn’t made to go to church after I showed a distaste for it about the age of seven. However, it’s almost impossible to grow up in America and not grow up in a Christian community — by name and default. I actually spent a good deal of time in my teens going to an Episcopal church — I was even a member of the EYC, even though I was not actually a member of the church — but that had more to do with the fact that nearly all my friends were Episcopalean than anything else. It had little to do with belief. Now, whether anything rubbed off is a different question.

  37. Taz

    I agree with 100% Dread P. Roberts

    And the smoke and sword stuff was never in the books. I personally don’t think the movie NEEDED a central villain per se. It could have gone the Alice in Wonderland route (which was a series of events) and made a totally psychological trip for us like in the book. It was the journey that was more important, not just he end.

    Each island brought a new wonder or terror and I’m kid of disappointed they left some of them out. Eustace turning into a dragon and then eating the carcass of a dead dragon disturbed the hell out of me. The whole episode wreaked of sorrow, vice, and death from which Aslan saved him. The sea serpent’s hunting tactics curled my toes, Deathwater Island was a “Oh hell no, get away from there!” moment, and the Dark Island got me thinking about my own nightmares. And finding out what became of the seven lords underscored the terrors of these places. Most of the Lords succumbed and died from the curses.

    The way Lewis describes things in the book really DID it for me because he is able to break imagery down into very vivid, yet abstract images.

    And sure, he has a desire to integrate his faith into his works but I don’t think he’s trying to bash anyone over the head. He’s a very mediative and contemplative person and whether you accept or reject Jesus Christ, at least you’ll make an informed decision when you read his works and hopefully enjoy the ride along the way. He actually wrote that fantasy functions as different way to look at faith in a whole new light, in new creative and contemplative ways.

    Kudos to the man for marrying his interests so effectively. And YES I want to read Screwtape Letters. The excerpts I’ve seen so far are so amusing.

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