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

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

Old 01-03-06, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by sfsdfd
I've always heard that it is a fun retelling of a bibilical story.
I really hate how some over religeous people ruin a good story in its own right by shoving a moalistic codebook to go along with it. CS Lewis wrote a lot of theological books and thats probably why they do it. There are shades of Biblical themes in the book but the heavyhandedness comes from Christian minded reviewers. See my examples below.

Originally Posted by sfsdfd
In fact, I was pretty psyched up to see it; the trailers did a great job of making it seem like an epic fantasy tale that happened to have some Christianity underpinnings (which would have been just fine.) Instead, I feel like I witnessed a bait-and-switch.
I didnt see any marketing for this movie beyond one trailer. I hate what the marketing machine feeds us. They could have been afraid that this movie would fail if not sold as a 'LOTR as told by Tolkiens friend'.

Originally Posted by sfsdfd
Let's look at the elements of this story:
  • This is the story of a charismatic, ethical leader struggling against an army of evil.
  • One of his followers succumbs to temptation and treacherously falls into the clutches of evil.
  • The charismatic leader makes a deal with the head honcho of the evil group, where the trespasser is redeemed in exchange for the life of the leader. The leader encourages the rest of his followers to forgive the trespasser.
  • Late at night, the leader delivers himself to the forces of evil, which mock him and then kill him.
  • But the leader more fully understands reality than the forces of evil, and since he is full of love and without blame, he returns from the dead to punish the evil ones in a final, glorious battle, thereby saving the whole world from evil.
Honestly that also sounds like the Matrix trilogy.

We could mince over details about a hundred popular 'good vs. evil' stories. Simply the fact that a movie has good vs evil implies morality and Biblical themes. Im not trying to argue that the Chronicles has no correlations to the Bible but that its not much more than many other popular stories and that its the religeous nuts (even with good intentions perhaps) trying to latch on to a popular thing and hammer home their message.

Now just for fun I'll illustrate how LWW is not like the Bible and how LOTR is

Differences between LWW and the Bible
-- Aslan dies for only 1 person whereas Jesus died for all
-- Jesus whole purpose on earth was to die, with Aslan it was a later decision
-- Narnia is ruled by a monarchy, Christianity is the basis for communism
-- There is no Santa Claus or even Christmas in the Bible
-- Much of the imagery in Narnia is lifted right out of pagan myth: River Gods, Wood Sprites, Dryads, Nyads, Centaurs, Fauns etc.
-- Aslan was a warrior, Jesus was peaceful

Similarities between LOTR and the Bible
-- The ring was like sin. It infected people who touched it, people lusted after it etc..
-- Frodo was the only one who could carry the ring. Christ was the only one who could take our sin
-- Frodo gave everything to rid the world of the evil to save everyone
-- Frodos friends betrayed him or let him down
-- The idea of a meek, unlikely hero who saves the world mirrors Jesus: A penniless carpenter born in obscurity who saves the world without sword or army but simply with faith, determination and courage.

Last edited by Save Ferris; 01-03-06 at 01:43 PM.
Old 01-03-06, 01:22 PM
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Was I the only one a little suprised that the movie actually fleshed out the book a little more. For instance, the childrens' exodus from London due to the German Blitzkrief was barley mention in the book but used up about 15 minutes of screen time. Also, the home life at the country mansion was fleshed out. Heck, Lucy goes into the wardrobe by page 3 in the book but it took her 20-30 minutes to get there in the movie.

I'm not complaining, I actually liked that they fleshed it out more to be less like a children's book.
Old 01-03-06, 01:25 PM
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The book is heavily narrative and unless the movie would be, it needed a lot of fleshing out.
Old 01-03-06, 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Mempho76
I walked out around the same time after getting tired of keeping my eyes open.
Oh come on.

I saw the movie yesterday and enjoyed it. It was a bit slow at times and it seemed to missing that sense of magic but it was never bad enough to walk out or fall asleep on. It's leaps ahead of boring badly done movies like F4 and Episode 3 of Star Wars.
I enjoyed the kids who were in the movie especially Peter.

So I have a question, at the end of the movie the kids were grown up until they went back into the closet. Will they be grown up or back to being kids again in the next movie?
Old 01-03-06, 03:06 PM
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No. They became children again physically. When they get back in the next movie: Prince Caspian (thats been 'greenlighted' already I think) they start their adventures again as kids.
Old 01-03-06, 03:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael Corvin
Frodo & his 8 followers, one of whom turns against him?

Baromir who turns and then later redeems himself?

Gandolf vs. Balrog and then his return as Gandolf the white?
You're stitching together some unrelated bits and pieces of LotR to suggest a biblical semblance. That's very different from having the central figure of Narnia embody all of them. Most centrally, no one in LotR willingly delivers himself into the hands of his enemies and death - which is the central theme of both Jesus Christ and Aslan.

(And keep in mind that Gandalf, very explicitly, didn't die. He was dragged against his will into the depths, fought valiantly against the balrog, and won. That's about the polar opposite of the story of Christ.)
Originally Posted by Michael Corvin
Lastly, Santa Claus did not appear in the book or the movie. Father Christmas did. They have come to be synonymous but they have different origins.
Heh. It's a big guy with a grey beard, riding a sleigh pulled by reindeer, and distributing presents. You can call him whatever you want; it's still Santa Claus.

- David Stein
Old 01-03-06, 03:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Save Ferris

"This is the story of a charismatic, ethical leader struggling against an army of evil.
One of his followers succumbs to temptation and treacherously falls into the clutches of evil.
The charismatic leader makes a deal with the head honcho of the evil group, where the trespasser is redeemed in exchange for the life of the leader. The leader encourages the rest of his followers to forgive the trespasser.
Late at night, the leader delivers himself to the forces of evil, which mock him and then kill him.
But the leader more fully understands reality than the forces of evil, and since he is full of love and without blame, he returns from the dead to punish the evil ones in a final, glorious battle, thereby saving the whole world from evil."

Honestly that also sounds like the Matrix trilogy.

Now just for fun I'll illustrate how LWW is not like the Bible and how LOTR is

Differences between LWW and the Bible
-- Aslan dies for only 1 person whereas Jesus died for all
-- Jesus whole purpose on earth was to die, with Aslan it was a later decision
-- Narnia is ruled by a monarchy, Christianity is the basis for communism
-- There is no Santa Claus or even Christmas in the Bible
-- Much of the imagery in Narnia is lifted right out of pagan myth: River Gods, Wood Sprites, Dryads, Nyads, Centaurs, Fauns etc.
-- Aslan was a warrior, Jesus was peaceful

Similarities between LOTR and the Bible
-- The ring was like sin. It infected people who touched it, people lusted after it etc..
-- Frodo was the only one who could carry the ring. Christ was the only one who could take our sin
-- Frodo gave everything to rid the world of the evil to save everyone
-- Frodos friends betrayed him or let him down
-- The idea of a meek, unlikely hero who saves the world mirrors Jesus: A penniless carpenter born in obscurity who saves the world without sword or army but simply with faith, determination and courage.
very good points. I never realized how many christlike qualities were all in the one Frodo character.
Old 01-03-06, 03:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Save Ferris
There are shades of Biblical themes in the book but the heavyhandedness comes from Christian minded reviewers.
I dunno, Save Ferris. I'm hardly a Christian-minded reviewer - quite the opposite, in fact - and I went in with an agenda of appreciating the film in a purely secular context. My impression was that the symbolism was heavy and obvious.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
I didnt see any marketing for this movie beyond one trailer. I hate what the marketing machine feeds us.
I'm perfectly comfortable blaming this solely on the marketroids who put together the trailer. They've screwed up plenty of movies for me through misrepresentation.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
They could have been afraid that this movie would fail if not sold as a 'LOTR as told by Tolkiens friend'.
I'm sure that was a big part of it. I also think it's plausible that they intended to sell the movie to non-Christians as a proselytization vehicle.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
We could mince over details about a hundred popular 'good vs. evil' stories. Simply the fact that a movie has good vs evil implies morality and Biblical themes.
Not really. The plot synopsis I outlined above is quite specific. You might be able to point to one or two elements - as Michael Corvin attempted - but good luck finding all of them in a secular film.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
-- Aslan dies for only 1 person whereas Jesus died for all
That's completely wrong. Apparently, the Narnia prophecy required all four children to be around for the battle. Losing Edmund would've broken the prophecy and doomed the world. And there's a very direct biblical parody here with Judas.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
-- Jesus whole purpose on earth was to die, with Aslan it was a later decision
I don't think you can state anything about Aslan's mental state based on the movie. The references to "deep magic" and "the prophecy" were oblique.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
-- There is no Santa Claus or even Christmas in the Bible
And I'm sure the "Saint Nick" moniker has no connection to Christianity.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
Much of the imagery in Narnia is lifted right out of pagan myth: River Gods, Wood Sprites, Dryads, Nyads, Centaurs, Fauns etc.
Nah, those are very ordinary trappings of child fantasy. You forgot about the unicorns and talking badgers. If they had used voodoo dolls and fertility symbols and burning straw men, I would agree with you.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
Aslan was a warrior, Jesus was peaceful
That's quite a stretch. Jesus did violently expel gamblers from the temple in a fit of anger - which is more violence than Aslan demonstrated before the final battle.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
Similarities between LOTR and the Bible
-- The ring was like sin. It infected people who touched it, people lusted after it etc..
Sin is tranferable? Sin can be dispensed by casting it into a volcano of fire? Sin makes you live longer?
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
Frodo was the only one who could carry the ring. Christ was the only one who could take our sin
Samwise Gamgee carried it for a while.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
Frodo gave everything to rid the world of the evil to save everyone
Frodos friends betrayed him or let him down
You really can't tell a story of good and evil without these elements. I mean, you can - but it's not very interesting.
Originally Posted by Save Ferris
-- The idea of a meek, unlikely hero who saves the world mirrors Jesus: A penniless carpenter born in obscurity who saves the world without sword or army but simply with faith, determination and courage.
It wasn't Jesus's faith, determination, and courage that saved the world. It was his death. Frodo didn't die - in fact, his death would have doomed the world.

- David Stein
Old 01-03-06, 03:56 PM
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CS Lewis didn't want the Narnia books to be looked at as somekind of religious doctrine. He simply believed that Christians should write good stories, not necessarily good Christian stories, but good stories in general, and that's all he set out to do. To read anything more into the books is, I feel, a disservice to the work the man put out. It would be like tearing apart a wonderful work like Les Miserables because it has Christian themes (and more Christian themes than any Narnia novel) but, like the Narnia books, Les Miserables is a wonderful book (and musical and movies) that can be enjoyed by anybody.
Old 01-03-06, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by calhoun07
CS Lewis didn't want the Narnia books to be looked at as somekind of religious doctrine. He simply believed that Christians should write good stories, not necessarily good Christian stories, but good stories in general, and that's all he set out to do. To read anything more into the books is, I feel, a disservice to the work the man put out.
I believe you, and I agree with his sentiments. However, I'm analyzing the movie, not the book. If that were his mindset, then I hope he'd be twice as put off by the heavy Christian symbolism that permeates this film.

- David Stein
Old 01-03-06, 04:11 PM
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The 'Christian reviewer' comment wasnt directed at you, I meant that the movie seemed to be marketed to some (by way of some early reviews by 'Christian reviewers') as a 'Christians version of LOTR' and to the rest of us as 'another LOTR'.

Aslan actually bit the witches face off (or head, or neck) all thats shown in the movie is her dead body laying behind him. Im glad it was a dead body and not just a puff of smoke or anything. In the book it says he kills her but I dont remember any details.

As far as prophecies and such goes 'the Matrix' had far more religion in it. Hell, Star Wars does too.

In light of movies like those, Im just surprised that LWW is seen as preachy. Perhaps its a reactionary response to people finding out that the author was a Christian author after the fact that leads to the 'duped' feeling.

Edit to add: I guess its a matter of what you're comfortable with. I can understand if someone hates bugs, a movie with lots of bugs in it (the delightful Kong scene perhaps) would really set someone off on the wrong way about a movie. Likewise for some, Im sure its hard not to think about Jesus in specific scenes of this movie.

Last edited by Save Ferris; 01-03-06 at 04:19 PM.
Old 01-03-06, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Save Ferris
As far as prophecies and such goes 'the Matrix' had far more religion in it. Hell, Star Wars does too.
I wouldn't call this content in The Matrix "religion"; I'd call it philosophy or metaphysics. As for what's in Star Wars... it would've been similarly characterized, before the invention of mitichlorians - at which point it just became bullshit.

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Old 01-03-06, 04:27 PM
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God could sue Lucas for stealing the 'virgin birth' for his beloved Anakin origin. He might also look into suing that other director for putting the baby in the basket down the river in 'Willow'.
Old 01-04-06, 12:43 AM
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Those are some interesting points about LOTR, SaveFerris. More thought out than my response.

Originally Posted by sfsdfd
I wouldn't call this content in The Matrix "religion"; I'd call it philosophy or metaphysics.
Yeah that whole bit about Neo being "the One" sent here to save humanity and does so through his own sacrifice. That is refreshingly new. How about Cipher pointing out Neo to the agents so he can be wealthy in the Matrix. Familiar? Definitely more metaphysics than religion.

I'm with you though even if we are on opposite sides of the coin. The marketing department is squarely to blame, as well as those early reviewers putting the heavy christian slant on the film. There is no more religion in this than in the Matrix, yet no one made a peep out of that movie.

Point is, that what you see on the screen was in the book. One of the best adaptations out there. There is no hidden agenda by the movie studio or christians behind it to push their faith on you. They just translated the written word. What's there, religious imagery & otherwise, has been there for 50 years. It's not news. Changing any of the elements you mention, Edmund as a traitor, Aslan's sacrifice, etc. would be detrimental to the story. It would have just been another Hollywood hack job. Instead they did it right, and I applaud them for it.
Old 01-16-06, 08:19 PM
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Finally saw this today and enjoyed it a lot. Was a lot darker, and the battle more intense, than I was expecting. Enjoyed it enough that I bought the books at the Borders next to the theater after the show.

I don't get all the hate on it for having christian themes...and I'm a pretty firm anti-religion person. There are some underlying it no doubt, but I don't think it's a christian doctrine peace by any means.
Old 01-16-06, 09:38 PM
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God could sue Lucas for stealing the 'virgin birth' for his beloved Anakin origin. He might also look into suing that other director for putting the baby in the basket down the river in 'Willow'.
True!!!
Old 01-29-06, 07:44 PM
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Just saw it and thought it was ok. I can see why people would walk out on it though. Think I might read a few of the books, I bet they will be better than the movie.

I think I like the the queen and monsters/animals makeup the best. The queen was pretty good with a sword for a magic user and had chain mail dress to boot. The final battle scene was pretty good.

On the downside the acting was poor as well as the directing. I wasn't feeling any true emotions from any of them except maybe the goat boy. I also didn't care for the lack of info on the minor races. All these guys are willing to give their lives over a prophecy. Is that it? I also thought they forgave the bad brother a little to easily considering what happen unless they knew how that would end.

I didn't see all that much religion in it. If the kids were something other than the daughters and sons of Adam and Eve I would say it was as religious as much as the Wizard of Oz.
Old 01-31-06, 02:05 AM
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The book is very good with the description of the places and how the characters are feeling but I thought the narration was a bit off pace. Some chapters would just focus on one character and then the next would focus on a battle that would last only a couple of pages. The big battle scene in the movie was way better than in the book.
Old 01-31-06, 11:24 AM
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Yeah, I'm about half through the books, and I'd say this is a rare case where the movie is better IMO.
Old 01-31-06, 12:02 PM
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I havenít read through the entire thread yet but itís interesting to notice the similarity between the knee-jerk ďhate it because it may have Christian themesĒ reaction this movie gets and the knee-jerk ďhate it Ďcause itís GAYĒ reaction another popular movie is receiving right now.

Itís amazing how the two sides are similar in their reactions. Maybe we all arenít that far apart.

BTW. I loved the books and a kid and I loved the movie. Much better than I could have hoped. Maybe not up to the LOTR par but excellent none the less.

Oh, Iím an atheist as well.
Old 02-03-07, 08:33 AM
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http://www.comingsoon.net/news/movienews.php?id=18721

The Chronicles of Narnia Update
Source: Infuze Magazine February 2, 2007

Infuze Magazine talked to Walden Media's Bob Beltz about the status of The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, which will start principal photography this month.

Asked for an update and whether the script is sticking closely to the book, Beltz said, "It's pretty close. Andrew Adamson is gonna direct again. Most of the same crew is working on this one. Mark Johnson will produce again. A lot of the cast and crew will be the same. Now, I don't think that will the case for all seven. I don't think Andrew Adamson wants to spend the rest of his life on this one series. But the script... let me put it this way: All of the elements from the book are present. It's not as easy of a book to adapt as The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe was simply because it has a little bit of a different structure and Andrew wanted to rearrange some of the elements for dramatic effect. But everything that is in the book will be in the film."

He also addressed the fact that the children have grown up from when they shot the first film. "We're actually using the same four kids and I know that three of them actually look almost the same as they did. Skandar [Keynes] who played Edmund has grown about seven inches and looks like a full blown adolescent now. In the Lewis story, there's only a year that has taken place between the first and second book and I think that will just get left a little open ended. The big challenge is going to be Edmund I think."

Beltz said the next book they will take on after "Prince Caspian" is "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader."We're going to try and film the next two in a way that it won't have to be two and a half years between them. We'll be able to bring them out sequentially a year apart."

He explained a bit more. "The way I understand it is that it takes six months to do the live photography on 'Caspian' and then a full year of post-production with all of the effects and computer generated things that have to get done. In theory, what we'll do is as soon as they are done filming 'Caspian' and into post-production, then we'll have a new crew to do the filming part of 'Dawn Treader.' Then when that one goes into post-production, we're hoping to go into 'The Silver Chair,' which would be the next book into production."

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian is scheduled for release by Disney on May 16, 2008.
Old 02-17-07, 11:00 PM
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so if they keep raking in the cash, are we to assume they will make all seven? oh damn.
Old 02-17-07, 11:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Brent_MN
so if they keep raking in the cash, are we to assume they will make all seven? oh damn.

The Last Battle (the final book) or maybe The Magician's Nephew (prequel, but most people think it should be read last) will probably come out about the same time as Star Wars Episode 7.

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