The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe | C+

director: Andrew Adamson
starring: Liam Neeson, Tilda Swinton, some British kids

My opinion on this movie may suffer because I haven’t read the C.S. Lewis series of books, but it seems to be a kind of mess of a movie, though it still manages to entertain. Narnia starts off well in World War II-era London, quickly moves to an estate in the country (where the titular Wardrobe is found). Once it gets to Narnia, the movie tends to bog down a bit, focusing a bit too much on the scenery instead of developing the characters. As the story moves onward, events get pressed together, actions don’t make a lot of sense, and there’s never any real emotional attachment to our heroes. There’s no real emotional payoff at the movie’s conclusion, because I wasn’t really invested in the characters. Narnia will suffer in its inevitable comparison to the Lord of the Rings films, but despite all that, I think it’s still worth seeing.

The CGI is, for the most part, very good; and the action sequences are well done. The scenery is quite good as well, and I think readers of the novels will find it pretty much faithful to its source material. Kids will most likely find this more entertaining than an adult audience, but it’s worth a matinee at least, for everyone else.

Updated: December 15, 2005 — 6:26 am

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