Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Posted: December 22, 2010 in Movies
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Voyage of the Dawn Treader is the third book, and now the third film of the Chronicles of Narnia series. The film opens similar to the book with Edmund and Lucy staying in England with their cousin Eustace, who is a real brat that they don’t get along with at all. Peter and Lucy are in America. A strange painting appears in Eustace’s house, which is of a ship at sea. Suddenly water pours out of the painting and the kids are washed away to Narnia. They are taken aboard the Dawn Treader commanded by Prince Caspian (from the last film and book).

From here they all embark on a journey to find seven lost swords to stop a great evil rising in the land. There’s not a specific villain in the film per say, but each character must face their temptations for the quest to succeed. Lucy, who is growing older, wishes to be beautiful like her older sister Susan. This leads to a short but sweet nightmare like sequence where she becomes Susan in a reality where Lucy was never born.   Edmund still fears the White Witch from the first film, who makes a cameo in his nightmare. He is also fears he’s been second fiddle to Peter, and now to Caspian. Part of him wishes to rule his own kingdom. This is appropriate for the character but in the narrative seems to come very fast. Caspian fears that he let his father down, but this is a very weak point in the story, not developed very well. Also the mouse character Reepicheep makes a interesting decision at the end that I felt the arc could have built up to more.

The book features several random journey’s of the Dawn Treader that are more streamlined for the purposes of film.  Peter and Susan have brief cameos, and everyone plays their parts well. Eustace is a great annoying twerp who provides comic relief and matures by the tales end. It was interesting to the the White Witch reappear, as she did in the last one as well. Edmund’s flashlight from the last movie appears as well. The effects are good, there’s a cool looking sea monster providing a good action sequence at the end.

I was hesitant to see this, as I didn’t care for the last movie, and remember not liking the third book as a kid. Pleasant surprise. 8.5/10

 

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