The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe
So yesterday morning it was all slushy out. Icy rain coming down on a couple inches of snow. Basically sucky. I decided that it was going to be a stay inside get organized day. I was finally gonna to pay bills and clean up some stuff and maybe organize my computer. It's all way overdue. So to get started on all that I headed to see Narnia at a 10AM matinee. On the way there I stopped at the bagel place to pick up a bagel with scallion cream cheese, an odwalla strawberry banana drink and some cool ranch. I got to the movie just in time to see a Bruckheimer trailer about a basketball coach who takes a bunch of teens who never stood a chance and trains them to become champion basketball players! What a fresh concept!
Ok Narnia. My history with Narnia books is- I do remember reading The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe as a kid and loving it. But over the years its blurred into The Lion, the Giant Peach, and the Phantom Tollbooth. It's all hazy and mismatched with other books. So I decided to definitely re-read Narnia before seeing the movie-- but I 100% didn't. And I'm sort of glad I passed on the re-read because as this movie spooled out, it chipped away at my memory block with this book and chiseled out some actual 'Oh yeahhhs....' which was kind of coolio to feel.
I have to admit it did take some time for me to really get into this movie. At first, the britness was annoying. And I was a little bummed when the first kid went through the wardrobe because I didn't get that tingly childlike chill of a world opening up. It was all coolio looking but it felt staged. It didn't wake up the kid in me with a pillow whomp to the head. Saying, REMEMBER, OLD MAN!? IMAGINE STUFF! I didn't. The kid was still snoozing away and at about the 1/3 point in this flick he was barely waking up. And I just sat there starting at this very cool looking flick as a cynical grown-up watching a kids movie.
Maybe I was too on the lookout for the whole Christian message thing. When I was a kid, the book was just a good book without any agenda. When I heard that this was a 'christian' movie I thought maybe it would be corny or obvious or preachy. But the good news is the religion thing is a total non-factor. Yeah sure there's Jesus theme stuff going on- but it seems more for the story itself than the message. Frankly, it's almost just a rip-off for a good plot. Like if Jesus wanted to take CS Lewis and Disney to court for plagiary... I'm sure he could get some backend points off the net.
The good news is around the one hour mark after the lion appeared....something changed in me. The kid in me snapped wide awake from his nap. He strapped on his goggles, hopped on his big wheel and raced down the driveway with his feet off the pedals letting them spin on their own as it picked up speed. The Narnia world finally started spilling off the screen. Down the walls and up the aisle. Eventually there was crunchy snow under my feet. It just took over. By the time the big battle came, I was practically bouncing up and down in my seat on a friggin sugar rush-- and wanting to lick the colors on the screen to see how good they tasted..
Three Good Things About this Movie
- The animals were probably the best looking talking animals I'd ever seen.
- Tilda Swinton put in the best chick performance of the year. Her eyes were on fire. She was seriously awesome.
- The whole movie smelled fresh and pure. Like pine needles and ice and burning wood.
Three Bad Things About this Movie
- The little girl was the only kid actor that really did it for me. The rest
were really sort of eh..
- There was more room for funny. It was a little too serious about everything.
- It felt 15-20 minutes too long.
All in all I dug this movie a whole lot and was thrilled how it turned for me. This movie powered through my adult block with way coolio effects and good glory glory. And it got me psyched for a new series to bloom. I'll be all over the sequel. Also while I was watching it I thought about how I got this whole big world for a $7 matinee ticket. 2+ hours of big fun storytime. I felt like I was ripping off the movie people for once. $7 didn't seem like alot to pay for that. So ha ha! In your face movie making monkeys! Keep cranking em out and we'll keep complaining how your tickets are overpriced.... you suckers!