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Friday, December 16, 2005

Narnia movie: The Georgie Henley show

My wife and I went to see the new Narnia movie yesterday, and enjoyed it a lot. We agreed that Georgie Henley, who is currently 10 years old, was a great Lucy. And, since Lucy has the largest part in the movie, that was good for the movie. I'd say that she was Lucy.

If you are looking for a lot of stuff on the web about this young lady, you aren't going to find it. But that's OK. Even movie stars aren't defined by what you can locate with Google. Will she go on to become a great actress? Will this be her only role? (See Mary Badham, who basically had just one role, as a 10-year-old, in a great movie, but presumably has gone on to lead a decent and productive life as a non-star.) Who knows? I hope she isn't spoiled by any success that comes from this.

What about the movie? If you are looking for reviews, lots of them, see here, also here for one that didn't make the extensive Christianity Today list.

Did the film follow the book, The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe? Not exactly. There were a number of tweaks. One was adding a little material at the beginning about World War II. (I had forgotten, but Arevanye reminded me, that C. S. Lewis, himself, had children from London stay with him during the bombing.) You can read about changes from the book in many of the movie reviews from the previous paragraph. Some changes, at least, are to be expected when you change from a relatively short book to a movie. No doubt there will be many arguments on the pros and cons of these changes. I won't contribute to such arguments here.

Did the film portray Isaiah 53:5? ("But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his stripes we are healed." Handel used this KJV text as part of his great Messiah.) In my opinion, yes. That was the central Christian message in the book, and it remains so in the film.

Did the film have a sense of wonder, of joy, characteristics of the book, and of the writing of Lewis, generally? Yes. No doubt much of the credit goes to the producer, director, and their many assistants, but a lot of it goes to Georgie Henley.

Thanks for reading. Enjoy the film, if you haven't already.


Martin LaBar said...

Thank you husband for your posting, even though I do not read them all, I have confidence in your Christian vision. Thank you also for stating my feelings about so many things in a much better way than I ever could. About the movie: My mind was constantly turned to biblical themes concerning sin, the price of our redemption, our redemption, and the joy we will someday share with the Master Planner...and I worshiped Him!

Mufana said...

One idea that I kept thinking about which was created in the movie and rather than the book was that to achieve the great plans that God has for our lives we have to the leave the safe and the comfortable behind. If Peter, Edmund, Susan and Lucy were to become kings and queens of Narnia they couldn't return to England. They had to trust that Aslan would make them adequate where they were extremely inadequate. God has huge plans for us if we will trust, take the risk and face the danger leaving behind the comfortable and the safe.

Mufana said...

I thought the movie was well and was a great family movie. I often had chills and was overwhelmed with excitement remember this book that I read many times years ago. It is a great story as are all of teh books. When I read the article by Steven D. Greydanus (Decent Films) I did agree with much of what he wrote.

Mufana said...

I apologize for my poor grammner and spelling. It is late after work and I am trying to wind down before going to bed. I am worn out.

Dave Hansen (SWU "CWC" Class of 1991) said...

My favorite moment from the Narnia movie is when my 7 year old son leaned over and said in his mothers ear "I get it! Aslan is just like Jesus who died and came back to life again". It was worth the price of admission just for that!!

Martin LaBar said...

Thanks for your comments, Mufana and Dave.

I didn't notice the grammar and spelling mistakes (if there were any) until you apologized for them!

Thanks for reading.

Arevanye said...

Oh, Lucy was perfect, wasn't she? I enjoyed this movie immensely. I wasn't expecting to like Liam Neeson as the voice of Aslan, but then forgot it was him. There were only a couple of moments during the battle scenes when I thought of the scant treatment they got in the book and wondered whether they had ramped it all up a bit too much. (But they had to show off all that wonderful costuming and special effects work by the WETA crew!) I've heard they've greenlighted the production of Prince Caspian, so there's more to look forward to.

I'm taking my Girl Scout troop to see it tomorrow. I can't wait!

Bonnie said...

Thanks for your thoughts on the movie, Martin. We went as a family (even our almost 4-year-old) to see it last night. All enjoyed it!

I agree about Lucy. The beavers were pretty good too :-)

I was a little bothered by the departures from the book but agree that the major themes that needed to be there, were.

I also wish the White Witch had been a little more -- evil of eye and visage. And I wanted the Professor to be more -- sage? Dignified? I don't know. But these are quibbles; I really did enjoy the movie, and was moved by it, actually, for Lewis' sake.