Saturday, December 18, 2010

Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Rated: PG

I will skip a synopsis for this and "cut to the chase," as it were. After all, I am pretty certain that most everyone has a pretty good idea what it is about - and anyway, a synopsis would not be able to help you much.

I will start off by saying that I did enjoy the third installment of The Chronicles of Narnia. It was not as good as The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe or Prince Caspian, true. I wasn't expecting it to be. There was a new director, new composer, and a new company to replace Disney. Such new things usually make a sequel not as good as its predecessors. So since I did not go in with such high expectations as most seem to have, I was able to like it for what it was.

Part of what made this one not as good as the other two is the fact that there isn't much of a storyline. This is no fault of the producers - the book doesn't have much of a storyline, either, and the makers tried to fix this as much as they could. They probably could have done a better job than they did, but then Narnia purists would be complaining even louder than they already are. Given these factors, the director did his best.

But, honestly, could they not have done better with the ship itself? While very pretty visually, anyone who knows anything about ships will notice many things amiss. Things like untarred lines, flimsy blocks and clips that, were they on a real ship, would snap in a trice should any real strain be put on them. Yes, most people will not notice this - but I really cannot pardon the lack of tar on lines. Even an untrained eye would catch this; it is a fundamental aspect of a working vessel. The sea and the weather that accompanies it is hard on rope, wood, paint, etc. Tar protects.

This aspect was more painful for my sister than I, her being a scholar of ships and sailing in general. What amused me most were some points concerning . . . Caspian. Correct me if I am wrong, dear Readers, but did Caspian not have a decidedly Spanish accent in the second movie? I know, it was not his real accent; that he is British. That is obvious if you watch Voyage of the Dawn Treader. I don't know if the director decided that with the very long hair (longer than mine!) and sad little beginnings of a beard, Caspian would just seem too gay with a Spanish accent and chose to bag it altogether, or what. But Caspian is now British - and decidedly from London. I am sorry - absolutely everyone will notice that. And I could not stop cackling over it.

And so I must close my review. It is an enjoyable movie and was a great source of amusement for my sister and I. It is a good thing there were only two other people in the theater; we might have been thrown out if there were more to overhear our snickers and hilarious comments concerning Caspian's brilliant locks (and no, these were not comments in favor of). I will probably buy it when it comes out on DVD, but it is not necessarily one you have to see in theaters. Unless you simply must see it in 3D - which I didn't; 3D gives me a headache. And as enjoyable as this one was, I do hope The Silver Chair is better. I have hopes for that one, for it has more of a storyline than Voyage of the Dawn Treader.


  1. I must agree - The Voyage of the Dawn Treader doesn't have much of a plot (book or movie), and so it wasn't as good as the first two. I still enjoyed it though. It was a fun movie. I thought the kid who played Eustace (sp?) did a good job.

    I'm glad you mentioned Prince Caspian's accent change in here, though... that was driving me crazy as I watched the movie. When I first heard it I leaned over and asked, "Didn't he have a spanish accent in the last one? And much shorter hair?" lol! The inconsistency was a tad strange, but oh well.

  2. I loved the actor they got to play Eustace. And the way they did him as a dragon was good - he was cute as a dragon!! ;)

    I am so glad that I am not the only one who was driven crazy by it. And absolutely no other critic has mentioned it. I love British accents, but really - you don't start a character off with such an obvious Spanish accent, then let him drop it later.

  3. Mara!
    (it's Sheri)
    I saw Voyage of the Dawn Treader over the holidays. *Twice!* I'm such a sap, and both times I managed to hit the damn 3-D showing. Hate 3-D.

    So I liked it! It had its flaws but like you, I went in with extremely low expectations. I went with my friend Mike, who knows the book as well as I do and we amused ourselves calling foul on all the plot liberties and making cracks about things Aslan does and does not like:

    Likes: roaring, creeping up on people, long walks along the beach...
    Does not like: vanity, self-deprecation, Caspian looking at the star lady "that way"

    I also thought Will Poulter did an excellent job as Eustace. That's a hard part -- you have to be a believable pill and then turn it around and become a sympathetic protagonist in time for "The Silver Chair." I think he can do it. His physical comedy is brilliant and he was really quite sweet by the end.

    I read somewhere that Ben Barnes patterned his initial accent after Inigo Montoya in The Princess Bride. It appears he forgot to put The Princess Bride in his Netflix queue this time around.

    The Eustace-dragon was cute but gave me awful Eragon flashbacks! ;)

    Have a good week -- if I don't see you Tuesday at the liberry I will see you the following week when I get back from ALA.

    (Also, congrats on the finishing of draft 3 -- can't wait to hear about it on TWG night!)

  4. Glad to hear that you enjoyed it! That's funny about Ben Barnes's inspiration for the accent; I wondered when I watched "Prince Caspian".


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