Film Review: ‘The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader’ Not Worth the Trip

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CHICAGO – The children’s fantasy drama is a hot commodity in the current age of computer generated images. Many favorite books once thought too complex to be filmed are now seeing new life in film series, including “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” by C.S. Lewis, first published in 1952.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

This is not to say that there is no value in these stories being rendered to film. The lovers of any book series, be it Harry Potter or The Chronicles of Narnia, would anticipate and understand each step through the movie series, simple because they know the characters and the back story. The challenge for any series director comes from an audience member who has never read the books and are viewing the films separately for the first time. With a cursory knowledge of the characters in the series, like Harry Potter, can the film stand up on its own? The latest Chronicles of Narnia movie, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, does not.

Edmund (Skandar Keynes), Lucy (Georgie Henley) and their obnoxious cousin Eustace (Will Poulter) are forced together just as World War 2 is breaking out across England. Edmund and Lucy are staying at Eustace’s house, and the spoiled cousin is constantly berating them for invading his territory. Lucy notices a painting in one of the bedrooms, that reminds her of previous journeys to the magical land of Narnia.

As all three fellow housemates stare at the strange painting, it begins to come to life, flooding the room with water until Edmund, Lucy and Eustace are swept away into an ocean, and emerge on the “other side” in Narnia, right below the ship called The Dawn Treader. Old allies King Caspian (Ben Barnes) and the heroic mouse Reepicheep (voice of Simon Pegg) are on board, and quickly enlist the three travelers to help them in their assignment.

A mysterious mist has been swallowing Narnia’s countrymen and kidnapping them to a far away island. Capian’s mission is to find seven lords, who his evil Uncle Miraz had banished after Caspian took up the throne. If the shipmates can find the lords and arrange a pattern of their seven swords, then perhaps they can develop enough magical powers to defeat their enemies.

“The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” opens everywhere on December 10th in Digital 3D and “Real D” 3D. Check theaters for formats. Georgie Henley, Skandar Keynes, Ben Barnes. Will Poulter, Simon Pegg and Liam Neeson Screenplay by Christopher Marcus, Stephen McFeely and Michael Petroni, directed by Michael Apted. Rated “PG

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader”

Ship of Dreams: Lucy (Georgie Henley) is at Home in ‘The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader’
Ship of Dreams: Lucy (Georgie Henley) is at Home in ‘The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader’
Photo credit: © Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp. & Walden Media, LLC

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader”

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