Friday, May 20, 2011

Questions Inspired by the Film Version of the Dawn Treader

Whose idea was it to boil the most important character development moment, and one of the best spiritual pictures in the whole book—the healing of Eustace Scrubb—into a 10 second bit?

Why was it decided that sea serpents were too fantastical to actually exist in Narnia, and instead we needed to reference the Stay Puff Marshmallow Man moment from Ghost Busters?

While we are one the subject of quoting other movie moments, was it necessary to reference Pinocchio by having Eustace repeatedly shout: “I’m a boy!”?

The original story is a travel log where they are out to find the fates of the seven lords, but also to simply explore. Has fantasy come to the point where every story must be a highly focused quest with video-game-like goals?

And whose idea was it to turn this story into Dora the Explorer?

Was it really so terrible for the book to make the black island a short adventure to a place where nightmares come true? Did it really need to become the source of all evil in Narnia?

Who hired the guys who make the rubbish Barbie animation efforts to do the special effects in this film?


  1. YES. Especially yes about the Eustace bit.

    I will say the end (you know, where they actually stayed true to the book) with Reep was greatness.

  2. It would be my second, or third favorite of the books, which is probably why I was so disappointed with it. The changes in the plot were silly and the special effects (especially the dragon) were terrible by today's standards. Look to Harry Potter later this year for a better effort I would imagine. At times I really thought it looked like a Barbie cartoon my daughter used to have in quality!

    I WAS surprised with how many plot points they retained from the book, which was good. However, they ruined the Eustace gets turned back into a boy moment, which is a high point in the book and takes a whole chapter. In the book this was an important spiritual parallel and made Eustace's evolution as a character one of the best in the entire series.

    I was also sad that they felt they had to up the stakes by adding in the whole "green mist" element. I felt it actually diminished the impact of the dark island, and made the whole story feel like a video game... find the seven swords and plug them into the thing and then you win. One of the great things about those old English, Christian writers is that they could simply tell an interesting tale. It didn't ALL have to be "save the world" hero's quests.


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