Monday, May 19, 2008

Learning from Aslan...

Warning! Prince Caspian movie spoiler below... Read at your own risk!

On Saturday we went to see The Chronicles of Narnia- Prince Caspian, a movie that we've been waiting to see since we saw the first movie two years ago. And while I did enjoy the film (and the kids loved it!) I was a little disappointed that this film does not stay as true to the book as The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe did.

Oh, I understand creative license and all that. And I get that this is an adaption of the book, so I was really OK with most of the changes. There was one thing that really bothered me though...

In the book by C.S. Lewis, Aslan appears midway into the story when he summons Lucy to follow him upstream as the children are searching for a place to cross the river on their journey to Aslan's How. But since only Lucy can see Aslan- Peter, Susan, and Trumpkin all vote to continue downstream instead (Edmund does vote with Lucy- redeeming himself from his role early in the TL,TW&TW). This choice backfires when the children walk into one of Miraz's outposts and come under fire. After retreating back to their original position, they build a fire and settle down for the night- admitting that they will have to travel upstream after all. Aslan wakes Lucy in the middle of the night and instructs her to wake the others to follow him NOW. Lucy does so and everyone follows Lucy (albeit against their will) who is still the only one who can see Aslan. After a while Edmund sees Aslan also, followed by Peter, and finally Susan. After leading the children safely across the gorge, Aslan speaks with the children and their companion, Trumpkin the dwarf- who does not even believe in lions, let alone Aslan!

The movie adaption of Prince Caspian almost completely eliminates this pivotal chapter of the book. Lucy only dreams of Aslan and then leads the children across the river when she accidentally discovers the path by falling through the edge of the gorge. Aslan appears again at the end of the film, strangely absent for most of the movie.

Initially after seeing the movie, the missing scene bothered me- but I couldn't really put my finger on why. So last night I re-read the book and discovered my answer in Aslan's response to Lucy when she apologizes for not following him the first time she saw him. Aslan says, I will wait here. Go and wake the others and tell them to follow. If they will not, then you at least must follow me alone.

It's about following God's call in faith, regardless of what others around you think and say... How often do I hear Him speak to me, but fail to heed His words because of what others think or even my own self-doubt? And just as Aslan forgives the Pevensie children and draws them back to the correct path, the Lord is gracious and draws us back to His plan for us if we stop to listen, repent, and follow. He redeems our mistakes and puts us back on His path. As Aslan explains to Lucy, To know what would have happened, child? No, Nobody is ever told that. But anyone can find out what will happen... There is only one way of finding out.

So if you loved the first movie and you're looking for a great family film- go see Prince Caspian. But, to loosely quote this review ' the book. That's where the real magic lies'.



Llama Momma said...

We're swapping kids with my sister-in-law this weekend and taking our nieces to see it. I'm looking forward to it, even if it doesn't stay true to the book! (Of course, anytime I see a movie that isn't animated it's cause for celebration!!)

Christy said...

I can't remember the books at all, but I think when my kids get older they will have to read the books before seeing the movie!

BundyMum said...

"It's about following God's call in faith, regardless of what others around you think and say..."

Amen! we all need to be reminded of that! Its a shame its missed in the movie, but Im glad you shared it with us.