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Showing 1-10 of 65 reviews(1 star). See all 1,404 reviews
on May 17, 2008
I now understand why so many great writers will never, or only under the rarest of circumstances, allow their stories to be turned into movies while they are still alive!

There's no excuse for this horrible adaptation! - "The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe" was a masterpiece, so having the genius to make a C. S. Lewis story into a great film was not an issue. Nor was money! Hollywood made a lot of cash from it's first venture into Narnia! And finding four child & teen actors with fine acting talent to play the lead roles was a smash success. So why such a violent and unimaginative Prince Caspian?

One can only speculate. The screenplay, acting and passion are so lacking this time around that I truly wish this story never made it to the Big Screen! I feel this disaster of a film will even damage the Narnia "brand." Since making money seems to be Hollywood's only motivation in making this film, they should know better!

Prince Caspian was all about fighting and killing, and more killing and more fighting. One scene shows the slaughtering of retreating Narnians and even the deliberate killing of one's own soldiers in the process. If you want to see real evil in a dumbed down fashion, you'll see plenty in this movie! NOR IS THIS FILM APPROPRIATE FOR YOUNG CHILDREN! There's certainly nothing cute or delightful about Prince Caspian!

Even Aslem was portrayed as a capricious deity, who didn't lift a paw until a child had to risk her life in order to get his attention. Meanwhile, Narians are being crushed to death by flying boulders, while Aslem leisurely has a chat with her about old times. This screenplay must have been written by an Atheist or someone with a very dark sense of humor!

I frequently write reviews on films I have strong feelings about. I like to encourage people to see a good film and discourage them from seeing a bad one. Let's face it, we have so many entertainment choices. But another reason I write reviews is to congratulate Hollywood for a job well-done, or like in this case, when a film is an unmitigated disaster, I hope to affect their bottom line. Because Hollywood is always confronted with two broad choice: To treat a story as art - with respect, passion and genius like they did in "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe;" or do the opposite, and treat it like a commodity, which has the feeling of a product made on a factory assembly line! Memo to Hollywood: If you venture in Narnia again fire the current crew and bring in some fresh talent! I challenge you to make your next film one that will stand the test of time!

Better Living Through Bad Movies and Bad Movies We Love (Plume)
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on November 25, 2008
Warning you up front there may be what people would consider a spoiler or two within this review.

After watching the original movie, "the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," I had high expectations for the movie. Especially after I read the book and saw how well they had adapted it into movie form. I even went out and bought the entire Narnian series so that I could read the story before hand and have an idea of the movie plot.
What happened? It was as though they took the characters and a few chunks of the story and slapped it together in hopes of making a decent movie. And let me tell you, they failed, quite miserably. The way that they changed important pieces of the plot frustrated me, while other story lines were nearly left out altogether (For instance, they only hint at the part of the book where Lucy sees Aslan and eventually follows him despite the others protest. Then one-by-one the others begin to see him. I have always thought that to be one of the more significant plots of Prince Caspian). And then, then they add senseless plots like when they decided to invade the castle. Though admittedly Peter did "need" that part of the movie to wake him up.

Which brings me to the other major part of the movie that just annoyed me to no end. They made Peter an absolute jerk. He and Caspian were never rivals, and Peter NEVER had any intent to take over/rule/or give orders to Caspian. He essentially saw Caspian as the leader because he would be once they won the battle. Oh, and don't get me started on that ridiculous "potential romance" thing they had between Susan and Caspian (how was that even remotely necessary?)

There were few redeeming qualities of this movie, but they still did exist. I did like the fact that when the witch was summoned (though this technically never happened)Edwin was the one to "destroy" her. It was a nice touch of irony. And then there was the rat and dwarf, who's names escaped me at the moment, which made the movie bearable to sit through. And, that's about it.

I might have enjoyed this movie had I not read the book in advance, but I'll never know. I guess if you haven't read the actual story then you could potentially think it once of the best movies of all time. But I definitely would not recommend this to someone who read and loved the book, it'll probably annoy you just as much as it annoyed me.

I'd also like to note something else - I saw this movie twice. This was only because I was giving it the benefit of the doubt. I thought that perhaps going in a second time without those high expectations would make the movie more enjoyable. Sadly, it did not.
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on December 11, 2008
Prince Caspain was terribly dissappointing. I read all the books when I was 8 and I loved them! I was delighted with The Warbrobe. It was well done, followed the storyline and the characters were true to form. I was hoping for the same quality in Prince Caspian.

1) It was darker and more adult. The characters were more cynical, the opening scene of a woman giving birth was not needed, Miraz was far more cruel than he was in the book and so on.

2) The charactes were out of character. The romance between Susan and Caspian was out of place, Reepicheep became a sad attempt at comic relief rather than a gallant mouse, Peter was a sullen, whiney, self centered teenager instead of the high king. Trumpkin was not a DLF! He was surly and cynical. The only one in character was Lucy.

3) The storyline was WAY OFF!! The beruna bridge was stone in the book and had been built long before. There was no high school fight in the beginning, there was no attack on Miraz's castle. Peter and Caspian worked together instead of fighting.

Overall the movie was dumbed down. It was as though the movie makers felt they needed to improve the book in order for people to enjoy it. Why is it so hard to just follow the book when mkaing a movie? Especially such a wonderful classic that still appeals to all ages years after it was written.

At some point I might be able to watch it as just a movie instead of a Chornicle of Narnia but I doubt it.
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on October 1, 2010
This movie is unfortunately different from the book as others have detailed. For myself, I found that key Christian symbolism (the purpose of these stories) was removed, and in its place is far too much emphasis on a statement from Aslan that things never happen the same way twice. Beyond having no great meaning, ironically, the scene occurs twice, with Aslan saying the same thing twice about things not happening the same way twice. Worthless. Where is the emphasis on Nikabrik's disbelief in the Narnians' tales of a savior, and where is the emphasis on the faith of Caspian, Cornelius, and Trufflehunter in a savior that lived many years ago who not only died but lived again and will return? Their dialogue should have been the highlight of the film as it was for me in the book.

Incidentally, who else hated the repeated nauseating Reepicheep jokes? "You're a mouse!!" Ugh. They ruined such a great character. But there are too many complaints about this film to list them all.

I intend to own the version of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe from the same series. I was so pleased with its faithfulness to the novel, and I looked forward to seeing the other books adapted. However, despite the good things they did in Prince Caspian, overall it was too disappointing to watch again, and I have no desire to watch The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.
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on August 30, 2008
I haven't read the books, so I'm not prejudiced in any way. But as someone who actually enjoyed the first one I was startled by how shockingly dull this snoozefest sequel is.

I can sit here and spend an hour writing a review that tears the film apart bit by bit though, quite frankly, I have better things to do with my time so I will only focus on my biggest complaints.

Yes, I know it's a film for kids and that it's rated PG but where is the blood? Hundreds of people, humans and creatures alike, are felled in battle but there is not one drop of blood in the whole movie. What is this teaching our children about violence exactly? Don't give me any nonsense about traumatizing them either. I saw Predator [Blu-ray] when I was a kid and I turned out fine. But this is Disney after all and the only people keeping them afloat as a studio are overprotective mothers who fear absolutely everything and are only too happy to spend money on movies and products that falsely suggest that the world is a magical and safe place (this is what you call being 'Disneyfied') and consider something as tame and boring as Prince Caspian to be dark and tough. "You may find Narnia a more savage place than you remember," warns Aslan. Wow, does that mean that we'll be getting Rambo-level violence? Sadly, no. However, more people are killed in this film. Can you work that out? Because I can't.

Since I haven't read the book I wasn't previously orientated as to who's who and what their motivations are, and the film doesn't make it any clearer I promise you. Far, far too often I found myself asking 'Who is he?', 'Who are they?', 'Why are all the bad guys identical to each other?', 'Why are they the bad guys again?'. 'What do they want?'. 'Why are they all Spanish?', 'Why are the kids still kids? Shouldn't they return to Narnia as adults?' And so on...and so on...

The only thing this film is good for is a cure for insomnia. I know that's a childish and crass and far from being a clever soundbite but it was so catatonic that it simply is not inspiring an intelligent review out of me.

Whatever charm The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe [Blu-ray] had is well and truly gone, all that's left is some pretty scenery and that's not enough to keep me interested for well over two hours. Please Disney, don't even bother making the rest of them.
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on December 13, 2008
Warning to those with older Receivers. This Blu-Ray disk only has a DTS audio soundtrack in English. If you have a Receiver, like I do, that only decodes Dolby Digital 5.1, there is no audio output.

The rest of this review is for the clueless producers of this Blu-Ray disk. Obviously they have learned nothing from the costly lost sales of the war with HD-DVD. People like me are not going to buy an expensive new Receiver just to play a particular movie on Blu-Ray. Especially with six audio formats to cover and perhaps more to come! I will rent this movie on DVD and wait for the audio wars to end. Since Blu-Ray has plenty of capacity, I do not see any reason why an English Dolby 5.1 soundtrack could not be included to ensure backwards compatibility. Particularly since Dolby 5.1 is already provided on this disk in other languages. From reading various blogs and reviews, I know I am not the only potential lost sale.
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on November 25, 2011
I'm doubtful the writers involved in this travesty ever read "Prince Caspian." Or worse, they DID read it and decided they could write it better. Whatever happened, this film is a derivative work with virtually nothing in common with the novel beyond character names and locations.

I'd love to say I understand why the writers and production teams would take such extreme liberties with the original story line, but the truth is I really don't understand it. Too much effort is placed on portraying the Pevensie kids as ordinary kids (perhaps to make them more relatable and likeable to child/young adult audience.) I found this absurd. Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy are NOT ordinary kids. They have lived a lifetime as warriors and rulers of an unique fantasyland, grew to adulthood there, and were magically returned to their earthly/childhood forms. These kids shouldn't be engaging in petty fistfights or rivalries. Nor should Peter be leading his troops into ill-planned suicide missions.

I found Susan's character more sympathetic but also disjointed. As lovers of the Narnia series know, Susan is the sibling who ultimately loses faith in Narnia and pulls away from her role there. "Prince Caspian" provides interesting clues and character development as to why Susan might behave this way. A light, slightly cheesy romance element is thrown in to emphasize this. However, Susan is also presented as a truly violent character, and I was shocked by this since it went so against the grain of the original story.

Ben Barnes is gorgeous eye candy. He's a tremendous actor, but you won't see it in this film because his role requires little of him besides looking young, studly, and a bit bewildered most of the time.

Georgie Henley and Skander Keynes had the most remarkable performances in the film, probably because they were the only stars permitted to accurately portray their assigned characters. Edmund is indeed "King Edmund the Just" even if he's still a young teen boy. Clear thinking and mindful of his conscience. And Lucy's faith and spiritual confidence based upon her closeness to Aslan is wonderful and terrifying to behold. Her wordless confrontation of the attacking Telmarines on the bridge is possibly the one thrilling moment in this movie. The Telmarines clearly don't know who they should fear most: an army of Narnian creatures behind them or one little girl armed with a small dagger and flanked by an enormous lion in front of them.

It's obvious the producers and writers wanted to strip this film of most of its spiritual symbolism and there was nothing else they could do except wreck the film. I'm seriously disappointed. Lovers of the Narnia saga know Narnia is a series of spiritually significant journeys. Take that away and you've got nothing but generic characters and meaningless events. And that's just what "Prince Caspian" is.

I'm going to view "Voyage of the Dawn Treader" because other reviewers have noted it's better than "Prince Caspian" but if it's similar to this film, I doubt this series will complete itself.
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on January 22, 2010
I had high hopes for this movie after thoroughly enjoying The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe. Although LWW does deviate from the book in some ways, (in spite of the casting for the voice of Aslan and the Witch), it stays true to the spirit and the overall plot line of the book. I think the battle is awesome, and the four Pevensies are played very well and spiritedly. My dad took my sister and me to see Prince Caspian in the theatre, and, although I had already heard about the kiss, I was pleasantly surprised by the movie. Now, don't stop reading. We were given the movie before it came out on DVD in the U.S. and our whole family watched it, and liked it. Then we watched it again. By that time, I was beginning to realize that it wasn't as great as I had thought (in part due to my brother, who pointed some things out). But I still liked it. Then I watched it again, and I totally disliked it that time. Here are my quarrels with it:
It begins with Caspian being awoken by Dr. Cornelius (whom I do not think is ever named except by the title 'Professor' or 'Doctor') and he is helped to escape.
He gets out of the castle and is chased by Telmarine soldiers; this is not in the book, where Caspian's escape, besides happening later on, is done in secrecy and is not found out for a day or two. Why do we care about Caspian? Just some guy with a Spanish accent (where'd they come up with that? Why couldn't they be descended from English pirates just as easily?)who is, for some reason, running away because his uncle, for some reason, wants to kill him.
Dear me, I'm already getting long winded, and we've hardly begun. I'll try to keep it short. Okay, then we go to the Pevensies, who are at a huge train station (very unlike Lewis's 'empty, sleepy country railway station') and the first thing we know, Susan (who has a bad attitude) has lied to a boy about her name, and Peter has gotten into a fight. Then they are pulled dramatically into Narnia, and arrive on the seashore.
The movie goes very quickly on to them finding their old castle, now in ruins, and then rescuing a dwarf from drowning. In the book, Susan merely shoots the soldier's helmet, and, being superstitious, he and his companion jump out and swim to shore. In the movie, she actually shoots the man! Dead! So much for 'Queen Susan the Gentle', and we're hardly twenty minutes into the film.
The dwarf turns out to be an idiotic, sour, ugly, bratty thing called Trumpkin, very unlike the lovable dwarf from the books. He is not a good actor, if you ask me, but maybe it's just his script. All he does is get on my nerves through the whole movie. So, after a neat swordfight between him and Edmund, they go off to find Caspian. Meanwhile, Caspian has escaped from the soldiers for a moment, banged his head on a tree limb, and finds himself at the doorway of a small cave. Two dwarfs rush out to kill him, and he, for no apparent reason, blows the horn that Cornelius gave him, despite the fact that it was supposed to be blown at a completely different time, and for completely different reasons (there are, apparently, no reasons at all in the movie for this action).
Trumpkin runs out as the Telmarines find them, and Caspian is knocked out by Nikabrik. Since I haven't watched this in a while, I can't remember when exactly all the cutting between the Pevensies and Caspian is, so I'll do my best.
The Pevensies row down the river, then get out and go on foot. We find out that Trumpkin has been captured by Miraz' men, and he stands before Miraz and the council. We find Caspian in the cave; he wakes up and hears the badger and Nikabrik talking about him. The badger is there completely for comic relief. In the book he's a noble animal, who is very loyal to Caspian. Here, he's a slapstick.
Nikabrik is extremely ugly (do dwarves have to be that ugly? In the old BBC Narnia movies, they looked perfectly fine without being made to look so extremely ugly), and bitter. Caspian convinces them that he is not going to harm them, and they go off into the forest, where they are found by Telmarine soldiers and shot at.
Trufflehunter is hit, and Caspian does a very brave (and somewhat out of movie!character) action, and goes back and picks up the badger. The Telmarines are still shooting at him, but suddenly they begin to fall down. Of course, it's Reepicheep, and after he's finished off the soldiers, he knocks Caspian down and is about to kill him, but the badger intervenes.
Then there's a really dumb place where he's at the Dancing Lawn, a very dark, horrid looking place, if you ask me, with a bunch of centaurs and animals pointing at him and shouting. Caspian calms them down and gives a stupid, politician like speech, full of the required, cheesy sounding promises, that he will give them back their land if they will help him become king.
You don't get the sense that he loves Old Narnia, merely that he wants to be king and get even with Miraz. It seems that he didn't even believe in them until he met the badger and dwarf (compare to the book, where 'thinking and dreaming about the old days, and longing that they might come back, filled nearly all his spare hours').

So, after that, obviously they decide to help him. We go back to Peter and Co., who are confronted with a high cliff that they nearly fall off of, and Lucy sees Aslan. I can't remember if Edmund believes her, I think he does, but the rest do not, and they go on. Lucy has a dream about Aslan coming to her, and then next day, after deciding that maybe she was right (they can't go the way they wanted because the Telmarines are there), they go back and Lucy finds the way down into the ravine. Aslan is conspicuously absent to those of us who know and love the story. He was supposed to show them the way down, and guide them down.
Then they meet Caspian (whom Susan and Lucy aren't supposed to meet till the end), and immediately Susan is looking admiringly at the prince. They go on with him, and from there the story plunges straight downhill:

The disastrous raid on the castle, Peter's horrible attitude, Caspian's horrible attitude, Susan's extremely out of character fighting (and screaming to the other archers), the long, drawn out Lord of the Ring's-esque battle, oh, I could go on and on. I can't stand that Peter is immature, right up to the end, where he gives Caspian his sword, with a 'You don't need us anymore', and then they leave. Edmund and Lucy were the only ones who seemed to be in character most of the time, but even they didn't redeem the movie, so I give it one star.
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on December 6, 2008
Well folks, I will not deal with the story. That is not what irritates me. First, the three disk set has two "bland" labeled DVDs. The third one looks like the play disk, but is a disk for Ipod or MS Media disk player. To make things more difficult, Disney wants some kind of input code number as if you were loading softwarwe. In my case the thing didn't work.

Also, I am sooo sick and tired of Disney putting a ton of movies on DVD for sale at the beginning of their disks. Sure, it only takes about 8 clicks of the remote to get by them, but why should we have to do more than one click.

I thought it was about time someone mentions these points.
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on January 7, 2009
I write this from the point of view of someone who grew up knowing and loving C. S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia. It was horrible to see, therefore, what some Peter Jackson-inspired movie director did to "Prince Caspian."

Everyone in the movie acts like a jerk. The character called "Peter" picks fights with random people, agonizes over his ego and emotions, and gets a lot of people killed. The character called "Susan" is given a gratuitous romantic sub-plotline with the character called "Caspian." "Caspian" himself is a clueless and inept leader. Both major and secondary characters are mean and creepy. None of them are supposed to be that way. It was all changed for the movie.

Sometimes when a story is expanded by being made into a movie, it becomes richer and more complete. This is not one of those times. The book made sense in its very simplicity, and because the simple things were straightforward it could also be a roaring good story. In the movie, however, the changes make the story seem ridiculous. Why would Caspian want to associate with the Narnians when they all seem to be snarling out of shadows and most of them look vaguely deformed? Why would anyone want to follow the four Pevensey children into battle when they are mainly occupied with spiteful bickering? The story makes perfect sense when the characters are friends held together by love and loyalty. Without that, not even epic battles can redeem it, since while characters are locked in a death struggle you're only thinking, "My gosh, this is embarrassing. You're acting like idiots. Please stop."

The movie of "The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe" held true to the book, but this is a different animal altogether. Major digressions have been forced into the plot. Good and valuable things from the book have been left out. Others have been changed into weird and creepy perversions of themselves.

As for the filming itself, unlike "The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe," much of the movie takes place in darkness. It's a gray and grim world, and not in a good way. Even though the movie does contain battles, swords, and sorcery (which it shouldn't), it was actually boring. The characters were so objectionable that you didn't care what they were going to do.

Now, if you like stories with magic, mystery, glory, confrontations, battles, great swordfights, and the kind of fun and wonder that makes you long to be there yourself, there's a really good story that contains all of those things. It's by C. S. Lewis, and it's called, "Prince Caspian." I think you'll like it!
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