Steve Goble

Choose life. (Deuteronomy 30:19)

Four adults in kids’ bodies board a tube train in London and are transported back to the alternate realm where they had previously all grown up.

Marvellous, that doesn’t need explaining at all.

Some follow-up movies seem to betray a certain shame of their status as a sequel. If they reference their preceding chapter too closely, then they risk alienating new viewers who haven’t seen it. After all, nobody likes to feel left out.

However The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian doesn't stop at talking about just its prequel. Initially we get Lucy, Edmund, Peter and Susan reminiscing in the ruins of their old Narnian home, which I don’t think was even in the last film. If my memory is correct, then the risk here is of EVERYONE feeling left out.

Ultimately though, I’m afraid that, for me, the odds were well and truly stacked against this movie from the off. I’m not that into C S Lewis, it’s been almost five years since I saw The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and, most challengingly of all, I was watching this on a tiny screen attached to the back of an aeroplane seat.

As a result I got characters mixed-up, and was thoroughly confused by much of the story, but in fairness I also knew that I was consciously not bothering to even try to follow it. Hey – that sort of apathy is what thin oxygen does to the best of us.

The fact that the big friendly lion is absent for so much of the running time didn’t really help matters either. However once Azlan had finally made his big entrance, his dialogue was so rich as to warrant my pulling down the meal tray and copying some of it out...

Lucy: “I knew it was you! The whole time I knew it! But, the others didn’t believe me.”

Azlan: “And why would that stop you from coming to me?”

Lucy: “I’m sorry. [I was] too scared to come alone. Why wouldn’t you show yourself? Why couldn’t you come warring [probably ‘roaring’ but I heard ‘warring’] in and save us like last time?”

Azlan: “Things never happen the same way twice, dear one.”

Lucy: “If I'd have come earlier, everyone who died – could I have stopped that?”

Azlan: “We can never know what would have happened, Lucy, but what will happen, is another matter entirely.”

Lucy: “[You] mean you’ll help?”

Azlan: “Of course. As also will you.

Lucy: “Oh. [I] wish I was braver.”

Azlan: “If you were any braver, you’d be a lioness!”

Finally, after the Pevensie kids had at last made it back across reality onto their tube train, all my protests at the lack of explanation for this journey were still failing me.

After all, I’d just got on a vehicle in London too. I was also being transported back to a land where I’d once had another life. In fact, because some of this film had been shot there, some of my destination looks literally identical to the spot where the Pevensies had found themselves set down.

And I didn’t have much of an explanation for my journey either.

(with thanks to Emirates)

(available here)
(review of The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe here)
(review of The Voyage Of The Dawn Treader here)

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