Monday, January 09, 2006

Narnia doesn't suck....really!

I went to see The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, a title which doubles as a trailer since the story revolves around four children and their mystical encounter with a lion, a witch and a wardrobe. Actually, in hindsight, it should be the wardrobe, the witch and the lion since that's the order in which they appear, but I digress. Based on a classic children's book by C.S.Lewis, a contemporary of J.R.R.Tolkien, the story is a basic fantasy of good triumphing over evil, with a generous helping of magical beasts from ancient Greek and Germanic mythology. But what separates Chronicles from similar stories of the genre is the religious subtext. The lion, Aslan, sacrifices himself for the sins of the treacherous younger brother, Edmund and is resurrected. This resurrection is witnessed by the sisters, Lucy and Susan, much as Jesus Christ appeared to Mary Magdalen and the pious women. The eldest son is named Peter and he leads the army of good, much as Saint Peter was the rock upon which the Christian church was built. Also, the good "people" are creatures of Greek myth, fauns and centaurs, while the evil forces are largely Germanic, dwarfs and giants (also minotaurs, but in Greek myth, they are evil). This suggests to me the conquest of Christianity (enlightened Hellenism) over Paganism (Germanic barbarism), although I could be reading more into that than is intended. In any case, I quite enjoyed the movie, despite having reservations going in. The film has a lot to offer adult audiences, far more than the Harry Potter movies, for example, and I highly recommend it.


No comments: