Lucy and Edmund Pevensie return to Narnia with their cousin Eustace where they meet up with Prince Caspian for a trip across the sea aboard the royal ship The Dawn Treader. Along the way they encounter dragons, dwarves, merfolk, and a band of lost warriors before reaching the edge of the world.
It's Harry's third year at Hogwarts; not only does he have a new "Defense Against the Dark Arts" teacher, but there is also trouble brewing. Convicted murderer Sirius Black has escaped the Wizards' Prison and is coming after Harry.
Lucy and Edmund Pevensie are stranded in Cambridge, living in the house of their obnoxious cousin Eustace, while the grown-ups Susan and Peter are living in the USA with their parents. When a painting of a ship sailing on the sea of Narnia overflows water in their room, Lucy, Edmund and Eustace are transported to the ocean of Narnia and rescued by King Caspian and the crew of the ship The Dawn Treader. Caspian explains that Narnia has been in peace for three years but before he took his throne back, his uncle tried to kill the seven lords of Telmar, who were the closest and most loyal friends of his father. They fled to The Lone Island and no one has ever heard anything about them. Now Caspian is seeking out the lords of Telmar with his Captain Drinian, the talking mouse Reepicheep and his loyal men. Soon, they discover that an evil form of green mist is threatening Narnia and the siblings and their cousin join Caspian in a quest to retrieve the seven swords of the seven lords of ... Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Narnian in essence yet shallow in fun and excitement
Perhaps the most moralistic of C.S. Lewis' Narnia novels would be 'The Voyage of the Dawn Treader', which is episodic in style with the Dawn Treader's aimless journey through Narnian seas. Michael Apted takes the helm of direction and brings this adventure to us in 3D; the first for Narnia.
Susan and Peter (King & Queen) have grown up now and reside in America where Narnia has no access. The teenagers Lucy (Georgie Hensley) and Edmund (Skander Keynes) who are in Britain in the midst of WW2, along with their unnerving cousin Eustace (Will Poulter) catch the moving waters in a painting in their room. Soon, the water flows into the room and in a spectacular fashion, they are underwater, only to be pulled up by Prince Caspian in front of the hull of the Dawn Treader. Welcome to Narnia! The trio are briefly introduced to the ship's crew that include the swashbuckling mouse Reepicheep and a Narnian buffalo sailor. Their initial inquiry about Narnia's state of affairs and the Dawn Treader's voyage reveal the book and film's weakness - Prince Caspian admits that there are no problems in Narnia. Peace rules the lands and barring the exploration of the farthest stretches of the waters where Aslan's country mythically exists, the ship has little to do on its voyage. Thus, they decide to go island hopping where, just on the first one, they are taken as prisoners and almost sold as slaves until a heroic rescue by the crew saves the day. It is within the walls of the prison that Prince and Edmund find out about the 7 missing lords and their magical swords. Oh and there's a LOST like smoke monster that devours boats full of slaves.
The most striking aspect about 'The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader' is that it lacks the mystery, build up and joy of discovery of the first movie. At the same time, it eliminates the excessive CGI and Lord of the Rings inspired battle sequences from the second installment and thus proves to be a closer- to- book adaptation. The focus is on retaining Narnia's adventures as an escape for children with funny bits that are memorable especially the endless picking of Eustace by the witty Reepicheep and the monopodial dwarfs on the island. Deeper into the story's entertaining layers, Evil tempts the protagonists in different ways and overcoming the lure is the didactic experience of C.S. Lewis' edition that is well captured by Michael Apted. Lucy's battle against her temptation to be as beautiful as her sister, Edmund's envy of Prince Caspian's position as the leader and Eustace's greed that draws him to hidden treasures are all lessons to be learnt in the battle of good v/s evil. On one hand, the white witch tempts Edmund to join the evil forces while Aslan, in his Christ like rendition guides Lucy on the right path.
The special effects involving the sea serpent in the cove are excellent and provide an ugly yet thrilling experience in 3D while the magical touches through the book of incarnations and entry to Aslan's country are simply enchanting to look at. Discovery of the 7 lords and their swords is itself a moral journey for everyone and while C.S. Lewis did brilliantly in detailing those aspects, Apted is short of time and just like all Narnian films, this one too falls short of the book's magical effect. But then again, Michael Apted is no Peter Jackson.
The climax is a sad farewell to what we were introduced to just 2 movies ago but The Silver Chair may prove to be an altogether different experience with Eustace. Will Poulter's brilliantly convincing portrayal of the annoying kid is the highlight of the film and the focus on him is a well thought out plan for the upcoming movies. Georgie Hensley IS Lucy as C.S. Lewis had once imagined and therefore, her presence is always charming. The rest of the cast could've done better with more focus on their characters had it not been for the time constraint; which, Apted has wisely been strict about. The shortest of the 3 films, yet least action packed, 'Voyage of the Dawn Treader' betters its predecessor by being closer to the book with moral implications and child-like adventures. The film is beautiful to look at but it leaves you craving for more fun, more adventure and sometimes, more heroism. It is by no means uplifting and we do miss Aslan in action at the required times. This is Aslan's shortest time on screen and that is a tragedy for the film indeed. Nevertheless, for loyal fans of Narnia, this is purely Narnian in essence but not an epic by motion picture standards.
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