chronicles_of_narnia_the_lion_the_witch_and_the_wardrobeWalt Disney Pictures

“It’s a beaver!”

Based on the book by C. S. Lewis, The Lion The Witch & The Wardrobe tells of four children in WWII-era England who discover a magical land in a professor’s old wardrobe, where they meet mythical creatures, talking animals, run afoul of an evil Queen, and ultimately meet Aslan, the majestic lion that is ruler of the land (and sounds suspiciously like Qui Gon Jinn). A battle between good and evil interspersed with strong Christian parallels ensue…

You know, when I was first thinking up what I was going to write for this review, I was playing around with starting things up by describing how there’s a similar magical land that exists in my sock drawer. Then I thought better of it. You’re welcome. Moving on…

Okay, here’s the thing. This is pretty much going to cheese off a lot of fantasy / Christian allegory nuts reading this, but I wasn’t really that enthusiastic about watching this big-screen adaptation of the classic children’s book. I read the series in High School, but I wasn’t too impressed with them at that time. And really, I already invested three years of my life watching all three of the Lord Of The Rings movies when they came out in theaters, and wasn’t exactly moved by them either.

So, coming from a standpoint of someone that isn’t a big fan of the books with a small knowledge of the story and an indifference to fantasy movies to begin with, I popped this moving into my DVD player with an objective mindset of not really expecting much. Meaning, I wasn’t going to be bogged down with any preconceived baggage like the other movies that fall into my fanboy category.

Which is to say, the fact that I was most certainly blown away by the movie speaks volumes.

The story was handled very well, drawing me in from the first moment to the end. For a movie like this, the makers could have easily decided to focus more on the stunning visuals (which are definitely something to behold), and let the story and characterization suffer. Instead, this movie strikes a nice balance with a strong story, engaging characters both real and CGI (loved the beaver family), and stunning special effects. For the record, between this one and the one in The Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King, I liked the battle scene in this one better.

I’m not going to go into the Christian parallels in this flick. They’re very apparent, yes, and are good to strike up some after-movie coffee talk. But, in the scheme of things, that’s a whole ‘nother article entirely. Sufficed to say, though, even if you don’t lean toward the Christian aspect, The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe is well worth the price of ownersh