Archives for May 2008

How “Prince Caspian” Botches the Meaning of the Book

Want to know if Andrew Adamson's Prince Caspian is fun and entertaining? Check out the reviews archived at Rotten Tomatoes.But if you're a fan of C.S. Lewis's Prince Caspian, which is something quite different, and if you hope to see Lewis's ideas come to life on the big screen in Adamson's film, well... what follows is a collection of reviews that address that question.This collection will be updated as I find further interesting reviews on the subject. Feel free to submit more reviews, … [Read more...]

Caspian’s PG and David Dark’s Next

Did Prince Caspian get the right rating?Cinematical's Eric Snider thinks the "PG" is misleading. ... watch The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian and marvel at how such a violent movie magically got the kid-friendly PG rating.I didn't know the rating before I watched it, and I didn't remember, off the top of my head, whether the first Chronicles of Narnia was PG. (It was.) As Prince Caspian unfolded, I noted that there was an awful lot of stabbing, throat-slitting, and other killing, … [Read more...]

DecentFilms on Prince Caspian: Lewis’s Themes and Ideas are “Largely Lost.”

When it comes to The Chronicles of Narnia films, well... I want them to be great. I want them to be entertaining, yes. But more than anything, I hope that the filmmakers finds ways to preserve the ideas at the core of the story. In The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, they did a decent job, but some of their decisions suggested that they failed to understand some of Lewis's ideas. And in stripping Aslan of some of his authority, they weakened the character and the core of the story.Steven … [Read more...]

Christianity Today: 2 1/2 stars (out of 4) for “Prince Caspian”

Are you looking forward to the appearance of Bacchus in Prince Caspian?Alas, you won't see that scene.That's just the beginning of the cuts that concern Peter T. Chattaway in his review of the movie at Christianity Today.Wow.Chattaway does find the film quite entertaining.But I just wish that efforts like this one, and like Alfonzo Cuaron's extraordinary film Children of Men, would do away with the label "Based on the book." Rather, they are new stories, "Inspired by elements … [Read more...]

Sean Penn Disqualifies Cannes Films that Don’t Reflect “Current Climate”

Aaaaaaaand they're off!The Cannes Film Festival has begun, which means Indiana Jones is suiting up for his first big-screen adventure in twenty years, and a crop of great works of art destined to be almost ignored in America are about to screen for very lucky audiences. … [Read more...]

“The Defanging of Aslan”

Steven D. Greydanus interviews the men behind Prince Caspian.And he finds them making some rather dubious claims. Unlike presidential candidates, the films' producer, Mark Johnson, doesn't even want to talk about change ... at least when it comes to Narnia."I've produced a lot of movies based on books," he said, speaking at a New York press event with other Narnia filmmakers. Citing titles from The Natural to The Notebook, Johnson said, "We made big changes in all of those in order to … [Read more...]

The Browser, 5/14: Brooks on “Neural Buddhism”; Fraggles; Scarlett Johansson; Why I’ll Miss Dubya

Brooks on a new challenge for those who believe in a "personal God"David Brooks talks about why believers' debates with Richard Dawkins are "just a sideshow," and that the real revolution is something like "neural Buddhism."-Fraggle Rock is here to stayCory Edwards is bringing back the Fraggles. Here's his announcement, and a quick Q&A.-Scarlett singsJosh Hurst reviews Scarlett Johansson's album of Tom Waits covers. You can probably guess where the weakest link … [Read more...]

Badder Lieutenant

The Hollywood Reporter is trying to ruin my day, claiming that Abel Ferrara's Bad Lieutenant is being re-made by Werner Herzog, with Nicolas Cage stepping into the role already owned by Harvey Keitel.But it couldn't possibly be true. Cage would know better than to ruin (*cough* Wings of Desire *cough*) an already legendary movie (*cough*The Wicker Man*cough) by creating a mediocre imitation... right?And what will Herzog, with his particular worldview, do with that profoundly spiritual … [Read more...]

Lord Save Us From Your Followers

Comedy writer/filmmaker Dan Merchant wrote a book called Lord, Save Us from Your Followers, chronicling what happened when he journeyed across the U.S. and asked people questions about the divisiveness of religion. … [Read more...]

Unbearable “Noise”; CGI vs. Ye Olde Fashioned Way

I watched Noise last week. I was assigned to review it. I was excited, because it came from writer-director Henry Bean. Bean made The Believer in 2001, an intriguing movie about a neo-Nazi starring Ryan Gosling a few years back. But alas, I should have looked closer. Bean also wrote Basic Instinct 2.Sure enough, Noise is awful. The more I watched, the more I was frightened by what happened to me. While the central character slowly descended into madness and rage, so I too descended into … [Read more...]