Film Review: Narnia- The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

The Voyage of the Dawn treader certainly does a better job than its predecessor- Prince Caspian and while it might not be as fantastic as The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe it definitely won’t induce you into a coma.

Unfortunately it won’t dazzle you either but it will mildly entertain you, especially if you are an avid reader of the books.

This third installment in the adventures of the Pevensie children finds the two youngest, Edmund (Skandar Keynes) and Lucy (Georgie Henley) forced to live with their aunt and uncle, the Scrubbs, and their unpleasant, despicable and snotty cousin Eustace (Will Poulter) in WW2 London while their older siblings Susan and Peter are away with the parents.

Eustace thinks their talk of Narnia is hogwash – until, he finds himself transported to Narnia, along with his cousins, via a painting hanging in their bedroom. The three find themselves on the Dawn Treader, King Caspian’s (Ben Barnes) vessel, which has set out to find seven lords banished from Caspian’s land. They must retrieve seven swords and place them at Aslan’s table, which will rid Narnia of evil and the green mist.

As expected Aslan the lion (Liam Neeson) makes an appearance, as does Reepicheep (Simon Pegg), the talking rodent.

Unfortunately good acting doesn’t.  It’s very sad when Aslan in his two seconds of roaring glory steals the limelight of the film but you can’t blame Neeson for that as the kids couldn’t act to save their lives! At least the Twilight brats and Potter Kids learnt how to act as the films progressed.

Then again you also can’t blame them for acting badly as the pointless, meandering plot where the characters shuffle from one heavily -embossed -in religious symbolism scene to the next is quite tedious to watch.

The film’s plot is also very slow and I blame the pace on the numerous fighting scenes  that are jerky, sloppy and boredom stirring.

In the end while keeping somewhat true to the novel the film remains dull despite excellent special effects (watch out for the dragon, a true highlight). But I couldn’t help wishing Johnny Depp and his pirates would jump on board and save me from the mundane and imagination-numbing plot. It should have been named the voyage to boredom or Voyage of Yawn Tredder.

3 stars

Published in The Star-20th January 2011

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