The following is what I wrote during the viewing of The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
. Container therein are musings, ragings, and in-jokes. Oh yes, there will be spoilers.
8:03 - We are on the 5th commercial in a row.
8:04 - 6th
8:06 - Dramatic pickle! Also, 10th.
8:09 - Green Hornet
has a January release. For those in the know, that means the distributors do not have a lot of faith in the movie.
8:10 - From the Yogi Bear
, "Too much razzle" is a little
8:15 - Movie finally starts.
8:18 - Movie is actually pretty good...so far.
8:20 - I remember the trailers. I wait patiently. (Retrospect: It is a miracle anyone saw the trailers, considering how little this release was advertised.)
8:21 - Hey, they just left Edmund and Eustace behind in the water--oh, wait, there they are.
8:23 - Only Peter had the title of "High King." </nit-pick>
8:24 - They are actually doing character development this time. Wait, how did Caspian know to bring the children's gifts from Father Christmas if he didn't know they were coming?
8:36 - And the movie blows it. The Dark Island, instead of one episode as it was in the book, is now an all-consuming evil that our heroes much conquer. FUCK!
8:39 - Wait, why does the pirate captain want to kill Eustace? (Retrospect: Now I realize "Who doesn't
want to kill Eustace.)
8:40 - Now we seek seven swords, supposedly from the Narnian Golden Age (the reign of the four children from the book,)...that were never mentioned in the entirety of the book series!!!
(Retrospect: Wait, sailors out to collect otherwise pointless objects that would somehow obliterate a corrupting sea-based evil? This isn't Dawn Treader
, it is Pirates of Dark Water
8:45 - Oh, hey, little girl that doesn't exist in the book either. I want in on the creative meeting that cooked this up.
8:49 - How are the Duffers invisible if they reportedly can't read? In the books, the chief Duffer's daughter made them all invisible by reading the Magician's spell-book.
8:50 - Occurs to me that the Swords MacGuffin are rather useless. They are rusty and not yet indicated to be magical. (Retrospect: When we first see the sword, is it covered in rust, but then they suddenly turned pristine sometime after that.)
8:51 - The beautifying spell is evil Green Mist magic, so why would the Magician have it?
8:52 - Lucy steal the spell from the book, dragging out what was quickly resolved in the book.
8:56 - The invisibility is to protect the Duffers from the Green Mist, as opposed to the book, in which the invisibility is self-inflicted. (Retrospect: Shouldn't the Magician be a little pissed now that the invisibility he cast supposedly for protection is now broken?)
8:58 - "Evil has the upper hand." (Retrospect: Alas, I can't find the quote from CT Studd to counter this claim.)
8:59 - Why are the swords magical!?
9:00 - Stephan King thinks that the foreshadowing for the sea serpent is heavy-handed.
9:01 - Beauty spell again.
9:04 - Man, what a shitty CGI lion. Looks like an overgrown playtoy.
9:07 - Eustace teleports again. Who is the real wizard?
9:09 - Ancient MacGuffin Sword with +10 Magic Status Resist.
9:11 - Being tempted is not the same as being bewitched. "But each man is tempted, when he is drawn away by his own lust, and enticed." - James 1:14, ASV
9:12 - The mixed the Dragon and Deathwater islands from the book. This is actually a good thing, since they both explored the theme of greed.
9:13 - The Green Mist turns Eustace into a dragon, where in the book, he was turned by sleeping on the gold "thinking dragonish thoughts."
9:15 - They couldn't make finding the Swords MacGuffin any more anti-climatic.
9:18 - Remember, kids, being tempted is just as bad as doing the deed itself!
9:19 - Why is Pointless Girl with the group?
9:23 - "How are we getting to Remandu's now." Oh, I donno, Edmund, how about by rowing...which we saw the instant before you asked that
9:31 - Pointless Girl is pointless.
9:32 - Why would would the Green Mist turn one of the people dedicated to destroy it into a more tactically advantageous form?
9:34 - Nice artistic subilty, making the mast of the Dawn Treader
look like a cross in the Mist. (Retrospect: I doubt this was intentional, given how the movies love to water down any kind of Christianity in these stories, or maybe some more artistic person lower down rebelled and the execs didn't catch it.)
9:37 - In succession: "You cannot escape!" "Leave before it is too late!"
9:38 - When told that the Mist can read your thoughts to create your worst nightmare, Edmund thought of the Sea Serpent. At least it wasn't the StayPuff Marshmellow Man. The Serpent itself is hideous, probably too scary for the children-dominated audience; it is downright Lovecraftian (
would love it.)
9:42 - Alsan uses the power of literal Dues Ex Machina to heal Eustace. (Retrospect: I don't know heal is the right word, because it was very handy up until now. The book made Eustace feel like isolated because of his hideousness and his inconvenience to the crew. The film made the mistake of making him too useful and too cute.)
9;43 - "Man the Harpoons!"
9:44 - Why is the Mist at Aslan's Table? So much for the auto-enforcing no-violence rule mentioned earlier.
9:45 - The Seven Swords MacGuffin combine to create the Super MegaSword! (Retrospect: Why is Peter's sword glowing? Is it magical too? Are there actually eight
Swords MacGuffin? Was this ever indicated before now?)
9:47 - Convenient that those rescued from the Mist are still in little boats.
9:48 - Eustace is a real boy! (Retrospect: Wait, he was just at Aslan's Table. How is he in the water just off the Dawn Treader
? Did he teleport again
9:48 - Yes, Caspian, you must be close to Aslan's country if you can see it
9:49 - So, the kids, Caspian, and Reepicheep all decide to go to Aslan's country without any discussion or reason.
9:50 - Aslan offers to let Caspian commit suicide.
9:51 - Caspian decided not too, so Reepicheep does it istead. (Retrospect: I should mention that in the book, Reepicheep had to enter Aslan's country to wake the remaining Narnian lords from their enchanted sleep. In the movie, it looks like he just happily killed himself for no reason.)
9:52 - Aslan, Spiritual Sophist Preacher.
9:54 - We might get to know you, Aslan, if you showed up for longer than a total 10 minutes per movie!
And that's the end of my notation. Overall, this is a hard movie to judge, because i actually think this, despite the ass-rape the book took shortly into the movie, is the best of the Narnia movies so far. This isn't saying that much, but it actually makes an effort at being unique from LOTR and Harry Potter while remaining somewhat spiritually faithful to the books...on the whole...taking one thing with the other. It seems like it could breathe new life into the franchise after it was on it's deathbed after Prince Caspian
. I surprisingly enjoyed myself, and didn't rage too much. It's worth seeing at least once.