Some thoughts on Prince Caspian

In a very celebratory mood, I entered the theater. All is perfect: the end of a long Master’s Degree and a free movie. My first reaction to Prince Caspian came when I heard it was a two hour and forty minute movie. I have always enjoyed long movies. They generally establish irrevocably the depths of each character. I enjoy that sense of thoroughness. I apply it to all my reading: if a book is not read from preface to conclusion, it has not been read at all. So every detail matters, but I have no intention of exhausting myself with such endeavor. So here are a few thoughts on Prince Caspian.

I was eager at the beginning, but at the end of the movie I felt somewhat relieved. I am not sure if I had too much on my mind or simply that the end seemed never to come. As an aside, I am avid Lewis reader, but never read his children’s works. Some have said that if I had read Prince Caspian, I as a purist, would have detested the liberties the movie takes. But since I never read the book, I felt optimistic, though filled with expectations since the first movie was outstanding.

Unlike the Lord of the Rings trilogy, which was filmed in succession, the Chronicles of Narnia has a two-year gap separating the filming of the first and Prince Caspian. This is unfortunate to me. The characters (especially Lucy) looked much older than the supposed one year gap mentioned in the movie. Nevertheless, that was not much of a detraction from the central theme of the movie.

Prince Caspian began with a good background to the story of Caspian as an heir to the throne and King Miraz’s attempt to assassinate him. Caspian flees–thanks to his old mentor–and finds himself confronted with the Narnians, thought to have been annihilated. In despair, he blows the horn, which summons the kings and queens. The Pevensie siblings leave the tedious life of London back to Narnia.

The four characters shape the spiritual dimension of the movie. Little Lucy is a picture of pure faith; a faith that is not shaken by circumstances. Her child-like belief in Aslan’s power to defeat evil is a marvelous example of Paul’s command to live by faith and not by sight. Lucy is steadfast and an example for all her siblings of commitment and loyalty to her king.

Edmund, who was a picture of unbelief and stubbornness in the Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe learns from his past mistakes and serves as a testimony of a changed heart. The power of Aslan’s sacrifice and the unwavering love of his family brought him to realize his foolishness and he turns from his ways.

Susan is a warrior. The gentle figure becomes strong in battle. She is the one who brings sense into Peter’s wild adventure in self-absorption.

Peter is struck with great arrogance in Prince Caspian. He is threatened by Caspian’s status as prince. His jealousy leads him to bring death into the camp. His wayward ways almost destroyed the remaining Narnians. Peter is the proud, but eventually repentant leader.

Much of the movie centers around decisions made by each character, mainly Peter and Prince Caspian. What will it take to restore Narnia to its original beauty? The strong will of a king or a prince, the strength of a people to survive extinction, or the faith of a little child to call on Aslan for help? The answer ultimately lies on the strength of the great king, not Peter and not Prince Caspian, but the One who preserves and restores paradise by His power and might. In the end, the enemies of peace are swallowed in the waters of judgment. In the same manner, the Egyptians fell by the hands of Moses, who trusted in his God.

Things do not happen the same way twice, as Aslan stated. There is no need for another sacrifice and there is no need for another resurrection. The work has been accomplished. Let the Narnians bring peace on earth and good-will towards men through the strength of the Great Lion.

Prince Caspian did not meet the demands of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Perhaps it may have been too long, and to some, the thrill of the battle was not as captivating as the first. But Christians can be pleased with another fantastic production containing Christian imagery, typological figures, and a faithful savior of His people.

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About Uri Brito

I am the Pastor of Providence Church (CREC) in Pensacola, Fl.
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4 Responses to Some thoughts on Prince Caspian

  1. Rick says:

    We were discussing this a bit today on campus…the conclusion was, if I had never read the book, then the movie was great. Susan never kissed Caspian, Peter was not portrayed as pompous (neither the fight in the beginning in the underground station took place, nor the attack on the castle)…

    I still enjoyed the movie though, but found myself shaking my head at points.

  2. apologus says:

    The question always worth considering is: What would C.S. Lewis say if he saw the movie? Would he be pleased? Or upset at the liberty taken?

  3. Chad says:

    I have never read Prince Caspian, so my viewpoint is significantly differently from those who have. While I did not enjoy the first (I fell asleep – which never happens), Prince Caspian was a fantastic movie. You are right. It’s Christian imagery was phenomenal. My favorite line was “Peter, you’ve forgotten who really defeated the White Witch” – or something similar.

    The romantic relationship between Caspian and Susan was a little weird – cultivating a romance with something you have no intention of pursuing.

    I didn’t really get why everyone thought it was Peter’s fault for the loss in the first battle. Prince Caspian went vigilante, Edmund dropped his flashlight, and Peter (and the yak-thing) was brave enough to lead in the recovery of what others had messed up.

    I’m still not sure why Peter was considered self-reliant to fight at the castle, but not self-reliant to fight at the cave place (I’m not good with names). His decision making didn’t change – just people’s opinion of his decision making. He wasn’t any more reliant on Aslan in one battle than the other.

    It sure sounds like I didn’t like the movie, but I really did. There were just a few things that I didn’t understand. You’d think that more than 2 hours would be plenty of time to time up those loopholes.

  4. patrick says:

    the makers of Prince Caspian kept to the original story in some ways and strayed in others… i heard they were going to make it into a silly pure-action flick, but thankfully this was not the case

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