The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Voyage of the Dawn Treader PosterI’m back now. I’ve been to Narnia, experienced all its wonders, and now, like Edmund and Lucy, I’ve returned home. It has been an amazing adventure each time, but this time, with The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, it has been extra special.

The Story

Edmund and Lucy Pevensie are stuck at the home of their obnoxious cousin Eustace Clarence Scrubb with no sign of relief in sight. The only comfort they have is an old picture hung in the spare bedroom. It’s a painting of a very Narnian looking ship sailing through the sea. On one particularly difficult day, the picture comes alive and the three children find themselves transported into Narnia.

While Edmund and Lucy are overjoyed at being back in Narnia, they find it rather odd that the whole country is at peace and there does not seem to be any great dangers threatening Narnia, as there have been the last two times they were called to Narnia.

But all is not as it seems, as they learn soon after landing at the Lone Islands.

The Good

This is another one of those wonderful films which is so full of wholesome elements that I’m not really sure where to start here.

On a purely technical note the film was very well done. The digital characters were not up to par with The Lord of the Rings, but they were not far behind! The acting was quite good and the whole production was just a joy to watch.

The film is packed full of edifying lessons and themes. One of the major themes of the film is resisting temptation. Each of the main characters in the film has to “defeat the darkness inside before they can destroy the evil outside”. One other lesson the film teaches is the need to be content with who we are rather than wishing we were someone else.

Other themes include friendship, loyalty, looking out for and protecting others, and courage. The film also touches upon our inability to change ourselves, and our need for help from someone more powerful than us. Also mentioned is the need for faith, or belief, for “without belief, we have nothing!” Lastly, in the very touching ending Lucy asks Aslan if they will know him in their world. Aslan replies that in their world he is known by a different name and that the whole reason they were brought to Narnia for a little while was so they could know him forever in their world.

While I will speak more in depth about this later, the film does contain a little magic and I think it was handled quite well. Most of the magic central to the story is clearly controlled by and caused by Aslan himself. What little other magic is used is either evil, or for the most part, frowned on by Alsan.

The Bad

While this isn’t necessarily bad, there are some tense scenes and a few potentially scary creatures. Just a warning for those with young children.

There are really only two problems with this film and, in my opinion, they are pretty minor when compared to all the positive elements. First, there is one improper use of the Lord’s name. While this certainly doesn’t excuse its presence, I will say it is very brief and it is said in a low voice, making it barely noticeable.

The other problem with the film is magic. Once again, it is handled pretty well in the Narnia series, but not quite as well as I would like. When Lucy is captured by the Dufflepuds she enters the magician’s mansion and reads a couple of spells out of his magic book, one of which makes the Dufflepuds visible again. Aslan does appear displeased with Lucy dabbling with magic, but she does recite a couple of spells. Also, the magician clearly has magical powers and uses them to create a map to show the travelers where to sail next.

Fortunately these scenes are very short and the use of magic is not a major subject of the film.


I’d have to say this is the best film I’ve seen all year, “period, exclamation mark!”

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