I feel like I’m the only person who actually liked this movie (which is strange, considering my movie preferences always align so perfectly with mainstream favorites such as A Man Called Peter and Nora’s Christmas Gift).
Prince Caspian was actually quite successful at the box office, earning nearly $420 million on a budget of $225 million. That was still, however, a far cry from the huge success of its predecessor, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, so Disney pulled out of co-producing the rest of the series. Walden Media ended up partnering with 20th Century Fox for The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.
This film is based on the second book written by C.S. Lewis (though it falls fourth in the overall chronology of the series), and I believe his stepson, Douglas Gresham, was a co-producer. It stars basically the same cast as the first, including Liam Neeson. This installment does add Ben Barnes as Prince Caspian and, as Trumpkin, a great actor named Peter Dinklage—whose name I just can’t say out loud with a straight face. (I can’t. I feel bad about it, but I can’t.)
OH, SOMETHING YOU SHOULD KNOW: If you’re watching this with your kids, I should mention there is a rather frightening scene where the White Witch is conjured up by her minions to tempt Caspian. The ending to that scene is actually one of my favorite moments of the film, but I would rate it “WW” for “almost as scary as that boat tunnel scene in Willy Wonka where Gene Wilder recites rhymes about Hell while flashes of monsters and decapitated birds appear in the background.”
Now the religious themes in Prince Caspian are not as overt as in the first Narnia movie, but they are definitely there. The main thrust of this story, however, is about (in the words of C.S. Lewis himself) “the restoration of the true religion after a corruption.”
In Prince Caspian’s time, a belief in Aslan and the “old ways” of Narnia are laughable to the reigning regime. This smug attitude should sound familiar to us non-Narnians as well.
It’s easy to feel embarrassed or awkward about being outwardly religious these days, but those of us who believe in God must not be afraid to talk about religion, or our love for religion. This is the battle we fight today—we fight it in daily conversation, we fight it online, and we fight it at the ballot box.
In Narnia, the ability to see Aslan varies according to the faith of those seeking him. You and I have a divinely appointed duty to not only keep our own faith alive, but to kindle or rekindle it in others who are ready to receive it.
Our world is living and suffering in a state of corruption. Who among us is willing to be a part of the restoration?
“Ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares… ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.” — Jude 1:3-4