The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (Review)

Impressive special effects can't save latest 'Chronicles of Narnia' film

For the third Narnia franchise installment, veteran director Michael Apted takes over helming duties performed by Andrew Adamson on the first two films. Sadly Apted, the filmmaker famous for the hugely influential 7Up documentary series, is confined by a script that is a mere sketch of C.S. Lewis' original novel. The result is a disposable children's adventure story that wears its well-worn primary narrative device like an afterthought.

Instead of collecting five rings ala the Lord of the Rings trilogy or seven horcruxes ala Harry Potter, the characters here must track down seven ancient swords belonging to the lost (read: deceased) Lords of Narnia in order to save a world of fantasy from some vaguely named threat. The opposing forces of evil might or might not affect the actual World War II reality from which our trio of young British protagonists temporarily escape. There isn't enough meat on the bones here to send potential readers in search of the novel on which this disappointing movie is based.

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