The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian ***
Directed by Andrew Adamson
As entertaining and expensive "The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian" was, there is just something missing from it to make the better than the last installment "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe." There is some element of magic or character missing here. I watched the action in this film from a detached standpoint, not really caring about what would happen to any of the people or animals here, but finding it interesting enough to follow. There is heart missing from this film, something that makes every single successful fantasy story successful-and its also why "The Golden Compass" was quite a failure. We follow the four children-Lucy, Susan, Peter, and Edward-once more as they find themselves in Narnia, a year after the events of the last film, but two hundred years after the events of the Narnia scenes of the last film. Narnia is in trouble, and it has been taken over by another race of people, but the trustworthy and mistreated Prince Caspian ends up teaming with the four children to save Narnia and restore it back to its original state.
Last summer I bought a big volume with all seven of the Narnia books by C.S. Lewis, and they were quite wonderful-epic novels in miniature form which are being somewhat overblown in these movie forms. The last film was actually quite wonderful to watch as the book was so wonderfully rich with themes, characters, and plots. I remembered the novel for "Prince Caspian" was also rich, but the themes, characters, and plots are all somewhat dulled here. And yet, as detached as the viewer will be from the action here, it is still engrossing, and the special effects battle scenes are quite a wonder to behold. The film is more of a spectacle, and while that is the definition of a summer movie, it isn't all that should be looked for in them.