Andrew Adamson doesn’t get it.
His Aslan is too small, too tame, too little seen. He’s the star attraction, and his scenes have been chopped, his dialogue butchered, his relevance minimized. The entire narrative of his gradual revelation to the children on their journey to Aslan’s How is eliminated.
His Caspian is too old. Ben Barnes will be 27 this year–that’s four years older than Samuel West was when he played the older Caspian in the TV version of “Voyage of the Dawn Treader.” Did Adamson read the books? Did he not notice that there’s a boy Caspian in one book and an adult Caspian in the next?
He turns the major narrative inside out, placing the summoning of the White Witch well after the Pevensies join up with the Narnians. In the book, it comes before, as the Narnians are tempted to doubt because of the delay of help coming. In the movie, it comes after a failed attack on Miraz’s castle (an Adamson invention), and tempts even Peter.
C. S. Lewis’ Prince Caspian is a children’s story, filled with magic. It’s a parable of faith and Christian maturity.
Adamson’s “Prince Caspian” is a special effects swashbuckler that is a shrine to human effort and imagination and a commercial for toys. It isn’t a children’s movie. It isn’t a Christian tale. It’s just a fun ride through an imaginary landscape of outlandish special effects.