The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe movie opens in Australia on Boxing Day, and having read the C.S. Lewis books as a kid (and adult), I'm looking forward to seeing it. Adding to the excitement is the fact that C.S. Lewis was a Christian who worked his faith into his books, which seems to have caused divides in the movie-going public as well as in Christian circles.
I've quickly skimmed some reviews from normal media (thanks for the heads up, GetReligion), and here's the general gist:
"'Narnia represents everything that is most hateful about religion' - Children won't get the Christian subtext, but unbelievers should keep a sickbag handy during Disney's new epic, writes Polly Toynbee" (The Guardian)
"That's the charm of the Narnia stories: They contain magic and myth, but their mysteries are resolved not by the kinds of rabbits that Tolkien pulls out of his hat, but by the determination and resolve of the Pevensie kids -- who have a good deal of help, to be sure, from Aslan the Lion. For those who read the Lewis books as a Christian parable, Aslan fills the role of Christ because he is resurrected from the dead. I don't know if that makes the White Witch into Satan, but Tilda Swinton plays the role as if she has not ruled out the possibility." (Roger Ebert)
"Alice, down the rabbit hole, tumbled into a Wonderland of vanity and vice — the real world etched in satirical acid — and her early-20th-century American counterpart, Dorothy, found Oz, with its surreal yokels and charlatans, to be just as crackpot a place. But when C.S. Lewis wrote his own variation on rabbit hole metaphysics, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, in which he dispatched four very proper British children into the haunted and mystical winterland of Narnia, he wasn't fooling around, or even cracking a smile. " (Entertainment Weekly)
"...too often in "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," even with a good cast and a promising first hour, the results recall the subtitle of "The Pirates of Penzance," the old Gilbert and Sullivan operetta: "The Slave of Duty." This project is a slave of duty. It tells Lewis' story, which has its share of sticky and ponderous aspects, in a predictable, visually cautious way. You keep waiting to be transported, yet in cinematic terms, the transportation never arrives." (Chicago Tribune)
I say bah humbug to everyone else. I'm not letting any negative reviews bother me - I'm going to see this Disney movie in person!
I'm sure there will be many different viewpoints once the film hits Australian shores/outside the US. I'll let you know what I think.
What about others - will you be seeing it?