Last night my friends and I finally watched ‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: Voyage of the Dawn Treader’ to close out the current Chronicles of Narnia saga on the bigscreen. I purchased the Blu Ray the day it came out but it took this long to finally watch it which is strange because the Chronicles were my favorite books growing up and Dawn Treader was by far my favorite of the series. But up until last night I thought the movies kinda sucked.
When transferring books to a movie it is always a tricky proposition. You change something and you alienate fans of the books. You don’t and you risk ruining the movie. One makes you an active participant where you feel what the characters are feeling whereas the other is a passive experience where you take the quo’s from the action/score/facial expressions to figure out what the characters are feeling. Both can be executed well (To Kill a Mockingbird) while others can fail miserably at both (Twilight).
In discussing this with my friends, we talked about how fantasy novels are wildly dissimilar. In talking about the Chronic(les) it is pretty easy to make the comparison to Harry Potter. For reference, everyone yesterday have read both the Chronic and Potter and were between 21-32. We all basically agreed that Chronic was more a part of us then Potter (I’m sure the younger we go the more it will sway the other way) and all agreed that we’d read ‘The LdoubleW’ before ‘The Sorceress Stone’ to our kids. But the Harry Potter movies weren’t quite as good as the books (I’ve yet to meet someone who didn’t read the books and enjoyed the movies).
This got us talking about ‘The Lord of the Rings’. These fantasy movies were unreal but the movies were pure crap (My words, no one liked them but didn’t hate them as much as I did. The mention of Tom Bombadil gives me chills). That is when I came up with this chart:
The scale is a little off – HP should be closer to Narnia on the book side and closer to just above good on the movie side . . . but you get my drift.
We actually dissected a while these movies and books and came up with this conclusion – for fantasy movies, the closer they are to the source material the worse they are!
Lord of the Rings – Crappy books + Changed a lot = Great movies
Harry Potter 1 & 2 – Great books + Changed nothing = Not too good movies
Harry Potter 3-7.2 – Great books + Ever changing = Movies got better and better
L,W,W and Prince Caspian – Great books + Changed nothing = Not too good movies
Voyage of the Dawn Treader – Great book + Changed a lot = Well, its pretty darn good!
Just wanted to see what everyone else thought about it!
* EDITORS NOTE = A lot of this is hyperbole and trying to be entertaining. Other than the LotR books I love everything else (LotR movies, HP/Narnia books & movies)*