Prince Caspian

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I had planned on seeing a movie based on the book Prince Caspian this morning.

Instead, I saw Disney's new movie, called Prince Caspian.

An overwhelming majority of the movie is all wrong. It has to be the least faithful movie to the book of any movie I've seen, that I've also read the book for. And that includes I, Robot. OK, not really. But close.

Three words: Susan, Caspian, Romance.

The plot is basically the same -- Caspian summons the children, children help Caspian defeat Miraz -- but almost all the details have changed. It has the same characters, but that's about it. It's quite annoying, really.

From the very beginning it's all wrong. Miraz is not yet King, Caspian is much older than he should be, the children vividly remembered Narnia even before they got pulled back, Trumpkin's personality is very different, the trees attack the Telmarines, and a huge water monster destroys the bridge at Beruna.

Even one of the most well-known lines in the movie was butchered. Aslan asks of Caspian, in the book, "Do you feel yourself sufficient to take up the Kingship of Narnia?" "I--I don't think I do, Sir. I'm only a kid." "Good," said Aslan. "If you had felt yourself sufficient, if would have been proof that you were not." But in the movie, this is turned upside-down: now the fact that he doesn't feel himself sufficient is proof that he IS sufficient. By that logic, the idiot giant Wimbleweather would have been sufficient for kingship.

But don't misunderstand: the inconsistencies do not begin and end with these relatively minor elements. The battles in the movie never happened; major events happen in the wrong place and out of order; Aslan never appears to anyone but Lucy until the very end of the movie; Peter and Caspian have a conflict that nearly leads to blows; Peter is tempted by the White Witch ...

I don't mind all the changes. Making Sopespian and Glozelle larger parts of the story is fine, although I don't like what they did with them, for example. Even including Susan in more of the action isn't terribly offensive. But the whole story is just twisted inside out.

The movie is fairly decent on its own (although the sense of humor in it is quite poor ... why would Reepicheep say to Trumpkin, "I was expecting someone taller?" And who could not have predicted Trumpkin's response?). But as Prince Caspian it fails miserably because it is barely Prince Caspian at all.

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