Cover Art and Menus: 6/10
I know Prince Caspian is the start of the story. Hint, look at the title. The thing is, I didn’t feel that attached to the dude. The cover plays up his importance, and maybe in the book he was bigger than life, but for me the sisters were the stronger characters this time around. As far as covers go, it’s bold and predictable, but functional and nicely done.
The menus are kind of hard to read because the put a yellowish orange font over some light colored backgrounds. There is a small, very small blurb from scenes of the movie up in the right hand corner, and some flourishes while locations from the movie change in the background. It’s all a bit busy for my taste.
- Circle Vision Interactive Creating The Castle Raid – A 360 degree tour of a set on the movie. You get several little bits and pieces to choose from, mini-documentaries behind the scene bits, and pieces of movie set trivia.
- BD-Live – You can chat with a friend online while you both watch the movie..whatever. However, there are a lot more mini-documentaries of the making of the movie. You do have to go through some hoops to get through all the navigation, but it looks good and is pretty easy to use despite the fussiness.
- Audio Commentary By Director & Actors – This cast and crew are a lot of fun and it’s worth another watch of the movie to listen to their chatter.
- The Bloopers Of Narnia – People goofing up…shocking.
- Deleted Scenes – There are a few scenes that got chopped, and they all have a voiced over description by the director. They wouldn’t have added anything to the story, so good riddance.
- Inside Narnia The Adventure Returns – How does the same team of movie makers and performers revisit such an epic tale with a sequel??? Ohhh good question.
- Sets Of Narnia A Classic Comes To Life – The art of Narnia was the starting place for sets and the world created in the movie, so I love seeing where the imagination can come from illustrations to moving pitchers:)
- Big Movie Comes To A Small Town – When 1200 people descend upon a small village to make a movie, something’s gotta give.
- Previsualizing Narnia – Computers making magic.
- Talking Animals & Walking Trees The Magical World Of Narnia – Oh, more magic. We are in a time of great change. Talking animals and walking trees are getting more and more work, and I think that’s a good thing.
- Secrets Of The Duel – There are several sword fights in Narnia, go figure. There is a certain amount of choreographing going on, and it’s well worth it, the clinking and clanking looks pretty good.
- Becoming Trumpkin – Oh, how I do have a strange fascination for watching people get their make up and costumes installed in their little movie set trailers…seriously. I love this stuff.
- Warwick Davies The Man Behind Nikabrick – Ackkk more make-up and prosthetics and I love it. This is a detailed day long adventure with Warwick Davies from 4 am in the make-up trailer to late in the evening when his day of shooting is done.
The Movie: 8/10
It is what it is, a huge epic adventure with fantastic places, characters, and a noble moral tale. How do I feel about that? I loved it. Truth be told I didn’t get as swept away with Prince Caspian as I did with The Witch the Lion and the Wardrobe, but I was so young way back then I guess it’s just growing up that takes away a bit of the fun 🙂
We start our adventure back in London during WWII with the Pevensie kids in a train station. It’s a year after they left Narnia and they do a good job of establishing that this family isn’t really fitting in just right. You must know, even if you haven’t seen the first movie or read the books, that in “Witch, Lion, Wardrobe” they go to Narnia and live their whole lives to adulthood ruling the land. They find the wardrobe they once stepped through to get there, go back in out of curiosity and are sent back to their childhood…ok that’s the wrap up.
So now they are living as kids again but know what it was like to have grown up, been kings and queens of a whole enchanted land, and are standing in a London train station during WWII. Caught up? Back in Narnia some political treachery is afoot. A king’s brother has had a son, while the king has disappeared. The prince to the thrown becomes a target for his uncle’s assassination attempt but escapes. He has a horn that once belonged to Queen Susan, the oldest Pevensie sister. He blows the horn which, well, you’ll have to see the movie to k now what exactly happens at that moment.
What I will say is that the Pevensie family find Narnia has passed through 1300 years of war and change. Narnians, the woodland creatures, the dancing trees, the life and magic they knew before is gone. A tyranny of humans has reigned down on the land for centuries and everything they knew is gone. Now their adventure to save Prince Caspian and the Narnians begins.
I really did enjoy the whole movie. It looks great, great story, excellent cast, wonderful sets. It took me away and I don’t have the sensation all the time with movies. The thing is, I didn’t have that da da ta da moment. I never welled up with that kid like emotion of triumph and excitement that I did with the first of the Narnia movies. That’s not a bad thing, it’s just that I wasn’t as worried about Prince Caspian and Narnia as I think I was supposed to be. That could be a sign of being too grown up, I don’t know.
What I did love is the time change. When the kids go back and so much time has passed it’s troubling and sobering and really isn’t a fun kind of idea. It is a reminder, when you are my age, that life changes, things change, and we change. That’s the theme of the movie, that these kids might not be able to be in Narnia forever because life doesn’t work that way. All things must pass and we have to grow up, move on. Kinda sucks, but that’s still a good theme for such a grand tale.
The battle scenes are incredible by any action adventure movie standard. There are a couple CGI shots that made me cringe, but in a movie full of Centaurs and Minotaurs and talking animals, a few dodgy effects aren’t much to worry about.
These movies are becoming a beauty of a collection and I can’t wait for the next one. Things will again be different, moving on to a new theme, new creatures, new magic, new conflict, new moral tales of justice and right. I love this stuff!! Did someone forget to tell me to grow up fully in the past 41 years. 🙂
Audio & Video: 9/10
Like The Lion The Witch & The Wardrobe before it Prince Caspian is a very pretty movie filmed in some stunning locations. Disney have gone all out on the transfer and HD presentation of this Blu-Ray disc. Video is presented in a 2.40:1 aspect ratio using the AVC codec and really is impressive. There is a ton of detail in the movie from chain mail armor to otherworldly creatures and all are represented perfectly in HD. If I had to nit pick the only other thing I could have wished for on the disc is a DVD copy of the movie to watch on other players in the house but Disney seems to be reserving that feature for the Platinum Editions. What we get in this offering is a low quality digital copy for Ipods or Laptops.
Audio is really where this disc shines and the 7.1 DTS HD mix is right on the money. This is a special effects extravaganza and the battle sequences have some impressive sound effects that really immerse you. For some reason the mix is quite low on the disc so make sure you crank the volume a couple of notches higher than you do for other discs and you will be just fine.
Excellent adventure movie, great extras, should be about $15.00. It’s not. You get more for your money, sure, but 30 bucks is too much money. Your kids might watch it over and over, that’s the only reason to invest that kind of dough on a DVD these days, Blu-Ray or not Blu-Ray.
Overall Score 9/10