The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian
Directed by Andrew Adamson
Prince Caspian's box-office take failed to match the dollar signs that its predecessor did, but such shortcomings should be measured more in Caspian's proximity to the Dark Knight's opening, rather than imply any inferiority. The second of C.S. Lewis's beloved series to be adapted improves upon the first in every way - an accomplishment made more impressive considering the less uniquely magical second tale. Caspian spins the spiritual allegory of The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe to parallel civilized man's bloodthirsty encroachment upon the rest of the wondrous creatures inhabiting the Earth. An attempt to usurp the crown from Prince Caspian by his uncle King Miraz forces the good Prince's exile to the magical woods of the mythical Narnia creatures. United in his plight but needing some ancient power for back up, Caspian blows Queen Susan's horn, thus summoning the Pevensie kids back to Narnia from London. There's plenty of visceral action, stunning visuals and charming humour to keep the pulses pounding, with surprising vigour for a PG film. The "Bonus Features" disc gives this top-notch fantasy adventure the revealing treatment it deserves with an excellent slate of content with nary a whiff of filler. Behind-the-scenes footage is the rule, with in-depth looks at the seamless CGI work, elaborate costumes, props, make-up and set designs. "Big Movie Comes To Small Town" is a great look at the river location shoot in Bovec Slovenia, where the production crew temporarily doubled the town's population and managed to help out the community by completing a river redirection project the town lacked funding for because it suited the purposes of the film. Throw in a couple more fascinating production features, deleted scenes with optional commentary, director's feature commentary, a quality blooper reel, a deconstruction of the big duel, separate features on the wonderful Dwarven transformations of Peter Dinklage and Warwick Davis and you've got one of the best packages a fantasy film lover could want.
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