Thursday, December 08, 2005

The Christians of Narnia

Here's a several-weeks-old article from the NY Times about not so subtle Christian undertones in the Chronicles of Narnia series. With the movie coming out this weekend, I thought this might be a good time to post this.

There are seven Narnia books in all, making them potentially the third great onslaught - after the movie adaptations of "Harry Potter" and Tolkien's famous "Lord of the Rings" trilogy - of British children's lit into the multiplex. Like the Rowling and Tolkien books, Lewis's evoke a richly imagined parallel universe, but they differ in including a frankly religious element: not just an undercurrent of all-purpose, feel-good religiosity but a rigorous substratum of no-nonsense, orthodox Christianity. If you read between the lines - and sometimes right there in them - these stories are all about death and resurrection, salvation and damnation. From a moviemaking point of view, this is excellent news if you are hoping to reach the crowd that packed the theaters to see Mel Gibson's "Passion of the Christ," probably not so great if you're also hoping to lure all those wizards-and-weapons fans who made the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy such a hit...

[12/9/05 update]
Move over Passion of the Christ thorn and nail necklaces, Christian retail stores have a new movie to promote:.

Large, elaborate in-store displays at many stores depict wardrobes, lions, lampposts, knights and other Narnia items and characters. Besides the original books, Christian retailers are stocking their shelves with a variety of movie tie-in products, from music CDs to figurines. Doug Lockhart, Zondervan's president and chief executive officer, said sales at Christian stores are going through the roof, though he declined to release figures.

Forgive me for I live in New York city. What are these Christian stores like? Are they like the anti-Hot Topic?

[12/12/05 Update]
Is it possible that there's room for Christian and secular appreciation of the Chronicles? Here's an Op-Ed piece from the NY Times making the case for getting along.

2 Comments:

>>>>>> Anonymous Ogre said...

and christians should'nt make movies???

12/08/2005 9:39 PM  
>>>>>> Blogger BrooklynKat said...

Fenton is just pointing it out, in case you miss the symbolism. The interesting thing that literati point out is that C. S. Lewis combined pagan mythological storytelling with Christian symbolism. It's not always a fight with us Ogre. :)

12/09/2005 10:47 AM  

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