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The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader Review

Movies.com Critics

3.0

Dave White Profile

Narnia's pulse returns... Read full review

3.0

Jen Yamato Profile

Back on course, in Aslan they trust. Read full review

Other Critics provided by Metacritic.com

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0
    53

    out of 100

    Metascore®
    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 40

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Todd McCarthy

    After slipping badly with the second installment two years ago, the Narnia franchise does a full-on belly flop with this third.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    It's serviceable, but certainly not much fun.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    I'm confounded by the fact that, aside from the Pevensie siblings and their nicely obnoxious cousin, absolutely everything and everyone aboard the Dawn Treader looks one-dimensional.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    This is a rip-snorting adventure fantasy for families, especially the younger members who are not insistent on continuity. Director Michael Apted may be too good for this material, but he attacks with gusto.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Michael Phillips

    The Dawn Treader doesn't so much reinvent the "Narnia" franchise as do what's needed, and expected, with a little more zip than the previous voyages.

    Read Full Review

  • See all The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader reviews at Metacritic.com

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 10+

Engaging third Narnia adventure is fun for tweens and up.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the third Chronicles of Narnia installment is, like its predecessors, a tween-friendly fantasy adventure. In general, you can expect the same level of special effects-heightened battles/violence and minor language as Prince Caspian. While there's little inappropriate content for older elementary-schoolers and up, younger kids may be frightened by a few scenes with a giant sea serpent and others set on an island where people are routinely sacrificed. Like all of the adaptations based on C. S. Lewis' classic books, there are some mild allusions to Christianity, though nothing overtly religious is said (Aslan does reference the "other name" he's called in the regular world). The film offers positive lessons about collaboration, selflessness, and overcoming personal doubts and fears, and the three central kids all grapple with self-worth issues that will be very relatable for tweens. Note: The movie's 3-D images add to the intensity of a few action sequences, particularly the battle with the giant sea snake.

  • Families can talk about how each of the main characters was tested and tempted and yet came out victorious. What insecurities did each of them overcome? What is the movie's message about pride and beauty?
  • For those who've read the books, how faithful is the film to the story?
  • Why do you suppose the Pevensies can't return to Narnia once they've grown up? What is it about getting older that makes your time in Narnia come to an end?

The good stuff
  • message true3

    Messages: The Narnia movies are filled with positive messages about selflessness, self-sacrifice, and generosity. The characters, with the exception of Eustace (at first), are brave and want to help the Narnians defeat evil. As each of the main characters is tempted, they learn to make the choices that work for the greater good. Some of the messages could be considered religious, but it's not overt.

  • rolemodels true3

    Role models: Aslan is an almost perfect role model, dispensing sage advice and guiding the characters to make the right decisions. The three kids are also positive role models -- as well as very relatable -- because they overcome their fears and insecurities for the good of Narnia. King Caspian doesn't surrender to his temptation to stand before his father before it's time. Instead, he honors his commitment to be the best king he can be.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: The Pevensies and King Caspian and his crew battle the elements and their own fears that turn into reality -- like a giant sea serpent that dozens of men try to bring down with swords and arrows. There's a fair bit of sword play and sword fighting, but no one is killed. On one island, people are "sacrificed" to the sea, so a girl looks horrified as her mother is whisked away on a boat, presumably never to be seen again (spoiler alert: all ends well). A few characters look dead but are actually in a deep sleep. Two characters nearly turn on each other but only because they're under an enchantment. The White Witch appears, but only in Edmund's mind.

  • sex false1

    Sex: In one brief scene, Lucy looks at a couple who are flirting with each other and embracing. A star manifests herself as a beautiful woman, and both Caspian and Edmund look completely taken with her. An ongoing theme in the movie is that Lucy wishes she were as beautiful (and attractive to the opposite sex) as her older sister, Susan.

  • language false1

    Language: Some British insults -- like "sod," "what the blazes," "bleedin," and "thick" -- as well as "crap," "shut up," "idiot," "oh God" (as an exclamation), and the like.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false0

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Not applicable

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