Thursday, February 20, 2014


Ariela Guerrero
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe

A Human Lion

            The first movie from the Chronicles of Narnia is such a complex movie that gives the audience so much to talk about; it is a rich movie in many aspects. This movie is the first thing that comes to my mind when I hear the word “special effects”, because of the fact that this movie takes the audience to fantasy world that they can really believe they are in. This reminds me of what Louis Giannetti said in his book understanding movies “… the ability of computer- generated imagery (CGI) to create fantastic, brave new worlds, where the magical is commonplace” (Giannetti 33).
            The Chronicles of Narnia movie makes contains several special effects and rethorical arguments. To start with, sound effects make a huge part of this movie; they are used to enhance what the audience is feeling which is an argument of pathos. Music is used to make the audience feel sorry for characters (such as for Mr. Tumnus when he is captured by the white witch or for Aslan when he is being killed), also to make them feel a sense of happiness after something bad happens (such as when Edmund is reunited with his siblings). Another example of how sound effects are used through out the movie is to create suspense, for example when the four kids are running to the wardrobe as an escape. Also, music is used in this movie to make a scene more dramatic, such as when the dwarf is hitting Edmund, music makes the scene much more dramatic, and without the presence of it, no one would take this scene seriously. Furthermore, pathos is present in the movie through the use of color, cold colors such as blue are used to represent the witch’s dark side, where as vivid and happy colors are used to represent Aslan’s kingdom.
            There are special effects that appeal to ethos, because they look very real and believable so they give the movie credibility. For example, the producers made a great job in making Aslan (the lion) believable. When Aslan talks, his mouth moves in accordance to what he is saying, so you really believe that he is talking. Also, Aslan’s voice is strong and tough like a Lion’s would be, but not too exaggerated to seem unbelievable. Another great special effect in this movie is how his movements and facial expressions seem so real. When he is afraid because he is about to be tortured, this is very noticeable, I even felt sorry for him.
            Furthermore, the movie appeals to logos because it attempts to persuade the audience that bad always looses to good. The message is that bad people may be powerful for a while, but in the end you will always win by being good, ethical and moral.
            I believe this movie does a great job with the special effects especially with the lion, because as mentioned above he is believable. His movements, voice and facial expressions make him seem real. The rality of his facial expressions must have been achieved the same way they did with King Kong, as Joe Lettri, the visual effects supervisor explained: “We created a system that’s based on emotional states. It depends on us figuring out all the muscles of the face and understanding the correspondence between a human facial system and a gorilla facial system. [That allows the creation] of believable expressions” (Giannetti 35). Furthermore, it does a great job in the interaction between animation (such as the animals) and the actors. The interaction between them does not look fake, for example when Lucy is hugging Alsan, it looks exactly as if she would really be hugging a lion. However, I believe the producers failed to make some animals believable, for example there is a fox whose face looks very unreal. Another example are the guards of the white witch who where some strange creature, their voice is to extreme, so this appeals to logos because if it doesn’t seem real, the audience cant believe it. Therefore, I give this movie a rating of 4 Slurpees because it only failed to make special effects believable in very few instances.

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