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The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (2005)

tomatometer

76

Average Rating: 6.9/10
Reviews Counted: 209
Fresh: 159 | Rotten: 50

With first-rate special effects and compelling storytelling, this adaptation stays faithful to its source material and will please moviegoers of all ages.

77

Average Rating: 7.1/10
Critic Reviews: 43
Fresh: 33 | Rotten: 10

With first-rate special effects and compelling storytelling, this adaptation stays faithful to its source material and will please moviegoers of all ages.

audience

61

liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 34,092,903

My Rating

Movie Info

Four siblings -- Edmund (Skandar Keynes), Lucy (Georgie Henley), Peter (William Moseley), and Susan (Anna Popplewell) -- are sent from their London home to the country estate of an eccentric professor in order to ensure their safety during World War II. The house is very dull, except for a large, ornate wardrobe discovered by young Lucy during a game of hide-and-seek. Venturing inside of it in the hopes of finding a hiding place, Lucy is transported to a snowy alternate universe: a magical world

Apr 4, 2006

$291.7M

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All Critics (210) | Top Critics (43) | Fresh (159) | Rotten (50) | DVD (41)

This PG-rated movie feels safe and constricted in a way the story never does on the page. It leaves out the deep magic of a good movie, or a good sermon: the feeling that something vital is at stake.

January 6, 2006 | Comment (1)
Rolling Stone
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Long may it roar.

December 17, 2005 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There's no fire, no passion and not much fun.

December 16, 2005 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine | Comments (4)
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An entertaining, emotional, and surprisingly intimate movie.

December 9, 2005 Full Review Source: Slate | Comment (1)
Slate
Top Critic IconTop Critic

For sheer entertainment value, and the painless imparting of values about family, loyalty and bravery, this lion in winter roars loudly.

December 9, 2005 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's a work of profound ambition, and, in adapting it for the screen, the makers of The Chronicles of Narnia don't shy away from its demands.

December 9, 2005 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Neither as complex or grand as LOTR nor as accessible as Potter; still, if you can overlook the arch moralising, this is fine kids escapism.

November 7, 2012 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine Australasia
Empire Magazine Australasia

Because it is a children's story about children it is occasionally a bit precious, but only occasionally. For the most part it is an extremely well-designed piece of fantasy that doesn't try to overwhelm the audience.

March 18, 2011 Full Review Source: ComingSoon.net
ComingSoon.net

Timeless classic faithfully rendered.

December 17, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

So digitalized that the images start to suggest chintzy old superimpositions

September 1, 2009 Full Review Source: CinePassion
CinePassion

Once I ignored the religious aspects, it was a very good film...

April 29, 2009 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed | Comments (2)
Cinema Crazed

The story never quite lives up to the grandeur of the visuals, and the narrative tends to drag, especially in the first half.

July 8, 2008 Full Review Source: ESplatter
ESplatter

It is marked by a peculiarly English celebration of the Church Militant. That noted, it's also a ripping yarn.

May 17, 2008

A slow, cold first half is followed by a lively, sunny second half.

May 13, 2008 Full Review Source: Film4

The bigger the scope gets, the less we really care.

March 26, 2008 Full Review Source: Zertinet Movies
Zertinet Movies

The good news is Director Andrew Adamson and gang have done an impressive job of adapting Lewis' admittedly simple and somewhat thin tale into a big scale motion picture, delivering impressive production values and few solid action sequences.

January 15, 2008 Full Review Source: Dark Horizons
Dark Horizons

Certainly a feast for the eyes; once the story moves to Narnia, the film is never dull to look at.

July 14, 2007 Full Review Source: Big Picture Big Sound
Big Picture Big Sound

The Chronicles of Narnia joins the ranks of other fantasy classics ... in creating an amazingly believable fantasy world.

July 10, 2007 Full Review Source: DVD Review
DVD Review

With its crisply told narrative, excellent production values and great ensemble cast [it] is one of the best big-budget spectacles Hollywood has released this year.

March 1, 2007 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

This is a worthy opening salvo, a film that succeeds through the sheer weight of our expectations, and that won't disappoint younger audiences.

February 10, 2007 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph
Daily Telegraph

It's an enjoyable adaptation and good enough for us to welcome this new franchise.

December 30, 2006 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

It is spendthrift in budget yet cautious in style, steadfast in holding to Lewis's imagination yet timorous about using any of its own.

November 11, 2006 Full Review Source: The Nation
The Nation

My guess is that [it] will appeal to all of us in need of a jab of earnest, old-fashioned moralism to save the day

August 20, 2006 Full Review Source: Cinema Writer
Cinema Writer

Aslan = Jesus. Now you don't have to buy a ticket.

July 27, 2006 Full Review | Comments (18)

...an engaging and visually-stimulating adaptation of the first book of Lewis' immortal seven-part Narnia series.

June 29, 2006 Full Review Source: Cinemaphile.org
Cinemaphile.org

.

May 28, 2006 Full Review Source: 3BlackChicks Review
3BlackChicks Review

Audience Reviews for The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe

Powerful, epic, and suitably touching, The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe deftly balances Christian themes with humor, family issues, and intense, well-executed action sequences. Overall, a must-see, well-done fantasy film that can be watched over and over.
April 20, 2014
Matthew Samuel Mirliani

Super Reviewer

With an appeal to both adults and children, the British author C. S. Lewis wrote seven books in his Chronicles of Narnia series. The stories are rich in mythology and religious symbolism, drawing upon archetypes from the Norse, Greco-Roman, Persian, medieval chivalric, and Judeo-Christian traditions.

Now comes this wonderful film of the first chronicle, "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe." The beautiful cinematography and the terrific performances of the children make this film outstanding for family viewing. As integrated with the live actors, the colorful animal characters, especially the Lion (Jesus), reveal brilliant technical film-making as well.

Lewis's books are not overtly allegorical. Rather, the symbols and the messages are subtle. The four children in the story (Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy) were inspired by the actual children evacuated from London during World War II, who spent time in Lewis's home. Lewis wanted his books to be enjoyed by young people who would later in their lives draw the spiritual meanings from the stories. In this area, the film is enormously faithful to the original book and would have made the author extremely proud. 4 Stars 12-29-06 (Updated)
August 9, 2013
bbcfloridabound
Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

Visually stunning and thoroughly well-played acting and plot. The first film of the Narnia saga was something more than expected. 4.5/5
July 27, 2012
Eugene Bernabe

Super Reviewer

Nice visuals
March 19, 2012
superclerk25

Super Reviewer

    1. Peter Pevensie: Don't worry Lu, we'll be home soon.
    2. Edmund Pevensie: If home's still there.
    – Submitted by Criselle M (13 months ago)
    1. Jadis the White Witch: You know, Aslan, I'm a little disappointed in you. Did you honestly think by all this that you could save the human traitor? You are giving me your life and saving no one. So much for love. Tonight, the Deep Magic will be appeased, but tomorrow, we will take Narnia forever! In that knowledge, despair... and die!
    – Submitted by Typhon Q (19 months ago)
    1. Jadis the White Witch: Your brother, is he unintelligent?
    2. Edmund Pevensie: Well, I think so.
    – Submitted by Isabella M (20 months ago)
    1. Peter Pevensie: For Narnia, and for Aslan!
    – Submitted by ethan t (22 months ago)
    1. Edmund Pevensie: Whoa, Horsey.
    2. Philip the Horse: My name is Philip.
    – Submitted by Isabella M (23 months ago)
    1. Mrs. Beaver: It's the world, dear. Did you expect it to be small?
    2. Susan Pevensie: Smaller.
    – Submitted by Isabella M (23 months ago)
View all quotes (17)

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Foreign Titles

  • The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (DE)
  • The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (UK)
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