Back in the day, when I went to school - you know, way back when we'd have to walk 10 miles barefoot in the snow for the privilege of an education? that's right! and by the time we got to school we were too tired and hungry to learn, so the teacher used to read us stories. Yeh, Back in the Day.
My teacher, Miss Klitcher, read us The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe when I was in Standard Three. That would have made me about 9 years old. I remember her sitting on a chair at the front of the class reading each day - a chapter maybe, who knows, I was too busy hanging on every word.
I loved that story. I loved it so much, the very first chance I got to get my hands on that book I did. And I read it. Then I read it again. Over and over. By the time I got to McKillop College, aged 11, I had read The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe nearly a dozen times.
I was so excited when I heard that they were making a movie of the book. I was never a Tolkien fan, and I've only read one of the Harry Potter books, so I've not had the investment in the worry of a book-to-movie before. And to be fair, worry is too strong a word. I wasn't worried as much as looking forward to see how the story would look on the big screen and secretly hoping no one would muck it up.
Andrew Adamson was to direct the film and I was pleased about that. I base that pleasure only on the fact he made Shrek and I thought Shrek was a great story, and the fact he was a kiwi - really, I am clueless as to who makes good movies and who doesn't. But surely, filming it in New Zealand, and having a sensible kiwi male direct the action, that's a great start. Not to mention The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is a bloody good tale.
I have never said what I am about to say about a movie before. It's a cliche, but I don't care. That movie, Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, was exactly as my inner 9 year old remembers it as she hung on Miss Klitcher's every word. The coats, the lampost, the beavers dam, the scary Ice Queen, the turkish delight, the fluttering flags on the tents as the army camped, the stone alter, the mice on the ropes, Cair Parvel - everything.
I have no intention of re-reading the Chronicles. I like the way my childhood memories are stored and don't want my adult-self seeing past the magic - and Andrew Adamson has already captured those images from my memory perfectly. Perfectly.
If you loved the book and have an inner 9 year old tucked away inside you somewhere, I hope you love the movie as much as I did.
PS and off topic: the 2002 Old Jam link below takes you to the best blogpost this site ever produced. Ever. If you're interested. which you should be, cos it's the best blog post this site ever produded ev0r!