Set sail with Lucy, Edmund, Caspian, and Eustace aboard The Dawn Treader as they head to the end of the world while facing temptations of the heart.
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The third installment in the Chronicles of Narnia movies picks up after the events of Prince Caspian, as Lucy and Edmund return to the magical world of Narnia with their bratty cousin Eustace in tow. This time, the adventure is a swashbuckling voyage on the open water, as the children join King Caspian and his crew to find the seven lost lords of Narnia (and their swords) and free the captives stolen by a malevolent mist.
Though grounded in fantasy, the Voyage is one we all take in life. This guide will help you discuss some of the questions raised by the film adaptation of C. S. Lewis’s beloved classic. Like Lucy, Edmund, Caspian, and Eustace, we face temptation all the time: vanity, pride, and greed, among others. But as illustrated in the story, with a little bit of humility on our part and confidence in our Savior, we too can overcome adversity and complete the journey to “World’s End.”
Discussing the Scenes
1. Lucy — Finding Beauty in Identity
(1 Corinthians 10:13; John 16:13; Psalm 139: 1–18)
In C. S. Lewis’s books, Lucy Pevensie is often referred to as “Queen Lucy the Valiant” and she usually seems incapable of doing wrong. However, she still faces temptation in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, and the film version deviates from the book somewhat to explore this matter further. In an effort to break the invisibility spell on the Dufflepuds, Lucy browses through a magician’s Book of Incantations and comes across a spell that will make her more beautiful. In the process, she ironically forgets herself (momentarily) while trying to improve her self-esteem.
2. Caspian and Edmund – Accepting Humility Along with Responsibility
(Proverbs 28:25; Philippians 2:3-4)
Among the more subtle spiritual journeys in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader are those of Edmund and King Caspian. The film expands on a couple of Edmund’s offhand comments from the book, portraying him as a young man who longs to be a respected High King and warrior like his older brother, Peter. Similarly, King Caspian is still relatively new in his reign, and though he wishes to live up to his father’s reputation as a wise and brave ruler, he nearly gives up the responsibility of his throne for personal gain. Both characters are a fitting reminder that the virtue of humility comes with the responsibility of leadership.
3. Eustace – Transforming from Selfishness to Selflessness
(Luke 6:44-45; Ephesians 4:22–24; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Colossians 3:5–14)
At the heart of The Voyage of The Dawn Treader is the transformation of Eustace, the Pevensies’ bratty cousin. He begins the journey unwillingly, whiny and antagonistic along the way. But cursed treasure gets the better of Eustace’s selfish nature and reflects his ugly heart by changing him into a dragon. This puts him on a path to contrition and redemption, though it is only through the help of Aslan that he is ultimately able to “shed” his old self and become a new creation.
As the Credits Roll
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (20th Century Fox, 2010), directed by Michael Apted, rated PG.
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