Clive Staples Lewis was a celebrated Anglo-Irish novelist, academic, medievalist, literary critic, lay theologian and Christian apologist whose impact and influence lives on.

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Some Quick Takes: A 2nd Viewing of Narnia, A Push Back at the Elitist Left, and an Invitation

January 25th, 2006 | Skip to comments


I waited almost six weeks, but I went back to see LWW again in the theatres this past weekend. I surprised by how much more I enjoyed it without my critical lenses on–focusing on virtues rather than shortcomings. I was also surprised by how many people were there–such a healthy crowd, a seemingly first-time crowd, for a Saturday afternoon in Toledo, OH. The acting is stronger than I remembered, the battle sequences not quite as long, and the overall impact bracing. I wonder what is on the cutting room floor; we shall see around Easter when the DVDs come out. I had picked Serenity as my top movie of the year with LWW as a distant second; it made up some of that gap this weekend for me.

THIRSTING FOR A THRUST at the cultural elitists who despise Narnia?

Take a look at Frank Furedi’s thoughtful reflections on the way the UK elites, in league with some American commentators, used Narnia as a staging ground to express their “anti-religious hysteria.” After quoting William Davies (Institute for Public Policy, London) in his depiction of the “The liberal, secular left” as having “somehow to find ways of supplying citizens with emotional and metaphysical comforts even when it does not itself believe in such things,” Furedi further explains:

This provision of so-called metaphysical comforts serves the same function that adult-invented cautionary tales play for children. Which takes us back to Narnia: clearly the problem is not the comforts provided by CS Lewis, but the way in which they’re branded. . . . The very term ‘metaphysical comforts’ suggests values built by calculation, instrumentalism, manipulation and cynicism. Morality marketed by people who do not necessarily ‘believe in such things’ is unlikely to set the world on fire. That is why they resent and hate the Narnia film so much. For all its faults, the movie attempts to transmit a powerful sense of belief, bravery and sacrifice. Such sentiments are alien to a cultural elite that regards the expression of any sort of strong belief as another form of that dreaded fundamentalism. Envy, bad faith and instrumentalism: these are the raw materials that fuel today’s anti-religious crusade.

CALLING ALL RESIDENTS in the Greenville, NC Area
(sorry about the Panthers!):

I will be speaking this weekend (Jan. 27-28) at St. James United Methodist Church, Friday evening at 7PM, and Saturday AM, 9-12Noon. Registration is required but the event is free. More details here.


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