(FILM ESSAY) Many people are excited by the news that Greta Gerwig will be directing the first two “Narnia” movies for Netflix, but a look at her filmography shows she is the wrong choice to direct those films.
Gerwig might be the hottest director in America right now. After two major films under her belt, including “Lady Bird” and “Little Women,” her latest film “Barbie” is breaking box office records and getting rave reviews from critics and audiences.
At the height of the hype for the “Barbie” movie prior to its release, the trades announced that Gerwig would be directing the first two upcoming “The Chronicles of Narnia” films for Netflix, which is planning to adapt all seven of the beloved fantasy books for its streaming service.
For many, this is an ideal choice. “The Chronicles of Narnia” is the acclaimed and best-selling fantasy series by Christian author and apologist C.S. Lewis, and is beloved for taking theological truths about Christianity and exploring them in a way that showed how they were beautiful as well as true, both in his fiction and nonfiction writing. Gerwig has shown she can balance blockbuster entertainment with a distinct artistic voice, can write strong female characters (Narnia’s Lucy often being considered one of the best female characters in literature) and has a strong interest in Christianity, having grown up in Catholic school, as she spoke about in the press for the “Barbie” movie.
Unfortunately, Gerwig directing Narnia is a colossal mistake. Gerwig’s filmography shows that she not only doesn’t share Lewis’ worldview but actively despises it. Having her make a Narnia movie would be like Ayn Rand directing a Spider-Man movie when she doesn’t believe in self-sacrificial heroism.
There are three key ways Gerwig doesn’t share Lewis’ worldview in his Narnia stories:
1. The problem of evil
2. God versus man
3. Heroic men
How are these important to Narnia stories?
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