This Alan Seymour dramatisation of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
was originally broadcast as a BBC series in 1988. Edited here to feature length, it's simply superb. Whether you take CS Lewis's unsubtle Christian symbolism on board or not, the fact remains that the cycle of Narnia
novels, of which The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
was the first, are among the best children's fantasy stories of all time. For anyone who spent their formative years on Mars, the story concerns four children who find their way into a magical land benevolently ruled by the mystical lion, Aslan (voiced by Ronald Pickup, no less). Aslan has been deposed by the evil White Witch (played wonderfully by a screechingly camp Barbara Kellerman) who has cast all of Narnia into perpetual winter and whose eventual defeat entails a fearful sacrifice.
While the special effects are firmly of the Doctor Who school, Lewis's writing is expertly transferred to the small screen and there are robust but credible performances from the four highly plausible young thesps who are cast in the leading roles. The perfect video for cosy family (early) evening viewing, and one which young viewers will return to again and again. --Roger Thomas
First in the televised CS Lewis trilogy, using live action and animation to recreate the magical world of Narnia. It is a quiet sort of day in the English countryside when Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy stumble through the back of an old wardrobe into the enchanted land of Narnia and embark on an extraordinary adventure. When the White Witch learns of their presence, their lives are in danger, but there is talk that Aslan is on the move.