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Review: Lord of the Rings

By onyxruby in Media
Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 09:29:05 AM EST
Tags: Movies (all tags)
Movies

After the abysmal embarrassing failure of the Dungeons and Dragons movie, fantasy fans are probably going to have some well earned trepidation for another fantasy book based movie, Lord of the Rings. Having just come back from the midnight opening showing, I can say that it is safe to cast said trepidation away. There are no spoilers in this review, so it is safe for those few that haven't read the books.


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Lord of the Rings draws you in from the very beginning, laying a solid foundation that builds a framework for the story to lay on. It is quite easy to follow the story without having to read the books first, no small accomplishment. You get to know the characters, and more than one dimension. The movie doesn't tell you the one ring is hypnotic, yet the audience can feel it almost as if they were within it's grasp.

The acting was well done, a welcome reprieve from the wooden acting of other fantasy movies that came before it. The audience was allowed to feel what the characters experience and reacted accordingly. I saw copious quantities of people scared enough at certain points to jump in their seats. There is no blood or gore to speak of, but younger children may be frightened by the appearances of various monsters. I could also swear there were several points in the movie where not one breath was drawn.

Fight scenes are well choreographed chaos. The fear, surprise and danger that come alive in the battle scenes are well presented. Many of the details that make for added realism are added without being pointed out. The heroes are all too fallible, and do not escape the harm that surrounds them unscathed.

The cinematography was spectacular, reminiscent of Gladiator. Stunning vistas added to the story, without taking away from it. From rain to snow, the environment enhanced the experience without being overbearing. Computer animated graphics were done well enough to blend in naturally with the rest of the movie without stealing the focus. Some parts of certain scenes obviously had to be computer generated (think Balrog), yet I think most moviegoers would be hard pressed to point them all out. Middle Earth comes to life and lets the audience experience a total immersion of the world.

The audio was well done, with a good balance of sound. Words meant to be said softly came across as such without straining the ears. Sound effects enriched the auditory experience without overwhelming it. The movie uses classical music to great effect, and times its use well. I would highly recommend that you see the movie in a theater that has a high quality well balanced sound system, you would be missing to much by seeing this movie in a poor quality theater.

All in all the movie enraptures the audience and brings to life the books far better than I could have expected. From the visual to the auditory to the plot, it allows one to suspend reality for an all too short two and a half hours.

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Review: Lord of the Rings | 108 comments (106 topical, 2 editorial, 0 hidden)
Peter Jackson (2.55 / 9) (#2)
by enterfornone on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 07:39:08 AM EST

Can't say LOTR appeals to me that much (never actually read it, but I used to be a mad fantasy fiction fan before getting majorly bored with the whole genre). But having Peter Jackon directing will certainly prompt me to check it out. If you've never seen his Heavenly Creatures check it out, IMO the best film of all time. His three films before that were interesting too. Tho his first major hollywood film, Frightners was rather disappointing IMO.

--
efn 26/m/syd
Will sponsor new accounts for porn.
Jackson (2.50 / 2) (#11)
by Merekat on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 09:48:55 AM EST

There are some slight touches of his earlier work such as Braindead visible in some of the effects. Toned down of course, and as emphasis rather than the whole point, but there if you are looking for it.
---
I've always had the greatest respect for other peoples crack-pot beliefs.
- Sam the Eagle, The Muppet Show
[ Parent ]
Very true to the book (2.66 / 6) (#3)
by isaac_akira on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 07:42:28 AM EST

OK, so it left out almost all of the feasting (I get SOOOO hungry when reading those books!) and slightly changed a few scenes, but overall the movie is amazingly true to the book. Oddly enough, I felt a tiny bit let down by that, because I felt like I'd already seen it all! =) But that's so much better than would COULD have been done with the movie (they could have Schumacher-ed it!).

Now I have to wait a YEAR for the next film?! Argh!

This is how you do a review (2.00 / 7) (#4)
by FredBloggs on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 08:02:59 AM EST

http://groups.google.com/groups?hl=en&lr=lang_en&threadm=u1v4vvrdiq423e%40news.supernews.com&prev=/g
roups%3Fhl%3Den%26lr%3Dlang_en%26group%3Drec.arts.movies.reviews

A better review IMHO (3.50 / 6) (#6)
by Zeram on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 08:25:46 AM EST

can be found at Ain't it cool.
<----^---->
Like Anime? In the Philly metro area? Welcome to the machine...
Omission..(slightly spoilerish) (3.55 / 9) (#8)
by driph on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 08:36:19 AM EST

(Actually, if you've never read the books, none of this will make sense anyhow).

Ya know, there's one thing they omitted from the books that I was pleased to see gone. The singing! All the freaking singing! Man, every other page, someone would burst into song to explain who this king was or why that ring did this or why the undersides of rocks are a different color than the topsides. Don't get me wrong, I love the books. Tolkien just isn't much of a dialog writer.

Other than that, the only "biggish" change that immediately comes to mind is the exclusion of Tom Bombabil(sp?). Jackson kinda skipped over that whole part, and instead has Strider giving the hobbits weapons, etc.

They also omitted most of the gift exchange at the end, only showing Frodo receive the light.

Oh, and we weren't subjected to hours and hours of "we're rock climbing... rock climbing... rock climbing," which also made me happy.

Amazing movie. Go see it.

--
Vegas isn't a liberal stronghold. It's the place where the rich and powerful gamble away their company's pension fund and strangle call girls in their hotel rooms. - Psycho Dave

The singing.... (3.66 / 6) (#10)
by jimmiejames on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 09:26:44 AM EST

I used to agree with you Driph, but then I read the Silmarillion.

Yes, its long and somewhat slow in places, but if you liked the bredth and majesty of the lord of the rings, the silmarillion will blow you away. You get the back stories for all those tragic love stories and what not, but they're much more interesting placed in context than they were as legends. Oh, and its pretty much all about the elves, which was also just fine with me, the originals left me with an elf-craving...The book took me at least 3-4 times as long to read as anything else. The writing is quite dense, and there's next to NO dialogue.

Oh yes, I'd started to write about the singing. Well, once I'd read the silmarillion, all the singing just made the books that much richer, gave the series roots, kind of a sense of history that I found quite unique and definitely engrossing.

[ Parent ]
Spoilers for book/Movie below: (4.33 / 3) (#15)
by Happy Monkey on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 11:03:51 AM EST

Other than that, the only "biggish" change that immediately comes to mind is the exclusion of Tom Bombabil(sp?). Jackson kinda skipped over that whole part, and instead has Strider giving the hobbits weapons, etc.

In my opinion, the biggest change was making Saruman into an admitted ally of Sauron. The Saruman from the books would never have admitted, even to himself, that he had fallen under the thrall of Sauron. He thought that he could defeat Sauron using Sauron's own tools, much as Boromir did. That was a major change that I don't think was necessary or good. Other than that, the changes that were slightly grating to me were (a) Gandalf leaving it up to Frodo to go to Moria, (b) Frodo figuring out the Moria door riddle, and (c) Gandalf's protracted fall from the bridge. There were quite a few other changes, but I can't remember any that bugged me.

All in all, it was one of the best movies I've seen. Awesome.
___
Length 17, Width 3
[ Parent ]
Singing (4.66 / 3) (#36)
by Robert Uhl on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 11:27:23 PM EST

I dunno--a bit more of Tolkien's songs would not have been utterly out of place.

All I know is that Eomer's lay at Pelennor damned well better not be removed:

Out of doubt, out of dark to the day's rising
I came singing in the sun, sword unsheathing.
To hope's end I rode, to heart's breaking:
Now for wrath, now for ruin and a red nightfall!
These staves he spoke, yet he laughed as he said them. For once more the lust of battle was upon him; and he was still unscathed, and he was young, and he was king: the lord of a fell people. And lo! even as he laughed at despair he looked again on the black ships, and he lifted his sword to defy them.

My absolute, utter favourite part of the book, bar none. To not be moved is to lack a soul, to lack a heart, to lack the very qualities which seperate man from the beasts.

For once more the lust of battle was upon him; and he was still unscathed, and he was young, and he was king: the lord of a fell people.


[ Parent ]
Now if only we can avoid ... (none / 0) (#42)
by joegee on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 12:52:36 AM EST

... a continuous hour of trudging, and trudging, and trudging through the wastes.

<sig>I always learn something on K5, sometimes in spite of myself.</sig>
[ Parent ]
One of the best movies I ever saw (3.75 / 8) (#9)
by Pac on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 08:49:30 AM EST

I saw it two weeks ago, in a closed session for the press and left the theater pretty amazed. The funny part is, most people present, most of them "cinical" journalists, left the theater silently, as if hypnotized by what they have saw in the previous three hours. The main complain I heard was that we will have to wait a year for the second part. And that from people that have not read the books.

I think Jackson managed no only to show proper respect for one of the most important books of all times, he also managed to make a movie that can have a life of its own away from the SciFi/Fantasy pigeonhole.

The movie is wonderful. If you have not read the books you may even feel it was too short, that you are missing something (and you will be right), but you will be glued to your chair almost unable to blink for the duration. If you have read the book you will be able to complain about something left out or something appearing not exactly as you would have done it (but you will be also unable to blink for the duration).

But everything is so perfect, so real. The direction is perfectionist, the art direction breathtaking, the effects almost never overdone (a hard accomplishiment for a movie that could only be done after technology had half a century to catch up).

I find it hard to name better movie than LOTR in the last ten years. I may be wrong, but I think this trilogy will quickly get a place among the best movies ever done.

Evolution doesn't take prisoners


Excuse me? (3.14 / 7) (#17)
by davidduncanscott on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 11:20:14 AM EST

Look, I've enjoyed the trilogy every time I've read (about every two years). It's a ripping good yarn and all of that, but "one of the most important books of all times"?

I'm not entirely sure what would constitute an "important" book, but influence over society and other books would seem to me to be significant points, and except for D & D and some of the worst genre literature created since Westerns went out of fashion (I will make an exception for Robert Jordan, whose books are, not great, but pretty damned good, with even a stab at characters and plot), it's hard for me to see where LotR has done that.

Besides, I'd bet that Prof. Tolkein would have said that his work on the Jerusalem Bible was far more important. And The Hobbit. :)

[ Parent ]

"Importance" (4.16 / 6) (#24)
by Macrobat on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 02:25:48 PM EST

"Influence over society" is not the only criterion for great literature. What is the social influence of Jude the Obscure, for instance? Or The Tempest? As opposed to something like The Jungle, which addressed a very real social problem, but which is read mostly for historical purposes nowadays, and not for its literary merits.

Many folks read Tolkien who read little else of the fantasy genre ever again, and love it. The power-wielding aspect of most fantasy is simply not the appeal to LoTR. It's more like the love of nature, the juxtaposition of intimate and (for lack of a better word) diplomatic discourses, and the sensual enjoyment of Tolkien's created world. I think it Tolkien himself (or was it C.S. Lewis?) said, that once you read about an enchanted forest, it makes every forest in the real world that much more magical.

I say that's real influence.

"Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
[ Parent ]

"Importance" (4.00 / 3) (#26)
by davidduncanscott on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 03:25:31 PM EST

I absolutely agree that "influence over society" is not the sole criterion, and in fact I also mentioned "influence on other books" (which is to say other writers, obviously).

(Hell, I'm not so sure that any book has ever had all that much influence over society. Most of the examples I've been given over the years, like The Communist Manifesto, have been waved overhead far more often than they've been read.)

The literary world was different after James Joyce, and I think Ulysses qualifies as an important book in that sense, as do The Tempest and Jude. Lord of the Rings, on the other hand, is simply a very good book (no small feat I might add). Tolkein had some imitators but no real followers.

Hell, I could be wrong. Maybe there's a whole generation of poets out there unborn that will owe their inspiration to Tolkein, but I haven't seen them yet (although I've seen a lot of "Gandalfs" and "Striders" mouthing off in chat rooms, and i suppose we can expect many more now.)

Hey, completely OT: does anybody know if the cover art from the first American paperbacks is available as a poster?

[ Parent ]

Importance (3.40 / 5) (#29)
by m0rb on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 07:18:32 PM EST

Uhm, I'm totally out of my element (having never posted on K5 before), but have you ever heard of quest narratives, or perhaps the fantasy genre as a whole? You definitely seem to know a fair bit about literature, but you don't seem to know much about fantasy, as a genre. Read a bunch of books by Anne McCaffrey, Terry Brooks, or any other well known fantasy author. Now, go back and read LOTR again. Tolkien's influence on fantasy literature as a whole is undeniable.

As for the artwork, are you referring to the stuff done by Alan Lee? Not sure if that was the original cover art or not.

[ Parent ]

The Fanatasy Genre (4.00 / 3) (#33)
by davidduncanscott on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 10:41:56 PM EST

Sure, I've heard of it, and so had Tolkein. It's not like he invented it either.

I've read some McCaffrey. On the whole, I rather wished I hadn't, but then again I was already convinced that women are at least as good as men and I didn't especially need a bunch of flying lizards to persuade me (much less that damned singing space ship). Terry Brooks I haven't tried. Donaldson -- after a while, don't you just want to slap Thomas Covenant, maybe take him on Oprah and tell him to get over himself? Piers Anthony gave Blue Adept roughly the lyrical charm of an appliance manual. Jordan at least has a sense of humor, as do, of course, Asprin and Pratchett.

As I said, I don't deny that Tolkein's work has imitators, but little of it has the texture of LotR. Too many people seem to have come away thinking that Gandalf and Aragorn were the central characters, so they've written Travels with Conan in Middle Earth, and most of it has, to use a technical term of literature, sucked a fat wad. I don't think any of them has given the effort that Tolkien did to understanding mythology and language.

I can suggest a sort of predecessor, though. Find some James Branch Cabell. He too was a poet working in prose, and like Tolkein many passages deserve to be read aloud (if you don't have children this might be best done when nobody's looking).

The cover art I had in mind was, I find, painted by Barbara Remington. It was used in, actually, the first legitimate US paperback edition. It's not so much that's better as it's the one I saw first, and the three covers are obviously a single work. There's a scan here.

[ Parent ]

Decent fantasy (5.00 / 1) (#38)
by driph on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 11:45:14 PM EST

I've never really been a big fan of fantasy, for many of the same reasons you mention above. I tried reading one of Brooks <noun> of <noun> books, and couldn't stand it. The books felt like the literary version of some unimaginative D&Der's game sessions.

However, I have read a few great fantasy series. Tad Williams Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn comes to mind. Asprin's Myth series is a lot of fun. Also try out Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber(especially the first five books), personally my favorite of any fantasy series I've read.

--
Vegas isn't a liberal stronghold. It's the place where the rich and powerful gamble away their company's pension fund and strangle call girls in their hotel rooms. - Psycho Dave
[ Parent ]

More decent fantasy (none / 0) (#45)
by whoozit on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 02:52:33 AM EST

Tad Williams rules. As does Robert Jordan. But if you've read all that, try Guy Gavriel Kay. I love all his stuff. Some people call it more 'alternative history' or some such than fantasy, but whatever it is, it's very very good. I started reading the Fionavar Tapestry and could not put it down!

-whoozit
...Experience is what you get when you don't get what you want.
[ Parent ]

I'll take a look (none / 0) (#55)
by davidduncanscott on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 10:40:28 AM EST

I think I mentioned Asprin, but yes, I've enjoyed his work, and Zelazny of course. I wasn't attempting to be comprehensive.

I'll keep an eye out for Williams.

[ Parent ]

Thieve's World (none / 0) (#75)
by wiredog on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 08:28:57 PM EST

It was one of those shared universe, where several authors write stories set in the same place with the same characters. The first three were excellent. It's been years since I read them as I lost my copies. The good guys weren't always good, and sometimes lost. Much more textured than the average fantasy.

Peoples Front To Reunite Gondwanaland: "Stop the Laurasian Separatist Movement!"
[ Parent ]
Re: Decent Fantasy (none / 0) (#79)
by andrewhy on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 03:40:10 AM EST

I just saw LOTR tonight. I read a number of fantasy novels as a teenager, and have read the Hobbit twice. I tried reading LOTR when I was about 18. I got through the first book, but stopped reading halfway through the second because it was so slow. I don't remember anything from the books, but I must say that the movie was definitely better than the book I remember reading.

My favorite fantasy novels were Terry Brooks Shannara novels. The first two, Sword of Shannara and the Wishstones of Shannara are good (especially the second, which i read first.) The third book, the Wishsong of Shannara, is rather short and could be skipped. But his four-part Heritage of Shannara series is by far the best fantasy series I have ever read.

If "Noise" means uncomfortable sound, then pop music is noise to me -- Masami Akita, aka "Merzbow"
[ Parent ]

Just one more book (3.00 / 1) (#43)
by selkirk on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 12:56:34 AM EST

I like some of the earlier McCaffrey stuff, although she has milked those dragon books to death and beyond. Most commercial authors can't resist writing just one more crappy book in a popular (well-selling) series. If you've read any Piers Anthony at all, you must know this.

[ Parent ]
The "imitation" thing... (4.00 / 1) (#46)
by Macrobat on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 02:58:30 AM EST

davidduncanscott, don't take this as a personal slam or anything, but I think you may have it backwards. The fact that many people try to imitate LoTR and fail attests to its greatness. I mean, if anyone (or even just many people) could simply crank out another Dubliners or something, it wouldn't be as great a work as it is, would it?

Oh, and Cabell. Great stuff. He was a funny, sick bastard, but I don't see him as a predecessor. Tolkien wasn't as sadistic as Cabell, and didn't like the French. But I agree, folks should read him.

"Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
[ Parent ]

Imitation and Precedence (none / 0) (#57)
by davidduncanscott on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 11:19:48 AM EST

If Joyce's influence meant that many novels were written about the Irish, then he'd be a minor figure. The hallmark of an influential book is that it is felt in distant fields. Joyce's influence can be found in mystery novels, in screenplays, and probably in the text on the back of cereal boxes. Writers don't imitate Joyce, they bring him into their own work. That people seek Tolkein's influence in books about short people in troubled quasi-medieval lands of magic is precisely why he must be classed as a genre writer. For whatever it's worth, Arthur Conan Doyle isn't generally considered a great figure of literature, and yet clearly the mystery wouldn't be the same without him, Sir Walter Scott arguably invented the historical novel yet ranks about -2 on most literary scales (but I've read Ivanhoe about two dozen times -- I like a good story), and I don't think Zane Gray's ever been considered for the Nobel in literature either.

When I mentioned Cabell as a predecessor I meant in a simple chronological sense. I don't know that Tolkein ever read his work, and I don't see any influence. I do think, though, that they drew on some common sources, although Cabell clearly enjoyed a more courtly approach, and they both loved language, which I suppose is the first qualification for a poet.

"Sadistic", though? Cynical, perhaps, although at heart I think Cabell was very sympathetic toward his (and His) creations.

[ Parent ]

Regardless of influence (none / 0) (#72)
by Macrobat on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 06:35:02 PM EST

Tolkien's influence is felt in other genres! Why, look at how the cookbook industry boomed as a result of all the sumptuous feasts in his books :)

Seriously, though, judging the book on its own merits, and not its influence on society/the literary world/the phases of the moon is still more valid to me. But let's not argue about that. We agree that it tells a great story, and that is a necessary, if not sufficient, condition for greatness. Whether it meets other criteria I'll leave for people who like to argue that sort of thing.

Oh, and that's Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to you! :)

"Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
[ Parent ]

Glad to agree (4.00 / 1) (#78)
by davidduncanscott on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 11:07:43 PM EST

...especially since I only have a day or so to re-read Fellowship before I go to the movie.

Did you notice that I didn't forget Scott's title? <g>

[ Parent ]

Joyce Puffs? (none / 0) (#106)
by pietra on Thu Dec 27, 2001 at 11:14:02 PM EST

Please, give me an example of Joycean prose on the back of cereal boxes. I'm genuinely curious about this one.

[ Parent ]
The Fantasy Genre/Importance (4.00 / 1) (#47)
by m0rb on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 03:46:13 AM EST

First, this:

<snip> The literary world was different after James Joyce, and I think Ulysses qualifies as an important book in that sense, as do The Tempest and Jude. Lord of the Rings, on the other hand, is simply a very good book (no small feat I might add). Tolkein had some imitators but no real followers. </snip>

I'm not going to do any more pasting than that in this post, but let's run with your imitators comment, for a sec. We're not talking about your opinion of the work, here. Were we, at any point? You go on in post #33 about your opinions of Piers Anthony, Donaldson, and Anne McCaffrey .. and it's great that you read them and all, but I was under the impression that this discussion was related to the importance of LoTR as a work. As has been stated, the influence is heavy, and one can find it very easily. The issue is not whether you *liked* the derivative works and felt that their authors were imitators or true followers. Rather, the issue is whether or not LoTR influenced later authors and their work. In short, fantasy as a genre exists and is enjoyed by many people in the world. Much of it is based on a narrative style that Tolkien covered a lot of fresh ground in.

To comment further, are you honestly stating that the lit world didn't change at all after LoTR was published? Common, you've done all your homework everywhere else. Do it here as well. :)

[ Parent ]

The literary world, no, mores the pity (none / 0) (#53)
by davidduncanscott on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 10:32:09 AM EST

The publishing world, yes. Umpteen authors looked around, saw LotR selling steadily, gave it a quick read, and figured, "Hell, elves and shit -- I can do that!"

Let's please remember that Tolkein didn't create the fantasy or adventure genres. The field has been plowed for millenia, ranging back, I suppose, to Gilgamesh.

What Tolkein brought to it, aside from a beautifully conceived world, was a poetic sensibility and a belief in the common man. If there is a central message I took from LotR it was the sheer irrelevance of the Man on Horseback. Aragorn, Boromir, Legolas, and even Gandalf could only serve as distractions while a small-town squire and his gardener saved the world. The one time they did anything with a sword it was practically by mistake.

A writer really influenced by Prof. Tolkein would be one who also did the research, who studied mythology and language, who spent years crafting a work of art, and more years dreaming it. The words would roll and flow, and there might not be an elf in sight.

I painted the ceiling in my bedroom once. That doesn't make me an heir of Michelangelo.

[ Parent ]

Song of Fire and Ice (none / 0) (#66)
by Happy Monkey on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 04:38:56 PM EST

A writer really influenced by Prof. Tolkein would be one who also did the research, who studied mythology and language, who spent years crafting a work of art, and more years dreaming it. The words would roll and flow, and there might not be an elf in sight.

George R. R. Martin's "Song of Fire and Ice" series may fit that bill. It's not done yet, but its world is extremely well thought out. Not to the extent of Tolkien, but pretty good.
___
Length 17, Width 3
[ Parent ]
Isn't it "A Song of Ice and Fire"? (none / 0) (#81)
by nefertari on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 09:10:21 AM EST

You are right, the world is thought out, but since the rules of this world are changing the reader does not know more than the protagonists.

I am currently waiting for the American paperback version of the third volume (i prefer their cover design, and the for the first volume the american version was the cheaper one - i am german, but i decided some time ago to buy the originals and not to pay the translators for sometimes crappy translations).

[ Parent ]

The Literary World (none / 0) (#104)
by m0rb on Thu Dec 27, 2001 at 10:48:51 PM EST

I'd like to refer you to this post:
http://www.kuro5hin.org/comments/2001/12/19/53218/657?pid=59#103

You still fail to grasp that you've been critiquing works left and right, without really grasping what you're doing. If you paint the ceiling in your bedroom, and you were inspired by Michelangelo, and the work is beautiful/inspiring to you .. then you have created a derivative work, his work has influenced you. It doesn't matter whether or not I walk into your bedroom and tell you that your painting is shit.

In short, you really need to understand that the world of fantasy was quite different after Tolkien wrote the LoTR. Of course, the concept of fantasy existed before. Of course, Tolkien was not the sole benefactor. However, as I already said, take a walk to a local bookstore and check out the fantasy/scifi section. Sure, there are publishers out there making money off of all of the crap fantasy that is published in the world, but *people* wrote those books. People who just might think that their work is good, and were influenced by Tolkien. It doesn't *matter* that you think their work is shit, or that the motive was money, or whatever. The point is that you cannot deny the connection. If you still do not understand, I cannot explain it any better than that.

[ Parent ]

Gilgamesh (none / 0) (#105)
by pietra on Thu Dec 27, 2001 at 11:09:00 PM EST

You heathen! How dare you suggest that the mighty epic of Gilgamesh, our father, is in any way FICTION, when all know it is the true story of the greatest hero who ever lived, the father of us all! (Sumerian priest, circa 2000 B.C.)

Point being: Dude, there's a big difference between fantasy novels and mythology. I can see how the vast quantity of really bad Celtic rip-off/Arthurian legend fantasy fiction out there could confuse you, but please get a clue.



[ Parent ]
PS (none / 0) (#37)
by davidduncanscott on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 11:39:55 PM EST

Your first post, eh? Well, welcome to the monkey house!

[ Parent ]
Re: Societal importance (none / 0) (#50)
by pietra on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 04:12:36 AM EST

While we're on the subject, about the only "societal importance" one could claim for Joyce is the obscenity trial re: _Ulysses_. As one of my high school English teachers nearly got fired two years ago for teaching that very novel because it was "obscene," I'm not even sure that trial ultimately had that much effect. Yeah, he wrote some good stuff. And yeah, lots of people have imitated him, too. Main difference is, people don't want to read bad modernist novels even remotely as much as they want to read bad fantasy novels. For this, I'm grateful.

[ Parent ]
LOTR is *not* great literature (4.00 / 2) (#82)
by itsbruce on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 11:23:52 AM EST

Some proportion, please.


--It is impolite to tell a man who is carrying you on his shoulders that his head smells.


[ Parent ]
Yes, that important (2.00 / 1) (#48)
by pietra on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 03:59:50 AM EST

Keep in mind when Tolkien originally wrote these works. Along with being an awesome fantasy trilogy and a great excuse for him to use his made-up language, LOTR was also in large part a way for him to reconcile the events of WWI and what they had done to Britain's population in general. Happy shire folk threatened by evil nasty empires? Hello? The relationships between the characters, especially Frodo and Sam, encompass all kinds of sweeping class changes precisely as a result of that war, and the very real threat looming throughout 1939 and beyond. (Crazed demented power-hungry maniacs warping minds left and right? Hello?) While the books clearly stand alone on their own merits (the proof of which is that you yourself don't see the overarching connections), a significant portion of their appeal lies in the way they take something frightening and terrifying (and all too real) and put it into a fantastic context. Tolkien wasn't the first to use metaphors in this fashion, but he was certainly one of the first to do it well.

[ Parent ]
Thanks (none / 0) (#59)
by davidduncanscott on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 12:04:09 PM EST

Do I sound like a child? Jeepers, Middle Earth might have been connected to Tolkien's own world? Who woulda' thunk it?

Putting aside his own introduction, in which Tolkien states his disdain for allegory of the sort you describe, it might also be worth noting that the period between the wars was hardly the only time civilization has been threatened (in fact, it's a little tough for me to believe that WWI was much of a model, since in that case the Kaiser, presumably Sauron, was of course Victoria's nephew, and the charges of Hunnish barbarity were pretty thin.) Sam and Frodo reflecting the class changes? Maybe. Certainly they become close, but he remains a faithful retainer. Dickens would have been quite comfortable with their relationship, and Kipling would have reveled in it. Consider the similar relationship between Wilfred of Ivanhoe and Gurth.

And of course he takes something frightening and real and puts it into a fantastic context. That's arguably what novelists do, and it's certainly what Dante and Homer did.

[ Parent ]

WWI vs. WWII (none / 0) (#102)
by pietra on Thu Dec 27, 2001 at 10:21:54 PM EST

While Tolkien's introduction does indeed strongly disavow any connection between his novels and the events of WWII, he makes multiple references to his own personal experiences in WWI, which is the war in question in my previous post. Nevertheless, I don't think it's an allegory for either world war, for precisely the reasons that you cite. My point was that there are a lot of parallels in terms of *experience*, and that's definitely part of its overall importance--people can relate to fears of overwhelming evils, events far out of their control, which tear their lives apart. War isn't the only obvious candidate here, either--Tolkien had plenty to say about the Industrial Revolution. It's very appealing to be able to take those moments and put them into a context where the whole world can be saved by two decent and worthwhile hobbits with a lot of backup from a few badass fighters and the occasional swoony elf. Tolkien's writing differs significantly from either Homer's or Dante's in three key respects: First, Homer and Dante wrote epic poems, not novels. If you don't want me to treat you like a child, don't make childish mistakes. Second, Homer's original audience (assuming he ever existed) took the Odyssey as basic history. In fact, to this day archaeologists are still trying to pin down exactly where Ulysses may have gone. It wasn't an analogy or an allegory of any kind. Granted, it does have fantastic elements, but they don't have much deeper meaning in the way that, for instance, the Ring does. The Lotos Eaters are addicts, and Ulysses is too strong to get addicted in the first place. The Cyclops is a big, bad, frightening dude; a demigod, to be sure, but he doesn't have the more complex aspects that the Orcs (depraved Elves, symbols of decay) do in Tolkien. Third, Dante's Divine Comedy is a straight-up allegory. He openly intended it to be such. There are direct connections between individual sinners, their sins, and their punishments; for instance, the Lustful are locked in their co-sinners' embrace for all eternity, floating around helplessly in a whirlwind. There aren't the sorts of dissimilarities or breakdowns that you've mentioned between viewing The Lord of the Rings as an allegory for WWI or WWII. In fact, in many cases, Dante takes actual people, exemplars of their sins (or virtue), and points them out as such. They aren't really even allegories at that point. They don't represent a sort of sinner. They *are* that sinner. As far as class goes, I seriously don't think that Dickens would have written a novel in which the valiant and noble servant eventually saves the day by inadvertently causing his master to be mutilated. Dickens' Sam would have cast himself down with Gollum, allowing 1) a hell of a cliffhanger, and 2) a great opportunity for Frodo to wail over him, a la the Pickwick Papers. In later years, Dickens would have written Sam in rather more vicious and parodying terms, I think, though I do agree that Sam and Frodo's relationship is rather Dickensian in most regards. Kipling would have *definitely* tossed Sam straight down into the cracks, and Frodo wouldn't have wailed, but would have given a stout speech on Sam's bravery. Likewise, Frodo would have never shown any signs of difficulty with the Ring, if the novel had been the Return of the Bandar-Log. Frodo's weakness in comparison to Sam's stoutheartedness, particularly at the very end of the novel, combined with the way the Ring ends up in the cracks, definitely indicate some cracks and fissures that were not present in either the middle nor the end of the 19th century. Probably the best way to describe Tolkien's writing is to lift a phrase from C.S. Lewis, who, when he received a letter from a fifth-grade class asking whether or not The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe was an allegory for the Passion of Christ, said instead that it was an *analogy*--similar to, but not exact, and a separate story unto itself. Tolkien, however, did it first ;)

[ Parent ]
The novel as fantasy (none / 0) (#103)
by pietra on Thu Dec 27, 2001 at 10:35:57 PM EST

In addition, you're betraying your own unconscious absorption of Tolkien et al into general culture. Prior to the 20th century, the aim of most novels was to be as "realistic" as possible, with the notable exception of Gulliver's Travels, which most critics don't even consider a novel for that very reason. It's an enormous jump from Moll Flanders (Defoe) (whose original audience thought it was an autobiography) to Middle-Earth, and the intervening 200 years mostly consist of novels with a heavy tilt towards realism (George Eliot, Jane Austen, etc.). Even the later half of the 19th century, with the Gothic elements of the Brontes and Dracula, is still set in a recognizable, non-fantasy setting. Novelists don't take something frightening and real and put it in a fantastic context. Fantasy and science-fiction authors do that. (Disclaimers for magical realism, Vonnegut, Atwood, etc.) That, again, is why Tolkien is important.

[ Parent ]
Imitation is the sincerest... (none / 0) (#67)
by Happy Monkey on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 04:40:40 PM EST

I'm not entirely sure what would constitute an "important" book, but influence over society and other books would seem to me to be significant points, and except for D & D and some of the worst genre literature created since Westerns went out of fashion

There aren't many authors that inspire so many people to attempt to imitate and recapture the magic of the original. It's not Tolkien's fault that the vast majority fail. Or maybe it is his fault, and evidence of his skill, that his work overshadows all successors. How many authors have caused over half of their chosen genre use their work as a template?
___
Length 17, Width 3
[ Parent ]
I think you would lose that bet (none / 0) (#84)
by itsbruce on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 11:37:00 AM EST

Tolkein was aiming to invent a whole new genre of English literature, a kind of "New Folk" writing. He thought that what he was doing was on a par with Beowulf. In this he definitely failed (and over-estimated his talents).

He was a good writer but not a great one. I'd rate The Hobbit as a better work than LOTR - it succeeds entirely in its aims, for one thing.

One thing LOTR is not is a work of great literature. I expect to be flamed and marked down for saying so - it seems to have been too important to the adolescent development of so many here.


--It is impolite to tell a man who is carrying you on his shoulders that his head smells.


[ Parent ]
Dungeons and Dragons: Misunderstood Silliness (3.25 / 4) (#12)
by Uhlek on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 10:41:30 AM EST

I think a lot of people that thought Dungeons and Dragons sucked entirely missed the point that the filmmaker was trying to get across.

Keep in mind that this movie was directed not only by a first-time director, Courtney Soloman, but also someone with no formal film training whatsoever. This is far less important, however, than the simple fact that Soloman bought the movie right to the DnD franchise as a teen.

What does this mean to the casual viewer? Nothing...just that it is, no matter how you look at it, a crappy movie

BUT...it is *just like* a DnD campaign! A bunch of stupid situations, interconnected with no real continuity except for a rather vague yet cliched plot. Hot chicks, one of the characters taking a valiant (yet silly) self-sacrifice, magic spells, oh yeah. Just like those long nights around the gaming table.

A movie version of a DnD campaign written and directed by a DnD player. And *that* is why it shall always be in my DVD collection.

Wow, that's really generous (4.33 / 3) (#13)
by Karmakaze on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 10:52:38 AM EST

I think you have a very generous interpretation of the director's vision.

To suggest he deliberately made a movie that sucked because the stereotypical first D&D campaign sucks is... a nice excuse. A movie that sucks on purpose still sucks.
--
Karmakaze
[ Parent ]
The Marketing of the Rings (4.00 / 3) (#14)
by wiredog on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 11:02:33 AM EST

The Washington Post has an article about the way New Line marketed LoTR to people, like us, who are very marketing-resistant. They did it online by winning over more than 400 fan web site operators. On TV by adverstising during Star Trek, Buffy, and other favorite geek TV shows. Also, AOL created an IM bot that delivered messages about "Lord of the Rings" and placed trailers on most AOL/TW properties.

Judging from the reviews I've seen, and the near universal anticipation amongst us, it worked. I'm going to a 5 PM showing after I get off work.

Peoples Front To Reunite Gondwanaland: "Stop the Laurasian Separatist Movement!"

One more thing.. (3.00 / 1) (#34)
by BigZaphod on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 10:42:53 PM EST

One other thing they did was make the movie KICK ASS. That helps. A lot.

"We're all patients, there are no doctors, our meds ran out a long time ago and nobody loves us." - skyknight
[ Parent ]
Quality (none / 0) (#76)
by Matrix on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 09:04:21 PM EST

They didn't just make the movie kick ass. (Though it did - such serious posterior has not been kicked in a very long time) They made it a faithful translation of the books to the screen. They didn't try to dumb it down to appeal to the "mass market", or commercialize it (for the same).

In general, they did a movie that was Lord of the Rings, instead of just sharing a title, some characters, and a few plot elements. I can't wait to see the next two.


Matrix
"...Pulling together is the aim of despotism and tyranny. Free men pull in all kinds of directions. It's the only way to make progress."
- Lord Vetinari, pg 312 of the Truth, a Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett
[ Parent ]

I Strongly Disagree... (none / 0) (#100)
by Canar on Mon Dec 24, 2001 at 02:16:13 PM EST

Let me start on the right foot: I loved the movie. It rocked my world. I just think, like one other poster, that this is best not viewed as a translation from the book, rather as an adaptation from the book. If it were straight-across lifts from the plot, rather than deep alterations, I'd have no difficulty with it.

I went half-expecting to see the book that I had read, with several alterations. I saw a similarly themed, similarly plotted movie. The alterations were deeper than expected, and, at least as far as FotR showed, unnecessary. The changes were on the scale of the adaptations of Jurassic Park, for those who've both seen the movie and read the book.

Notable, very important scenes that would have taken but seconds to show and portray were omitted, yet other sections, blending well with Tolkien's background were added as ambiance. The omissions I'm speaking about are namely:

  • Aragorn's eyes. As a Numenorian, a Dunedain, they should have been grey. Not blue. Makes me wonder just what detail they were paying attention to. Elves, too. I forget where I picked these details up, tho. Don't quote me.
  • The fact that Galadriel held one of the Elvish rings. On close inspection, for those who were very observant, she was wearing a ring in the parting Lothlorien shot. But, as the whole story's about these Rings, the movie's plot much more so, you'd think that they'd give a much less cursory glimpse of this aspect of Galadriel
  • Aragorn with his sword... Narsil was reforged before the Fellowship left Rivendell. I can see where Jackson's going with the present story, and why he'd delay Narsil's reforging, but was the sword necessary at Weathertop? I thought it'd be more effective for Aragorn to fight only with the flaming brand, myself. =)
I'm trying to reserve judgement 'til the release of the next two movies, but it's hard... =(

[ Parent ]
Time Concerns? (none / 0) (#101)
by Matrix on Thu Dec 27, 2001 at 07:23:38 PM EST

I agree about points two and three. Those were obviously missing, especially the fact that Galadriel had one of the rings. Tolkien didn't make a big deal about it in the book, but it was still vital to that scene. As for the reforging of the sword, if you look closely, I think Aragorn uses it several times after the Fellowship leaves Rivendell. Though I'm not sure, the blade he used in the final fight looked suspiciously similar.

Maybe its just another thing that was dropped as a minor detail they couldn't afford to spend time on... Or maybe he's planning to come back to it later. Almost makes me wish they'd waited until all the movies were done and released them much more closely together.

As for the first, I'm guessing that after flying all the actors down to New Zealand several times, the tatoos, and the Balrog, they didn't have enough money left over to give Aragorn's actor a decent set of contacts. ;)


Matrix
"...Pulling together is the aim of despotism and tyranny. Free men pull in all kinds of directions. It's the only way to make progress."
- Lord Vetinari, pg 312 of the Truth, a Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett
[ Parent ]

How long is it? (3.00 / 3) (#16)
by westcourt monk on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 11:11:48 AM EST

suspend reality for an all too short two and a half hours

Ummm... the Lord of the Rings movie I saw last night was 3 hours and 7 minutes - Silvercity, Kitchener. Of course tribute.ca claims the movie is 187 minutes.

It seemed more like 30 minutes... I have never been to a movie that had the audience silent at the end.



Ok for kids?? (3.00 / 3) (#18)
by cod on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 11:32:53 AM EST

For those of you that have seen it - do you deem it appropriate for almost 8 year old? Can't decide it it is too intense, or too long for my son.

no but... (3.66 / 3) (#20)
by westcourt monk on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 12:17:56 PM EST

I don't think an 8 year old would last the 3 hours but that depends on the personality of the 8 year old. There are ample 'pee breaks' in the movie - if you have read the book you will know when you can take off for 5 min.

Now the battle scenes might scare an 8 year old, and some of the critters are downright scary to look at.

For my own personal enjoyment I might go see the movie without the 8 year old, then see it a second time with the kid. Then you can leave whenever and even avoid cetain scenes if you like - plus you get to enjoy it the first time (very important).

[ Parent ]

concur (none / 0) (#51)
by ehintz on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 05:24:39 AM EST

I'd call it very questionable for kids. Best bet is to see it first, then decide based on your particular kid and such. There are certainly some scenes which could really freak out a kid who isn't ready for them.

Regards,
Ed Hintz
[ Parent ]
If you're wondering, the answer's probably no (none / 0) (#108)
by haflinger on Fri Jan 11, 2002 at 07:53:21 PM EST

It's not just because Fellowship's a pretty adult movie. It's because your eight-year-old will be nine next year when Two Towers is released, and 10 when Return of the King comes out. Assuming Jackson pulls off the next two as well as this one, there are parts of those two movies that are going to be, well, basically horror movies. (Shelob. Mordor. The Ents. (They're good guys, kind-of, but think about the effect of them on a small child.) The Siege of Gondor.) Go see it yourself. Watch the Moria sequence. Now ask yourself: in a year's time, when the Shelob's Lair sequence gets released on film, will your kid be ready for something twice as frightening as that?

I really doubt it.

Did people from the future send George Carlin back in time to save rusty and K5? - leviramsey
[ Parent ]

Graphics (3.50 / 4) (#19)
by Signal 11 on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 12:10:05 PM EST

I went with onyxruby to the show last night... I'll have to see the movie again some day. We were front row, off to the side, and the theatre had a not-so-good sound system and the worst seats I've had to endure since high school (the principal's office, to be exact). We were also placed behind some wannabes who could not shut up the entire movie, despite my speaking to them directly. Please, people... comment after the movie... don't ruin the experience for others with excessive commentary (the occasional 'cool!' is okay, but not a running dialog).

It was still an excellent movie. My only advice - do not take children to see this movie. I don't care what the rating is... adults will have nightmares over some of the scenes - they are both that realistic, and that frightening. Everyone around me jumped at least a few times... as my shoulder's morning tenderness will attest to (oh, and sorry about that again, honey!). It seems the older you get, the more things like that just bother 'ya. Call me a wimp. :P

Otherwise, excellent movie.. just fair warning... parts can be pretty scary. Oh... get snacks ahead of time and sneak them in... it's long. Like, really friggin' long!


--
Society needs therapy. It's having
trouble accepting itself.

Well Duh (2.50 / 2) (#22)
by /dev/trash on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 01:47:55 PM EST

We were also placed behind some wannabes who could not shut up the entire movie, despite my speaking to them directly.

That's why if ya really wanna see a movie you wait til a) it's on DVD b) it's months old and is being shown at the second run places.

---
Updated 02/20/2004
New Site
[ Parent ]

A brief pop culture interlude: (3.71 / 7) (#21)
by sakusha on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 12:47:35 PM EST

Ross: What?!? You never read Tolkien in High School?

Joey: No man, I got laid in High School.

Best of both worlds (4.00 / 2) (#23)
by Macrobat on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 02:07:04 PM EST

Hah. I read Tolkien in Junior High, and got laid in High School. So there!

"Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
[ Parent ]

Geek love (2.25 / 4) (#27)
by sakusha on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 05:08:56 PM EST

Too bad you only got laid by pencil-neck geeks that thought reading Tolkein was cool. I don't think that really counts.

[ Parent ]
Geek love beats no love. (4.00 / 3) (#31)
by pbryson on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 08:51:01 PM EST

I'd have taken the geek love in high school. As it is I didnt get geek love, or read Tolkien. If it weren't for beer I'd be really really pissed about the whole four years.


- - - - - - - - -
Paul
http://www.technocore.org
- - - - - - - - -

[ Parent ]
"Really counts?" (none / 0) (#63)
by Macrobat on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 03:12:49 PM EST

Well, (disregarding the fact that you're wrong) at least geeks are real people, and not your dad's Hustler centerfolds like you had to be content with.

(I know, I know, don't feed the trolls, but I jes' couldn't resist any longer.)

"Hardly used" will not fetch a better price for your brain.
[ Parent ]

"National Review"'s review (3.75 / 4) (#25)
by wiredog on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 02:32:06 PM EST

The (very)conservative magazine National Review has a rave review also.

Peoples Front To Reunite Gondwanaland: "Stop the Laurasian Separatist Movement!"
My LOTR experience. (4.00 / 5) (#28)
by la princesa on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 05:26:36 PM EST

So I left for the midnight showing lasnight and got lost. I pulled up to what is usually a 24 hour grocery store to ask for directions, but they were closed, so I asked the security guard for directions and he opened the door long enough to tell me. His English was uncertain, but five minutes later, he didn't steer me wrong.

So at any rate, I show up at the theatre just after promos have finished and they've ALSO closed for the night. I stare pleadingly at the girl locking the doors and she smiles apologetically and says, "Go talk to the manager." The manager sees me coming and just waves me in. "Go right ahead, last door on your right." I thanked him breathlessly and still went into the door on the left, where I caught two seconds of vanilla sky, enough to make me not want to see that any time soon, heh.

Finally I turn right and walk in just as the opening credits have finished. I stumbled up to a spot near the top and sat down to watch the Fellowship of the Ring.

All I have to say is that this is a movie where they managed to make Galadriel look both terrible and still beautiful and where people laughed at some of the effects, but it was nervous laughter. They took out stuff I wanted them to keep, added completely new stuff, and left in stuff I wanted them to take out. That said, it's best to think of the film as an alternate path kind of tale, like if Tolkien were really a myth and this set of movies was a re-imagining of a classic mythology. Then one can view the novels and the films as similar, but separate objects. That way one can't be bothered by things being left out, because they aren't really, not the way this film was done. Only in a more overarching sense of lost backstory, which any really cool story should hint at anyhow and never mention.

I've only seen people applaud three films-- Men of Honor, Shawshank Redemption, and Fellowship of the Ring. There were even multiple instances of applause in the last one.

Anyways, after the movie ended, I skipped and bounced off to my car and drove home. The miles flew by and before I knew it I was at my doorstep. My eyes were kind of raw and hurty, so I went to sleep and woke about ten hours later to presently post this comment about a movie I'm off to see again tomorrow, something I only ever did with L.A. Confidential and partially with The Matrix (saw the middle hour while waiting for a train.)

The last thing I have to say about it is that it worked. Somehow, it worked. The people look nothing like what I figure they look like, and yet that's ok (taking the film version as alternate)-- they look correct. Tolkien's one of my personal models and while I know he would not have liked this set of films, I think he might have picked up a grudging fondness for the sheer craft and artfulness of this first film. And on that note, I'm off to tend my own little slice of the Shire.

I think Tolkien might have liked this ... (4.00 / 1) (#41)
by joegee on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 12:50:15 AM EST

... I think he would have probably loved the director's attention to detail. He would have been flattered by the linguistic attention paid to his languages. I think he would have adored the set of Rivendell.

He might have had a problem with some of the omissions and the creative license taken with his work, but I suspect he would have been flattered by the extraordinary amount of labor that went into capturing the essence of his creation on the big screen. :)

<sig>I always learn something on K5, sometimes in spite of myself.</sig>
[ Parent ]
Classical music? (3.00 / 3) (#30)
by Kasreyn on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 07:27:52 PM EST

Are you aware that the movie had an original film music score, composed for it by Howard Shore? That and some Enya pieces. I hardly think either count as "classical". The word you are grasping for, I think, is "symphonic".

Pity Shore's score had to suck so bad. I guess that's what the producers get for not hiring Goldsmith or Horner. Bah.


-Kasreyn


"Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
We never asked to be born in the first place."

R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
I stand corrected (3.50 / 2) (#32)
by onyxruby on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 08:57:35 PM EST

Are you aware that the movie had an original film music score, composed for it by Howard Shore?
No
The word you are grasping for, I think, is "symphonic".
I stand corrected

The moon is covered with the results of astronomical odds.
[ Parent ]

My ass is numb (4.00 / 4) (#35)
by wiredog on Wed Dec 19, 2001 at 10:54:20 PM EST

From sitting almost completely still for three hours. Wow. What a picture. The Moria scenes were amazing. Trying to imagine what the Battle of Helm's Deep is going to look like!

Peoples Front To Reunite Gondwanaland: "Stop the Laurasian Separatist Movement!"
I can't wait to see the ents ... (NT) (2.00 / 1) (#40)
by joegee on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 12:43:07 AM EST



<sig>I always learn something on K5, sometimes in spite of myself.</sig>
[ Parent ]
My immediate impressions (possible spoilers) ... (4.00 / 1) (#39)
by joegee on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 12:42:06 AM EST

  • The ringwraiths were absolutely perfect.
  • Moria is wonderfully done, and my God that Balrog is glorious.
  • Cate Blanchett as Galadriel was a pleasant, even stunning surprise, and I love Jackson's elves.
  • Speaking of elves, Glorfindel who?
  • Sir Ian McKellan will be nomininated for (and probably win) all sorts of new awards for his mantelpiece.
  • There wasn't anything left out that I really missed, and there wasn't anything included that I felt was extraneous.
  • Regarding literary license, I was a bit put off by the "Strider is just another ranger/wandering shifty vagabond" bit at the Council, and found the general scorn of Elrond towards humans (and the aforementioned ranger) to be an uncomfortable take on differences between the races, but the whole worthless human thing seemed to help develop the characters of Boromir and Aragorn. Why is it I doubt that Jackson's Elrond would approve of his daughter's dalliance with an unshaven wanderer?


My impression tonight, I liked this movie very much, and I think I might grow to love it after I fully digest three hours of rapid-paced images. I will probably go to see this movie again to soak in more of the details, and then maybe one more time just to marvel at the effects.

<sig>I always learn something on K5, sometimes in spite of myself.</sig>
My thoughts (3.50 / 2) (#44)
by ODiV on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 01:35:21 AM EST

I'm not much of a critic, but here goes.

Overall, I liked it. Most of the characters were great and the actors who played them did a very good job. The cinematography was well done and most of the computer graphics was decent. I have some problems with the movie though.

My main problem with the film is way the battle scenes were shot and edited. The cuts were too quick short and disorienting for my tastes. It was hard to keep track of exactly what was going on.

A smaller annoyance is the scene with Galadriel. You know the one I'm talking about. It looks like a cheesy photoshop filter and sounds horrible. Is it just me? Am I being to critical here?

A couple of the cuts are uncomfortable. I can't remember exactly which ones, but I was very aware of them during the movie.

That's about all I can remember right now. Overall though, I think it's a very good film. Unfortunately I think the battle scenes will keep this movie from being considered 'great' by me.


--
[ odiv.net ]
Smell the shampoo (none / 0) (#61)
by The Wandering Atheist on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 01:30:53 PM EST

It looks like a cheesy photoshop filter and sounds horrible
I know the part you mean - and it was truly horrible. The low point of the film and kind of embarassing to watch because of its badness. The other Galadriel stuff was a little iffy too. Backlit golden hair with God rays and Enya. Please! I was expecting her to strip off, shower under a waterfall and reveal her new volume enhancing silky smooth shampoo.

[ Parent ]
Just saw it (no spoilers) (4.00 / 2) (#49)
by m0rb on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 04:10:24 AM EST

Where to begin?

First, I definitely agree with someone earlier, who said that they'd need to see the movie a few more times to fully digest all of the content. Three hours of outlandishly beautiful film is a bit much for my mind to take at once (I want the score!). In any case, I was enthralled by the entire film. It's obvious that Jackson put his mind, body and soul into the work, not to mention that of the entire crew and all of the actors. LoTR speaks volumes about what can be accomplished through cinema, given the proper director, actors, and enough time (not to mention money) for them to truly create a universe.

I would recommend LoTR on a purely technical basis, but I'm also going to recommend it because it's one hell of a ride, and it's just plain fun to watch. I have some minor issues with Arwen's role, but I realize that accessibility to a broad audience was an issue, due to the lack of strong female characters in the novels. Also, I felt that Galadriel's freakout scene was great as far as her presence (not to mention volume), but that her color change was a bit much. However, additions and artistic licenses taken were tasteful, and well integrated into the plot. I had some questions going in as to how things would be handled, and all of my questions were answered without any disappointment or resentment.

So uh, go see it! LoTR is beautiful, and my hat is off to Peter Jackson and Co. I don't feel that a cinematic adaptation of such a huge fantasy world could have been done better. :)

Better than I had hoped-but Gimli got shafted (3.66 / 3) (#52)
by ehintz on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 05:54:57 AM EST

Overall, it was better than I had hoped. The complete lack of Glorfindel was disturbing but understandable. The parts I missed most however were Gimli's development. The grudging respect growing into friendship and brotherhood between Gimli and Legolas always struck me as a very important sub-plot. Likewise, Gimli's request for a strand of Galadriel's hair, and his heartfelt lamentations as they depart Lorien, showed great depth. As it was, the character became a grunting dwarf, and not much else(save for the comic relief in Moria where he protests dwarf tossing). I'm saddened that these things wound up on the cutting room floor, but I understand that something had to go. Maybe Jackson will do a special edition release in 10 years or so and add in some of it. Or perhaps they'll do more development in TT or ROTK.

Oh, and the council at Rivendell was kind of bizzare; I missed the wisdom, eloquence, and restraint of the original, and I also pictured it as a *much* larger gathering. But it's tough to cram 500+ richly woven pages into a 3 hour movie, so while I lament the loss, I still salute the final product. Anyway, overall, it was indeed better than I had hoped, so I'm happy.


Regards,
Ed Hintz
Wait for it... (none / 0) (#65)
by Happy Monkey on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 04:19:04 PM EST

The parts I missed most however were Gimli's development. The grudging respect growing into friendship and brotherhood between Gimli and Legolas always struck me as a very important sub-plot.

Gimli's character development advances more in The Two Towers more than in Fellowship. Come to think of it, this is true of many of the characters.

Likewise, Gimli's request for a strand of Galadriel's hair, and his heartfelt lamentations as they depart Lorien, showed great depth.

This would have seemed strange and out of place without also showing more of Gimli's interaction with Galadriel, for those unfamiliar with the book.

But it's tough to cram 500+ richly woven pages into a 3 hour movie, so while I lament the loss, I still salute the final product. Anyway, overall, it was indeed better than I had hoped, so I'm happy.

Indeed.
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Length 17, Width 3
[ Parent ]
When did the head-count contest begin again? (none / 0) (#70)
by Rizzen on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 06:12:55 PM EST

I can't recall, as I haven't read the books in close to ten years, but when did the contest between Gimli and Legolas begin? I thought it started right near the end of FotR in the final battle. I know it was in full swing for the Battle of Helm's Deep, but I thought it started before then.

Guess I will have to back and read the books. :)
----- The years of peak mental activity are undoubtedly those between the ages of 4 and 18. At age four, we know all the questions; at eighteen, we have all the answers. -- unknown
[ Parent ]
it starts at helm's deep (none / 0) (#94)
by speek on Sat Dec 22, 2001 at 07:14:06 PM EST

just read that part today, and they start the counting at helm's deep. Legolas is the instigator, actually. Gimli wins by one for that battle, btw (42-41), if you care :-)

--
al queda is kicking themsleves for not knowing about the levees
[ Parent ]

Thanks (none / 0) (#98)
by Rizzen on Mon Dec 24, 2001 at 12:43:55 PM EST

Just wasn't sure when. I've read the trilogy (and the choose-your-own-adventure style single-player RPG books -- much fun), but that was several years ago.

For some reason, I thought it started after the battle at the end of the FotR. Always pictured it as Strider, Gimli, Legolas talking about hunting orcs, rescuing Merry/Pippin, and suddenly one of them mentions how many Uruk-Hai they killed. But, guess that was my mind playing tricks on me again. :)
----- The years of peak mental activity are undoubtedly those between the ages of 4 and 18. At age four, we know all the questions; at eighteen, we have all the answers. -- unknown
[ Parent ]
My only true comment... (3.00 / 1) (#54)
by clarioke on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 10:33:08 AM EST

...do not bring a child. I'll be having nightmares about those damn mutated elves for weeks. Besides just those mutated elves (I haven't read the books, I know, I don't have the terms down) the fight scenes are not graphic, per se, but leave plenty to the imagination. Which, in my opinion, is all the more terrifying. I can't imagine bringing a child. I apologize profusely to the woman in front of me.. the theatre had limited leg room (and I'm short) and every time I jumped, my knees whacked against the back of her seat.

The movie is magnificent. Absolutely stunning. Just leave the littler ones at home.

peace,
.c.

Half-breeds, not mutants (none / 0) (#69)
by Rizzen on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 06:09:54 PM EST

They weren't "mutated orcs". They were half-breeds, orcs and human (although the tribe of mountain men used couldn't really be called human). The correct term is "Uruk-Hai", or Fighting Uruk-Hai, or Orcs of the White Hand.

This is all spelled out in the movie, but the books go into it in much more detail.

As for suitability for children: it all depends on the child. There's nothing here that I wouldn't show to my sis (she's 12), and if it wasn't so long, I'd take my cousin (he's 3.5). But, they are both mature, fun-loving, and imaginitive kids who would really enjoy this show (they both really liked Harry Potter, and the troll in there is virtually the same as the one in LotR:FotR).
----- The years of peak mental activity are undoubtedly those between the ages of 4 and 18. At age four, we know all the questions; at eighteen, we have all the answers. -- unknown
[ Parent ]
Thanks for the clarification... (none / 0) (#83)
by clarioke on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 11:31:04 AM EST

...i think. :) I believe my term was "mutated elves" as something was mentioned about how they were once elves. Keep in mind I never got past halfway through The Hobbit so my knowledge of Middle Earth and its inhabitants is limited. I haven't got all the details down and when discussing the movie with others, tend to refer to the characters by height and general attitude.

So thanks for a bit of clarification on the orc.

peace,
.c.

[ Parent ]

Glad to be of service (none / 0) (#86)
by Rizzen on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 03:12:24 PM EST

It took me several years, several attempts, and several false-starts to get through "The Hobbit". Still not sure if I've read the entire thing or not.

Read the entire "Lord of the Rings" trilogy in a week though. Then re-read a few more times after that. Then took up role-playing using MERPS (Middle-Earth Role-Playing System) and ICE RoleMaster. Read "The Silmarillion" in a week as well, but had to read it again to be sure I understood it all.

For some reason, I just could not get through "The Hobbit" in one try. It's weird. My sis is reading it now, maybe she'll get through it. I found LotR to be a much easier, enjoyable read.
----- The years of peak mental activity are undoubtedly those between the ages of 4 and 18. At age four, we know all the questions; at eighteen, we have all the answers. -- unknown
[ Parent ]
Orcs = Morgoth's Elves (none / 0) (#109)
by haflinger on Fri Jan 11, 2002 at 07:54:11 PM EST

In the Tolkien universe. Orcs were "created" by Morgoth (as were the Balrogs, and some of the other big nasties of Lord of the Rings, including Shelob IIRC).

However, Morgoth, lacking Iluvatar's power of original creation, could only warp existing things. So orcs are the result of what Morgoth did to elves to make them his.

So in a sense, all of them are mutant elves, the Uruk-Hai included. It's a pretty nasty scene, though, yes.

But with that said - I wouldn't take the small ones to see this film either. And it's not so much because of the things which happen in it (most kids wouldn't be bothered by the Uruk-Hai scene, it's just gross, which gets adults and teens way more than little kids; they would get freaked out more by Weathertop, the drums in Moria, and just the Ringwraiths in general, I think), although some of it would give some kids nightmares, for sure. No, it's because of what's coming. If you take your kid to see Fellowship, next year The Two Towers is coming out. And it's gonna be a lot darker. Shelob in particular would make many adults wet their pants.

And there are probably going to be fifteen-year-old girls bawling in the audience over The Return of the King, whose parents took them to see Fellowship when they were thirteen.

Did people from the future send George Carlin back in time to save rusty and K5? - leviramsey
[ Parent ]

time of show question? (2.00 / 2) (#56)
by sety on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 10:57:32 AM EST

Can someone explain to me how I saw Lord of the Rings at 10pm (22:00) on Tuesday Dec 18, 2001. I went to the local theater, walked in 10 minutes before the show ( I was really going to see Oceans 11) and got a seat. As far as I can gather the movie was released on Wednesday Dec 19, 2001. So that means that any time after 00:00 on Dec 19, 2001 you can see the movie. So how is it that I saw it 2 hours before the official release date (day)? I live in eastern time zone if that makes a difference. Were they going by GMT? Would the theater not get into big shit over this?

Nothing new here, move along now (none / 0) (#68)
by Rizzen on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 06:06:28 PM EST

It was a sneak preview. Virtually all the theatres did this. None advertised it, but if you asked for the preview showing when buying advanced tickets, they'd sell you one.

Most theatres do this for the expected blockbusters, like Harry Potter, The Matrix, LotR:FotR, and the like.
----- The years of peak mental activity are undoubtedly those between the ages of 4 and 18. At age four, we know all the questions; at eighteen, we have all the answers. -- unknown
[ Parent ]
From Peter Jackson's Personal Log (1.50 / 2) (#58)
by Lethyos on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 11:43:44 AM EST

13, June, 1999 - They're Getting Tired...

"Where there's a whip, there's a way!
"The cast says they don't want to act today,
"But they know I'll just say, 'nay, Nay, NAY!'
"They're gonna rehearse all day, all day!
"'cuz we're all just slave in New Line's ploy."


19, December, 2001 - About time...

"One monopolistic film company to fund them all.
"One producer to make them.
"One marketing campaign to bring them all.
"And in a dark theater, enthrall them."


earth, my body; water, my blood; air, my breath; fire, my spirit
Mostly very good... (none / 0) (#60)
by The Wandering Atheist on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 01:22:37 PM EST

...but casting Agent Sm^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^HHugo Weaving as Elrond was pretty ridiculous.

Why? (none / 0) (#64)
by Happy Monkey on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 03:40:57 PM EST

I thought he did well. He brought the same intensity to the role that he did to Agent Smith, but I didn't find him to be too "Agent Smithy" as Elrond.
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Length 17, Width 3
[ Parent ]
Two reasons (none / 0) (#73)
by The Wandering Atheist on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 06:44:07 PM EST

Firstly I think he has the wrong build and face. He just doesn't look elfin. And secondly when he opened his mouth he sounded exactly like Agent Smith. Legolas looked pretty elfin, and so did most of the other elves. I think that if they really wanted to use Hugo there were plenty of other rôles.

Nonetheless the casting was pretty good overall though I didn't like Frodo that much - he was too much of a pretty boy rather than the slightly ugly and podgy figures I imagine hobbits to be.

[ Parent ]

General Agreement (none / 0) (#74)
by Matrix on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 07:56:14 PM EST

I just got back from seeing the movie. Most of the characters were cast almost-perfectly. Legolas, Aragorn, and Gimli, especially, were well-matched to their roles. Gimli was properly stout and weathered, Legolas was tall and soft, and Aragorn was Aragorn. Compared to them, Elrond just looked shockingly out of place. His face was shaped wrong for an elf, his hair was wrong, and his voice just didn't sound right.


Matrix
"...Pulling together is the aim of despotism and tyranny. Free men pull in all kinds of directions. It's the only way to make progress."
- Lord Vetinari, pg 312 of the Truth, a Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett
[ Parent ]

Elrond isn't an elf. (5.00 / 1) (#77)
by Happy Monkey on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 10:09:29 PM EST

He's a half-elf.
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Length 17, Width 3
[ Parent ]
He didn't even look... (none / 0) (#85)
by The Wandering Atheist on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 01:43:55 PM EST

...half-elfin :-)

[ Parent ]
misheard at the theater (4.00 / 2) (#89)
by dr k on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 08:07:02 PM EST

"Tell me, Mr. Baggins, what good is a phone call when you are unable to speak?"
Destroy all trusted users!
[ Parent ]
John Huston's voice as Gandalf. (3.00 / 1) (#62)
by demi on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 02:46:59 PM EST

I know that I am risking a flame war here, so first I will start out by saying that I thought the movie was great, it made my silly pessimism about movies wither away, and I want to see it again (maybe a few more times) before it leaves the theater. There is very little that I would change about the movie given the power to do so.

I didn't like Ian McKellen as Gandalf, and it's for somewhat personal reasons. When I was a little kid, I happened to see the Rankin-Bass animated version of The Hobbit, which followed the book fairly well and wasn't nearly as bad as their follow-up version of Return of the King. But one thing about the animated movies that really stuck in my mind was the voice of John Huston as Gandalf, which has set as hard as cement in my mental version of the stories. His voice is very clear, timeworn, and certain which is exactly the way I imagined Gandalf to be. There is something doddering and wispy about McKellen that I didn't like when he played Magneto in X-Men and it is the same for Fellowship. I thought he was great in Richard III but not the perfect Gandalf. I don't know who would have been better but I couldn't improve upon the image of the animated Gandalf and Huston's voice.



Small errors in CGI gave me a big headache (none / 0) (#71)
by Rizzen on Thu Dec 20, 2001 at 06:21:53 PM EST

Overall, I throroughly enjoyed the movie, and will be seeing it again.

There were only four things that kept it from being perfect for me:
1. The orcs had horrible makeup/design, IMO. I always liked Angus McBride's depiction of orces as you could more easily see the elven-blood in them. I found these orcs to be too slimy and sounded like crap.

2. Since when are orcs born from mud-pies??

3. There was a distinct glow around the actors whenever a CGI background or character was on screen with them. This glow and strange "floating" effect gave me a head-ache quite quickly, and didn't go away until around noon today. Maybe my eyes are just off enough for this to be a problem??

4. The actors' eyes rarely lined up with the Hobbit/Dwarf they were supposed to be looking at, especially Gandalf's. Was quite disconcerting to see the wise wizard staring into space while talking to Frodo ... made him seem like a blind man.

However, these are all small technical details. The plot was well crafted with just the right amount of background for the story to make sense to those who haven't read any Tolkien books, the acting was top notch (not often you make 20-somethings seem like grown children), the effect were subtle but effective, and the sound was very nice. Too bad it's another year until the next one. :(
----- The years of peak mental activity are undoubtedly those between the ages of 4 and 18. At age four, we know all the questions; at eighteen, we have all the answers. -- unknown
Uruk-hai (none / 0) (#96)
by joecool12321 on Sun Dec 23, 2001 at 02:48:10 AM EST

Since when are orcs born from mud-pies??

I believe you're speaking of the Uruk-hai, bred from Orcs and Saruman's magic, IIRC. I don't know if they're in the Trillogy, I don't have my books near me (I'm pretty sure they're not). They were added to increase Saruman's role as a villan. Very few "normal" people can handle a true anti-quest.

--Joey

[ Parent ]

They are in the Trilogy (none / 0) (#99)
by Rizzen on Mon Dec 24, 2001 at 12:48:29 PM EST

But they are bred from humans and orcs and magic. AFAIR, there were no "magical mud-pies" in the Trilogy. Trolls, I could see being created like that, but not orcs.
----- The years of peak mental activity are undoubtedly those between the ages of 4 and 18. At age four, we know all the questions; at eighteen, we have all the answers. -- unknown
[ Parent ]
Looking Forward (none / 0) (#80)
by senjiro on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 08:57:59 AM EST

I was very impressed. As a movie, I can offer little criticism, all I can really do is make comparisons to the book, which is hardly fair.

The movie itself is one of the best in memory. CG was neither an afterthought, nor did it overshadow plot and character development. Acting/casting was great, except Agent Smith as Elrond.

<rant>Elves are immortal and beautiful. Agent Smith is balding. Those two concepts do not mix.</rant>
Action I thought was very well done.
The Ringwraiths made me pee my pants. Figuratively.
What I'm looking forward to now is:

The Battle Of Helms Deep.
The Muster of Rohan.
Shelob
Barad-Dur
Winged Nazguls
and
ENTS fighting Sarumon at Isengard. THINK OF IT!

how long is it until next christmas?
it is by will alone that i set my mind in motion
Balding is nothing! (none / 0) (#87)
by Happy Monkey on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 03:36:02 PM EST

Elves are immortal and beautiful. Agent Smith is balding. Those two concepts do not mix.

Well, the actor playing Legolas had a mohawk...
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Length 17, Width 3
[ Parent ]
Elrond is no pure elf (5.00 / 1) (#88)
by twi on Fri Dec 21, 2001 at 06:42:10 PM EST

> Acting/casting was great, except Agent Smith as Elrond.

I too found Elrond irritating, but only because he instantly reminded me of Agent Smith and I could not take him serious for it.

> Elves are immortal and beautiful. Agent Smith is balding. Those two concepts do not mix.

That's not as wrong as it seems, for Elrond is "only" a half-elf, his father was human. He is somewhat removed from the "high-elves" of lorien, as is his daughter Arwen (they both have dark hair). So, for a half-human of over 3000 years of age he looked rather well to me ;-)

[ Parent ]

mea culpa (none / 0) (#91)
by senjiro on Sat Dec 22, 2001 at 12:10:10 PM EST

>That's not as wrong as it seems, for Elrond is "only" a half-elf, his father was human. He is somewhat removed from the "high-elves" of lorien, as is his daughter Arwen (they both have dark hair). So, for a half-human of over 3000 years of age he looked rather well to me ;-)

I was preparing for an epic battle of flame and sorrow, when I decided to grab my copy and re-read a bit on elrond. I stand corrected, he _is_ half elf/half human. I still think he was a bad casting decision. I didn't have much difficulty with his performance, per se, but he just didn't do elrond for me. Everybody else: swell.
it is by will alone that i set my mind in motion
[ Parent ]
However... (none / 0) (#93)
by Elendale on Sat Dec 22, 2001 at 07:12:01 PM EST

Unless i'm mistaken, Elrond "chose" immortality over mortality- what that means, i have no idea.
In other news, i highly recommend this movie- despite the fact that i despised it. If there were no LotR books, i would absolutely love it- but since there are books, i just can't divorce myself from them :/

In any case: Excellent, if pointless, movie.

-Elendale
---

When free speech is outlawed, only criminals will complain.


[ Parent ]
Deliberate, perhaps? (none / 0) (#92)
by Tatarigami on Sat Dec 22, 2001 at 05:33:09 PM EST

Maybe the casting of an actor who looked a little bit time-worn was intentional. I would have found it a bit harder to accept someone who looked as young as Legolas as a battle-hardened warrior of the before times who fought in the first war against Sauron.

[ Parent ]
Not at all (none / 0) (#97)
by crazycanuck on Sun Dec 23, 2001 at 08:32:05 PM EST

Elves are immortal. they do not age but simply become more beutiful with time. Take for example Galadriel (the Lady of the woods). She is Arwen's grandmother. She is older than Elrond but looks much younger.

[ Parent ]
Agent Smith (2.00 / 1) (#95)
by scanman on Sun Dec 23, 2001 at 01:46:08 AM EST

"Welcome to Rivendell, Mister Anderson. I am Elrond. Agent Elrond."

"[You are] a narrow-minded moron [and] a complete loser." - David Quartz
"scanman: The moron." - ucblockhead
"I prefer the term 'lifeskills impaired'" - Inoshiro

[ Parent ]

Greetings from Middle Earth (3.00 / 1) (#90)
by Leanda on Sat Dec 22, 2001 at 04:16:44 AM EST

Well, you'd have thought that Peter Jackson had invented a cure for cancer, the way that Wellington has been acting. And, for those of you that don't know, Wellington is where Peter lives, and New Zealand is where the film was shot.

The newspaper, radio stations etc have all be renamed 'Middle Earth' for the week of the Australasian premier .. though we are pretty but up about not getting to host the world premier of Fellowship.

Anyway, the place is LOTR mad! Hope that the film inspires you enought to visit NZ and see the stunning natural beauty for yourselves! :o)

~L~

Gandalf Becomes A Bumbling Fool(BIG spoiler) (none / 0) (#107)
by PowerPimp on Mon Dec 31, 2001 at 03:41:19 AM EST

Well, only if you havn't read the book...

The biggest problem I have is that Gandalf's protracted fall into the pit makes it seem like he messed up, that he had not planned to sacrifice himself, and that he is, in fact, a bumbling fool, not Gandalf the Grey.


You'd better take care of me God; otherwise, you'll have me on your hands...
Review: Lord of the Rings | 108 comments (106 topical, 2 editorial, 0 hidden)
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