OK, I've gotta ask...

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Return of the King?

Sigh... I think I'm in love...
Well worth the money
It ain't great
(no answer, suppressing vomit)
(no answer, still in shock after seeing the Pelennor Battle)
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#61 Post by Gwai »

One might well note that the appendices are nice for historians but are Not part of the novels.

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#62 Post by Yottle »

One mention of Arwen?

There are two in the Fellowship: a long description when Frodo is at the feast in Rivendell and then a short exchange between Bilbo and Aragorn afterwards. All of this section is told from Frodo's POV, and he is not particularly concerned about her, but it is clear that Bilbo knows what is going on.

There are many mentions in the Return. She comes to Gondor, marries Aragorn, talks to Frodo and gives him the jewel, rides with the company to Edoras, and says goodbye to her brothers and father.

The long story in the appendix fills this in, and it is entirely consistent with the three books. I think that JRRT added this because the LotR was told by hobbits, who didn't have the background to understand the Arwen and Aragorn story. Much of the other material in the appendices fills in other gaps in the story that hobbits from the Shire would not know about.

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Re: OK, I've gotta ask...

#63 Post by overtrix »

Aragorn's luminous light brigade was more than faintly ridiculous, all the moreso since they toddled off to rest in peace long before the Pelennor Field, didn't they ? ... firmly with Gimli on this one though - "oh just one more thing lads, heh, could we call on another 47.3 seconds of your time to kill the rest of Sauron's army please ?"

Slow motion buffs might want to nip back to Helm's Deep and watch hippy-on-a-rope being pulled back over the wall. That's got to hurt, arm broken in about a dozen places but then just shrugs it off and gets busy again, what a guy.

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Re: OK, I've gotta ask...

#64 Post by bio_hazard »

overtrix wrote:Aragorn's luminous light brigade was more than faintly ridiculous, all the moreso since they toddled off to rest in peace long before the Pelennor Field, didn't they ? ... firmly with Gimli on this one though - "oh just one more thing lads, heh, could we call on another 47.3 seconds of your time to kill the rest of Sauron's army please ?"
This somehow didn't ruin the film for me even if it didn't parallel the books exactly. I always assumed that Sauron or the witch king would have been able to turn the ghost army to their advantage. So it was only in the particular moment in which Eowyn kills the witch king and Sauron is busy driving Denethor mad that the ghost army could be used on the big field of battle. I'd assume they wouldn't be as effective at taking the black gate.

The alternative would be having to explain who the heck all these other men of gondor are who are suddenly leaping off the boats, which might have been even more wtf for people who hadn't read the books, plus it wouldn't have really solved the problem of letting the super army retire before the entire job is done. Gimli would have had the same line, just in a different part of the movie.

The one thing I missed about the books was that the ghost army's only weapon was fear.

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Re: OK, I've gotta ask...

#65 Post by Replikant »

Yeah, reviving dead topics! Probably nobody's going to read this, but I feel strongly about this, so here's my two cents (and anyway there's the "Hobbit" movies now, which suffer from the same problems, imo):

a) The LOTR movies are (for the most part) visually beautiful. New Zealand scenery is great and the props are really well done.

b) In my opinion, the movies were too much tailored for commercial success, unfortunately:
1) major focus on action: Lots of stuff was cut (Bombadil, Scouring of the Shire, ...), allegedly in order to keep the movies at an acceptable length. However, then PJ went and shoehorned a lot of unnecessary stuff back in, completely bloating the movie.
Good examples:
- Aragorn going over the cliff on the warg. Cheap cliffhanger, really, nobody can possibly believe he dies. Come to think of it, the whole warg fight was unnecessary.
- the fight at weathertop, with Aragorn singlehandedly driving off all the Nazgul
- any Aragorn fight, really
- all Legolas superman scenes
So, in essence, in my opinion the books were stripped and used as a convenient background to show as much over-the-top action/fighting as possible. Oh yeah, the fight between the wizards is also a great example. In the Tolkien books, magic is much more subtle. Speaking of subtle, I also didn't particularly like the RoboCop portrayal of Sauron.
2) lots of romance:
The extended screen-time for Arwen, in particular, is obviously a move to cater to the female audience
3) lots of drama:
The amount of time we have to look at Frodos sad puppy eyes is just ridiculous. Just look at the last half-hour of RoTK. Also, I am _really_ annoyed by the cheap suspense generated by having Faramir seize Frode and Sam and ship them to Osgiliath, just to have the opportunity for another completely unnecessary emotion-laden monologue by Sam. As pointed out earlier, this completely kills the fine point Tolkien was making in the character differences between Boromir and Faramir.
4) comic relief: Gimli is reduced to a completely one-dimensional one-liner production machine. In general, funny one-liners which no-one would possible use in any "real" situation, are prevalent. This is something which belongs into sit-coms and action movies but doesn't fit into my understanding of the LOTR grand epic story. It makes the characters completely unbelievable.

c) If we assume for a moment, that these movies have nothing to do with the books, they are OK, compared to other SciFi/fantasy movies out there, which are often quite terrible and clich?d. The LOTR are entertaining, but don't leave a lasting impression. As is the trend in recent Hollywood movies, stories are just used as an excuse to show as much action as possible, which I find unsatisfactory. Then again, I am not in the targeted audience age anymore. However, the visuals are great as is the production quality in general.

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