PJs' Movie bits which enhanced the text.

What do you think of Tolkien on the silver screen...? Whether Bakshi, Jackson, or whoever else, come on in and discuss your reflections, opinions, and memories...

PJs' Movie bits which enhanced the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Mon Mar 04, 2013 1:28 pm

For those who have read LOTR and seen PJs' movie adaptation of LOTR...

Regardless of what you experienced first...

What of text LOTR do you now enjoy even more because of PJs' LOTR movies?

What did you experience in PJs' LOTR movies which further enhanced your joy of text LOTR?

More or less, after seeing the movie, now...when you read the text..do you find yourself thinking of the enhancement / adaptation in a good way?

=============

I will go first.

I found Boromir much more interesting in the movie. I felt I "knew" him..more than I did from the text. I better "understood" him. I felt more compassion for him and felt sad when he died. Much more sad than I felt when reading the text. That remains a highlight for me...from the movie.

Please share your highlight(s).

Which can be in reference to any character..any scene...any moment...any view...any action...anything.

=================

In your opinion....

What did the movies get right?

What did the movies enhance?


Agreement, debate and or differences of opinion are very welcome.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby Melwa » Mon Mar 04, 2013 3:55 pm

Cool idea, FT!

(ha! Beat you here, Siddo!)

I enjoyed the movie's point that because Bag End is large by hobbit standards does not necessarily mean that it is tall. Seeing how Gandalf interacts differently with the short hobbits, and how he stoops in Bag End made good sense to me.

The movie made me realize that Saruman must have made very few obvious changes to Isengard before Gandalf arrived. Otherwise, Gandalf would have been instantly suspicious.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Mon Mar 04, 2013 4:38 pm

Melwa wrote:The movie made me realize that Saruman must have made very few obvious changes to Isengard before Gandalf arrived. Otherwise, Gandalf would have been instantly suspicious.


Thank you Melwa.

"Saruman must have made very few obvious changes to Isengard"


I agree..then Gandalf looks down from the pinnacle of Orthanc and sees what "has changed".

I, too, enjoyed that sequence.

I remember Gandalf...in the movie...feeling very hopeful and quite at ease..walking with Saruman through the gardens and trees of Isengard.

The contrast. The irony of it all.

Thanks again Melwa.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby siddharth » Tue Mar 05, 2013 4:08 am

Melwa wrote:(ha! Beat you here, Siddo!)


:roll: Probably the first and the last time! :roll: And anyway, I was busy with bugging tests! =:)

On the Topic...

As far as I feel, I don't think PJ's movies "bettered" the text excepting Boromir. And I have seen the movies and THEN read the books, mind you. But I do think the movies enhanced my reading of the books. For example, I was sooo awestruck when I saw the Argonath in the movie that I was really very excited when I read that part of the text. I paid special attention to it. Yes, I think the Argonath vision was awesome. At least for me. :wink:
the same goes with Minas Trith and Lothlorien as well.

Among the changes, I feel the one that really was a cool change was the arrival of the elves at Helm's Deep. Topsy-turvy it may seem to a few, but that scene still gives me the chills!!! It's so Silmarillion-esque!!

I like the tension in the scene when the three reach the Black Gate and sam almost gets discovered. It was really tense, one I missed in the books.

And of course the Balrog scene!!! Another of those chilling scenes! To be honest, that scene really drew me into the Tolkien-universe. I was forced to take up the book and read! And it's considered one of the iconic scenes of LOTR. And I very much enjoyed it in the book too.

And my most favourite part of the whole trilogy is the climax. Perhaps the only time, I really wished while reading the book that JRRT should have written like in the films (don't hit me. It;s my own opinion only! :D ). I was very disappointed when Gollum fell into the Cracks by "chance". Yes, later I came to know that it was Eru's doing. But that honestly ruins the seriousness of the quest. And so I prefer the PJ version in that only case, where Frodo pushes Gollum.


Anyway. These are my opinions. I have read the books, after seeing the films. So perhaps my views are biased, or perhaps not.
And thanks FT for the insightful thread. If you don't mind, can you tell me how the thought of this thread came to your mind? Just curious! :D :D :D
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:07 pm

Hey Sid

You have mentioned many scenes which I think PJ "got right". Many scenes were well received and accepted by my mind in reference to what I imagined as I read the text prior to the movie.

Following is one scene which I think PJ "got right"...which has enhanced my joy as I re-read the text.

All of The Shire..right from the beginning of the FOTR movie. I was in awe and so very happy to see Middle-earth..well in accordance with my personal vision from the text.
My goal, as I drove to the theater, was to "go to" Middle-earth. I was "dressed up". I had my cloak on..ready to travel. The Shire, much to my personal joy, took me to Middle-earth immediately.

That, my friend, is a very good memory for me because I was so looking forward to PJs' version. And not just because it was PJs.

It was because it was going to be new to me...the most recent adaptation...which I was going to experience. I am 59 years old now but well remember when I went to the theater to see the "earlier ones" ( Ralph Bakshi and Rankin / Bass ) when they first came out. I felt joy in seeing them and have copies of them. What I saw then was what I got and was so very glad to get "something". I found joy overall and it remains a cool memory seeing other fans in the theater.

But first seeing them was a long time ago indeed.

2001 was the time for a new movie Middle-earth experience for me and I was glad I was still alive to experience it. VERY GLAD. :)

siddharth wrote:can you tell me how the thought of this thread came to your mind?


Probably from reading thoughts shared in another thread which is usually what prompts me. But sometimes, like you, I just come up with a thread because...well...I just want to hear what folks think on a random thing..which is rattling around in my mind and want to hear folks weigh in...so I can learn from them. :)

I really would love to hear from those who dislike most of PJs' adaptation and hear what single bit or few bits they did enjoy...if any.

I see that that this thread is getting quite a few views..I wish more would share their thoughts.

==========

That said...

I, too, enjoyed...just to name a few from memory.

Rivendell

Moria...especially with The Balrog..will say though..I did not care for the insect ORCs...crawling down the columns ( minor complaint )

Cirith Ungol..and the climb up to it...will say though that I did not like Frodo turning Sam away. A major departure for me..I did not like that.

Shelobs Lair...cutting the web and a very scary spider...with many eyes...her impaling herself on Sams blade...then crawling away..AWESOME!!!

The Argonath..I so agree..AWESOME!!! Also remembering the bird which flew away.

Helms Deep..got a bit campy..but am OK overall.

Minas Tirith..when I saw it..I loved it.

My percentage of joy was high at each place...even if it was not 100%.

The good definitely out weighed the bad for me..by a long shot...at each of those places.

As I type this I feel moved to see the movie again..after I read the text again.

Always...The cycle continues. I keep going back again and always find more to enjoy...in the texts and in the movies.

I "still wish" the Scouring had been included. I still remain a purist...to quite a degree. :)

I do relate to both extremes and love learning from both ends of the spectrum....and from those in between.

That is why I love TORC so very much..and why I keep on coming back here.

My joy of Middle-earth is enhanced by each of you and all of you.

I thank you all VERY MUCH.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby siddharth » Thu Mar 07, 2013 7:05 pm

Ah yes FT! The Shire! I still wish to be a hobbit when I see the Shire scenes.
And another that comes to my mind are the Beacon Hills. Yes they were portrayed larger than given in the texts but the sheer majesty of the scene and Shore's beautiful music overwhelmed me. Then and now.
And Sam leaving Frodo was not very good. I agree. It was very unlike Sam to do that.

I forgot to mention Charge of the Rohirrim at Pellenor . . . one of the best scenes. E.V.E.R. Still feel the chills at Theoden's speech!

As for TH AUJ, as I read it before the movies, I can give examples that enhanced the text in a more unbiased view.

Erebor. . . . I never imagined it to be so big. And after we got a glimpse of Dwarrowdelf, I wanted to see more of the dwarven architecture. And Erebor is COOL!

Radagast definitely. We get to know about him a lot more than from Tolkien. As for the bird-poop, I ike to think of it as some sort of lichen. :P

Bilbo. I loved the book Bilbo. And was more than satisfied with what Mr. Freeman gave us.

Dol Guldur. Much bigger and spookier than I thought. But very befitting as Sauron's abode.

Goblin King. In the book, he really was nothing more than someone to give the orders.

Now lets see what other purists think of this. :)


Thank you Peter Jackson for introducing me to Tolkien and thank you JRRT for creating another world for me to live in and wonder about.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby Swordsman_Of_The_Tower » Fri Mar 08, 2013 7:52 am

Moria. It was sparse in the book. I liked the goblins, they looked like they fit where they were living. This is also one of the very few times movie Gimli was as good as book Gimli IMO

Amon Hen.

Helms Deep (yes I liked the Galadrihm being there)

Book Sam was a bit...........dense to be honest. Of course that fits in with the reactionary look at class present in the book in that all the heroes are well bred, and the one normal person is a simpleton.

Erebor

Radagast
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby Noria » Thu Mar 14, 2013 1:20 pm

Swordsman_Of_The_Tower wrote:Book Sam was a bit...........dense to be honest. Of course that fits in with the reactionary look at class present in the book in that all the heroes are well bred, and the one normal person is a simpleton.


I agree with this assessment of class in LotR. Sam works in the book, book Sam wouldn't work in a movie, especially for a modern audience.

I also liked the more human Boromir much better in the movies and Aragorn as well for the same reason. They were much more interesting to me than their book counterparts.

As for The Hobbit, I didn't read the book as a child and so have always found it's tone and general childishness a bit irritating even as I love it as a whole. Heresy, I know, but there it is :D . So there are many things about the movie that I prefer. One of the biggest is the dwarves, all of them. Instead of grumpy Thorin, Balin and eleven garden gnomes, we get thirteen distinct characters, even if as this point it only visual distinction for some of them. I like their group persona and the fact that, while they still get captured, at least they put up a pretty good fight instead of being herded around like a flock of particularly dumb sheep. I do rather like how PJ tried, IMO, to capture the whimsy of the book in a way more suited to modern audiences, with Radagast and the bunny sled, the trolls, the Great Goblin, and the over-the-top action.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby solicitr » Fri Mar 15, 2013 9:37 am

I do rather like how PJ tried, IMO, to capture the whimsy of the book in a way more suited to modern audiences, with Radagast and the bunny sled, the trolls, the Great Goblin, and the over-the-top action.


That's not 'capturing' the whimsy of the book, that's replacing Tolkien's donnish drollery with a completely alien form of 'whimsy' more suited to Hanna-Barbera.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby Melwa » Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:22 pm

Come, solictr, this is a complimenting thread, not a criticizing one. For every critique of the subject, you must give at least one compliment. :D
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:14 pm

Melwa wrote:Come, solictr, this is a complimenting thread, not a criticizing one. For every critique of the subject, you must give at least one compliment. :D


Hey Melwa.

I did say in the initial message...

Agreement, debate and or differences of opinion are very welcome.


So I do agree that solictrs' comment is in line.

But I stiil do wonder if solictr found "anything" enjoyable in PJs' adaptation...feeling the adaptation "got it right".

OK..I WILL NOW YELL OUT LOUD AT solictr

solictr

WHAT DO YOU FEEL PJS' MOVIES "GOT RIGHT".

WITH YOUR FEELING SOME BIT..even if it be just one bit...you personally found IN HARMONY WITH YOUR JOY OF THE TEXT?


ANYTHING?

By Eru...I will start a new thread and ask you, if you not reply in this thread.

Pistols at dawn. :)
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby solicitr » Sun Mar 17, 2013 6:48 am

There were moments that PJ got right. "Where are the horse and the rider" worked. The Bag End set was very nice, as was Edoras. Wormtongue's scene with Eowyn was creepily good. Boromir's last stand was great, and I agree that PJ made him a more sympathetic character than in the book. The 'mourning' scene outside Moria was very good indeed, and I liked 'the end of all things' bit on Mount Doom.

But these moments, sadly, are just occasional glints of gold, to me, almost devoid of context, or rather mis-fit into a context devised by a screenwriter/director who *just doesn't get it.*
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby ToshoftheWuffingas » Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:50 am

Sometimes PJ caught the essence of Tolkien. Frodo's first sight of Arwen through his shadow sight, he sees the inner light (of The Trees?) and then we cut to her normal self. There was no point to it for any narrative reason but the fans would know the reference. ( I know Arwen was born Ages after the Two Trees btw) But the bit that resonated with me and was not canon but revealed a deeper understanding is during the cliched hand grasp after the Ring has fallen in the fire. Frodo wants to follow it and Sam pleads with him. The Ring floats on the lava. Only when Frodo rejects the Ring or despair and takes Sam's hand does it melt. It's subtle but crucial.
Shelob was pretty darn effective too.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby Melwa » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:57 am

:clap: solicter!
I know what you mean about occasional glints that don't always fit their context. I watched the movies once, but feel no urge to purchase them. (TH, on the other hand . . .) I too really liked seeing Boromir's last stand. A friend asked me what my favorite part of FOTR was and I had to say both of the "deaths" - Gandalf's and Boromir's. Not that I like them dying, but it was done well. :roll:

TotW, I also was quite satisfied by Shelob. :)

Ooh, onto TH. I loved that first exchange between Gandalf and Bilbo. Bilbo's expressions were so perfect, and Gandalf asked things so strangely!
Erebor was so dwarvish it got me. The strange weapons, not so much, but I just loved the - oh, how can I say it - the elegant chunkiness of the dwarvish buildings. The other places like Dale and Goblin-town didn't jump out at me nearly as much.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Mon Mar 18, 2013 5:16 pm

solicitr wrote:There were moments that PJ got right....Wormtongue's scene with Eowyn was creepily good.


I thank you for saying so solicitr

Of that, we definitely agree. Brad Dourif, who in my opinion was excellently cast, enhanced Wormtongue for me..creepy indeed.

Also..thinking on the movie...I wish I could have seen the "Scouring" and wish I could have seen Grima stab Saruman in The Shire and seen Saruman's spirit being "denied"..turned away...blown away.

I found myself wanting to see "more".

I remain purist..to a very high degree.

In contrast...My consolation...thinking..maybe some things are best just left to and in my imagination.

Kinda mixed up emotions for me. But still joyful.

I Thank you again.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Mon Mar 18, 2013 5:56 pm

Melwa wrote: TH...Erebor was so dwarvish it got me. The strange weapons, not so much, but I just loved the - oh, how can I say it - the elegant chunkiness of the dwarvish buildings.


I enjoyed what you said Melwa and thank you for sharing.

Reading your thoughts which further "enhance", I enjoy thinking the "chunkiness" / influence you are referring to originated from Aule....Mahal
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby siddharth » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:14 pm

FrodoTook wrote:
solicitr wrote:There were moments that PJ got right....Wormtongue's scene with Eowyn was creepily good.


I thank you for saying so solicitr

Of that, we definitely agree. Brad Dourif, who in my opinion was excellently cast, enhanced Wormtongue for me..creepy indeed.


Umm, sorry but I have to disagree on that.

In the book, Wormtongue is described as a wise but evil man. He looked wise. But the film Wormtongue looked sort of a ruffian picked up from the road by Saruman to serve as spy. And no eyebrows?????
(Gandalf says) "The wise speak only of what they know, Gríma son of Gálmód. A witless worm have you become. Therefore be silent, and keep your forked tongue behind your teeth. I have not passed through fire and death to bandy crooked words with a serving-man till the lightning falls."

“At his feet upon the steps sat a wizened figure of a man, with a pale wise face and heavy-lidded eyes.”

That does indicate he was wise once. But atleast I cannot imagine the film Grima to be wise E.V.E.R.

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Even the way he speaks his dialogues makes him appear more of an uncouth and ignorant fool. (Have ye seen the yellow teeth and the greenish slimy skin? :wink: )
Dourif could have been a good as Grima if the character was represented more like the book, but one can never tell. I think it's mostly the screenwriters' fault.
But I do agree, Dourif does play the "neo" Grima very well. :)
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:49 pm

Hey Sid

You said...

In the book, Wormtongue is described as a wise but evil man. He looked wise.


He looked wise..by that, do you mean you know he once was?

By neo

Do you mean "most recent"?

Also

From the text, I recall...just from my personal memory, Galdalf saying of Grima

He was "once" wise and of good service.

I could see that in Grima...in the movie.

I also thought the lust of Eowyn was well played by Brad Dourif.

And quite creepy.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:52 pm

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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby siddharth » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:00 pm

FrodoTook wrote:Hey Sid

You said...

In the book, Wormtongue is described as a wise but evil man. He looked wise.


By neo

Do you mean "most recent"?


By neo I mean "modified" Grima (in my most humble opinion) :)

"The wise speak only of what they know, Gríma son of Gálmód. A witless worm have you become. Therefore be silent, and keep your forked tongue behind your teeth. I have not passed through fire and death to bandy crooked words with a serving-man till the lightning falls."


Yes Gandalf does say he was once a wise and of good service.
But atleast to me, he doesn't look like he was wise. And I find his appearance a bit repulsive.
But Dourif plays it very fine, as I said. And the Eowyn scene was great and was in sync with the book.
But could have been more, if Grima's appearance was more befritting (to me).

===============================================

I want to mention another scene from RotK which enhanced my reading.
Gollum's fall into the Cracks of Doom.
It shows so much about Gollum's character without ANY words. He gets the Ring after so much suffering and toil. So he now cares for nothing that's happening around him. He doesn't notice he is falling ... falling... he keeps the Ring close to his heart happy to be at one with his "soulmate". And then he falls in. And even then, he is trying to protect the Ring not caring about his own demise. A perfect sans-dialogue scene that explains away his feelings more clearly than any other of his scenes about the Ring.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:25 pm

Hey Sid

I agree..Grima was repulsive..in the text and in the movie.

As, in the text, he did eventually have a bad influence on Theoden.

But he was "once" wise...but I did not "see" him that way in the text. I remember him as Brad Dourif portrayed him..but not because of how Brad Dourif portrayed him.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:38 pm

siddharth wrote: he ( Gollum ) now cares for nothing that's happening around him. He doesn't notice he is falling ... falling... he keeps the Ring close to his heart happy to be at one with his "soulmate". And then he falls in. And even then, he is trying to protect the Ring not caring about his own demise.


Thank you Sid.

I enjoyed reading your thoughts.

Enhancement..is good for me.

Sincerely..I thank you.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby solicitr » Tue Mar 19, 2013 3:48 pm

I can't disagree with Siddharth: Grima (A-S "Mask") was after all a trusted advisor, an Anthony Blunt, not a guy whose very appearance shrieks Evil Guy! Don't trust this creep!!! If he ain't a traitor he's gotta be at least a child molester!!!!!!!

IMO that mistake in costume/makeup doesn't hurt the Eowyn scene too much, because there Grima is revealing himself, at least in part, as a villain. But it really works of course because the lines are Genuine Tolkien Text(tm), even if borrowed from elsewhere in the book.


--------------------------

Last night I ran into something that might help explain how I feel: my kid for some reason watched back-to-back one of the episodes of Sherlock (Cumberbatch), and the second of the movies (Downey). Now Guy Ritchie invested enormous care in sets and costumes and props and so on in meticulously re-creating Victorian London (and Paris etc)- but it's just sets and costumes; the entire feel and spirit is all wrong. This is not Conan-Doyle, this is a rollicking steampunk adventure with two guys who happen to be called Holmes and Watson. Ritchie just doesn't get Conan-Doyle: he's made a retro Mission Impossible movie.

Whereas the TV series, despite of course not being Victorian in the slightest degree, does capture the feel and spirit of Conan-Doyle, and the personality of Holmes, as spot-on as anything since the Jeremy Brett series, or even more so (since I think Freeman is closer to book-Watson)

PJ's movies unfortunately are like Guy Ritchie's. Their "Tolkienism" is all on the surface.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby Melwa » Tue Mar 19, 2013 9:06 pm

I've only seen the movies once and read the books about 4 times, so I'm not diving into the Grima debate. :D

solictr wrote:Now Guy Ritchie invested enormous care in sets and costumes and props and so on in meticulously re-creating Victorian London (and Paris etc)- but it's just sets and costumes; the entire feel and spirit is all wrong.

PJ's movies unfortunately are like Guy Ritchie's. Their "Tolkienism" is all on the surface.

I see what you mean. :cry2: Well, in that case, were there times where his scenery enhanced your picture of Tolkien's world? Times when because you didn't have to focus your imagination on the setting, you could concentrate on the important stuff like the characters more during readings?
Another question is are there things that you didn't notice about the text until you found that the movie had changed them? :wink: I could probably find a few like that . . .
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby siddharth » Wed Mar 20, 2013 9:05 pm

solicitr wrote:Last night I ran into something that might help explain how I feel: my kid for some reason watched back-to-back one of the episodes of Sherlock (Cumberbatch), and the second of the movies (Downey). Now Guy Ritchie invested enormous care in sets and costumes and props and so on in meticulously re-creating Victorian London (and Paris etc)- but it's just sets and costumes; the entire feel and spirit is all wrong. This is not Conan-Doyle, this is a rollicking steampunk adventure with two guys who happen to be called Holmes and Watson. Ritchie just doesn't get Conan-Doyle: he's made a retro Mission Impossible movie.

Whereas the TV series, despite of course not being Victorian in the slightest degree, does capture the feel and spirit of Conan-Doyle, and the personality of Holmes, as spot-on as anything since the Jeremy Brett series, or even more so (since I think Freeman is closer to book-Watson)

PJ's movies unfortunately are like Guy Ritchie's. Their "Tolkienism" is all on the surface.


I do get now, how you feel about the films. because I simply hate the Downing-Sherlock franchise. I really cannot find any reason at all to call the series "Sherlock Holmes"! XO
But, as you perhaps know, I have got to Tolkien by the films. So, I love them and the books as well. And I think PJ did get the atnosphere and characters right in the films, at least to some level (And definitely, the changes in the storyline and the feel are not that drastic as the Sherlock-thing you mentioned, imho!)

For the Grima debate...
As solicitr said, in my humble opinion, just because he's the bad guy doesn't mean he should look the most evil of all men on ME. In the book, the first description of Grima, when Gandalf enters Meduself, says he had a pale but a wise face. So, I think the appearance is a departure from the descriptions in the text. Only my opinion. :)
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby ToshoftheWuffingas » Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:03 am

I agree with solicitr (pour yourself a stiff whisky). Grima needs to look trustable. But PJ favoured the pantomime school of acting. It's what seems to jar in The Hobbit actually. Martin Freeman tries to play it fairly naturalistically and it sticks out like a sore thumb. In the context of The Hobbit it doesn't matter so much....so far. The clearest example I can quote is the Smeagol and Deagol episode in the fishing boat. In no way are the two actors playing that sequence as real life and I know Serkis can do that. In my TV serial attempt I tried to portray Grima when we first see him as clerical, busy doing all the paperwork in an illiterate society. Textbook Hollywood villainous lawyer maybe :twisted: Other than Grima, PJ got Rohan fairly right.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby solicitr » Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:13 am

In general I thought that Rohan was the most successful exercise in production design in the whole trilogy. The equipment and horse-tack of the Riders was spot-on; Edoras both in location and rendering was glorious. The two exceptions were the civilian populace, which were Generic Hollywood Peasant; and the unfortunate fact that the "plains of Rohan" location chosen was too rocky, not really the steppe or prairie required... but NZ may not have any of that.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby FrodoTook » Thu Mar 21, 2013 11:32 am

solicitr wrote:In general I thought that Rohan was the most successful exercise in production design in the whole trilogy. The equipment and horse-tack of the Riders was spot-on; Edoras both in location and rendering was glorious. The two exceptions were the civilian populace, which were Generic Hollywood Peasant; and the unfortunate fact that the "plains of Rohan" location chosen was too rocky, not really the steppe or prairie required... but NZ may not have any of that.


I seem to remember that the lack of plains / steppe / prairie in NZ was mentioned in one of the directors documentaries of the LOTR film. It was said that the location scouts diligently searched, via helicopter, for appropriate landscape but could not find any. As an aside, it would have been grande to have seen the "plains of Rohan" on the left and the White Mountains on the right during Gandalf's ride ( with Pippin ) on their way to Minas Tirith.

I do agree that Edoras was wonderful. Inside and out.

I also thought Minas Tirith looked awesome.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby siddharth » Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:48 pm

solicitr wrote:... and the unfortunate fact that the "plains of Rohan" location chosen was too rocky, not really the steppe or prairie required... but NZ may not have any of that.


I agree. A Rohan with green fields would have been so beautiful and perfect.

Solicitr, what do you think about Minas Tirith and Argonath? I do think the sets pretty much matched the descriptions.
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Re: PJs' Movie bits which enhanced ( or bettered ) the text.

Postby solicitr » Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:21 am

siddharth wrote:
solicitr wrote:... and the unfortunate fact that the "plains of Rohan" location chosen was too rocky, not really the steppe or prairie required... but NZ may not have any of that.


I agree. A Rohan with green fields would have been so beautiful and perfect.

Solicitr, what do you think about Minas Tirith and Argonath? I do think the sets pretty much matched the descriptions.


My problem with Alan Lee's Argonath- and this goes back to his illustration for the 1992 edition- is that those outstretched arms are physically impossible. You just can't make stone do that: its strength is only in compression, not tension. I'm pretty certain that what Tolkien had in mind was something in fashion much more akin to a giant version of a saint or king from the facade of a Romanesque cathedral, with the hand raised (and connected) to the shoulder, not doing an Ave Caesar. (I have a similar complaint with the giant statues of Erebor). I also missed the wild whitewater ride through the ravine, of which the Argonath marked the end.

Minas Tirith in detail, the street shots, was wonderful- these were actual built sets- but in wide shot (model and CGI) looked fake, both in the sense of unconvincing f/x, and the 'artificiality' of the city's form and especially the designers taking the description of the Great Pier being "like a ship's prow" far too literally. I liked Osgiliath better, if one assumes the movie's uncanonical conceit that it had been uninhabited until not long prior. (I also disliked the plate armor, which not only was an anachronism, if one can use that term for Middle-earth, but which also was way too obviously plastic given the way the actors and extras moved in it).
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