Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Guest

LOTR EEs

Recommended Posts

The one-and-only time I have seen all three films back-to-back was on "Trilogy Tuesday", the day before TRotK came out -- and then, only the first two films were the EE versions.

FWIW, my wife (oh, what a lovely phrase) is thinking of doing an EE marathon, probably after Lent, during which she plans to serve food at all the Hobbit-ish mealtimes (breakfast, second breakfast, elevenses, lunch, etc.). Anybody know of any good Middle-Earth cookbooks?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
FWIW, my wife (oh, what a lovely phrase)....

dry.gif ...obviously, marriage suits you!

Anybody know of any good Middle-Earth cookbooks?

No, but I ran across Francine Segan's Movie Menus the other day at a trade show: 'Recipes for Perfect meals with your Favorite Films'. Random House, ISBN0-8129-699-8. Sorry -- that's all I know about it, so it may or may not help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's a pretty cool review, there. Very thorough and accurate. It's the first time I've seen the whole saga reviewed as one movie.

I just watched the RotK special edition for the first time myself, over the weekend. All the new additions were excellent except the drinking game scene, and to a lesser extent, the Mouth of Sauron scene. The Mouth looked more like something out of Hellboy than I would have liked.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the link Peter. It was an interesting read, though too worshipful by half:

"In sum: it is no exaggeration to call The Lord of the Rings a masterpiece, and one of the very greatest accomplishments in the history of film. It is highly doubtful that it could ever be surpassed."

Uhh... right.

I did appreciate that he attempted to draw out some of the faith themes and parallels that might otherwise be overlooked.

A factual quibble:

"In the final battle, a moth issues forth from Gandalf's sword, then turns into a mighty eagle."

I must have missed this particular event... huh.gif

"...the concept of eternal life is touchingly enunciated by Gandalf, in a wonderful passage taken almost verbatim from the climax of the book (describing Frodo approaching the Undying Lands). As they sit barricaded in Minas Tirith, with enemy forces closing in, the wizard says to Pippin: 'No, the journey doesn't end here. Death is just another path, one that we all must take. The grey rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and all turns to silver glass. And then you see it . . . white shores

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I must confess I had not read Tolkien's appended story of Aragorn and Arwen -- at least in a long time -- and didn't realize how much of that subplot was in fact drawn from Tolkien. That bumps the film (as adaptation) up a notch or two in my book.

"In the final battle, a moth issues forth from Gandalf's sword, then turns into a mighty eagle."

I must have missed this particular event...  huh.gif

The writer is a bit confused here. Of course the moth doesn't turn into an eagle -- it is the harbinger of the eagle. It's the same moth that that Gandalf caught and sent to find Gwaihir the Eagle while imprisoned on Orthanc in the first film, and it reappeared just as Gwaihir arrived to rescue Gandalf. Now, in the third film, the moth shows up again, and so of course we know that the Eagles are about to arrive. It's quite nicely done (though how the moth could arrive before Gwaihir both times is a bit puzzling... perhaps it hitches a ride with the eagle, and then the eagle goes into a holding pattern and sends the moth ahead to announce his imminent arrival).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
So, we started with an amalgamated "first and second breakfast" (scrambled eggs, hashed browns, cinnamon bread, butter), and we proceeded from there through "elevenses" (mango, pineapple, strawberries, three kinds of whipped cream: plain, amaretto, chocolate & triple sec), "luncheon" (sandwich ingredients: smoked salmon, oregano bread, cucumbers, green peppers, mushrooms, three kinds of cheese: feta, mozzarella, marble), "tea" (key lime pie, chocolate cake, spice cake, whipped cream redux), "dinner" (breaded chicken or fish, chips) and "supper" (luncheon redux).

Man, you must've had a ton of leftovers. wink.gif

I can understand the reasons behind many of the changes that were made to the characters and situations, but these changes do result in a number of gaping plot holes which, as Tolkien might put it, disrupt the storyteller's efforts to "create belief" and thus require the viewer to "condescend" to the film by "suspending disbelief".

What kind of plot holes? I'd be interested in hearing more on these. I agree with you that Towers is the weakest of the three, but I didn't notice any significant plot holes myself. My quibbles were that the Ents were given too many fruitless walking scenes, the Nazgul lost some of their spine-chilling "Holy Crap!" factor, and the Eye of Sauron became a lighthouse bulb. Though the EE did remedy these things to some extent, I thought.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Let's start with the Ents.

1. Why do so many of them just happen to be standing near the edge of Fangorn Forest when Treebeard issues the call to war?

1.a. Why did none of THEM notice what had happened to the forest?

2. The EE actually specifies that the trees talk to each other. (This is not spelled out in the theatrical version of the film.) So why haven't THE TREES tried to tell the Ents what Saruman has been doing to them? Especially if, y'know, Treebeard counts many of those trees as lifelong friends.

3. And this is before we get to the question of why the never-be-hasty Ents would turn on a dime and suddenly do something so, well, hasty. It takes them the better part of a day to say "Good morning," but they apparently have some code yodel that makes them all drop whatever they're doing and go to war once every few thousand years!?

That's just for starters.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did a search and I don't think we've discussed Tolkien's concept of "eucatastrophe." If so, sorry - If not I find this fascinating and very helpful in understanding the direction and purpose of the LOTR.

I watched the discussion on the extended version DVD and they had some wonderful scholars discussing Tolkien's creation of this word. The scholars made the point that in Tolkien's view most classic literature and novels were filled with both catastrophes and eucatastrophes - sudden problems that befell the characters, but ALSO sudden providential solutions that also seemed to befall the characters - without anything they did to cause this good thing to happen. Tolkien also noted that in the modern novel you seldom find the eucatastrophic events. This is what removing the Gospel from modern culture then creates, stories without hope, or a tragic tragedy.

I don't have that discussion - but here is one one scholar's explanation which says basically the same thing:

Catastrophe and Eucatastrophe: Russell and Tolkien on the True Form of Fiction

by Christopher H. Toner

By

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We recently finished watching all three EEs over the course of three weeks (one per weekend). Two big surprises this time around: Fellowship seemed weaker than the other two, and Towers ended up the favourite.

I've been thinking about this and I think it comes down to the required amount of suspension of disbelief. Seeing Fellowship in the theater was a great moment in my cinematic journey. And with the huge screen, and huge expectations, and a hugely supportive audience, it makes sense that I'd've been able to suspend a certain amount of disbelief. Without those ideal or finely-tuned conditions, I found the movie much less engrossing. I still found moments, even whole scenes, a wonderful cinema, but too often some aspect distracted. Lorien just looked a little too much like a Star Trek set.

Towers is a much more action-oriented story, as portrayed in the film. And it was much more engaging. I spent less time thinking how some set piece looked like a set peice, and more time enjoying the dialogue and other character interaction.

Return was somewhere in the middle...I still think the conclusion is the most affecting part of the trilogy.

Anyway, I was just suprised to find the Towers could work better than the other two.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...