rewatching Lord of the Rings

Clint_L

Hero
I re-read the books fairly recently. I prefer them, ultimately, but I also love the films. For me, they are very different properties (which is why I would have preferred Sam and Frodo dying at the end of the films, but not the books).

I'm a literature guy. I teach it. And LotR is such a weirdly unique text. There really is nothing else like it***, even though many have tried. So I find it just fascinating. In particular, I don't understand how it manages to be so completely immersive for me despite often being terribly written, in the usual ways that I measure writing. It is expository, the characters are archetypes rather than individuals, and the dialogue does not read like how real people talk. And I am so there for it.

The films are much more conventional. I absolutely think that was necessary, given how Hollywood works and the amount of money involved. And I think the films are fantastic. But, to me, they don't stand out in the way the books do.

***In literature. The first Stars Wars film approaches it. Which I also love unreservedly despite having many similar criticisms.
 

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reelo

Hero
Had time yesterday to re-watch The Fellowship of the Ring. I am almost speechless at just how moving and how awesome this movie was. Peter Jackson truly created a World on Film that lives and breathes like no other. Will we ever see another movie whether from a franchise or original that even comes close?

Im euphoric that I was born in a time when I got to experience the LOTR on the big screen and sad that this may be the pinnacle of such movies for my lifetime.

Now on to The Two Towers.

Just had to share.

mk
I was fortunate enough to have experienced the world-premier screening of FotR back then in London, red carpet and after-show event and all. I met most of the cast, as well as PJ (and have autographs on the ticket to prove it). Truly memories I will cherish forever.
 

Retreater

Legend
I was fortunate enough to have experienced the world-premier screening of FotR back then in London, red carpet and after-show event and all. I met most of the cast, as well as PJ (and have autographs on the ticket to prove it). Truly memories I will cherish forever.
It doesn't compare, but I had a friend who was a manager of a multiplex when Return of the King released. It was a Tuesday night, and I worked until 9 pm, drove an hour, then watched the movie at a "special preview" for some of his closest friends. Then drove back home and had to work at 8 am the next morning.
The code to get in was to buy tickets to "Snow White." Well, apparently he had invited over 100 of his "closest friends" for this unsanctioned preview screening.
It was a great time for all the attendees - not so much for my friend. He didn't work there much longer.
 

Heh ... a gifted copy of the remaster blu-ray extended edition trilogy arrived yesterday and I stared watching it today. I've rewatched the theatrical editions a number of times over the years, but it has been 20 years since I watched the extended versions, and I've missed some of the little moments. Mostly in Fellowship; I generally prefer the theatrical versions of the other movies, despite being more of a book fan.

As to the Hobbit, well, it's my favorite book and while I can still bring myself to watch the first movie as pure fantasy entertainment, I really wish someone would remake it. Keep the New Zealand landscape and the Weta visuals, but go back to the book plot. I do have a "There and Back Again" fan edit that burns the whole thing down into a single three-ish hour movie that's pretty good, and as close to the book as you can get with the PJ films, but it's still lacking.

Heck,, I'd even like a remake of the full LotR, filmed as a TV series, at say a chapter an episode, doing the full bit. I'd tolerate Tom Bombadil on screen to be able to see the Scouring filmed.
 

Clint_L

Hero
Heck,, I'd even like a remake of the full LotR, filmed as a TV series, at say a chapter an episode, doing the full bit. I'd tolerate Tom Bombadil on screen to be able to see the Scouring filmed.
In defence of Tom Bombadil.

I agree that the whole TB episode feels like it comes out of left field, and by normal storytelling measures should have been cut. But here's the thing: I think LotR fails by normal storytelling measures in a number of ways. So, for this one singular text, I start to think that those flaws might just be features.

Yes, its characters are mostly archetypal, which lends it the weight of myth. Yes, it's expository, which grants it the depth of history. Yes, the dialogue is often declamatory, but that emphasizes the importance of what is being said. And sure, Tom Bombadil seems extraneous, but that contributes to a sense of a real world with a vastness that goes beyond the plot of this one epic story. In his existence, Tom Bombadil kind of explodes the boundaries of a simple Good vs. Evil, biblical narrative, and implies infinite possibilities. I think he opens the world up for the reader's imagination: if there's also a Tom Bombadil who can wander by, what else might there be?

In RPG terms, Tom Bombadil makes LotR a bit more of a sandbox environment. And I think that is a big reason why it has been so foundational to fantasy, and to fantasy RPGs in particular. He suggests the possibility that there is more than one story. And that got our attention, and started our own creative juices flowing.
 

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Others agree with the OP - noted SF author John Scalzi included it as one of his December comfort watches. The one that falls on Christmas no less...

 

Muso

Explorer
Just re-watched the entire trilogy because my daughter asked to me. Every time I do it, then I have to read again the book in order to make peace with my favoured characters raped by PJ (Faramir, Treebeard and Gimli, but also poor Denethor) and with the story.
 

Jasperak

Adventurer
I feel the same for the most part. I saw the LotR in the theaters when they out, I liked them well enough but they got worse as they went on. I own the DVDs and watched them when I bought them, but they just collect dust nowadays, and I can't imagine a time where I'd want to spend 9-10 hours rewatching them. The Hobbit movies sucked, and I think I only saw the first one, and walked out of the second one after less than an hour. If they're on cable I skip right by all six of them every time. Agreed, the books were hard to get through at times.
And after hearing so much negativity about the Hobbit movies, I was glad to find The Hobbit: The Tolkien Edit.
 

Jasperak

Adventurer
Heh ... a gifted copy of the remaster blu-ray extended edition trilogy arrived yesterday and I stared watching it today. I've rewatched the theatrical editions a number of times over the years, but it has been 20 years since I watched the extended versions, and I've missed some of the little moments. Mostly in Fellowship; I generally prefer the theatrical versions of the other movies, despite being more of a book fan.

As to the Hobbit, well, it's my favorite book and while I can still bring myself to watch the first movie as pure fantasy entertainment, I really wish someone would remake it. Keep the New Zealand landscape and the Weta visuals, but go back to the book plot. I do have a "There and Back Again" fan edit that burns the whole thing down into a single three-ish hour movie that's pretty good, and as close to the book as you can get with the PJ films, but it's still lacking.

Heck,, I'd even like a remake of the full LotR, filmed as a TV series, at say a chapter an episode, doing the full bit. I'd tolerate Tom Bombadil on screen to be able to see the Scouring filmed.
Is that the same as the four-hour long 'The Hobbit: The Tolkien Edit' from 2015?
 


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