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  1. #31
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilkRoad View Post
    Do you mean the bit with the Mirror of Galadriel, where she...freaks out, turns into a film negative and has a bizarre boomy voice?
    yes. THAT part.

    I still can't get over how dumb that was. And don't get me wrong, I adore these films, and especially the first, and though I can find things to be critical about, I think all three are fantastic achievements in so many ways. But that bit was just so stupid and cheesy. I remember having a total WTF moment when I first saw it.
    I know, I feel like Jackson has to somehow make everything overt and concrete; he really didn't know how to work with suggestion and insinuation very well in some parts of the picture. (You'll hear me bitch about this in some other parts of the film where I just felt like powerful scenes from the book were ruined... such as the Balrog, which like I stated the other day looked like a video game boss rather than some larger-than-life demonic spirit.)

    That scene is very powerful, especially for Galadriel's character, and he just clubbed it to death like it was a baby seal and he an Urukhai. There are other ways of being dramatic without slapping electric bolts and voice reverb on someone... especially an elegant elf queen who has been around since the First Age. Jeeez.

    The Arwen race to the ford with Frodo bit is just fabulously powerful. So beautifully filmed and just brings her out as a character. It was one bit I felt I "should" have disapproved of, being a bit of a purist, but I loved it.


    Quote Originally Posted by SilkRoad View Post
    Definitely super-creepy, but I just thought it was way too much! I thought they could have just had eerie music and maybe some VERY subtle effect. It just makes me giggle and not in a good way. I do love Cate Blanchett though.
    Quote Originally Posted by 21% View Post
    Ya, that scene in the book was awesome -- she's supposed to become "terrible and beautiful", like all mighty scary and worshipable. The movie version is just kinda... cheap >_<
    Yeah, like Silk says, this kind of scene is handled in SO many other movies with some grace, it's not difficult to suggest things that are creepy without bludgeoning them. Camera angle, music, lighting, delivery, pacing, etc.

    She didn't look "terrible and beautiful," she just looked .... crackly and freaky-weird.

    (I wonder how Jadis will be handled in The Magician's Nephew, now that I'm thinking about it. She's kind of the epitome of who Galadriel was tempted to become.)

    I think this is also getting back to my complaint about "magic of being" versus "magic of doing." A lot of the characters in LotR are powerful because of who they are, not necessarily what they do -- it's power rooted in their nature and being. Galadriel can speak and command (although she lets Celeborn rule) because of who she is, not because she had to cast some spell per se that would come with a bunch of prerequisite lighting effects, etc.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  2. #32
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
    Oh I forgot to mention something about the actual writing style that began to bother me: characters constantly staring in amazement or wonder at another character, usually when Aragorn reveals his kingly lineage. I could handle it a couple of times, but it began to occur so frequently I began to roll my eyes each time. Trying to impart a sense of awe to the reader is a difficult task, esp. for an imaginary world. Aragorn's destiny is a big deal for those in that imaginary world, but I think Tolkien overused this trope way too often. A small annoyance in the grand scheme of things.
    ROFL.

    I noticed that in the movie a bit at the COuncil of Elrond, too...
    "Who's THAT guy? What a schlunk."
    "Oh, he's the heir of Elendil."
    "The heir of elendil??"
    "yes, the heir of Elendil!"
    "OMG, he's the heir of Elendil!!! Thank god you are here, heir of Elendil! [blah]"

    I guess we don't really comprehed how big the "men of old" were in myth and legend, it would be like meeting King Arthur or George Washington or Jesus, or John Lennon. But only bigger!

    Still, I think Americans (and maybe some other modern generations) are pretty jaded. We just don't really have reverence anymore for particular lineages. It's more like, "yeah, so he's the heir of Elendil, what has he done for US lately??"
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    I guess we don't really comprehed how big the "men of old" were in myth and legend, it would be like meeting King Arthur or George Washington or Jesus, or John Lennon. But only bigger!

    Still, I think Americans (and maybe some other modern generations) are pretty jaded. We just don't really have reverence anymore for particular lineages. It's more like, "yeah, so he's the heir of Elendil, what has he done for US lately??"
    That's something I'll probably talk about more in the last volume. Americans in particular don't have aristocracy, it runs counter to the "everyman" democracy tradition.

  4. #34
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Hmmm. Maybe if Aragorn had been a rock star, a sports hero, or a tech guru, he would have gotten more acclaim from us.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Hmmm. Maybe if Aragorn had been a rock star, a sports hero, or a tech guru, he would have gotten more acclaim from us.
    As long as it wasn't inherited!

  6. #36
    Away with the fairies Southern Kross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Getting back to Jackson's schlock -- sometimes the drama works (including his slowmo camera panning / intense music), and other times it doesn't (such as with Galadriel's "oh I'm all bright and sparkly with laryngitis" moment, which ruins the scene rather than allowing the scene to speak for itself). Subtlety might have really helped the drama within some scenes, but he's not really that kind of director.
    Ugh, his overuse of slow-mo is ridiculous; although it's far worse in King Kong. I thought the attack in Moria where Frodo is speared by the troll goes too far. Yes we need to care if he lives or dies but there are only so many 'almost deaths' one story can hold; emphasising every one like it's really the end (with slow-mo and everything), can get tiring. He can be quite heavy handed in general too (the Galadriel scene being a perfect example of where he goes way OTT) but as you mentioned he makes some really lovely quiet simple moments that convey so much. He's very good at communicating the weight of emotion and creating an atmosphere of feeling. Frodo's uneasiness with Boromir, his increasing isolation from the fellowship and the immense psychic burden of the ring, for example, are dealt with so well.
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  7. #37
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Did anyone notice that there are over *25* minutes of credits at the end of the extended edition, first movie? The movie ends at 1:35 on disk 2 and the credits do not stop until 2:02 or so. Wow.

    @Southern Kross: the slowmo in the troll attack didn't bother me as much, but mostly because it was early on. Jackson just drags that slowmo thing out for all three pictures; by the end, it just becomes tedious. What is funny is that I forgave him for much in King Kong because he really was just making his own movie (although the slowmos when the crew discovered they were going to Skull Island, etc., were so overwrought). But like you say, he's interesting in that sometimes he totally blows it with heavy-handed drama, and other times he pulls off something quite lovely. In LotR, he tends to do best with the hobbits (which he had a passion for anyway)... and in King Kong, there are scenes like the winter park in NYC with just Kong and Annie that are lovely, or the sunset with both of them just sitting together and watching. (There's the slowmo I recall too when Annie walks toward Kong on the NYC street after he had looked frantically for her, and she's like an angel... the slowmo there was so perfect, because the word was in a sense 'slowing down' for Kong and he was forgetting to breathe.) Jackson's kind of hit or miss, it seems.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  8. #38
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    Default Tom Bombadil

    Every so often I read from LOTR fans that they wish the character of Tom Bombadil had made an appearance in the film trilogy. His character is one of the most mysterious in Middle Earth. Several theories have been floated regarding his nature. Is he a god? THE God? He seems very powerful, rescuing Frodo and the other Hobbits from the Old Forest as well as the wights on the barrow. He is seemingly unaffected by the One Ring, even trying it on at one point, but he is unconcerned by it. He is an ancient being, one with great power.

    The exact nature of Tom is never completely revealed by Tolkien. My own interpretation is similar to another theory: that he is a kind of living embodiment of Middle Earth. He is both his own being as well as tied to the actual world. He lives in the physical world, but is far removed from the concerns of the beings that live in it. He wields great power, seemingly because he is unconcerned by it. As Tolkien says:

    "I might put it this way. The story is cast in terms of a good side, and a bad side, beauty against ruthless ugliness, tyranny against kingship, moderated freedom with consent against compulsion that has long lost any object save mere power, and so on; but both sides in some degree, conservative or destructive, want a measure of control. But if you have, as it were, taken 'a vow of poverty', renounced control, and take your delight in things for themselves without reference to yourself, watching, observing, and to some extent knowing, then the questions of the rights and wrongs of power and control might become utterly meaningless to you, and the means of power quite valueless..."

    In the end, I believe it was a good decision to leave him out of the film trilogy. The films are already very long, and adding Tom does not move the story forward in any appreciable way. Tom's mannerisms - hopping and bopping around while singing rhyming songs would look ridiculous. Precisely what a big budget fantasy film needs to avoid.

    Tom Bombadil was a fun character to visit in the novels. Leave him there.

  9. #39
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    I don't think TB would have contributed much to the story and, as you suggest, it would have also been a big departure in tone.

    In all honesty, I feel like TB was something he dumped in just because the guy had personal meaning to Tolkien -- kind of like a "literary cameo."

    From wikipedia:
    Tolkien invented Tom Bombadil in memory of his children's Dutch doll, and wrote light-hearted children's poems about him, imagining him as a nature-spirit evocative of the English countryside, which in Tolkien's time had begun to disappear.

    Tolkien's 1934 poem "The Adventures of Tom Bombadil" depicts Bombadil as a "merry fellow" living in a dingle close to the Withywindle river, where he wanders and explores nature at his leisure. Several of the dingle's mysterious residents, including the River-spirit Goldberry (also known as the "River-woman's daughter"), the malevolent tree-spirit Old Man Willow, the Badger-folk and a Barrow-wight all attempt to capture Bombadil for their own ends, but quail at the power of Tom's voice, which defeats their enchantments and commands them to return to their natural existence. At the end of the poem, Bombadil captures and marries Goldberry. Throughout the poem, Bombadil is unconcerned by the attempts to capture him and brushes them off with an inherent power in his words...
    See? He wrote a poem about Tom in 1934, a few years after he finished his first draft of The Hobbit but before starting LotR. FotR was not published until 1954, twenty years later. I think he would have been writing the segment with Tom probably in the 1939-1942 range while WWII was raging and years after Tom creation. At the time, Tolkien was ALSO wandering in the plot; he had many MANY false starts for LoTR and wasn't even sure of what tone he wanted or where things should go, if you study the bio's and the nine volumes of notes published by his son Christopher in the 80's/90's. This is why the story took him 12 years to write.

    I would guess he introduced Tom as a homage to his kids, and because he personally liked Tom himself, and because his lightheartedness at that time in history was very important since the story and the world was very dark, and because he was also trying to keep the story moving and didn't quite know what he wanted to do with it yet. And, at some point, once something gets embedded in the foundation of a story, it's very very hard to pull it out. They needed to escape from the riders by cutting through the Old Forest, and then they needed to pick up the Westernesse blades from the wight in the other bookend scene (and be saved by someone), and it would have been difficult to write Tom out later in the process... and we all know how bad Tolkien was at editing things out of his work, if you look at the Two Towers...

    Just my thoughts, based on my knowledge of Tolkien and my own experience writing long texts....
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  10. #40
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    Yeah, the advice given to writers when they edit their own stories is to "kill your darlings".

    He certainly couldn't kill this one, probably for sentimental reasons as you said.

    Then again, think what Stephen King would've done. Oh wait! We don't have to imagine, we have the Dark Tower series.

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