Sunday, 13 July 2008

The Road goes ever on and on

I put on "The Fellowship of the Ring" dvd last night after getting back from Edinburgh. I'd seen it many times, and saw some of the extended scenes on YouTube. Unlike the current feeling of the US Courts, it does make me want to buy the extended versions of the movies. I got the extended final film in sale, and wonder at buying the other two now.

But it really makes me want to go back and read the books (again) from the beginning. For me, the start is the Silmarillion. I never bothered with the later books that the Son brought together from his Father's notes.

Obviously, I went looking for news of the Hobbit movie, and find that some of the linking stories between the Hobbit and LOTR may be made into another movie (once the legal battles end). I just hope that the scriptwights don't make the usual mess of appending their own agendas and own works to the stories that Tolkien crafted.

No, I'm not talking about the omission of Tom Bombadil (and his tasty wife), or the re-jigging of the early chapters. Film-making would still be in progress if every scene from the books was being shot. Nor tweaks to make up for those cuts. Anyway, film news from


Martin Rye said...

Tom Bombadil before the Elves. I always wondered why he did not get in the films along with Glorfindel or what ever his name was. Must admit – found the films more urgent in there story telling than the books. Anyway I love the books and would like to see Bilbo and thirteen dwarfs go of to the Smokey Mountain’s. Be New Zealand so it would look good. If you need a fantasy fix read Magician and the Rift War books by Feist – saying that you may have already and if so what do you think of em?

AktoMan said...

The film's visuals are great. A cracking advert for the book. Good advert for NZ too.

20 years between Bilbo's birthday party and Gandalf reappearing to speak to Frodo. No wonder Jackson skipped over the times.

As to fantasy - well, Tolkien put me off it. I tried reading other authors and wasn't keen on them. Preferred sci-fi more for the imagination. Pratchett's wit and imagination excluded from above.

Chris Townsend said...

The extended films are well worth having. The story is comprehensible! Parts of it aren't in the film release version. Some of the extended scenes are far more dramatic too.

I gather that the legal disputes are over and that Peter Jackson will be making a film of The Hobbit. In fact there's going to be two films.

I've read the books several times over the years. I reckon the films are mostly good - though some of the additions and changes seem unnecessary and occasionally against the spirit of the books. I don't understand the reason for Aragorn's death and resurrection scene in The Two Towers, nor why Frodo and Sam are taken to Osgiliath. The character of Faramir is changed too. And Aragorn would never have killed the Mouth of Sauron during a parlay. But overall they are pretty good!

I guess Tom Bombadil and the Old Forest are omitted because they aren't central to the story. I think the omission of the Scouring of the Shire is a greater loss. As it is Bombadil and Treebeard are merged to some extent in the films and the story of Old Man Willow occurs in Fangorn.

AktoMan said...

Scouring my brain for the occurrence of Aragorn dying, but wonder if you meant Gandalf? But my brain is fried today with all this comment chasing.

It was the Old Man Willow scene that caught me when I was looking for LOTR parodies on YouTube. Mike offered to loan me the extended films. Think I'll get them myself after the hols are over.

Chris Townsend said...

I meant the bit where Aragorn is carried over the cliff by the wolf into the river and then washed up on the shore and rescued by a horse. This seems to me an unnecessary resurrection episode. In the original film the horse is a mystery as it hasn't appeared before. In the extended version it's appearance is explained.

I have the extended box set, which has lots of interesting stuff about the making of the films. That's the version I'd recommend.

AktoMan said...

Ah, the Indiana Jones scene. I'd obviously forgotten about that.

I've added the extended boxed set to my birthday gift list (hint to relatives reading this).

I loved that they dropped in 'placeholder' comments in the movie with the names of the book chapters. It was a shame that Serkis got prevented from getting Oscar nominated as he wasn't really acting.