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Author Topic: The Hobbit: The movie?
Puffy Treat
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...sounds like MGM and New Line may have reached an agreement!
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Lyrhawn
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YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ONE TO TWO INSTALLMENTS!!!!! ???


YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES

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Narnia
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[Big Grin] Ah, that's great news. [Smile]
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Sterling
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Guys, if you can't get Peter Jackson, don't bother.
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Puffy Treat
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I think Jackson is the director they have in mind, Sterling. [Cool]
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erosomniac
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God forbid they screw this up the way they screwed up the LotR movies. [Frown]
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vonk
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Would it be drudging up old arguments to ask what the aych-ee-double-hockey-sticks your talking about? The LotR movies being excellent movies, that is.
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erosomniac
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quote:
Originally posted by vonk:
Would it be drudging up old arguments to ask what the aych-ee-double-hockey-sticks your talking about? The LotR movies being excellent movies, that is.

Their removal of the entire point of the novels (the Scouring of the Shire) renders the movies nothing more than standard fantasy action flickery.

They could have done less damage by not including Frodo, or Gandalf.

That said:

1) I'll still see it, and
2) I don't want to turn this thread into another debate about the relative merits of the films, so carry on!

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vonk
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*cough*I think the use of "standard" there is a heavy understatement*cough*

Yay The Hobbit! [Smile]

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FlyingCow
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Hey eros, what if this happened:

The Hobbit is made as two entirely separate movies. The first is the Hobbit we all know and love, with the dwarves showing up at his door, the riddle contest with Gollum, the finding of the ring, the spiders of Mirkwood, the story of Smaug, etc. It would serve as a prequel to the LotR movies.

The second is made as the Scouring of the Shire, showing the return of the four younger hobbits to the town they loved, only to find it industrialized and tainted. Their struggle to find out what's going on, then put an end to it, rebuilding the Shire to its former glory. It would serve as an Epilogue (though taking place before the final minutes of RotK).

They could bundle all five movies together, even having a extra special super edition that puts the Scouring into Return of the King where it should fit chronologically.

I know it will never happen, but it doesn't hurt to dream. [Big Grin]

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BlackBlade
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The entire point of LOTR was to show the Shire almost completely destroyed by a digruntled Saruman?

That was the crux of the entire matter?

I don't pretend to be a LOTR scholar or even a VERY INTERESTED fan, but to me it was one important chapter in a VERY long and complicated story.

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erosomniac
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quote:
Originally posted by FlyingCow:
Hey eros, what if this happened:

The Hobbit is made as two entirely separate movies. The first is the Hobbit we all know and love, with the dwarves showing up at his door, the riddle contest with Gollum, the finding of the ring, the spiders of Mirkwood, the story of Smaug, etc. It would serve as a prequel to the LotR movies.

The second is made as the Scouring of the Shire, showing the return of the four younger hobbits to the town they loved, only to find it industrialized and tainted. Their struggle to find out what's going on, then put an end to it, rebuilding the Shire to its former glory. It would serve as an Epilogue (though taking place before the final minutes of RotK).

They could bundle all five movies together, even having a extra special super edition that puts the Scouring into Return of the King where it should fit chronologically.

I know it will never happen, but it doesn't hurt to dream. [Big Grin]

That would do a pretty decent job of redeeming the films, actually, since the Scouring of the Shire really could be most of a movie all on its own.

They would need to revise the current ridiculous ending to Return of the King as well, though. [Wink]

Edit to add:

quote:
The entire point of LOTR was to show the Shire almost completely destroyed by a digruntled Saruman?

That was the crux of the entire matter?

I don't pretend to be a LOTR scholar or even a VERY INTERESTED fan, but to me it was one important chapter in a VERY long and complicated story.

The Lord of the Rings, at its heart, is a story about ordinary hobbits called upon to do extraordinary things. The Scouring of the Shire is what makes all of the other text in the books applicable to that story: by showing that those great things affect their lives even in the distant shire and by demonstrating how, as a result of the journey, the hobbits are able to save, restore and better their community.
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Teshi
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So who do I have to bake cookies for to have a hand in helping make The Hobbit?
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vonk
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Me. I promise. [Big Grin]
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Lyrhawn
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No.

I'd be okay with Peter Jackson doing 30-45 minutes of film to release on a super superspecial version of ROTK. But NOT a whole new movie.

I don't think The Hobbit needs to be two movies. Considering The Hobbit is half the size of any of the original LOTR books, and he turned them individually into movies (and intended to only make a duology), I think it can be done in one shot.

I also think that since this is a shorter book, it will be impossible for him to leave out the massive amount of detail omitted from the LOTR trilogy.

I have high hopes.

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FlyingCow
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From what I remember from the commentary on FotR, he intended to make a trilogy. Miramax wanted a duology, and he said "I'll try somewhere else." he was very clear that the LotR had to be a trilogy, and not a duology.
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Stephan
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If they make it another 3+ hour movie, it should be pretty close to the book considering how short that it is.
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Avin
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I really hope that they don't cut out the Arkenstone plot. In a similar way to how erosomniac called the Scouring the heart of LOTR, the subplot about the Arkenstone was the heart of the Hobbit and what turns it from being just a fun children's tale to a story with serious moral themes.

But knowing Hollywood, it will probably either be cut like the Rankin and Bass adaptation or severely downplayed, like as if Bilbo was really fulfilling some secret promise made to Gandalf.

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Lyrhawn
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I thought the cartoon was pretty faithful, with the exception of the Arkenstone. It's small enough in time constraint to not be cut.

FC -

Jackson pitched it to New Line as a duology, Phillipa and him and written a duology, but the VP of whatever, who wasin charge of it, said "well wait, you're talking about three movies." And Peter gleefully said sure, and they rewrote the script to stretch it out.


I have high hopes for this movie being very well done. I think with the advances in technology made even since ROTK, The Battle of Five armies will be stunning.

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Puffy Treat
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The Rankin Bass cartoon also completely deleted Beorn, and made the elves look incredibly ugly. [Razz]
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Lyrhawn
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OOoo I forgot about that. Beorn MUST be included, and the Elves will obviously be done in the style of the first movies.
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Telperion the Silver
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quote:
The entire point of LOTR was to show the Shire almost completely destroyed by a digruntled Saruman?

That was the crux of the entire matter?

I don't pretend to be a LOTR scholar or even a VERY INTERESTED fan, but to me it was one important chapter in a VERY long and complicated story.

The crux was that the Hobbits didn't save the Shire... not in the way they thought. The War did come to their homes. That the whole point of Gandalf taking them along was to train them... to advance the Hobbits from their childlike ways into mature people.

The Shire is England of WWII.... or if you will, the USA of today. That the battle between Good and Evil is not always black and white. That if you're not careful you can become the enemy.

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neo-dragon
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quote:
Originally posted by FlyingCow:
From what I remember from the commentary on FotR, he intended to make a trilogy. Miramax wanted a duology, and he said "I'll try somewhere else." he was very clear that the LotR had to be a trilogy, and not a duology.

Actually, he was willing to do a duology, Miramax wanted it done in a single film! When he pitched it to New Line, he actually pitched a duology because he'd all but given up on anyone committing to 3 films. Then whatever big wig he was talking to at New Line said that since it was 3 books, it should be 3 movies, and Jackson was floored.

Anyway, I must be the only big LOTR fan who doesn't care if they do the Hobbit or not. I think it'll be somewhat dry compared to the epic saga that is LOTR. I've read LOTR about 6 times in as many years. I've only read the Hobbit once. It just doesn't have that depth that appeals to me. Ah well. I'll still go see it if it gets made.

btw, I don't think that "duology" is actually a word, but I use it anyway.

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PUNJABEE
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They should get Michael Bay. He's doing a bangup job on Transformers.
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Dagonee
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quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ONE TO TWO INSTALLMENTS!!!!! ???


YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES

I agree wholeheartedly!
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neo-dragon
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quote:
Originally posted by PUNJABEE:
They should get Michael Bay. He's doing a bangup job on Transformers.

Let it go. [Roll Eyes]
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PUNJABEE
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quote:
Originally posted by neo-dragon:
quote:
Originally posted by PUNJABEE:
They should get Michael Bay. He's doing a bangup job on Transformers.

Let it go. [Roll Eyes]
Never. [Cool]
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Dr Strangelove
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I don't think its fair to condemn the entire LOTR movie trilogy because they didn't include the Scouring of the Shire. Sure, they messed up on RotK ... and TTT by including elves in Helms Deep ... and FotR by cutting out Bombadil ... but all in all they were still good movies!

And, oddly enough, I'm being serious. Sure they didn't do a perfect job, but they were good. Better than I expected.

And yeah ... if they cut out the Arkenstone plot, I will personally ... do something awful to them. Collective "them". Everyone involved.

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Lyrhawn
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Duology is a word as far as I'm concerned. It's a word I've heard used in common usage, and to describe 2 parters, so, other than being officially entered into the dictionary, I don't know what else it takes to be considered a word.

The Hobbit might not have the depth of the Lord of the Rings, but I think it's a fun read. I read it every couple months (it's a fast read), and I always enjoy it. And I watch the cartoon of the book all the time, though that is mostly because I love the voice acting of John Huston. I think there are lessons to be learned from it, just as there are from LotR. It's also about perseverance, going out into a strange world and finding courage where you thought there was none, friendship and fellowship.

As far as the lack of the Scouring goes, I DO think it would have been better to include it. The whole point, that you can't always go back home, and war touches everything, nowhere is safe, is valuable. From a FILM point of view, especially to people who hadn't read the book, I think it appears out of place. Movies usually have a fairly clear rise, climax and finale. This climax comes AFTER the finale, and you'd need almost another hour to really cover it in a way that really fits.

I think it should've been show and added to the extended edition, and they should have tacked on an extra cost to the DVD for it.

I would LOVE if they opened the movie the same way the cartoon was opened, with John Huston's voiceover. That man is the voice of Gandalf for me, for now and forever.

Edit to add: Starting to look more official...

quote:
Hollywood studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer has revealed it will make a movie version of The Hobbit and plans to approach the Wellington film-maker.

The studio made the announcement yesterday as part of plans to release half a dozen big-budget films in the next few years

We all know Jackson wants to do it, but it looks like he won't be available to direct it for a couple years. But 2009 could be a viable year for The Hobbit. And it looks like MGM is interested in making it a two parter. I think if they had to choose between waiting for Jackson and making it sooner with someone else they'd wait. Jackson has a following with LOTR, they won't mess up a sure thing by rushing it.

I want to know the details of the New Line/MGM deal that would have had to of happened in order for this to be a serious topic.

[ September 11, 2006, 07:13 PM: Message edited by: Lyrhawn ]

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Telperion the Silver
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quote:
I would LOVE if they opened the movie the same way the cartoon was opened, with John Huston's voiceover. That man is the voice of Gandalf for me, for now and forever.
Hear hear Lyrhawn!!
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neo-dragon
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A bit off topic since we're supposed to be talking about the Hobbit, but I think it was a smart move to cut the scouring of the Shire. The theme that it represents is just one of many important themes, and it just wouldn't work well in a movie. Pretty much every one but the LOTR purists were already groaning from the number of "false endings" in RotK. There's simply too much that happens after the Ring is destroyed. If they were to do the scouring properly, it would have added another hour to the film! Movies are different from books. You can't expect the audience to stay with you for a new conflict of that magnitude after the main one that has driven the action for 3 lengthy films is resolved. We all miss the scouring in principle, but I think that if it were actually there we'd all realize that its only purpose would be to appease purists and bore 90% of people who see the film.
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Puffy Treat
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Well, the holding company that sold the film rights to The Hobbit gave the right to make a movie to New Line...but the rights to distribute such a film was held by MGM.

From this point I always confused. Wormholes, albino monks, MIBs, and the Illuminati all seem to be involved...

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Lyrhawn
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Well, New Line CAN make the movie...


They just can't show it to anyone until MGM gets their cut.

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Tarrsk
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quote:
Originally posted by neo-dragon:
A bit off topic since we're supposed to be talking about the Hobbit, but I think it was a smart move to cut the scouring of the Shire. The theme that it represents is just one of many important themes, and it just wouldn't work well in a movie. Pretty much every one but the LOTR purists were already groaning from the number of "false endings" in RotK. There's simply too much that happens after the Ring is destroyed. If they were to do the scouring properly, it would have added another hour to the film! Movies are different from books. You can't expect the audience to stay with you for a new conflict of that magnitude after the main one that has driven the action for 3 lengthy films is resolved. We all miss the scouring in principle, but I think that if it were actually there we'd all realize that its only purpose would be to appease purists and bore 90% of people who see the film.

Besides which, the film does visit the Scouring's theme through Frodo's decision to leave. Not quite the same thing, but it gets the idea across that the adventure has changed the lives of even the little guys, and not always for the better. From a filmmaking perspective, they avoided a lengthy coda that would have introduced an entirely new conflict and had to resolve it in addition to providing closure for the main characters. Considering that one of the primary criticisms of ROTK was that its ending was already too damn long, I think cutting the Scouring was ultimately the correct move to make.

But then, I think the movies are better than the books, so what do I know. [Razz]

Count me excited about "The Hobbit," but only if Jackson and WETA are involved. Boyens and Walsh I could do with or without, as my main beef with the LOTR films was in the writing... just about every line that wasn't taken straight out of the book was awkwardly expository, anachronistic, or both. Since, as previously mentioned, I'm not a great fan of the books either, it meant I spent most of the time watching for the neat battles and gorgeous cinematography (and going nuts over Howard Shore's brilliant score).

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Avin
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Unlike many LOTR/Tolkien "purists" I actually don't care about chopping up and omitting things from the book when they are adapted to film. I completely understood leaving Tom Bombadil out of FOTR, and some of the other changes that were made in the films. I didn't object to the elves at Helm's deep for instance, or having Arwen replace Glorfindel.

What I really hated about the LOTR moves was not that there were things that were changed, but that the story was in a sense a different thematic story than the one told in the books, even though a lot of events and dialogs were preserved rather faithfully. There were even occasions where I would cringe to hear an exact line from the books faithfully reproduced in the movie but said in a completely different context than it was meant to be, and therefore changing the very meaning of it. Tolkien's universe was not morally black and white. Certainly there were certain characters who were clear "perfect" heroes and certain characters who were clear villains, but you could count them on one hand (I count: the Balrog, Shelob, Aragorn, Gandalf. Even Sauron is not depicted as being totally depraved). Not only did most characters bear shades of grey, but the whole history of the universe in fact was such, resting on great tragedies depicted in the Silmarillion.

However, the movies completely discard all the moral complexity found in the story and replace it with some trite that you could find anywhere. Gollum is reduced from a miserable but pitiable creature who is enslaved to the ring but has a glimpse of redemption peeking through to a character who is clearly rotten overall with a literal "slinker" and "stinker" Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde complex, rather than being two parts of his multi-faceted personality as depicted in the books. This in turn makes Sam's suspicions in the movie justified and Frodo a blind fool, whereas in the books we see that although Sam has reason to be wary, it is Frodo's admirable mercy that touches Gollum's humanity and ultimately leads to his own redemption. The relationship between Saruman and Wormtongue in the books is equally complex. Saruman is a good wizard turned evil because of his pride, but he probably genuinely believes he is doing good to the world by trying to take the ring for himself. He is not, as the movies depict him, a puppet of Sauron - he is acting completely in his own interests. Wormtongue as well is his clever spy, who while successful was treated well by everyone, but after his failures acts independently in a curious fashion, although he is bound to Saruman for his acts, and we see this come out when he finally has had enough and stabs Saruman at the end of the Scouring. There is none of that in the movie. Wormtongue is just there for audiences to hate, as he is depicted on screen.

By removing all the development from these characters, you end up with a rather stale story. So to fix that, it seems like Jackson decided to throw in all sorts of character development where none was needed, as though he is afraid to have a good character be static. Arwen goes through all the unnecessary deciding back and forth about what she wants to do with her life - it feels like something out of a cheap romance or a soap opera, watching that on screen. Aragorn doesn't have self confidence, but over the course of the movies he somehow gets it. In what one of my least favorite changes is Faramir is reduced to a clone of Boromir (or like I once heard in one review, Faramir was cut and replaced by a different character with the same name)!

Anyway, the plot about the Arkenstone seems just like the sort of thing to get done completely wrong in the sort of morality the Jackson movies would like to depict. The point of that plot in the Hobbit is that people are stubborn, foolish, and prideful, and sometimes an act of seeming betrayal is worth it when you know that those you are betraying are heading down the wrong path. Bilbo was loyal to his friends, but not to the sinful aspects of their characters. Somehow I doubt that this will get portrayed in a movie.

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Puffy Treat
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quote:
Originally posted by Avin:
Tolkien's universe was not morally black and white. Certainly there were certain characters who were clear "perfect" heroes and certain characters who were clear villains, but you could count them on one hand (I count: the Balrog, Shelob, Aragorn, Gandalf. Even Sauron is not depicted as being totally depraved). Not only did most characters bear shades of grey, but the whole history of the universe in fact was such, resting on great tragedies depicted in the Silmarillion.


...I must have been reading a completely different LotR series since I was seven, then. Except for Frodo, Samwise, and Smeagol, I found every LotR character VERY much be either clearly "good" or clearly "evil". Only in the three I name was there more than a mere hint of mixed morality in evidence.
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neo-dragon
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quote:
Originally posted by Puffy Treat:
quote:
Originally posted by Avin:
Tolkien's universe was not morally black and white. Certainly there were certain characters who were clear "perfect" heroes and certain characters who were clear villains, but you could count them on one hand (I count: the Balrog, Shelob, Aragorn, Gandalf. Even Sauron is not depicted as being totally depraved). Not only did most characters bear shades of grey, but the whole history of the universe in fact was such, resting on great tragedies depicted in the Silmarillion.


...I must have been reading a completely different LotR series since I was seven, then. Except for Frodo, Samwise, and Smeagol, I found every LotR character VERY much be either clearly "good" or clearly "evil". Only in the three I name was there more than a mere hint of mixed morality in evidence.
I think that you're both right, in a way. Many characters in LOTR are quite black or white. The grey area is the matter of how they got there. Tolkien constantly stresses the theme that no one is inherently evil, but rather they get corrupted. Gollum, Sauron, Saruman, the Orcs, and even Frodo when he succumbs to temptation in the end. These are all characters that started out good, or at least benign, and through events that were often beyond their own power to control they are corrupted. Thus Tolkien says that no one is truly evil at the core. Their path is usually a tragic one, and Tolkien stresses that redemption is almost never out of the question.
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JennaDean
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Boromir: one of my favorite characters. Strong, carried the hobbits through the snow on the mountain; brave - fought valiantly to defend them; loyal to his homeland - wanted to do whatever he could to defend it; and yet he tried to take the ring from Frodo by force. And in the end he realized what he'd done and repented. I love that character, because he was so human. Not perfectly good, but not evil either. He was fallible.
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Launchywiggin
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Personally, I don't want Jackson behind the helm.
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Sterling
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quote:
Originally posted by Puffy Treat:
I think Jackson is the director they have in mind, Sterling. [Cool]

I'm just noting that the linked article says

quote:
one or two installments of "The Hobbit," which Sloan hopes will be directed by Peter Jackson
<emphasis mine>

Whatever quibbles anyone might have with PJ's LoTR, he managed to get a major studio to finance a trilogy of three-plus hour movies. He got a fantastic cast. He devoted years of his life to the project, and got scores of people to do the same, many making less than they could have on other projects.

Personally, I'm in the camp that loved them, occasional warts and all. And I think anyone with less passion for the project than someone like Jackson is bound to bring is almost certain to fall far short of the mark we've come to expect.

So, when they say for certain Jackson's on, I'm with the rest of you firing champagne corks. But watch the skies.

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Lyrhawn
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I think many of them were morally ambiguous, but also many were pure as the driven snow or purely evil.

Sauron was evil, no question about it. The elves weren't purely good. They were good in the sense that they fought for the sake of good, and against evil, but they were also petty, and bickered, and back in the first and second ages, many dark elves fought for Morgoth and later Sauron. Elrond and Galadriel are fallible, though made of sterner stuff than your average man, they could make mistakes, they are prone to selfishly defending themselves and there own at the expense of others.

Aragorn I think was purely good. It's his legacy as the son of greater men, greater kings. He's more the heir of Elendil than the heir of Isildur, as far as whom he emulates more.

Launchy -

Who would you rather have in charge of it? There was stuff I was very disappointed about missing from the movies, but what was there felt so completely real, that I couldn't imagine Middle Earth being any other way. The way he portrayed elves was so real, it felt like a documentary as much as a movie, and the same for all the other races. He was faithful to it, and cut as he felt necessary. I don't think anyone else could capture the same feel of the show, and I think Philippa Boyens is an integral part of that. The writing was anachronistic for a reason, that's the society they are writing about. It's a wordy, long winded, overblown story, and the dialogue is the same way.

I'd love to see more of the dialogue taken directly from the book and used in the story. Part of my problem with ROTK the movie was that I felt the story was almost better in many ways in the CARTOON than in the movie. Eowyn in the cartoon was strong, gallant, bitchin, regal, she felt so much more powerful and real. In the live action movie she seemed so vulnerable and out of sorts, like she wandered into the fight under false courage and got caught up in the situation. Old timey as her words were in the cartoon (taken directly from the book), they were strong.

I still remember the words form the book, "Be gone foul dwimmerlaik, lord of carrion, leave the dead in peace."
"Come not between the Nazgul and his prey, or he will slay thee in turn."
"I would hinder it if I may"
"Hinder me? foul! does thou not know the prophecy, no living man may hinder me."
"but no living man am I, Eowyn am I, you stand between me and my lord and kin, and living or dark undead, I will smite you if you touch him."

I don't care how archaic it sounds, I love it. I loved it when I read it, I loved hearing it voice acted. It's part of why I love John Huston's portrayal of Gandalf so much too. His voice is strong and sure, powerful, wise, and the archaic words flow out of him like music. Ian McKellan is good, but he still isn't the voice of Gandalf to me.

Part of what will be difficult to get used to is the fact that the cartoon did a first person perspective for Bilbo, including a narrative. I loved his narrative, and for that matter all the Glen Yarborough songs that went with it, I'd love it if Howard Shore wove some of those into his themes, (even though he didn't for ROTK, curses!). I doubt they'd do a first person story like that, but it was cool.

Another thing I'd like to see in the future, though it'll never happen, is the story of what happened everywhere else during the War of the Ring. The battle with the Men of Dale and Dain of the Lonely Mountain, and the Beornings versus the Goblins of Mt. Gundabad. The fight between Dol Guldur and Mirkwood elves, the battle between Dol Goldur, Khamul (second Nazgul chief) and Lothlorien. I think there was a fight in Rivendell and the Grey Havens too, and with the Blue Mountain dwarves. It'd be a giant action fest, but it'd be cool to see the other side of the war, and that like war left no part of Middle Earth untouched.

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Tarrsk
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I meant anachronistic in a different sense, actually. The "o! my lord" type of dialogue, I was fine with, although I didn't hear poetry in it the way you did (diff'rent strokes and all that). The "anachronistic" stuff I was referring to were the modernized phrases ("Fire!" and "Game over!" being two of the more egregious) which were completely out of place, and threw me out of the movie as much as "Not the beard!" did.

Interesting that you view Huston's Gandalf as definitive. I personally can't see anyone other than Ian McKellan in the role at this point, especially as the more mischevious Gandalf the Grey (which will obviously be the incarnation of Gandalf in "The Hobbit"). He embodied the compassion, power, will, and wry humor of the character.

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Avin
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quote:
...I must have been reading a completely different LotR series since I was seven, then. Except for Frodo, Samwise, and Smeagol, I found every LotR character VERY much be either clearly "good" or clearly "evil". Only in the three I name was there more than a mere hint of mixed morality in evidence.
Lyrhawn excellently covers the elves and their moral ambiguity: while they were mostly good, they have a dark history. Galadriel in particular was very much a Noldorin leader in the past and the jealous love of the Silmarils affected her too. So her trial before Frodo was really something dangerous. The way that test is depicted in the movie makes it seem almost comical and it's hard for me as I'm reading it now to get that out of my head, but I definitely remember how I read it before the influence of the movie: what is her heart? Will she fall to the temptation of the ring? Her rejection of the ring does not mean she is purely good in any way. Rather the whole idea of her hidden kingdom in some way reflects a combination of the kingdoms of Turgon and Thingol, however not natural as theirs was, but made using the power of her own ring. It is a sort of unnatural escape to paradise, and she has a very real temptation to cling to that when the means of either doing so or forsaking it comes within her grasp. This sort of temptation is exactly the sort that Saruman did not resist from afar, and her overcoming it is a huge accomplishment.

I disagree with the assessment that Sauron is purely evil. Evil yes of course. And from just reading Lord of the Rings I think that this is about all you can say. But I don't think Tolkien meant him to be "pure" evil when you consider his backstory. I think that although Sauron was not meant to be pitied or sympathized with, he is given the motive that he came to seek power and dominion because he thought the world would be better under his rule than otherwise. It is debatable, but he may have genuinely repented at the end of the first age when Morgoth was overthrown.

JennaDean had a great description of Boromir's moral complexity.

Another really interesting character is Eowyn, who I think is often misunderstood because people tend to view women in the story with such a modern tilt. Eowyn fights on the side of the good armies, yes, but she is NOT presented as morally admirable at all, although she develops a lot over the course of the story. She is extremely selfish, in fact, in a selfless way. What I mean is that she allows herself to be ruled by despair and self-pity as much as Denethor does, only the consequences of her actions are not as negative as Denethor's because she does not have authority as Denethor does, and second because she still has some level of compassion (for Merry). But after Theoden is killed, she is left in the houses of healing and she is forced to accept her situation and is also partially healed through her relationship with Faramir.

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Lyrhawn
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Even given Sauron's history I still can only think of him as purely evil. Look at what he did after the first age ended, he went to Numenor to spread deceit and mistrust and destroyed the greatest civilization of Men to date, then gathered forces of evil in Dol Guldur under the guise of the Necromancer.

He might not have been born evil, not when he was a Maiar floating around the undying lands, but once under Morgoth's sway I think he was unrepentable. Morgoth pretended to repent, only to come back more evil than ever.

(I might have some details off, I haven't read the Silmarillion in a year or two)

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Launchywiggin
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Lyrhawn,

I'll use my cop-out answer and say I never wanted the LotR movies made, just like I don't want Ender's Game made.

Being one of the kids that had read LotR and loved it made me different back then. We had our own esoteric counter-culture which made us feel unique. The worldwide explosion of LotR brought on the commercialism and popularity that made LotR not "mine" (or I should say "ours" because most people here were part of this culture) anymore.

That said, my expectations were too high going into the movie, so I was dissapointed. Stunning visuals, great artistic choices, great realization of middle-earth.

But, specifically where Jackson's fingerprints were glaring, I found myself cringing. His camera style is kind of blunt, obvious, and cheesy sometimes. It grinds on me. The script had me cringing at many points, and the pacing was way off for the second two movies. I just don't like his style overall.

Who else could do it though? I dunno. Not me. Probably not anyone else either.

That doesn't mean I have to like Jackson, though.

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Lyrhawn
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Possible bad news

quote:
Jackson got involved when producer Lucas Foster read galleys in January and sent them to Jackson's manager, Ken Kamins. When Jackson read it, he was hooked.

"As I was reading these books, I could see them coming to life in my mind's eye," Jackson said. "These are beautifully written novels, not only fresh, original and fast-paced, but full of wonderful characters with real heart."

He's optioned The Lovely Bones too. But Lovely Bones is a 6 month project, not something that will take years like LOTR or King Kong did. But Temeraire is your average big CGI fantasy project, even if the plot sounds more like something you'd see on a Sci-Fi Channel miniseries (ahem, such as the recently released one about a group that finds the world's last dragon egg).

I'm wondering if MGM and New Line can work together fast enough to secure a deal and woo him away before he gets hooked on something.I also wonder if perhaps he OWES it to Tolkien fans to make The Hobbit before anything else.

Launchy-

Fair enough. I feel the same way, in many respects, about Lion the witch and the wardrobe. I don't like the way much of it was done. And I almost wish he hadn't made it at all.

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Kwea
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
The entire point of LOTR was to show the Shire almost completely destroyed by a digruntled Saruman?

That was the crux of the entire matter?

I don't pretend to be a LOTR scholar or even a VERY INTERESTED fan, but to me it was one important chapter in a VERY long and complicated story.

I can think of at least one person (not on this board) who would have completely disagree with you on that. Strongly disagreed wiht you, in fact.


His name was J.R.R. Tolkien.

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Lyrhawn
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All of which is why, I think, Tolkien never expected, or really wanted the books to be made into films to begin with.
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Lyrhawn
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Question for those excited about The Hobbit:

What elements of the story are you looking forward to the most? (spoilers ahead)

Obviously there will be the Battle of Five armies and Smaug, that covers the end, but the rest is what concerns me.

1. Beorn lifts right out, in much the way that Tom Bombadil did, but I think he should be kept in, even if his scene is noticeably shortened.

2. I want to see the Dwarves singing in Bilbo's Hobbit hole, it's the perfect oppotunity to explain all the backstory to why they are going to the Lonely Mountain, and if they sing the song written in the original book, the prose is quite moving.

3. Have to see the three trolls and show Gandalf getting Glamdring and Bilbo getting Sting.

4. Show them getting into trouble with the goblins and Gandalf killing the Goblin King, followed by Bilbo finding the Ring and having the Riddle Contest with Gollum. Then show the subsequent fight with the Goblins outside the mountains when they are rescued by the Eagles led by Gwaihir.

5. Show them going to Beorn's and getting the horses, and then riding them to the more dangerous parts of Mirkwood.

6. Show Gandalf leaving them for the White Council and the fight with the Spiders, and their capture by the WoodElves.

7. Show Bilbo rescuing them from the WoodElves by cramming them into barrels, and Thorin's return to Laketown.

From then on I'd say it's all fairly straight forward, just needs to be shortened timeline wise. Get them up the mountain, have Bilbo do his riddling with Smaug and have Smaug get pissy and fly to Laketown, where Bard will kill him with a sweet looking Black Arrow, and then have Bilbo find the Arkenstone, and the battle, so on and so forth it ends.

I miss anything? What do you all think about maybe including Gandalf's visit to the White Council and them driving Sauron as the Necromancer out of Dol Guldur? Too out of place? Probably, but it's an interesting idea.

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Avin
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quote:
All of which is why, I think, Tolkien never expected, or really wanted the books to be made into films to begin with.
Tolkien did write a good deal of thoughts about a possible movie version of Lord of the Rings actually. I don't remember the source; I'll try to find it again, but it was in response to a failed script that someone else had made. Interestingly, the script kept Tom Bombadil in, but Tolkien insisted that he get cut out because he realized that a character like Tom could never be depicted on screen in a way that is true to the way he envisioned him to be, and his character is also a better cut to the story than other parts.
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