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A very nice post Shaya. I'm just commenting on a few things you mentioned!

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He is only frayed a bit from the Tolkien Aragorn by needing to be "bucked up" by Arwen when he doubts. The real Aragorn does not doubt and he does not waver in his intentions and hopes with Arwen. Neither does Arwen waver. They both do in the movie.

With the wavering of Aragorn, PJ just tried to bring out the mental confrontation that might have been going on in Aragorn's mind. The movie Aragorn has been shown to be weak in his mind doubting the strength of his lineage and his fate. He believes that he too is as weak as Isildur was and hence the mental battle and dilemma.

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The movie gutted the character of Faramir. In the book, he is completely the man who would never take the Ring, and would be well past that adolescent angst vis-a-vis his father that the movie depicts. That whole shallow soap opera of brothers and father there functions levels way below Tolkien's world.

Faramir's character was done pretty well. He loved his brother and admired him. But then he wished his father would stop lamenting the loss of Boromir. Actually, Faramir wanted his father to see that he himself is as good as his brother. The movie clearly shows that.

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Tolkien's Denethor is, at worst, proud and cold. But he is always assiduously attentive to the defense of the city and rules with strength and intelligence and seeking the good. There is a horror to his insanity. He is a loss. PJ's Denethor is downright loathesome and exhibits no particular talents, and we are not sorry to see him go.

Denethor has been portrayed as insane. But then if a character is given a screen timing of just 1 hour it is very tough to actually develop him in detail as can be done in a book in a matter of a few pages. Actually, the idea of Denethor as a power-crazed person did go down well with me since I never compared the movies with the books. Denethor's character could explain a lot of things in the movie.

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Tolkien's Ents are ancient and deep with wisdom, memory and thought. That trick of Pippin's makes Treebeard little more than a buffoon.

PJ's ents too are deep with wisdom, memory and thought. Pippin's "trick" (as you call it) was just to go home safely. He obviously didn't know thet the trees had been cut at that part. And as with a shepherd, a loss of his sheep makes him kill the wolf won't the treeherds do the same thing? The Ents were brilliant.

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Speaking of buffoons, Merry and Pippin are supposed to be young gentlemen and the particular friends of Bilbo and Frodo. Despite a youthful hobbitlike lightheartedness, they are far more serious and brave than the movie depicts. For instance, Pippin's swearing fealty to Denethor is respected and praised by Gandalf, but in the movie Gandalf treats him like a foolish child. Again, though, the actors do very well with what they are given.

Pippin and Merry were solely for comical relief and for moving the watchers emotionally. The movie hobbits were harmless, little creatures who had nothing to do with any of what happened and they were dragged unknowingly into the war and everything. They were portrayed as lovable beings who were at the wrong places at the right times.

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Eowyn is fairly close to the book. That scene of her as a giggly bad cook is an awful degradation of Tolkien's character.

Eowyn is justified. She is shown in the movie to be a strong character as she is in the books. And then, Tolkien never wrote that Eowyn was a good cook. Wink Smilie

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The possession of Theoden by Saruman turns him into a simple pawn and replaces the terrible descent of his spirit and the potency of his redemption with a bit of fairy tale magic. Further, the king of Rohan would not ever question his duty to ride to the aid of Gondor when summoned.

I find PJ's Theoden to be more human-like that Tolkien's. Tolkien's Theoden was quite frail and was not able to take decisions for himself. I liked PJ's Theoden to be more enjoyable and brave.

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Gimli has been turned into comic relief.

Good stuff!

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The books' Legolas would never express or feel the doubts and fears the movie's Legolas did at Helm's Deep.

But then the movies cannot show what a person is thinking if the person doesn't say it on screen. (whether live or in a pseudo-thought voice)

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Saruman, however, is right on the money. That scene of duelling staffs pretty much cheapens the story, though.

You can't trap a wizard like Gandalf without indulging him in a fight. Well done, I say!

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Other than thinking the astonishingly excellent computer graphics of Gollum never stops looking like astonishingly excellent computer graphics, I think the character of Gollum is even less of a moral actor than the book. There is a real sorrow and pathos, even hope and, eventually regret at his fall in the book that doesn't make the movie.

Gollum has been portrayed as a negative character so its obvious that people don't sympathise with him.

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And Frodo sending Sam away in being duped by Gollum is completely false to the three characters and their relationships. Additionally it makes Frodo look stupid.

This was brilliant! It shows the weakening of the will of Frodo and the power the Ring had on his mind and decision-making as he approached Mount Doom. Remember, Frodo is raged at Sam when he talks of Frodo lending him the Ring to carry. It makes a good run-up to Frodo claiming the Ring in the Cracks of Doom.

On a whole, I think that the changes made in the story were made for a reason and for good reasons at that. Remember, the movie wasn't made solely for theose people who had read LOTR already. He had to include those people who had never heard of Middle-Earth or Tolkien till the movie came out. And if he had to stick true to the books. It would have taken him 10 years for all the movies to come out. Its not easy to convert a 2500+ page long story into a 9 hour movie and staying true to the book as well. He had to explain the story to everyone (including LOTR ignorants) and the only way that could be done was the way he did. I don't think anyone will be able to better the movie for another half-a-century. Its not easy to make a movie. Trust me! And its very hard to get a producer who will buy it.

If you forget whatever you know of Middle-Earth and LOTR and then watch the movie as if its the first time you are hearing of Middle-Earth, then you'll really like the movie. I completely blanked my mind throughout the movie and viewed it as an ignorant will. I never compared the movies to the books.

There's no point in blaming PJ for what he did. There was no other way he could do it and definitely no better way to do it than what he did. Kudos to Peter Jackson and the Lord of the Rings movies!
I'd like to see 'Shaya Puma' do a better job than Peter Jackson, at least he appears to have read the book!
Very good response, Lord_aragorn86. Clearly we disagree on a lot of points. As I've said, I don't know that PJ has to make a movie accurate to the book. I just think he could have and would have preferred that he did.

I am not a moviemaker, not in the least, Davetherave. Are any of us? If that were a requirement, then nothing could be said here.

Otherwise, did I read aright from you that I seem not to have read the books? I have, at least thirty times, at least four times aloud (I wouldn't have thought about it until I did it, but that really is a richer reading experience).
This is what I love about some of these discussions. I agree with a lot of what Shaya Puma posted but at the same time I agree with Lord_Aragorn's comments (mostly) so for me it is a matter of acknlowledging all that I didn't like about the movies because they differed from the written word but at the same time realising that PJ had to make a lot of additions and changes purely to portray the essence (or as close as he could get) of the story.

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The movie gutted the character of Faramir. In the book

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Faramir's character was done pretty well. He loved his brother and admired him. But then he wished his father would stop lamenting the loss of Boromir. Actually, Faramir wanted his father to see that he himself is as good as his brother. The movie clearly shows that.


No matter how much PJ managed to portray parts of Faramir's character, I agree with Shaya that the most important part of him was lost totally. He should have been so much more in the movies.

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Gollum has been portrayed as a negative character so its obvious that people don't sympathise with him.


I sympathised with him.
Yeah, I can appreciate that about Smeagol. He is treated sympathetically. It's not quite the thing it is in the book, but I can see it is a real attempt to replicate the book's character. I really dislike the beat-us-over-the-head two people duality treatment. I know that a lot of people really liked that. I really didn't. Mostly with Gollum I just didn't buy it as a real character. If other people do, I don't have an argument. It's not like I want people to not enjoy anything I don't enjoy.
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did I read aright from you that I seem not to have read the books?

I never meant that. Of course you had read the books and hence the dislike with some parts of the movies.

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I sympathised with him.

Because you had read the book. The first timers believed that Gollum was actually a villainous character and it was good that he fell to his death.

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No matter how much PJ managed to portray parts of Faramir's character, I agree with Shaya that the most important part of him was lost totally. He should have been so much more in the movies.

When one's favourite character is not portrayed as one had visualised it himself/herself, he/she doesn't like that character while the others may love it. It happens with everyone. Even with me.
Just for clarity, I meant the point about my not reading the book for Davetherave, not Lord_aragorn86.
I must say that I really liked the movies, because they took the books I love most and brought them to life on the big screen. Granted, there were some things that I found irritating at first when I saw the movie. For example, the whole bit of Arwen saving Frodo when actually it was Glornfindel. But once I decided that the movie could not replicate the book word for word, I was okay with the changes that were made. For instance, the elves showing up at Helms Deep. No it didn't happen in the book that way as they were busy defending their borders from orcs and such, buy hey...the whole room still cheered when the elves showed up! My young teen sons had lots of questions about why things happened in the movie the way they did, and it gave me the chance to say , "read the books and it will make a lot more sense." Hopefully thats what PJ's movie accomplished. Hopefully the LOTR movies have instilled yet another generation to pick up the books and read the whole story.
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The movie gutted the character of Faramir

I kind of have to agree with this. This was one of the few parts of the movies that I had a lot of trouble with, that Faramir actually drags Frodo halfway back to Minas Tirith before letting him go, instead of letting him go at the waterfall. I think it is important that Faramir does not want power nearly as much as Boromir does, and so is not nearly as easily corrupted, and this kind of minimized that. However, it did give the opportunity for Sam's beautiful speech about "the stories that mattered," so it was not all bad...
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I sympathised with him.

Because you had read the book. The first timers believed that Gollum was actually a villainous character and it was good that he fell to his death.


I think that the movie Gollum could elicit some sympathy even in those who had not read the books- in fact, I think I would have been more sympathetic if I hadn't read them. or almost. The whole scene where Smeagol says "go away and never come back!" to Gollum was something that we did not get to see in the books- that for a while he may have been truly good and truly free. It also makes the misunderstood "betrayal" by Frodo more poignant.
You guys have already exhausted the discussion I would take part in, so I won't go on for long. I just agree that they gutted Faramir and Denethor and all that. I thought the Ents could've been better but weren't too bad. I used to hate the movies with a vehemence, which some of our older members might remember, but I am a little more sympathetic to our PJ than before. I still think the movies could have been a whole lot better, but hey... he tried.
Dude, the LOTR movies ROCKED!!!!!!!!!!
Personally, I like the movies, i already bought the trillogy... but i take em as an interpretation of PJ, as the way he thought the world of Tolkien could be, the most accurate way he could.. but still, we can never compare the way others think about anything just because we are not them... i mean, i used to imagine Hobbiton, and Bilbo,and Gandalf... in this very personal way... and at some points.. i am pleased with PJ work.. but at some others.. I just remember to myself "ok, it is a movie, one of a million ways to imagine LoTR" and that is it, i enjoy it as i enjoy an other movie (well, not the same but kinda) and that is it... PJ managed to finish it, they are ok to me, it was his job, his dream, and he did well...
I think it is important to seperate the movies from the books...
It has never happend, and WILL never happend, that everyone is pleased with a film based on a book. Especially when you decide to make a film about Tolkiens books. He has many fans (Dooh) and many of us reads his works over and over.
I am impressed that PJ really did a movie, he knew that either we would love it or hate it, a risk-taker on its highest level. I love the movies (despite the rights or wrongs) but I also love the books. Both have their own charm. The movie pleases my eyes and the books pleases my imagination...
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It has never happend, and WILL never happend, that everyone is pleased with a film based on a book.

Well, I did find "The Green Mile" quite pleasing and also "The Guns of Navarone" and "Where Eagles Dare" which are all based on books. But then, that's not the point. The question is "Do you like the movies?" and my answer is "Yes, I do!" Simple, ain't it?
Lord_Aragorn: I liked the green mile also.

But all in all, I truly enjoyed the movies...and I think just as much as the books. When you read a book you have your own ideas in your mind of how people and places appear. As we are reading we set the scene in our minds. We all don't have the same visions. I'd say LOTR films came darn close to mine...and I love them all! PJ did a great job...as well as all the actors/actresses. An epic.
The movies, taken as a whole, are among the best ever made. But they are far, far beneath the book. The movies are comparatively light and superficial, both in terms of character and in terms of intellectual content. The movies are still compelling entertainment, primarily because the book, on top of its philosophical and intellectual interest, is also a terrific tale and adventure story. This latter the movie captures. There were also some explorations (e.g. Arwen and Aragorn) that were illuminating. But usually the movies just skimmed over issues that were treated in depth in the book. One example: Elves and their sense of time, and what it might mean for humanity to be in the presence of an immortal race. Even the all important topic of the inherent evil of absolute power and the nature of true leadership is barely broached.
I just saw that Shaya Puma's great post is on this thread on page 2. ( I first read it somewhere else.) It's a must read.

(Grondy merely added the link to page 2.)
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I first read it somewhere else.

You must have read it on POTW. And yeah it was a good post. Such long ones are very hard to come by. And ofcourse, I disagree with most of what he says!

But, how come you saw the post only now? Its a big pity, people do not start reading the threads from the very beginning. Its a good habit to do so. Makes you understand lots of stuff and also helps you find out if what you want ot say has already been said by a like-mided member or not. Saves repetitions, that!
I love the books !!!But I also like the movies, the EXTENDED version that is
I think the first movie was the best as it kept as much to the book as it could only missing out small things rather then changing the story to much. The second movie made me mad there was no reason to change the story so radically that it changed how you felt about characters PJ managed to make theoden & faramir look like morons which is far from the truth it makes my blood boil. PJ uses the excuse the he couldent fit everything in but then why does he include made up stuff like Aragorn falling off the cliff what was that about he totally lost the plot!. The third film managed to get back on track a bit the stOry was still messed up but the riders of Rohan turning up at the Pelennor fields was the best moment in all the films it brought tears of joy to my eyes so that made up for all the other nonsense. Overall I do love the films just for there visual beauty but if only they were made for the tolkien fans and not the masses they would have been ten times better.
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but if only they were made for the tolkien fans and not the masses they would have been ten times better.

Precisely. As you may know, there are (or rather, were) more number among the "ignorant" masses and fewer numbers of those who were Tolkien fans from before. And when you make a movie, you try to make it such that it would cater to all types of people. Same thing for LOT movies. PJ had not only to make the movie interesting to the Tolkien enthusiasts but also to the larger number of those people who didn't even know that Tolkien ever existed. And I personally feel that PJ did an excellent job. I don't think that his version can be bettered.
i liked the movies, but the problem is i saw them before i read LoTR, so gimli wil always be a lil wlesh man and balrogs will always have wings, y'know, i really wished id read the book first
Watching the LOTR movies is like eating fried liver : it's disgusting, yet you still have to eat your way through.
I like fried liver, onions, bacon, mashed taters and gravy so I'm OK.
What's mashed taters ?
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What's mashed taters ?
That's where one places 20 pounds of potatoes in a burlap bag and drives a D-6 Caterpiller tractor back and forth across it until they are extruded through the bag's weave. Or is that how one make riced potatoes? Elf Sticking Tounge Out Smilie
to get back to the main topic...
I knew the movies before the books (sad, but true...), a friend of mine made me watch them, I wasn't very interested in fantasy. but I was so impressed I immediately read the book afterwards, and felt sorry I hadn't read it before. the books are better than the movies are, but that doesn't necessarily mean that the movies are bad, does it? of course, some things were stupidly changed for no reason, as it seems (maybe there was some deeper reason we can't know...?). but on the whole pj and his team did good work. and it certainly was a lot of work. they had a hard task. trying to make a movie of the book of the century is a big job, and as it already had so many fans before, it was clear from the beginning that many of them wouldn't like it. but before complaining about his work try to make it better, ok? among all their flaws the movies also contain many very well done scenes, the special effects such as gollum were really good and in my opinion the cast was well chosen, most of it. isn't viggo mortensen a wonderful aragorn? and sean astin was a really good sam, only to name a few examples. also the music was really wonderful, and most of the settings were fitting ot the story, I think.
if you don't try to compare the movies with the books, and just look at them as "individuals", you'll see that they're not bad. and if you can't accept them as what they are, just be thankful for all the new and lasting fans they provided the books with. f.i. in my area (countryside, sleepy little village full of farmers, etc. Wink Smilie) tolkien isn't very well known. if it weren't for the movies I might have stumbled over tolkien in a library in some years when studying at university or I might never have read it...
I'm glad the movies exist, and if it's only because of their introducing me to the books.
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if you don't try to compare the movies with the books, and just look at them as "individuals", you'll see that they're not bad.

Not bad, but not good either. Too many plotholes and things that don't make sense, whilst the action scenes and special effects weren't world-shattering either.

Mediocrity à gogo.

They're as good as the Star Wars prequels to me.
Our wet washcloth has spoken. elfbiggrin: Though I think PJs movies were much better the Lucas's prequels.
I abhor some of the changes in character: particularly Faramir, Gimli, and Théoden. The "being possessed" by Saruman was utterly corny and totally out of sync with Tolkien; I was disgusted the first time I saw it, since the King of the Golden Hall was my favorite chapter in the book of TTT. Also, Gimli is reduced to nothing but comic relief: in the books he represented the ancient culture of the Dwarves... in the movies, he's belching in front of Théoden and acting in a way no Dwarf would act without being ashamed. As for Faramir, it's as if he was a whole new character, since he was nothing like Tolkien's Faramir, both in looks and personality.
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The "being possessed" by Saruman was utterly corny and totally out of sync with Tolkien.

Well, I was just surprised to find out that Gandalf the Magician could also double up as Gandalf the Exorcist.
I didn't understand why Aragorn & Co were beating up people while Gandalf was doing his exorcism shtick. Were they just feeling bored, or did they have problem with controlling their violent tempers?
I love the LOTR movies (they're my favorite movies) and I don't have a problem with the changes that were made. I love the books, and I'm a huge fan of Tolkien (in fact I just started FOTR for the umpteenth time!). I try not to compare the books and the movies, because it is obvious that they will be different. The books are books, and the movies are movies, and I just try to enjoy them both without pitting them against each other.

Changes from books to movies are inevitable. Tolkien was a great writer, but in order to write a screenplay based on the book, some of the things he wrote had to be cut out or changed. PJ stayed as close to the books as he possibly could while creating a fantastic movie. Now, if the adaption was as bad as Zimmerman's would have been (and thank God he never got to make his movie), I might have second thoughts about seeing it. But PJ stayed close enough, in my opinion.
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I didn't understand why Aragorn & Co were beating up people while Gandalf was doing his exorcism shtick. Were they just feeling bored, or did they have problem with controlling their violent tempers?


Very funny.

They were attacked by some of the thugs who served Wormtongue. They didn't have their weapons, so they had to use their fists.
I like the Films even though they have inaccuracies. Why do they have these inaccuracies?

- try fitting about 800-1200 pages of story into 10 hours of film. Parts have to be cut out.

- Its a 50 year old book - audience appeal has changed so the films must destort to fit around this.

- PJ was not doing a whole replication of the Books. he was including the basic plot and some scenes but clearly he was not wholly following the book page for page.
No kidding PJ was not following the book page for page! He wasn't even following the book in basic outline, not when he can do some things just for dramatic effect without thought to the underpinning of the story. I have reviewed ROTK elsewhere, and we in PT have been all through this. But for example, there is no way that having Gandalf thrown off his horse by the Nazgul king is something necessary to make a movie! Rather, if PJ was so hellbent on action in that scene--apparently Tolkien's action in the book wasn't good enough--then Gandalf should have flattened the Lord of the Nazgul! But that would not have been what Tolkien wanted done at all. PJ should have been more concerned with bringing the same story Tolkien had written to the screen, instead of his "modernized" version of the story. As I think Morambar commented elsewhere, PJ has made a fantastic trilogy of movies and made a mark on the history of Tolkien's work. But he has not given us the story as it should have been told, even in film.
Yes, and the 10,000 Orcs and Uruk-hai at Helm's Deep for the Battle of the Hornburg would have been enough to make the movie great without ever having to add the tear-jerking Elves and Haldir's death. The story didn't really need Aragorn's swan dive into the non-existent river to be good; but that did help show Eowyn's infatuation with him and his steadfast love for Arwen, towards drawing the young female population back into the theatres for more of Viggo and Little Orly.
I think it's a love-hate relationship I have with the films. For all the reasons spelled out above, I abhor the changes which don't ring true towards the spirit portrayed in Tolkien's words.

On the other hand, there was a lot that DID ring true: Could you have asked for a better casting choice than we got with Gandalf, for instance? my hypothesis is that the parts that don't work stand out worse because of those things which were done well.

It's absurd to say PJ never read the books or that he wasn't trying to follow them at all - (as I've read in some posts)- This is obviously not true; it's slander. If he and Fran had claimed to make up the screenplay from scratch, not bothering to get the rights, he would obviously have been sued. It's precisely because he DID read the books and DID work with others who read them and DID try to do justice to the story that we cry out so loudly against those parts of the film in which we see his failure to do so.

I loved the scenery, the cinematography, the music had truly marvelous bits, the orcs were realistically greusome and evil; the Shire was lovely, the fireworks scene superb, the idea that it was good for Merry and Pippin to come, if only to give Boromir opportunity to redeem himself, was brought out better than I could have imagined it on my own; the awesomeness of Dwarrowdelf, of the statues of Argonath, the otherworldliness of Lothlorien, the horridness of Shelob, the pitiableness of Gollum, the loyalty of Sam, the desperation of Eowyn, (The musical theme for Rohan!), the gradeur of Minas Tirith, or of Helm's Deep, the sheer size of an army; the sight of the white rider appearing with the dawn, the costumes, even the flavor of some of the linguistic differences was brought out in a way that I could never have "heard" inside my head. These things and more were good -- I have posted before that the movies made me see MORE of the treasures inside of the book than I saw before. They primed the pump, so to speak, for me to read and study and enjoy the descriptions and characters more closely.

It's precisely because they did so much to unveil more of the book's beauty to me that made Elrond's character more jarring, the Ents indecision more nonsensical, Faramir's wavering more un-noble, Aragorn's unwillingness to claim the Kingship more strange, Arwen's riding towards the ships and then returning because of a vision more odd, and etc., etc., etc. If the whole thing had been farce from start to finish, I'd never have given it's worse points a second thought. Our debate over it shows exactly that he DID get some things right. More than any other director before him has done.

Last time I posted on this subject, I was of the opinion that we wouldn't see the like of this set of movies again soon -- this adaptation of a well-loved piece of literature was the best and most faithful adaptation of an excellent book I'd seen on the large screen. Now, of course, though the story itself is grander than the story of a more recent movie, I'll have to say that the recent Narnia movie was a better adaptation of its material-- (or at least just as good).
Thats what i am saying Gandalf and grondmaster.

I agree there is no way the WK could beat gandalf. However think of PJ situation. Gandalf had already had a tremedous battle with the Balarog so PJ needed something that would appear to be worse, yet obviously cannot include Sauron himself. The only thing is to portray the WK as some almighty foe that gandalf fears and is weaker than. I personnaly admire the Broken staff scene whether or not it follows the book - IT is ENTERTAINING.

PJ was not TRYING to copy the book so therefore he cannot fail at copying the book. By all accounts the films are the best films ever made, whilst they still involve the very basic plot - that is all they were MEANT to involve.
LOA, if, as PJ himself said, they were trying to do justice to Tolkien and "get people to read the book," then PJ was not justified in making Gandalf weaker than the WK. Period. As I said, if you need more "action," if what Tolkien did in that part of the story isn't good enough, then at least make it logical to the story. I do not admire that scene at all--in fact, it is my pet peeve of the entire trilogy. I understand all about adaptations of literature to film--but that is not a good excuse for sloppiness.

I agree with Elanorraine above. It is because PJ did such an excellent job with so many aspects of Tolkien's work that the defects stand out that much more glaringly. If we didn't like the way Gandalf had been cast in the movies, or if we didn't think he looked believable riding around on Shadowfax with his new staff, then the scene with the WK wouldn't mean a heck of a lot because it would not have come up to par anyway. But since so many things had been done so well, including Gandalf and all that concerned him, then the scene becomes truly jarring.

Why not leave in the scene as Tolkien had described it? Why not have them encounter each other when the gate goes down, and have both interrupted by the Rohirrim and by Pippin? It can be just as dramatic--and it was the scene we were all waiting to happen at that point in the movie. I believe it is quite dramatic as it was written or Tolkien would have written it differently. PJ would have done us all a greater service to have put that scene in without any of his own "interpretations."
I will give you an example - Grond.
In the Book grond simply came along and busted the gates open.

In the movie they first try using a battering ram standard then they bring in grond. Why do you think that is? They wanted to show how powerful and menacing Grond was so they would show how easily it busted down a gate that was unhindered by a normal ram.
This is a very good tactic to me. But if we look at it logically it makes NO sense. Why would Mordor spend such a long time making a superb ram like grond to then first try the gates with a normal ram?

When you analyse parts you can see they make no sense in reality but WHY they were put in.
I understand your argument, LOA, but the WK already appeared formidable enough without having to make the character of Gandalf suffer for it. Look at how the WK was shown leaving Minas Morgul, what the Nazgul were doing to Faramir's troops, what was shown of his attacks against Minas Tirith. I think we already had a pretty good idea he was a definite BEM. Now I watched all the extra material on the EE and I never saw or heard an explanation of why PJ had to do it this way--other than the general one of "it had to be changed for the movie." Again, I think Tolkien's vision of the scene works much better.
I thought it obvious - PJ wanted another character to match gandalf.

The balrog is gone, Sauron cannot come - he used the WK. If he hadn't the audience would think that 'Oh well gandalf will lead them right, for he is unmatched'. The WK as a deadly foe to Gandalf however inspired the watchers more becuase they didn't know what would happen.
The "match" was already forceful enough in the book. In a contest between PJ and Tolkien on this scene, I will take Tolkien.
Tolkien would always win but the point i am making is - PJ was NOT having a contest.
No, your point was that PJ did a good job on this scene, while I and others here believe the scene was somewhat wanting. As I said, PJ did many things right, but not this.
In your opinion.
It *is* a matter of opinion. That's not a problem. For the die-hard fans of the books any change to a favourite scene will seem unwarranted. (Why oh why did he do that to Faramir? - that's my pet whinge!) Many people who saw the films without having read the books were completely satisfied with the films but at least they have some lovely surprises in store if and when they read the books. And it gives us all the chance to discuss and revel in the good parts (which I think far outweigh the bad) and pick the not-so-good parts to pieces. Human nature being what it is we seem to take more pleasure in the picking to pieces and not giving enough praise for the good.

I agree with what has been said above - the impact of PJ's changes is exacerbated by the impact of great scenes true to the books.

You can please some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time but you cannot please all of the people all of the time.
PJ did a lot of things right, but he shouldn't have killed off April. That made me cry.
Quote Vee:
Quote:
(Why oh why did he do that to Faramir? - that's my pet whinge!)

Mine too, Vee, mine too. Faramir just would NOT have done what he did in the movies. It just wasn't in his nature. Ugh! So frustrating!
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