Thread: WHITE COUNCIL WILL WRECK HOBBIT
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Gandalf going off in The Hobbit was really just an excuse to give Bilbo the oportunity to 'grow' as a character (and hero, even). Gandalf went off to chase the Necromancer away from Dol Guldur (I'm not even sure it was to chase Sauron away to Mordor at that stage of writing). This is an excellent reason why it should not be part of the movie - it was never, strictly speaking, part of the book.
Bilbo is the Story. The only diversion should be the slaying of Smaug, as this was IN THE BOOK. And should be shown after the Party have had time to begin to wonder about things - perhaps in Flashback. All that wandering around inside the Lonely Mountain with them wondering where Smaug had got to was truly suspenseful. Let this play out - and then do the Flashback.
Hey, how's this: don't fix it if it's not broke!
In the book Aragorn releases the Dead Men ("the Army of the Dead" is a film-only phrase) at Pelargir and proceeds to battle with Legolas, Gimli, the Dunedain, and some of the Men of Southern Gondor.
[quote="Odo Banks":1viljb5u]This is an excellent reason why it should not be part of the movie - it was never, strictly speaking, part of the book.
Hey, how's this: don't fix it if it's not broke![/quote:1viljb5u]
I agree. I don't think showing Gandalf's "comings and goings" would be necessary beyond make a few-second flashback at some point when he hints at where he was (sort of like they did in [i:1viljb5u]The Two Towers[/i:1viljb5u]).
But then I am one of those kids who always wanted to know what Gandalf was doing in The Hobbit anyway.
However, I love Hollywood Special Effects Blockbusters. And as Jackson mirrored a lot of what was in my own subconscious, I feel pretty good about how this is going to turn out.
Since my recent conversion to Tolkien Fundamentalism, I have come to see things far more clearly. Yes, I am well aware that is a Powerful Force of Darkness (PFD) that I must contend with. That same force was strong enough to seduce one such as Eldorion away from the True Path. Yes, I don't underestimate old PFD, no way.
But lukilly I now know the fervor of the true Tolkien Fundamentalist (I couldn't be more fervorous if I was a Reformed Smoker, and we all know how fervorous they can be!) I tell you, I'll fight the good fight, even if the fight is ultimately futile. Sigh....!
Is this because of the Bombadil thing?
I must take up this Tom business with you again sometime, Eldorion, but on a more appropriate thread. I'm really amazed at how far you have wandered of the True Path! Perhaps you can still be saved.
Now reply to my new dragon-y post in an informed yet light hearted way, post haste.
And I have...
Let's put things out logically.
Gimli could slide into the movie as Gloin (find a different glue, or digitally change his face a bit - hey - big budget!). Gloin does not take such a big role. A lot of his shots would be of him as one among thirteen. Use a stunt double and digitally stick on his face if non-speaking? Dead easy - if you know how.
Legolas, legitimately could be in movie - though as a cameo, very few lines, just to please the fans. Orlando could play Thranduil even, with minor make-up changes. He's Immortal. He does not age!
Anyhow - to the Bigger Picture!
To put in Aragorn and the White Council would require so much sub-creating and movie time, we'd definitely need three movies, or else the whole thing would be too rushed! The movie makers can't risk anything but a movie of the quality and 'pacing' of LOTR. Tonal changes between Bilbo and the White Council sequences would be too extreme - unless they're making The Hobbit (Adults Only) Version. (If so, they'll have to cut out all the lighter scenes - and that will leave nothing left but DT's imagination!)
I don't think DT can do it. The Hobbit will be The Hobbit. The movie makers are playing with us with all this talk of showing events in Southern Mirkwood - because they know it can't be done even half-well in the space of two movies!
The White Council will come in "Gandalf the Grey (The Movie)," just as I've always suspected! "Money, money, money, isn't funny, it's a rich man's world...!" (Abba)
Yippee-yay! No White Council!!!
But I happen to agree that balancing the different tonal quality of the more "grown-up" material with the "kid-stuff" presents difficulties as Del Toro has recently indicated that the material will be interspersed throughout the films instead of putting the White Council mostly in the second film.
Still, if anyone has a hope of pulling this off, I think Del Toro could. The Hellboy franchise seems to balance "juvenile" with "adult" quite well. Terry Gilliam could have pulled it off years ago as Time Bandits is basically his version of The Hobbit (Baron Von Munchausen also had that same succesful blend of "childlike imagination" and edginess).
Del Toro seems to have a similar mindset as Gilliam, so I really think this is going to work out, however he arranges the story.
I never knew Time Bandit's was basically The Hobbit!!!
I didn't pick that at all.
I don't know for sure, but perhaps (just perhaps) your ideas on 'adaptations' are even more novel than I realized! Phew!
I won't tell Eldorion you said it. He'll probably have a fit!
A gang of Roguish Dwarfs draft a reluctant innocent young British Lad (i.e. a "Hobbit" into their quest to steal treasure.
When I first saw the film as a teenager in 1981, it struck me as a very unique re-visioning of The Hobbit .
This began as the Fundamentalist Purist position against The White Council being in The Hobbit ([i:14p66wsq]my[/i:14p66wsq] oposition, that is).
I have to go to a quote from Peter Jackson, which in paraphrase is "the fans will eventually forgive us for changes to storyline and even to character, so long as we stay true to middle earth. Assuming we keep that intact, the fans will say 'well, he royally screwed that movie up, but at least middle earth is still there so we can always go back again and do it right.'"
I like GB's idea of keeping the most Hobbitish parts together in the first movie, then letting us wander a bit during the darker second movie and see things we might have otherwise missed. It's still middle earth.
And though I remain royally pissed at PJ for the parts he screwed up, I thank him for the wonderful visit to a place I love. So long as orcs/goblins don't stop and take a vote at forks in the road instead of fighting about it, and the Misty Mountains don't look like the rolling Appalachians; so long as elves still sing in the trees, I'll be glad it got made. I burned out my rigid book faithfulness in a series of hissy fits after each LoTR movie and don't plan to let myself get worked up in a huff this time. I think Del Toro will get the world right despite any other sins he may commit.
I suspect a Tyrantean Conspiracy to get me all huffed up again!
Was I just a rabbit in your trap, Mr Tyrant! (Bloody Scots! )
[i:1i435y1j]Sauron's Soldiers[/i:1i435y1j], I name thee all thus!
Did Sir Edmund Hillary say: Oh #*^^ me dead! That's a #*^#@&@ big mountain! Even if I make it to the top, I'll freeze me balls off! (No, he didn't - Sir Edmund never swore - at least not in public... [i:31fxv5cf]He[/i:31fxv5cf] was a gentleman!)
So why should I accept the proposed desecration of The Hobbit? I know I am but a hobbit-sized shadow standing in the shadow of the Great Tolkien - a small Hobbit shadow from Rushock Bog (below Needlehole) - but does that mean I can't continue to fight against those Dark Forces bearing the Flame of Udun ? That evil flame, unimaginably dark, darker than any flame you could possibly imagine! (In Middle-earth it's possible, Halfwise, trust me!)
Yes, I am but one wee Hobbit, but remember this fine and stirring song:
[i:31fxv5cf]"Give me ten Hobbits,
Ten stout hearted Hobbits,
And I'll give you ten thousand more!" [/i:31fxv5cf]
You guys worry me with how easily you give up. (Some of you even seem to welcome this pending Wreck of the Hobbit!! )
[i:31fxv5cf]Huffed[/i:31fxv5cf], Hail Manwe!
I'm not ashamed to be huffed!
I'm proud to be huffed!
I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow their Monstrous Movie down...!
Are you with me or are you against me
Odo Fullwise Banks
Mr Tyrant - don't...give...in... Stay out of GB's clutches. Yes, I know how persuasive he is!
My cap off to you, Odo and friends; you are doomed to defeat but it will be the stuff that songs are made of. The movie will at least echo parts of your dream, as a voice heard far off.
I too dreamed of Lord of the Rings done with every word and every scene in place, but it will be some bohemian art project with little profit yet much nobility. The same could be done of the hobbit. If the current big venture comes out 75% intact it will be the best we can hope for. In which case we may as well have the white council. Alas, it is but a grown up solution arrived at by committee rather than youthful dreamers.
"We lived many lives in those whirling campaigns, never sparing ourselves: yet when we achieved and the new world dawned, the old men came out again and took our victory to remake in the likeness of the former world they once knew. Youth had won, but had not learned to keep, and was pitiably weak against age. We stammered that we had worked for a new heaven and new earth, and they thanked us kindly and made their peace.
"All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their mind wake in the day to find that it was but vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes to make it possible."
Lawrence of Arabia
Seven Pillars of Wisdom
The book can be filmed quite faithfully and be excellent for it.
I don't disclaim all need for sub-creation - just any unnecessary sub-creation and any add-on that steers clear of what the book is.
The story needs no improvement to be successful. What worked in the book will work in the movies - and with not too much brain work required.
Tolkien was the Dreamer here. The Dream (the story) was just about perfect (to this dreamy child's eyes).
The film can't be perfect but it can be faithful - and it will NOT be dull or non-commercial because of it.
I'm not an Art House man generally. I'm not seeking a small audience. I'm seeking an audience of folk who love The Hobbit.
Mr Lawrence, though laudable in many ways, was a hard nosed self-promoter who tapped other people's dreams to sound wise and impressive.
Perhaps I truly understand you now, Halfwise! Physicists, it may turn out, may be all alike. We are more modest in Australia. We call you guys [i:3nxdzlwj]Electricians[/i:3nxdzlwj][i:3nxdzlwj][/i:3nxdzlwj]. And[i:3nxdzlwj] Electricians[/i:3nxdzlwj] can only ever pretend to be Dreamers - which is just as well I guess when you're wiring houses - but not when you're filming classic fairy-stories! (Or am I really thinking of [i:3nxdzlwj]Chemists[/i:3nxdzlwj]?)
I agree absolutely. The Hobbit has been a bestselling classic for over 70 years and has a huge fanbase (including some who dislike LotR). Add to that the fact that it will bring in many fans of the LotR [i:ki59cppq]movies[/i:ki59cppq] as well, it's pretty much a guaranteed hit. It doesn't "need" to do anything (except not be a steaming turd, but I think it's a given it won't).
Thank goodness you're here, Eldo! I don't feel so alone now. With just another 9,999 hobbits - or Hobbit-lovers - at our side, we can make our assault on Dol Guldur!
'Your movie-making is known to us,' said Galadriel, looking at Bilbo. 'But it has no place here. Yet not in vain will it prove, maybe, should you leave this land and not seek aid here, as Gandalf himself plainly purposed. For though the Lord of the Galadhrim is accounted the wisest of the Elves of Middle-earth, and a giver of gifts beyond the power of kings, he would not let you stray so far from your purpose. He has dwelt in the West since the days of dawn, and I have dwelt with him years uncounted; for ere the fall of Nargothrond or Gondolin I passed over the mountains, and together through ages of the world we have fought the long defeat against those who would corrupt the very stories they claim to adapt.
'I it was who first summoned the White Council. And if my designs had not gone amiss, it would have been a record in history, and not told in any tale of Latter Days, and then mayhap we should see our stories adapted faithfully. But even now there is hope left. I will not act in this movie, my character where she should not be, or saying things she never said. For not in changing or adding, nor in mixing this line and that scene, can I avail; but only in staying true to the book at the heart of this all. But this I will say to you: your Movie stands upon the edge of a knife. Stray but a little and it will fail, to the ruins of all. Yet hope remains while all the Film-makers are true.'
Hmmf.... I don't mean to pry... but why were you looking through T's dirty undies? Not that there's anything wrong with that!
Here's what I think everyone can agree on:
1. The Hobbit doesn't [i:2b06bylm]need[/i:2b06bylm] the white council. It's eminently complete and filmable as it is.
2. The white council would detract from the flow of the story.
But we also have to accept that if you give film-makers an entire world to play in and the funding to do so, they're gonna play. And it would be cool to see the white council, so long as the damage to the story and Tolkien's larger legacy can be minimized.
So here's what I suggest: the WC can be used as the opening segment to the second movie, sort of like Gandalf fighting the balrog scene. It would give the viewers a re-introduction to the world with a glimpse of what's going on behind the scenes, without really interrupting the flow of the story which was already interrupted by a bunch of damn credits and perhaps a year's wait anyway.
This way the purists could hit the skip button on their DVD remote right up front and get back to the pure Hobbit with little more than an oath under the breath.
So why film the white council if it doesn't really go in the story? Because it's an important part of middle earth history, and it fits in the chronology. To pass it up is too hard to resist - there will never be another chance to get it on film. I say bag the sucker but structure it so it doesn't interfere.
[quote:1j0n4btc]so long as the damage to the story and Tolkien's larger legacy can be minimized.[/quote:1j0n4btc]
I'm not sure what exactly you are referring to by "Tolkien's larger legacy", but I don't think that including the White Council is going to work out at all, from the perspective of making a faithful/accurate adaptation. It will shift a large part of the focus and emotional energy away from the "real" story of The Hobbit, and makes it more of "The Prequel to LotR" than its own story. Based on the filmmakers' comments, that seems to be their goal anyway. Apparently adapting one of the great classics of fantasy literature just isn't good enough on its own for the likes of PJ and GdT.
While it would be nice for it be unintrusive, I'm not sure how well slipping it into the first few minutes of film two would work. The Gandalf/Balrog scene was only a few minutes long, so it fit; but the White Council is going to take quite a bit longer. It might be possible to show as long as a 15-20 minute sequence, but sooner or later you've got to get back to the main story. My position on this is that if they're going to add the White Council, I'd like them to do it justice.
Whatever my own preference is though, I think that petty is probably right as to what ultimately will happen.
But it has been indicated by Del Toro himself that it will be included in both films concurrent with the main story. I think of all people other than Terry Gilliam, Del Toro will be able to handle these shifts in tone. So I am not overly concerned about any "ruination" .
Ten stout hearted Hobbits..."[/i:2r9tq2mn]
GB - I'd be thrilled to see a full blown white council and attack on Dol Guldor on screen, but I strongly sympathize with those who don't want their childhood memories mucked around with. It's kinda like watching a beautifully done Winnie the Pooh, and then all of a sudden you are assaulted with Christopher Robin sitting behind his little desk in 1st grade, drinking milk out of a little cardboard carton. I mean, we know he went away to school, but do we really want to see it?
I would like to see the WC etc, 'cause it's much cooler than watching Christorpher Robin drink milk, but it's a delicate thing. I think your solution comes closest to making it work (my James Bond type of opening scene being universally booed out). We'll see what they do.
But my picture of Smaug is still the best. (other thread)
Remember, The Hobbit is a proven story - and a best seller - have we forgotten that? Hoisting one's flag on Tolkien's ship (bathing in his reflected glory as lazy folk do) while maximizing profit as the main purpose of sailing at all,is surely the antithesis of all true art - and an assault on the sensibility of all true fans! (And poor seamanship to boot - and we all know how much we hate that!)
I recall a poem of Wordsworth:
[i:3pnvusz7]Darkness lit as flame shining bright,
Foulness has never smelled so sweet,
Bathe us in all your false lantern light,
Blind us all in your glimmering deceit!
But I am not blinded by the beacon blaze!
Verily I see your smiling twisted lip,
And your Cynic's hard gleamed gaze -
What once was good is now a Pirate Ship!
Ah! Prophetic words those... yes sirree!
Eru Bless us All!
(I hope the Sinners will get cast down too into a fiery place as punishment for their arrant Liberalism, but [i:k3r1zljr]The[/i:k3r1zljr] Tyrant hasn't mentioned anything about that yet...)