Thread: Hobbit creatures- silly or not?
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The only moments I really find jarring in The Hobbit are the anachronisms like Bilbo's matches. My literary 'conceit' (suspension of disbelief) when reading both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings is that Tolkien found and translated the stories but adapted them instead of just translating. This is evident in Tolkien's own words in the Prologue and Appendices to TLotR, but also explains instances like the "freight train" analogy in A Long-Expected Party. The matches are part of the 'world', though, and not a comment by the narrator (unlike some other parts, such as goblins being said to invent modern weaponry). I could try to rationalize it that maybe Tolkien mistranslated or deliberately changed something, but I don't really care enough to go through with the whole suspension of disbelief schtick in this case. I just accept the oddity and keep on reading. I won't miss the matches if they're cut from the film, though.
[quote:1u2fym8j] that's a dilemma for the film makers, TH, the film of the book, could stand as a great film, but not as an extension of LoTR the films, so I think we will lose a lot of the fairytale and get more of the grit which will be a shame.[/quote:1u2fym8j]
It seems clear to me that they are more interested in making prequels to the LotR films (in the context of a five-film series) than adapting the original book. Obviously both are goals to a degree, but the film prequel goal seems to be taking precedence.
I'm not sure how much of a distinction there is between Bilbo's Wilderland and "real" Middle-earth. Wilderland has its own characteristics, but so does every other setting in M-e that we see. The diversity and detail of Middle-earth is a big part of the appeal of Tolkien's stories to me. Likewise, The Hobbit has some distinctive aspects (as I mentioned in my last post), but while the nature of the story is certainly more light-hearted, I don't think the differences are too significant.
[quote:2m869gki]Just one idea of how to handle it, but it could be done. Again, I don't see the distinctions as so great that they can't be bridged through various techniques.[/quote:2m869gki]
Agreed. No offence petty, but I think you're overstating the differences a bit.
The Hobbit is set at the heart of childhood. That's where it should remain. Adults, however, are very welcome to visit. They're bound to love it too. I do.
I agree with you, but I like LotR more than TH, though for different reasons. LotR is more epic, more grand, more historical, and more serious. They are, as has been pointed out on this forum many times, do very different types of stories. I like both, though in the end I like LotR/Silmarillion type stories more than Hobbit-type stories. That said, I wouldn't want to lose either.
[quote:kpbajgsz]The Hobbit is set at the heart of childhood. That's where it should remain. Adults, however, are very welcome to visit. They're bound to love it too. I do.[/quote:kpbajgsz]
I think the best kind of fairy-story is the kind that can be read and appreciated by both children and adults, though in different ways. It's the sort of book that grows up with you.
Of course the History/Language/Theology geek in me also loves the sense of Realism imparted in books like LotR and the Silmarillion too; but again, I just see it all as part of a spectrum without any hard distinctions. To me Magic, the Imagination, and "Realism" should all be of a piece in a good Fantasy. And one should never sacrifice the Magic at the Altar of "Realism".
Of course as an adult, I occasionally enjoy a bit of "adult" material in the mix too . But it only works for me when it is done in the "juvenile" style. Anyone who reads [i:2xinhrj3]Heavy Metal[/i:2xinhrj3] magazine or has seen the film, or Bakshi's [i:2xinhrj3]Wizards[/i:2xinhrj3], or Japanese Anime should know exactly what I mean.
HP???? are you comparing Hp & Lotr???? their stories are different from each other...
HP???? are you comparing Hp & Lotr???? their stories are different from each other...[/quote:kgxtegkh]
They're two parts of the same genre, certainly. I can't speak for Odo or anyone else, but by calling The Hobbit a fairy story I only mean that it takes a less serious, less adult, and (I suppose) less gritty approach. This distinction isn't as clear in the latter chapters of The Hobbit and the early chapters of The Lord of the Rings, though. (Incidentally, Book I of TLotR has some of my favourite moments).
[quote:21bp44pg]To me Magic, the Imagination, and "Realism" should all be of a piece in a good Fantasy. And one should never sacrifice the Magic at the Altar of "Realism".[/quote:21bp44pg]
I agree. I don't find TH to be less realistic than TLotR, really.
(NB If the above is flaming, I'm sure getting a taste for it! )
BTW, Odo, happy belated 1000th post birthday!
I don't know for sure, but I would assume it involves making someone's brain contort so much that it feels like they've had their underwear jammed through their ears and twisted around the cerebral cortex. Sort of like math does to me.
I'd say we're spot-on, GB.
Oddly in this neck of the world theres a local legend to explain the massive boulders you can find dotted around everywhere- story goes (in brief) that stone giants used to have competitions, who can throw the biggest rocks the furthest. But this was playing havoc with the poor mortal humans whose houses kept getting flattened by rocks. So the humans damned a river in a glen and next year they challenged the giants to stone chucking contest. When the giants were all in the bottom of the glen ready to start throwing they released the dam and drowned them all. This neatly explained why there are isolated huge boulders everywhere and where the loch came from.
Of course the glen, the loch and the rocks are the result of glacier activity during last ice age and the rocks were just dumped when the ice melted- but I know which version Id rather watch a film of. I'm sure there was a point to all this, feel free to dig around and find one.
But really, even if they were out of place in [b:19n8aulq][i:19n8aulq]Tolkien's[/i:19n8aulq][/b:19n8aulq] later Classical Pagan/Biblical conceptions, I don't see a problem with them fitting in context of the Films (or in the books too for that matter). As Fantasy Creatures go, Giants aren't so "airy fairy" that most people would see any incongruity.
They seemed to be wild things who played games - nascent intellignces? And on the good-to-evil scale somewhat neutral, or indifferent to mortal things at least. Mortals might be good for playing with, as cats do with mice - nothing personal, you see.
[quote="pettytyrant101":2e5ai3pu]I hope the giants are in it, I loved that bit as a kid as they cross the mountains and the storm is raging and the giants come out to have a laugh. Overall I'm of the opinion if your going to do TH then go for broke- put the lot in, talking trolls, purses spiders, stone hurling giants the works- because the alternative is a film I don't want to see, a bland, dull story with no fantastical elements to it. It just needs to be handled right.[/quote:2e5ai3pu]
[quote="Gandalfs Beard":2e5ai3pu]Talking Trolls, Giants, Ogres, Goblins, Talking Spiders, whatever; they all work in Middle Earth for me.[/quote:2e5ai3pu]
Yes - and good to see no mention of White Councils!
The above would be a whimsical resonse to my earlier post on this thread, would it not?