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Thread: Purist scale

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[quote="pettytyrant101":29zgvfra]Either a scene serves its purpose within a film or it does not.... We are talking here about what actually ended up on screen under the guise of an adaptation.[/quote:29zgvfra]

I think GB made it clear that he does not like the scene that appears in the film, so I'm still unsure why you're bothering him about this. :roll:
There will not be a truly purist adaption until Tom Bombadil is included. Has anyone done that yet?
[quote="Noom Chevaline":2zhm0wu3]There will not be a truly purist adaption until Tom Bombadil is included. Has anyone done that yet?[/quote:2zhm0wu3]

That sounds more "literalist" than "purist". Almost all purists (by which I mean people who use that term to describe themselves) don't expect the sort of 100% accurate adaptation you've been mentioning in your last few posts.
I put all this to GB because he said on another thread that he was yet to be convinced by argument that PJ ballsed everything up- I am presenting a small example of that argument Eldo.
I don't think Petty or Noom see a difference between Purism and Literalism Eldo :roll: . They are entitled to their opinions, it's a shame they can't return the courtesy on this issue. Some matters are issues of Objective Fact and Empirical Evidence, this is not one of those issues (unlike the ACTUAL definition of a term vs a made-up philosophical one <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' /> ).

There is no hard and fast distinction between "Purism" and so-called "Liberalism". Some "Purists" would see Petty and Noom as Flaming Radicals for not insisting that every line of dialogue, every minor plot and sub-plot detail be filmed. Yet Petty and Noom will still claim that they can be the Arbiters of All-That-Is-Pure :roll: :roll: .

Petty insists that a Director has no right to draw upon anything but the original source material and still call the film an adaptation. Fair Enough as an Opinion, he's welcome to it. But it's not "fair enough" that he (and Noom) insist that everyone must adhere to HIS definition of adaptation. It's ludicrous and narrow-minded to do so, and incorrect besides.

Yes, the filming of the Warg scene was poorly executed, and yes, I have no problem with the inclusion of such a scene (Better Done). There is no "Fence-sitting" involved, just an opinion, which is partially shared with Petty.

I have made my case. It Stands on it's own and needs no further defense. Petty can continue to flog a dead horse all he will, but I doubt it will gain him further satisfaction. Once I've made my case to my satisfaction, I see no need to continue repeating it.

And Petty, your "example" is as unconvincing as ever :P .

"I've made my case to my satisfaction"- you have GB? Could you share your case as I've seen nothing of it here so far.
You say you have no problem with the inclusion of such a scene but fail to say why or what purpose you think it serves. You also failed to address the accusation that the scene fails on its own terms within the context of the film.

If my example is unconvincing it is far less so than your reply. If its true GB than you can be convinced by argument then it would be prudent to heed the arguments and address them, less easy than blanket statements I understand, but makes for a far better debate.

My views are my own, I don't know what Noom's are. My previous posts here and elsewhere should make it clear I understand the need and reasoning for changes, just not for wholesale bastardisation.
In regards to the "Purist Scale" discussion I have made my case.

Your argument regarding the Warg scene as it "fails on its own terms within the context of the film," rests on the fact that it wasn't in the book :roll: . That's hardly an Objective example of how horrible Jackson's films are, but a perfect example of how Subjective (and internally contradictory) your OPINION of the films is :P .

When I'm stating a clearly Subjective opinion, I don't always see it as necessary to "back it up", particularly when it's over something relatively trivial.

My argument does not rest on that premise GB- that is an overall opinion on what I believe an adaptation should be. My charges against that scene in context of its own film was that that it fails the purposes it was written for- Aragorn having a moment with Arwen and Eowyn's reaction to his apparent loss. Both of which are handled very clumsily and poorly, the Aragorn/Arwen scene adds nothing not already sufficiently covered in conversation and the overplaying of Eowyns emotions regards Aragorn are poorly realized and by altering the timing of her outbursts undermine the tragedy of her plight and Aragorns. These are criticism made of the film as film, besides the fact it has no bearing in source material.
[quote="pettytyrant101":371yr5ji]I put all this to GB because he said on another thread that he was yet to be convinced by argument that PJ ballsed everything up- I am presenting a small example of that argument Eldo.[/quote:371yr5ji]

I don't think that GB has ever claimed that the films were perfect, and in any event "I don't think PJ messed up everything" and "I think PJ messed up this specific scene" are two perfectly compatible statements.
My views are my own, I don't know what Noom's are. My previous posts here and elsewhere should make it clear I understand the need and reasoning for changes, just not for wholesale bastardisation.[/quote:3criu69o]

There was some irony in my previous comments. I will nail my colours to the mast.

I first read the novel LoTR 23 years ago, I loved it and have been hooked since. I would not call myself an absolute purist. For instance the only thing about the warg attack that annoyed me was that it was in the film when the scouring of the shire was out of the film. If the scouring of the shire was in hte film, I would not have been bothered about the addition of the warg attack. There were plenty of little add ons that I could list but could not. The films were not too long for me, If including the scouring of the shire meant a 4th film then so be it. They tied their hands behind their backs with the concept that a trilogy requires 3 movies. I realise that it was six books so do not need reminded of that but I would not have tied my hands with those numbers. I was watching the three movies and was willing to overlook a lot, an awful lot and give credit where credit was due (Boromirs death was very close to how I imagined it and how Ted Nasmith depicted it in art.) The colours in Rivendel were amazing, I loved the sound track, (well most of it)

If Tom Bombadil had been included as well as the scouring of the shire I would have stood by GB and argued against The Tyrant about the additions. I loved the movies, I went to the premiers of each one and wanted to tear my hair out in frustration when it ended because of the scouring of the shire being ommited.. There was so much added that wasted valuable filming time. Why do I think the scouring was ommited, because of the hollywood formula of the false need for comic effect. Merry and Pipin could not have pulled off the scouring of the shire after their characters were assassinated with inane stupidity within the rest of the movie. Merry and Pippin had become the two stupid guys in Robin Prince of thieves, Jar Jar Binks and co, CP30 and R2D2. Hollywood needs to realise that you can have humour without needing to have the comic effect of the stupid duo formula. However if he had kept Merry and Pippin true to their characters as in the novel then some of the other superstars would have drowned in their shadow.

Rant Over, I hate being provoked to a rant as the best rants are about humour.

The irony of this post is choking me right now.

I am away to sit bare naked in a Haradian sandstorm so that I can feel clean again.

There, there Noom! ...*pats Noom gently on the back*...

I sympathize with your plight. It IS annoying when a director eliminates one's favoured scenes and injects new material in it's place. I don't fault you for those feelings. For me, Bombadil and the Scouring, were elements of the books that weren't a priority (in fact I never did particularly care for the Scouring to begin with). So it didn't seem sacrilegious to me to leave those bits out, but I can certainly comprehend your dismay at their elimination. And this really goes to the heart of my point about the Intense Subjectivity of trying to create a Purism scale--especially in regards to applying it to individuals and not films.

Personally, I loved Jackson's version of LotR, and I think it is suitable for General Audiences. But I would be just as delighted as any "Purist" if someone made an even longer version that included everyone's favourite scenes from the books. Though I'm not certain such an endeavor would draw a sizable enough general audience unfamiliar with the source material, which is one of the things directors must take into consideration when a film is For-Profit. But Goodness Knows, Classics are constantly being remade, so don't count it out.

This discussion haas certainly become interesting. Two main issues seem to have sprung up. (1) The question o what true adaptations should be and (2) did the warg scene work or not in the context of the movies as made. The reason I am suggesting this is, I think pettytyrant is right to make his comments on (2). Whether he agrees it was good or not is not relevant to (1) as it is a separate question in the context of what pettytyrant asked. Eldorion seems to recognize the distinction. Sorry for stating what is probably so obvious, but the reason I have done so is to address Gandalfs Beard really. I think pettytyrant has a point, Gandalfs Beard. What is your view of the warg scene in the movie (forgetting Purism for a minute). Does the scene work properly as cinema or not? If it works, how? I have my own views but as pettytyrant raised the issue with you, I would like to hear your response to it.
Oh Eldo you are so pedantic, must be the Lore master in you! Better then to say I feel the warg scene is a perfect example of the specific type of way in which PJ ballsed up the films. It is typical of where he went wrong in many of the other arbitrary changes he brought to the story and characters. So as a small illustration of the problems in the greater whole the warg scene is a perfectly good example.

As Noom says above his treatment of Merry and Pippin is appalling but its probably not the worst offender- for me its Frodo siding with Gollum and sending Sam away- but there are countless examples, minor and major, throughout the three films, but especially the latter two of Pj's own brand of adaptation (which is to ignore the source and go with his own ideas).

I d so hope GB you are right and there is another version made in my lifetime- please Illuvator make it television- it needs the room and the pacing is more suited to tv than film I think.

I have said it before and I will say it here again now, my problem with PJ's version is one of disappointment, so much of it is so right that the script being the poorest element almost reduces me to tears. Its for the missed opportunity I become tyrannical, nothing more.

Good points well put GP! I would still like to hear that reply myself, as well as your own views on it.
I liked the idea of a Battle Scene with Wargs in it. End of Story :roll: .

Did I care for its execution? Not particularly. Could it have been done differently? Absolutely. Does Petty have some valid reasons for disliking the scene? I never said he didn't, I just plain disagree with some of them and consider them subjective.

I haven't put a lot more thought into it than that, and I don't really intend to for what I consider to be a minor point :P .

A television adaptation would be the go. I agree. I have often wondered if a live action shoot could be made in studios against blank backdrops and then the live footage used (and added to where necesary) as the substrata for animation. This way children or small people could be used for hobbits and dwarves and taller folk for Gandalf and Elves and Men because they would be used for basic movement and would not be seen as real people in the finished product. I suggest this as a cheap means of filming using existing tried and tested computer animation (little or no R&D costs). Actors could be good voice-over people - forget famous actors demanding huge wage bills. The story would drive the movie and so a very close adaptation could be done. I would expect a cheaply made (but wisely made) adaptation could be done this way. I'm not sure Tolkien fans would mind if the series was cutting edge, indeed we probably would be happy that the story counted most, so long as the cinematography and animation were not utter rubbish. As to making a movie of The Hobbit, I am happy to trust Peter Jackson. Successful expensive movies make different demands.

Gandalfs Beard, the proof is often in the pudding. Minor points and major points, when brought up, should be treated with respect and deserve careful consideration. If you want to make throwaway comments you should make it clear from the start you are doing so. pettytyrant asked a fair enough question, you could at least give him a reasoned response as opposed to an offhand rebuff. As to the scene, pettytyrant, I think it is exciting. I like the idea of the drama with Aragorn and not knowing if he lives or not, and it helps build the romantic tension with Eowyn. I also like the scene with the horse rolling on its side so he could mount, though I know this was not part of the scene we are discussing (sorry for the digression, but I did like it! :oops: )
Attempting to goad me into into answering Petty on HIS terms is more than likely to push me the other direction. :P

When Petty first brought up the Warg scene as an example of Jackson bolloxing the films, I answered that I agreed with him on the execution but disagreed with the rest of it. It didn't seem worth taking the time to me to spell out each of the points as we've already read the points in Petty's post. Picture the opposite of what Petty said and you have Pilgrim's response (which is simply restating Petty's points as a positive instead of a negative and which I agree with).

In fact the only reason I'm wasting my time on THIS post is to make perfectly clear what everyone already knows. :roll:

See GB. GP may be leaning to the loony liberal camp but at least he has his reasons and isn't afraid to state them clearly- however wrong! <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' />

As to the reasons you give GP- I can't argue with you finding the scene exciting- a warg attack is exciting and there's a perfectly good one on the way to the MInes Of Moria that they neglected to include (a big troll fight and collapsing staircases seem to have pushed it out).
The warg scene is a scene contrived with the sole aim of separating Aragorn to fulfil the need the writers felt for Arwen to 'appear' in the TT. However Aragorn's feelings for Arwen are made perfectly clear on the journey to Helms Deep when Eowyn questions Aragorn over the elftstone Arwen gave him. In writing this is called a 'redundancy' a repetition of information, oddly repetitions are usually the first scenes to be cut when time is an issue. And time is very much an issue in any adaptation of LOTR. So I am surprised it remained on that point alone.
As to Aragorn's survival or not, I'm not sure even that works. For the non-Tolkien fan there is not much time to wait to find out he's fine and for the Tolkien fan they know he must survive- so how much tension or drama this generates is debatable, it's also quite a cheap writing ploy.

As to Eowyn, I think it undermines her character. It makes her seem more emotionally frail than she is in the books, it is a chance of escape and honour she sees in Aragorn, not love. PJ plays it to close to love and by having her so emotionally wound up by Aragorn's apparent demise they write themselves into a corner- in order to provide the emotional capping to it before the battle they have to have her declare her love. Further making her seem like a simpering woman, not a shield maiden of Rohan.

I liked the horse bit too, for what its worth, if only to admire the skill of the training and the control of the horse.

Try extending your idea of the discussions to the bigger picture GB. These types of changes are common throughout the films. And it gets to the heart of what is and what is not adaptation. Which in itself is at the heart of the purist liberal debate that is the subject of Nooms thread. The devils in the detail you know.
When a person calls himself or herself a fan, then I would have thought EVERY detail was important, whether discussing the book or the movies, or comparing the two to each other positively or negatively. Discussing the Warg Scene is as important as discussing the big picture (pun not intended). Gandalfs Beard, I seem to agree a lot with you, but I still think you should not be able to just get away with flippant responses, not when it seems to be a strategy of yours to prevent having to concede ground to the Enemy (pettytyrant and his Yes Man, Odo, I mean! :lol: ) Surely we must show the Puritans that we Tolkien Liberals ( :roll: ) can put up strong arguments to defend our views. As to your points, pettytyrant, I think you are wrong. In a movie the Director has to find simple ways to get points across. You can't be too subtle if you have little time. The Aragorn-Eowyn matter is a sub-plot (even in the book) and the audience needs to see it without it taking hours to get the point across and without bathing it in ambiguities either. That is just sound movie making. The warg scene serves many purposes, fills gaps if you like, and I think adds drama, excitement and humor in a part of the story where the characters move from Edoras to Helms Deep that needs telling. In the book this was done excellently, but I am not sure it could be filmed successfully. We are talking about The Lord of the Rings here, not The Mill on the Floss. Indeed, at least Mill had plenty of conversation, not just descriptions of landscapes. <img src='/images/smileys/smile.gif' border='0' alt='Smile Smilie' /> And by the way, Gandalfs Beard, what exactly did you find so wrong with execution of the scene?
Hello pettytyrant. How are you, Master? Would you like me to continue to lick your hobnail boots? Oh is that a speck of shite. Oh my, it landed on your toe when GP spat out his drivel! Surprised to see me, GP? Oh I've just crawled out from the rock I was hiding under!

My! The Wrong are certainly showing their claws - mainly against each other! :lol: Is GP on GB's side - or is he his worst quote 'Enemy' unquote. :? At least we Purists, (we 'Right' minded folk) know whose side we're on! That's the trouble with Libs. They do so much disagreeing with each other they can't agree on a Logical Collective Program (or Argument). Of course, they can form Coalitions with Real Political Parties and become their Junior never-heard-of-again Partners in Government - but they can't do anything in a collective way for the collective good! :lol: (My God - do I sound like a Commie or just an Anarchist Syndicalist?? :? :? )

Hey! I think GB has a good point, strategic or not! The warg scene should be treated with flippancy and disdain, indeed, it should be [i:2sqzhaw0]rebuffed[/i:2sqzhaw0] - it's shite! Perhaps he's correct: it's not worth discussing.

Odo Banks

Odo Lives!!!!
Ahh Odo, there's fire in your belly I sense! But at least my boots are shiny now. Perhaps you are right on the warg scene, certainly your reasoning is sound if blunt. Problem is that when one takes into account all the other scenes PJ created that fall into the same category all you are left with is sh**e.
But try to get a liberal to admit it. Hah! Blood from stones is mere childs play next to that.
As to GP I have no idea either who he supports, sometimes he backs my arguments sometimes not- a classic liberal, no clear ideas or purpose of their own! It's hard not feel sorry for them, but we must be strong and righteous against this tide of wishy-washy thinking or we will end up with TH film they deserve and we don't.
Ah! Sweet Mr Tyrant! It's like Illuvatar himself lent you his bow the way you shoot your arrows so accurately. I bet you Illuvatar isn't a wishy-washy God. Old Testament type I reckon, not your softly spoke Jesus type. (I should say this a bit quiter - old Forum-crasher GP might be listening!) Anyway, if the Libs want a fight, I'm up for it - even if it means beating them to a pulp with marshmellows (we'll let them have their weapons of choice! <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' /> ) Mind, we'll have to explain to them what their 'Enemies' even look like, as they can't seem to distinguish who is on their side... Actually, I expect we'll have to tie our hands behind our backs, bind our legs, and gag our mouths - to give them a fighting chance, you know. We 'Right' minded folk are generous, and make no mistake. Solid, reliable, good hearted folk can afford to be generous, at least to pushovers. <img src='/images/smileys/bigsmile.gif' border='0' alt='Big Smile Smilie' />
Oh GB, you mustn't listen to this new Grey Wizardy chap. Remember this, I will support you through thick and thin. I am very fond of you. I think all you need is a strong woman behind you. Now, I'm not promising you anything more than friendship at this stage, but who knows... once your spine begins to... err.. solidify... we'll see what happens, okay?

As to you, Grey Pilgrim, welcome and all, but please, will you stop being so argumentative. Petty and Uncle Odo are set in their ways, but only when they're utterly 'Right.' They are people with Great Big Thoughtful Brains (no matter what Uncle Wise thinks), not some intellectual weaners you can push around (or roast on a stick). As you should know by now, they're never 'Wrong' - ever. Mind you, it might be better to explain (for ye of faint mind) that they're Purists (in the old scale) as opposed to Tolkien Liberals. I have to say this as you don't seem the sort to think things out very deeply. I mean that in the nicest possible way.

You may call me Bella, but only if your try harder to be a gentleman (you know, act respectfully!)

Yours reproachfully,
Bella Banks

Gandalfs Beard, I hope I have this procedure right. I am not sure if it's five of these round brackets ((( . The number seems to vary. I hope the spell of encryption works for me too. :? I will take a risk. My advice is that you remember the story of Salome and its relation to the death of John!!! The way pettytyrant and Odo are behaving at the moment I fear a 'Right'-wing heathenish strategy could be in place. I wonder which one is Antipas? I would think it is pettytyrant. Odo seems too wide eyed and too much a follower to be leading the attack against us Reasonable people. <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' /> We may have to play along with their childish game. Wait until they feel their position is unassailable before we make our move! :mrgreen: (Being as a silly as a wheel is easy to do. Sorry that should be as "silly as an Odo!" Indeed, as easy as trampling down a pettytyrant! 8-) ) NB I still think they are naive if they think they can change anything. The Hobbit will not be a perfect copy of the book. It cannot be. Sooner or later they will have to accept cold facts. <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' />

Oh my lovely Bella, it is nice indeed to have some "unconditional" support :mrgreen: .

First, my opinion is my own, and perfectly self-consistent, no matter whether I agree in part with Petty, in part with Pilgrim, in part with Eldo etc. It is an OPINION, subjective, not entirely formed on any particular basis other than than some bits I liked and some bits I disliked (in regards to the Warg scene). And in fact, looking back at my posts, I have assured myself that I have neither been Dismissive (Disagreeable YES), nor needlessly Flippant (the Flippancy was a tactic to encourage people to remember that I HAD previously answered the questions directed at me :roll: ).

The reason I didn't intend to spend a lot of time arguing about it, is remarkably close to what Odo was just saying. In short, I'm not particularly attached to the Warg scene as filmed, so why waste my time defending something I'm not particularly attached to.

Seeing as no-one wants to drop this, I'll briefly [b:3oreim26]repeat[/b:3oreim26] my position regarding the Warg scene: I liked the idea of a scene with Wargs, I liked the losing Aragorn thing, and the follow-up scene with the horse and the re-assertion of Arwen's part in the story, and what that portended for any possible Eowyn, Aragorn pairing. In short, I liked the Dramatic intent--precisely the opposite of Petty's reasons for hating I have already stated.

What I didn't like: I didn't like the Warg design as some sort of Prehistoric Mutant Hyenas (they're supposed to be Larger than Average Wolves). I didn't like their beady eyes and boar-like shape. I didn't like the CGI, it was unconvincing at conveying a sense of realism.

See, no new information, just a clear restatement, Was it really worth the brow-beating? :roll:

Petty's new point regarding redundancy, is a Fair Point, and under other circumstances I might agree with it, however; I didn't see it as unnecessary at this point. Indeed, it was very necessary given that Arwen/Aragorn story is included in the body of the main story instead of an appendix. At this juncture as Eowyn and Aragorn are drawing closer, the re-connection in this scene between Aragorn and Arwen is necessitated and therefore not really redundant. And just to be clear, I approve of including the Arwen/Aragorn sub-plot in the films.

Personally I felt that the Faramir/Eowyn thing seemed a bit sudden and under-developed, and I was pleased that was dealt with more in the Extended Editions. And to be fair to Jackson, this pairing occurs rather late in Tolkien's original version also, giving very little room for development. No doubt, had Jackson spent more time on THAT, Purists would be crying foul <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' /> .



Grey Pilgrim, do not be fooled by Odo's caginess <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' /> . No Follower He. He is clever as a Fox, and surreptitiously instigates many an argument for the sheer delight of its Dramatic and Humourous Effects. He is neither as "Pure" or as "anti-liberal" as he pretends to be.

Mr Tyrant is another matter, Bold and Brash and absolutely certain that he is in the Right (even when he's wrong :mrgreen: ), though he's not really such a bad sort at all. On matters of Lore, he is generally knowledgeable and occasionally even Reasonable (perhaps due to the fact that it's harder to disagree on Canonical Issues. In fact we tend to agree a lot on Canonical Issues).

Therefore, Odo and Petty generally project an image of unassailability. It's their Standard Operating Procedure <img src='/images/smileys/wink.gif' border='0' alt='Wink Smilie' /> , designed to put others on the defensive. Which is why I choose to debate them on my own terms (well, with Odo, it's not so much "debate" as it is having a laugh :lol: ).

I doubt either of them are really Naive, indeed I think it likely that the cold hard facts are what incites them.


Mr Tyrant I sense fluxes in the netosphere, hear wobbleshimmerings of particular potency in the synapowind, and smell the distinct odour (chife, really) of encryption magic which, as you know, can't be decoded, not ever, unless a mistake is made in the brackets count as you know, drats! (I also fear Jack Vance will learn of my theft of his stylistic mannerisms, and hope this missive doesn't leak out!)

The sad fact is: I suspect goings on are going on. Yes, on-goings are on the go, both ongoings-in and ongoings-out and ongoing-meetings-in-dark-corners going ons. That's a hella lotta goings-on going on, Mr Tyrant! What can it all mean?

If I was Mirabella I might intuit the truth about it all, and if Wise Odo, channel it, but poor old me, I am a mere genius of the mortal kind, sadly hamstrung most days by my purulent humility, unlike Mirabella whose lovely countenance opens the doors of both the high and the mighty, or Wise Odo, who is not at all hamstrung by such mortal shortcomings as [i:7knpgs3d]humility[/i:7knpgs3d]!

Anyhow, stay alert. I suspect a Liberal Plot!

(NB Did you notice the large blank section at the bottom of G.B's last post? There he is talking away like the rabbid Liberal he is, all smarmy and good natured and 'reasonable' (seeming! :x ) and then: a blank section. I suspect both an encryption spell of strong potency (a definite Bracket-5 as we call them in the spy game) and a Liberal waste of valuable Forum space to boot! :shock:

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