Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Return of the King by JRR Tolkien

WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY could they not have at least FILMED the Scouring of the Shire?!?!!?!?

Sorry, just a little freak-out there.

So we come to the end.  Sort of.

You know, except for the 125 pages of appendixes that I haven't read through yet.  (I decided to save most of the to read with The Silmarillion, which I've actually never read.  So that should be fun.

One thing I've found very interesting-- there are so many little bits and scenes and conversations that actually are in the movies, but are in completely random/different places.

For instance, in the movie Aragorn sends Sam looking for athelas, or kingsfoil.  In the book, it's Ioreth from the Houses of Healing that he sends.  The conversation is near word-for-word and yet it's stuck in a completely different context.  Interesting and weird all at the same time.

Also interesting-- Arwen finally speaks!  I don't think she'd had a single line until after marrying Aragorn.  As much as I don't love what they did with her in the movies, I understand needing to give her a bigger role.  Can you imagine telling someone like Liv Tyler, "No, honey, you don't say anything.  You just sit there and look pretty for a few minutes in the first movie.  No, sorry, you aren't in the second one.  You get a few pages in the script of the third, but yeah, you only have one or two lines." LOL

Characters that I think were totally undercut in the movie(s):
First and foremost-- SAM!  I will contend to my dying breath that it is Sam that is the true protagonist. 
I've said it before and I'll say it again-- Faramir.  Totally the most-butchered character.  Sigh.
In the "simply too shallow a portrayal" category-- Eowyn.  Too much fire, too little frost, almost no depth.

And frankly, I think cutting out Merry and Pippin's roles in the Shire is a disservice.


Easier to get through than Two Towers, certainly, but there were, interestingly, places where I actually wanted more description, if you can believe that.  A disturbing thought, really.

I do think I've OD'ed on LoTR, though.  The other night I tossed and turned having the most bizarre dreams, and all I remember about them was someone shouting "Ecthelion".  Yeah, no idea.  Apparently I'm being haunted by Denethor's father.  Sigh.

And yet, I think I want to watch the movies again. :)


  1. You won't get any arguments from me that Sam's the protagonist. After all, he's the character we end the story with.

  2. It's true. And it's Sam that you're really following through a lot of the Mordor stuff, at least in the later chapters.

  3. I'm a Samwise fan all the way. Reading your reviews makes me want to read them all over again!

  4. And really, Sam was soooo well-cast, but they just give him the depth to work with, which makes it all the sadder.

    Go for it, Melissa! It's only several hundred pages. :)