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Old 03-16-2008, 10:59 AM   #140
Illustrious Ulair
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Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: In the home of lost causes, and forsaken beliefs, and unpopular names,and impossible loyalties
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davem is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.davem is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.
Episode 4: The Mirror of Galadriel

(Well, this seems to be one of those odd threads where we don't get many participants, but loads of readers - we're now approaching 2,000 views!! I can only assume that the reason is that most Downers haven't heard the series & hopefully this will inspire them to get hold of a set.)


This episode takes us to the end of the Fellowship of the Ring. We begin with Gandalf's fall in Moria, & end with Boromir's fall at Parth Galen. In between we pass through Lorien & meet Gollum for the first time.

I have to admit that what I regret most is the omission of Mirrormere. And the inclusion of Aragorn's parody of Baby Bunting! - that has always made me groan & I suspect it is only by reason of his heritage (& his big sword) that he got away with it.....

Lorien must have a been challenge. How do you get across the experience of the Elvish realm in sound alone? Yet I'm not sure that a visual representation can work much better - I don't think the movie captured the magic either. What is missing in both is the subjective, psychological dimension. Jackson stated that if he had been writing the story from scratch he wouldn't have had Lorien in the story at that point, so near the end of the first movie, because it breaks the tension. In many ways the Lorien episode 'mirrors' the Old Forest/Barrow Downs episode, & I wonder whether something is lost in this adaptation by having omitted that first woodland adventure?

I did like the way Celeborn was played by Simon Cadell (& that the BBC budget stretched to employing an actor, rather than, as with the movie, having to resort to a robot...), though you do half expect him to greet the Fellowship with an awkward 'Hi de Hi!'...... No, unfair. Cadell's performance was subtle & informed. Which brings me to a question about the 'bit players' - how much background were they given as to their characters, & what was happening? And how many of them were like Michael Hordern, with no real clue about what was happening? Marian Diamond's Galadriel has always been one of my favourite performances - I love her voice.

Oh yes, were any of the actors fans of the story beforehand? I know Peter Woodthorpe said at Church House that he only read the parts of the book in which Gollum appeared & didn't really know the other events of the story.

I do love Ian Holm's performance in this episode - from his initial expression of loss, through his awkwardness first over Aragorn attempting to treat his 'wound' & later in his stumbling recitation of his poem about Gandalf. When his voice breaks at the 'old man in a battered hat' I always get a lump in my throat....

What else? No Amon Hen. I wonder why (of course, one always assumes 'time constraints' as the reason for cuts, but I do wonder whether anything got cut simply because there was no way of dramatising it effectively). However, I did think the scene between Boromir & Frodo was brialliantly done. Michael Graham Cox conveyed all the pain, confusion, & egotistic desire of Boromir perfectly, the sense of a man in a state of absolute hopelessness grasping at what he feels is his people's only chance for survival. MGC is often ignored in discussions of the series, but I think he is absolutely brilliant here.

Anyway, that's me intro - hope I haven't stolen anyone's ideas....
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