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Old 12-27-2012, 03:12 AM   #41
Nerwen
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Also, as I've already said, I have a general problem with the fact that so many defences I've seen of this film rest on the claim that the other party is, for one reason or another, unfit to critique it in the first place. I very much dislike this type of argument, just on principle.

I mean, davem– you realise you've now effectively said "anyone who doesn't like this movie is an idiot"? Giving a pass to people who haven't seen the original trilogy makes little difference– you're still denying the right of (I should think) most of the general audience, not to mention pretty much literally every single member of this forum, to form an opinion. Sorry, but that's about as unreasonable as it gets.
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Old 12-27-2012, 04:16 AM   #42
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Honestly, based on Jackson's form, what did anyone expect? Its not a 'great' film, its not high art, and in many ways it lets down Tolkien, but as a romp, a high adventure, and particuarly as a Peter Jackson film, what else were you expecting?
Didn't expect much, but certainly not this little. And knowing the film wasn't going to be great does not negate one's right to criticise it. That makes little if any sense.
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Old 12-27-2012, 04:18 AM   #43
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Yep. I am saying that anyone who watched the LotR films and went to AUJ expecting anything other than what they got is a bit of an idiot. Isn't the definition of insanity something like doing the same thing repeatedly but expecting different results? If you go to a Peter Jackson film expecting to see anything other than a Peter Jackson film then you aren't firing on all cylinders frankly.

I'm not saying everyone should like the film, but quite honestly, complaining that you went to see a Peter Jackson film and when you got there you actually found yourself watching a Peter Jackson film is a bit odd.

And, honestly, I have never gotten angry at anything on the Downs
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Old 12-27-2012, 04:50 AM   #44
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Yep. I am saying that anyone who watched the LotR films and went to AUJ expecting anything other than what they got is a bit of an idiot. Isn't the definition of insanity something like doing the same thing repeatedly but expecting different results? If you go to a Peter Jackson film expecting to see anything other than a Peter Jackson film then you aren't firing on all cylinders frankly.

I'm not saying everyone should like the film, but quite honestly, complaining that you went to see a Peter Jackson film and when you got there you actually found yourself watching a Peter Jackson film is a bit odd.
So... *only* positive reactions to this film are legitimate. Anything else is a clear sign of insanity or mental deficiency. Right.

...And you really think that's a perfectly sound, reasonable position to take? Really?

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And, honestly, I have never gotten angry at anything on the Downs
Well, you see, it's like this, davem. I would only say the kind of things you said at #27 if I were in a towering rage. Possibly I'm generalising too much from my own case, but there it is...
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Old 12-27-2012, 05:21 AM   #45
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I never said only positive reactions are legitimate. I merely pointed out that its a Peter Jackson film and everything in it is exactly what one would expect -whether one liked it or not. Or was there a single episode in the film where you felt that it was completely out of character for Jackson to do that?

I'm saying its entirety valid to either like or to dislike the film, but to complain that Jackson has done exactly what one would expect based on his previous films makes no sense. Did you honestly not know what the film would be like given the director? And knowing that, why would you even go? Its like going to see an 18 certificate Scorsese gangster film and complaining about the violence, or that you found that Terry Gilliam film a bit surreal.
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Old 12-27-2012, 05:31 AM   #46
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Hmmm. I understand pefectly well what davem means. I absolutely hate Simon Cowell and what his X Factor things has done to pop music (and I mean hate - let's think: burning, incandescent rage here) so you know what is going to happen if I watch it. So I don't. Except if I feel like being nasty and trying to make people laugh. Then I watch it.

That's why some went to see The Hobbit. Fair enough, nothing wrong in that, but their views are not objective in any way. I know I make people laugh when I refer to the winner of X Factor as 'Paper Plate Face Coke Can Fringe Man', which is precisely what eggs me on to be rude. It's actually quite easy to be nasty. I learnt my craft from reading too much Charlie Brooker

And anyone who went along somehow hoping it wasn't going to be like a Peter Jackson film (as though Peter Jackson's body had been occupied sf style by that of, oh...let's say....Lars Von Trier) was indeed foolish.

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Also, as I've already said, I have a general problem with the fact that so many defences I've seen of this film rest on the claim that the other party is, for one reason or another, unfit to critique it in the first place. I very much dislike this type of argument, just on principle.
Read up thread and note responses which are really quite rude about those who enjoyed the films, questioning whether they are Tolkien fans and have read the books. I, for one, am really quite fed up with this attitude and I am afraid it invalidates the arguments made by anyone who resorts to it. There are plenty of fairly expressed reviews on here that are negative and I certainly have no problem with that. I have met many Tolkien fans who have impressed me with their knowledge and understanding but not a one of them has impressed me by being rude about other fans who may be less 'serious' or younger etc. I'm feeling quite sad about the prospect of new fans being scared away.

As for anger, isn't the whole thread a bit like Monty Python's Argument Room?
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Old 12-27-2012, 05:57 AM   #47
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I never said only positive reactions are legitimate. I merely pointed out that its a Peter Jackson film and everything in it is exactly what one would expect -whether one liked it or not. Or was there a single episode in the film where you felt that it was completely out of character for Jackson to do that?

I'm saying its entirety valid to either like or to dislike the film, but to complain that Jackson has done exactly what one would expect based on his previous films makes no sense. Did you honestly not know what the film would be like given the director? And knowing that, why would you even go? Its like going to see an 18 certificate Scorsese gangster film and complaining about the violence, or that you found that Terry Gilliam film a bit surreal.
But as far as I can work out, your argument rests on your opinion that the film is exactly comparable in every way to the LotR movies– an opinion which is evidently not shared by a considerable number of people. And even then it won't hold. I may think my brother was foolish to bother seeing "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" at all after having watched, and hated, the previous two entries– but that doesn't mean he wasn't entitled to criticise it, or that his criticisms were any less valid. (Still less that they meant he was mad, or mentally handicapped.)

By the way, I haven't even seen this film yet. Maybe I'll like it, maybe I won't. I just hope that if it does, after all, turn out to be a pleasant surprise, I'll be able to convey my satisfaction without directly insulting people who happen to think differently.

Anyway, I don't know there's much point in continuing this discussion. By my lights, the position you're taking is, well– not one that's likely to result in us ever finding a common ground. And one thing the internet certainly doesn't need is another flame war.
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Old 12-27-2012, 06:01 AM   #48
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And, Lal, I *have* read the thread. I'm sorry, but in my opinion davem has now gone much further than anyone else when it comes to rudeness and extreme statements.
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Old 12-27-2012, 06:16 AM   #49
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However many of us who expected to dislike the films werr told that they should see the films before judging presumably expecting pj to take the cow and produce beef wellington rather than the anticipated hoofburger, even though a definition of madness is to do the same thing repeatedly expecting a different result.

For some I suspect it isn't the fact that it wasn't as expected that is the disappointment but that it wasn't the best use of the cow. Being long convinced that despite some of the cast I would enjoy the film as much as a vegan does a barbie I have stayed away but according to many that means I can't comment even in an observational way. that sort of person would probably insist I try cream of parsnip soup despite having a dislike of parsnips that borders on the pathological being lactose intolerant and not being overfond of soup generally.
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Old 12-27-2012, 06:44 AM   #50
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And, Lal, I *have* read the thread. I'm sorry, but in my opinion davem has now gone much further than anyone else when it comes to rudeness and extreme statements.
Hmm, I think you should have a look at the mobbing of a newbie earlier on. And one who has read the books. I wasn't going to post on here, I just chunnered last night about how sad I was about a Flame thread existing, because that is what it is. If someone can dish it out and all that....maybe this is not the site for Brooker-esque stuff. I was quite looking forward to new fans joining.
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Old 12-27-2012, 07:47 AM   #51
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However many of us who expected to dislike the films werr told that they should see the films before judging presumably expecting pj to take the cow and produce beef wellington rather than the anticipated hoofburger, even though a definition of madness is to do the same thing repeatedly expecting a different result.
First off, I haven't seen the thing yet, and won't if left to my own devices.
The above comment is valid though. So which is it? Are the critics unfair for having prejudicial ideas about AUJ based upon past experience, or are they "idiots", to use davem's term, for having higher expectations this go around? Seems as if those inimical to PJ's Tolkien treatments can't win regardless.
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Old 12-27-2012, 08:16 AM   #52
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1420!

Lal, if you're referring to Annatar, well, he came in guns blazing himself– and it seemed to me that many of his arguments were pretty ill-reasoned.

Nonetheless, I'll certainly give it to him that he did try to answer the criticisms fair and square– rather than trying to disqualify the opposition.
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Old 12-27-2012, 08:25 AM   #53
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First off, I haven't seen the thing yet, and won't if left to my own devices.
The above comment is valid though. So which is it? Are the critics unfair for having prejudicial ideas about AUJ based upon past experience, or are they "idiots", to use davem's term, for having higher expectations this go around? Seems as if those inimical to PJ's Tolkien treatments can't win regardless.
Everything in the film, good and bad, absolutely screamed Peter Jackson. You may not be able to guess exactly what will happen, but you know what Jackson will do with the material and the approach he will take to it. Complaining about that is just silly. If your problem is that Jackson made the film at all, I get that. If your problem is that Peter Jackson made a Peter Jackson film, I don't. And I still say that anyone who goes to see a Peter Jackson film with expectations it won't be a Peter Jackson film is a few sandwiches short of a picnic.
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Old 12-27-2012, 08:53 AM   #54
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First off, I haven't seen the thing yet, and won't if left to my own devices.
The above comment is valid though. So which is it? Are the critics unfair for having prejudicial ideas about AUJ based upon past experience, or are they "idiots", to use davem's term, for having higher expectations this go around? Seems as if those inimical to PJ's Tolkien treatments can't win regardless.
It's fair comment to ask why someone who hates Jackson's films would want to go and watch another of them. I do know why you might go - so you can have a therapeutic snipe at it. I know the urge very well and you'll sometimes find me doing just this on things like fb and twitter, sounding off with some very rude comments after watching X Factor/The Queen's Jubilee/anything else I dislike intensely! Ever watch Mean Girls? You will understand...

But I'm with davem on failing entirely to understand why someone would go to watch this film with hope that it's going to be amazing when they really hate the original trilogy. It's why I never waste my money on wine - it's never going to change its essential nature of being foul to my taste.

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Lal, if you're referring to Annatar, well, he came in guns blazing himself– and it seemed to me that many of his arguments were pretty ill-reasoned.

Nonetheless, I'll certainly give it to him that he did try to answer the criticisms fair and square– rather than trying to disqualify the opposition.
Yes, I thought it was very unfair, especially when the thread was opened as a flame one, to round on someone for offering robust argument back. This line of attack that those who enjoy the films are somehow dullards, 'fanboys' or in some way inadequate is, aside from being incorrect and snobby, very boring.

This is what always happens. I'm long in the tooth and know that what always happens is outrage when someone fires off with something contrary. Kind of: "Why did he hit me back?!"
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Old 12-27-2012, 10:01 AM   #55
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I think the point regarding "When going to a Peter Jackson film, you have to expect to see a Peter Jackson film" is well made. However, I don't think the validity of this point negates the ability of critics of the films to express their points of view.

Speaking personally, and as a self-confessed (and in some respects, fairly harsh) critic of the films, there are three things in particular that really get my goat, even knowing that it is a Peter Jackson film. The first is how needless so many of the especially silly changes from the books are. I do understand that changes have to be made when moving a story from book to film. However, that reason is used as an excuse to justify the most ridiculous alterations to the story that don't even make much sense when taken just within the context of the movie. They certainly aren't necessary for transitioning from book to film.

The second is this sort of Panglossian attitude that these are the best of all possible Tolkien films in this the best of all possible worlds. That is just nonsense. As I just said, many of the changes imposed by Jackson and Co. are needless and have the effect of making the story worse and more confusing rather than better, even from a film perspective.

The third is the sort of cynical exploitation of Tolkien and his fans that Jackson seems to be indulging in at this point along with Jackson's turning of the work of a better mind into his own little ego project.

Now, all that being said...Yes I went and saw the film and yes I bought some of the merchandise to give to my Father as part of his Christmas presents.

Does this make me a hypocrite? Some might say so. I don't think it does. Some might say that I was giving Jackson and Co. another chance, in hope rather than in expectation. A rather Tolkienish attitude if I do say so myself.

Personally, at bottom I have a rather strong wish that somebody other than Jackson had made these films and overall I feel perfectly justified to express my opinions and impressions about what I saw. Its what we do here.

Besides, if we didn't discuss this stuff, there wouldn't be a Downs at all.
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Old 12-27-2012, 10:02 AM   #56
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I don't think it divides down like that. There are people who hate the films, some who won't even go and see them and yet still think they have anything to say about it. And there are people who enjoyed them, ranging from frothing joy all the way to picking holes in everything yet still saying it was fun. I'm in the latter - and I certainly don't think Jackson's other films are great (that thing with the lawnmower was stupid, King Kong was dull and Heavenly Creatures is over rated).
I probably didn't explain that clearly, because I was trying to avoid the Purist and Revisionist labels, since I agree with you that there is a wide spectrum. So, let me put it this way...

The more pro-movie crowd, I think, tend to view criticisms of the movies as "Oh this person is a purist and wants an exact, literal translation of the book." And this I will agree with WCH on, no so-labelled Purist, said this...ever. It often goes as follows:

"I don't like the invention of Azog chasing the dwarves. Azog should be dead."
"You can't have a movie that is 100% accurate to the books."
"Uhh...I said no such thing."

This is really harmful in discussion, because no one wants to spend their time debating the strawman "you can't make the movie a literal translation of the books."

Now on the flip side, I think the more critical movie crowd sees any positive comment towards Jackson as coming from some immature fanboy, who thinks everything Jackson touches is gold. "Did you even read the books?" "Do you not see the senseless butchering and alterations Jackson did?" This is also a rather poor argument though.

The fact there are changes can not be disputed. Azog is dead at Azanulbizar in the books, he's not in the movie. This can't be disputed. Tolkien had his reasons for killing Azog's character when he did, but Jackson has his reasons for having Azog not dead. And my point here is those reasons don't have to be beat into some antagonistic evil plot that Jackson is trying to defecate on Tolkien's legacy and force anyone who are book fans to eat his crap for 6-meals a day. Or that somehow Jackson skims the books before making movie decisions and makes a checklist of "I can do this better than Tolkien. Azog shouldn't be dead, I know more than Tolkien, I can improve it here if Azog is not dead in the movies." That stance is really no different than the "Purists want 100% accurate translation" argument.

In the context of the movie, I think we're still kind of guessing since the entire story is not told yet, but for the time being, it seems Azog wants revenge for Thorin chopping off his hand. Eh...ok, not the best, but I suppose better than random raiding orcs after treasure, and Bolg chases Thorin and co. after the dwarves are out of the Misty Mountains anyway...Bolg and the wargs being driven by revenge. So, perhaps Jackson should have just made Bolg be the one after Thorin from the start, but the name of the orc leader is a niggling point (in my opinion...it might be more important to others).

The meta-reasons are a little clearer, to create a sense of urgency in the Dwarves journey, similar to Frodo's urgency in leaving the Shire and the Ringwraiths "hunt for the Ring." And to possibly put it in the larger context of the dwarves main antagonist are orcs, which then culminates in the Battle of 5 Armies. The Necromancer is the White Council's main antagonist, he's rather unimportant to the dwarves journey in reclaiming Erebor. You can't really make Smaug the main antagonist, because he's sleeping under a mountain, and in the end Smaug's death is not the climax of The Hobbit.

Azog is just one example, because it's the clearest and easiest one to give. What anyone thinks about this change is just down to subjective preferences. But we seriously have to get away from the circular "you just want a movie exactly like the books!" and the "Jackson just wants to urinate all over the books because he thinks he knows better."

It may get me cast out of here as a leper here...but Tolkien is not infallible. Brilliant man. An unrivalled imagination. But a writer? Parts of extreme wonder and beauty that pull you into his imagination. Other parts of very slow pace and a little too much of the "Let's send a hobbit blindly into Mordor and count on a Fool's Hope, trust in the greatest luck anyone can ever have and hope for the best?" for me. (It's why I've always sympathized with Boromir. "Really you want to send this hobbit into THAT place, when the only entrance you know is...the large flippin front gate? What do you expect him to do when walking to the front door?")

Don't get me wrong, still the best fiction/fantasy story I've read, but a pace that always doesn't work for film. Films are driven by action to action, something interesting always has to happen. Extensive dialogue about history, family lineage, and background just doesn't work. There's a reason Tolkien wrote an epic novel and not direct a movie. He made the decisions as a story-teller, for me those decisions worked on the page. Jackson, also as a story-teller made the decisions he did, and for me, they worked on screen. If I didn't want to see my favorite book adapted into a blockbuster action flick, I wouldn't have watched the movies.
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Old 12-27-2012, 11:36 AM   #57
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"And I still say that anyone who goes to see a Peter Jackson film with expectations it won't be a Peter Jackson film is a few sandwiches short of a picnic."

Davem, it seems to me you're shadow-boxing with non-existent opponents; and on the whole it's folks who get into arguments with people who aren't there whose hamper isn't quite full. Do you seriously think there's anyone on the planet old enough to have seen PJ's LotR who expected TH to be significantly different? Really? I for one went into TH fully expecting it, just like the previous three, to suck. I wasn't disappointed.
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Old 12-27-2012, 12:05 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by William Cloud Hicklin View Post
"And I still say that anyone who goes to see a Peter Jackson film with expectations it won't be a Peter Jackson film is a few sandwiches short of a picnic."

Davem, it seems to me you're shadow-boxing with non-existent opponents; and on the whole it's folks who get into arguments with people who aren't there whose hamper isn't quite full. Do you seriously think there's anyone on the planet old enough to have seen PJ's LotR who expected TH to be significantly different? Really? I for one went into TH fully expecting it, just like the previous three, to suck. I wasn't disappointed.

Then why did you go? Seriously-did you honestly expect anything other than you got? If not then I don't get the anger, frustration and overal disappointment. I'm not saying this is a great film, and I'm sure other directors could have produced a more faithful adaptation, and probably a better film for it. What I'm saying is that this film, with its troll snot, over extended action sequences, Azog, changes to character motivation, bunny sleds and all of that and more, is what PJ was inevitably going to do, because that's the kind of director he is, and that's the kind of film he makes. Anyone who saw the LotR films and expected anything else hasn't been paying attention.

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Old 12-27-2012, 12:14 PM   #59
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The first is how needless so many of the especially silly changes from the books are. I do understand that changes have to be made when moving a story from book to film. However, that reason is used as an excuse to justify the most ridiculous alterations to the story that don't even make much sense when taken just within the context of the movie. They certainly aren't necessary for transitioning from book to film.
Fair enough point, though the only one I still fail to be able to fit in properly is the Azog thing. And the Elves' attitude though I think that will be explained later. The rest does fit coherently, even when the text is looked at. The only bits which jar are those 'echoings' of the LotR films, which I almost universally dislike and find disappointing (partic. when Bilbo decides he's going to walk back to The Shire).

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The third is the sort of cynical exploitation of Tolkien and his fans that Jackson seems to be indulging in at this point along with Jackson's turning of the work of a better mind into his own little ego project.
Now on this point I have to say that the whole Tolkien bandwagon is pretty exploitative. I have spent thousands of pounds on stuff we do not really need, and that's not just the toys I collect, but all these new editions and books with fancy covers and whatnot. The publishers and the Estate are certainly not immune from being involved in 'exploitation' of fans.

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It may get me cast out of here as a leper here...but Tolkien is not infallible. Brilliant man. An unrivalled imagination. But a writer? Parts of extreme wonder and beauty that pull you into his imagination. Other parts of very slow pace and a little too much of the "Let's send a hobbit blindly into Mordor and count on a Fool's Hope, trust in the greatest luck anyone can ever have and hope for the best?" for me. (It's why I've always sympathized with Boromir. "Really you want to send this hobbit into THAT place, when the only entrance you know is...the large flippin front gate? What do you expect him to do when walking to the front door?")
There's nothing wrong in bringing this up because Tolkien himself was deeply unhappy with how The Hobbit did not 'fit' with his later work and repeatedly tried to rewrite it. One of the things he disliked the most was his tone, which I will say right now can be cringe inducing. He admitted that he 'talked down' to children in the novel and always regretted this. That's one of the main things that has been stripped right out in the making of the film and personally as an adult viewer I find this very interesting. I'm really not sure if this is the 'tone' that some viewers feel is lacking, because had it remained, the film would have been twee. I'd rather have fights than twee.

Oddly, my biggest disappointment was the "burrahobbit" joke not being included. I think I'd have ignored all the other things not to my taste had that been included, I like it so much
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Old 12-27-2012, 12:27 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Lalwendë View Post
Now on this point I have to say that the whole Tolkien bandwagon is pretty exploitative. I have spent thousands of pounds on stuff we do not really need, and that's not just the toys I collect, but all these new editions and books with fancy covers and whatnot. The publishers and the Estate are certainly not immune from being involved in 'exploitation' of fans.
That is a valid point from a certain perspective, I won't argue that.

However, in my own view it's not exploitation in the same way because the Estate owns the material. Jackson and Co. in my view have sort of expropriated it for their own purposes and in my opinion misused it. Christopher Tolkien has not gone through and re-written Lord of the Rings in an attempt to sell more books. He has edited some of his father's work and published the results of his editing, but he has always been explicit as to what he has done.
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Old 12-27-2012, 01:19 PM   #61
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Now on this point I have to say that the whole Tolkien bandwagon is pretty exploitative. I have spent thousands of pounds on stuff we do not really need, and that's not just the toys I collect, but all these new editions and books with fancy covers and whatnot. The publishers and the Estate are certainly not immune from being involved in 'exploitation' of fans.
Mind you, in most all cases that's HarperCollins rather than the Estate; CT hasn't been driving for a plethora of Deluxe and Illustrated and Anniversary editions just to generate repeat sales. Believe me when I tell you he's got plenty of money for his own modest requirements and isn't driven to be more than "comfortably well-off" (even if his bank balance is already far beyond that Bagginsy level).

The one exception I can think of is CT's endorsement of and limited lobbying for the Hammond-Scull corrected text which issued as the "50th Anniversary edition;" but this was motivated chiefly by an interest in accuracy, and clearing out five decades of accumulated typos and textual errors. Naturally, the big leather-bound gold-edged Superduperdeluxe edition was HC's idea.
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Old 12-27-2012, 06:09 PM   #62
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I don't know... The estate must surely have a final say on whether new editions are published and indeed not published; it was they who had The Tolkien Family Album withdrawn and not reprinted after the first run so they must retain privileges. I hope so anyway. In a weird way, I'd rather it was them exploiting poor saps like me who are suckers for nice books than Rupert Murdoch, who owns Harper Collins and is about 10,000 times more sinister than Jackson could hope to be.
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Old 12-27-2012, 07:59 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by Boromir88 View Post

1. Making alterations is not proof of Jackson et all thinking they were improving the story. Either one accepts that with the film rights sold and Jackson chosen as the director has his own artistic license rights when it comes to making the films. Therefor, alterations are a part of Jackson trying to put his director stamp on the story. Alterations, in and of themselves, are not proof Jackson thought he improved the story.
Leaving aside your illiteracy, you're wrong. Jackson must consider his alterations an improvement to the story. Alternatively he must concede that his alterations either made no difference to, or negatively impacted on, this classic. It's really that simple.

One might argue that alterations made were based on the change of medium, which is a fair statement. It does not, however, change the fact that the story itself suffered as a result of alteration. End of story, I'm afraid... literally.
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Old 12-27-2012, 08:05 PM   #64
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Yep. I am saying that anyone who watched the LotR films and went to AUJ expecting anything other than what they got is a bit of an idiot. Isn't the definition of insanity something like doing the same thing repeatedly but expecting different results? If you go to a Peter Jackson film expecting to see anything other than a Peter Jackson film then you aren't firing on all cylinders frankly.

I'm not saying everyone should like the film, but quite honestly, complaining that you went to see a Peter Jackson film and when you got there you actually found yourself watching a Peter Jackson film is a bit odd.

And, honestly, I have never gotten angry at anything on the Downs
Saying something thrice doesn't make it true. Regardless, your argument is flawed. I suggest revision.
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Old 12-27-2012, 08:42 PM   #65
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Originally Posted by Ruscundil View Post
Leaving aside your illiteracy, you're wrong. Jackson must consider his alterations an improvement to the story. Alternatively he must concede that his alterations either made no difference to, or negatively impacted on, this classic. It's really that simple.

One might argue that alterations made were based on the change of medium, which is a fair statement. It does not, however, change the fact that the story itself suffered as a result of alteration. End of story, I'm afraid... literally.
Ruscundil– please see my previous remarks about insulting people. Anyone can make a typo, you know.
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Old 12-27-2012, 08:51 PM   #66
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Ruscundil– please see my previous remarks about insulting people. Anyone can make a typo, you know.
Link please?
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Old 12-27-2012, 09:18 PM   #67
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Link please?
It would be nice if civil behavior did not require a suggestion.
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Old 12-27-2012, 09:23 PM   #68
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Link please?
Do you really need a link? It should be clear that the Barrow Downs Forum discourages flaming and insults. The 'Downs uniquely welcomes very young posters still learning to construct a sentence, and people for whom English is a second language, and college professors and authors who appreciate Tolkien, and many, many people in between. A responsible poster here ought to make allowances for such differences. Most do. And all of them here have occasionally been guilty of missing-reading a typo in one of their posts. That hardly makes any of them illiterate.

By the way, I notice you just recently joined the 'Downs. Welcome! As used to be said here, "Enjoy being dead!" Give this site a chance, and you will find some of the most stimulating and enlightening discussion of Tolkien available on the 'net.

With the release of the new "Hobbit" movie, a link to the forum posting policies would be in order. I don't know how to link, however. Especially in edit mode.
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Old 12-27-2012, 09:24 PM   #69
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Link please?
I'm talking about my exchange with davem. You can see it up there.
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Old 12-27-2012, 10:29 PM   #70
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Then why did you go? Seriously-did you honestly expect anything other than you got? If not then I don't get the anger, frustration and overal disappointment. I'm not saying this is a great film, and I'm sure other directors could have produced a more faithful adaptation, and probably a better film for it. What I'm saying is that this film, with its troll snot, over extended action sequences, Azog, changes to character motivation, bunny sleds and all of that and more, is what PJ was inevitably going to do, because that's the kind of director he is, and that's the kind of film he makes. Anyone who saw the LotR films and expected anything else hasn't been paying attention.
Was it my expectation to see a Peter Jackson film? Why, yes, by God, I am sure it was! But which Peter Jackson? The one who directed The Fellowship of the Ring, a fairly faithful adaptation with only a few jarring inconsistencies (like Xenarwen raising the Bruinen), but with an excellent Balrog battle, a superb bit of acting by Ian Holm as Bilbo, Sean Bean as a believable Boromir, and all in all a satisfying experience? Or was it the excessive fan-fictional PJ gone totally off his nut as in The Two Towers with giant hyenas, Elves in Helm's Deep, Aragorn falling off a cliff and frenching his horse, the senility of Treebeard and the ignoblement of the character Faramir?

Seeing as The Hobbit follows a fairly linear track in regards to plot, not unlike FotR, I had a reasonable expectation that the linear quality of the story would be somewhat maintained; ergo, I had hoped to see more of the former than the latter. Unfortunately, Jackson has gone off the deep end far earlier in his version of Muddled-Earth. Bilbo, the alleged protagonist of the story, is virtually invisible for most of the movie (and he didn't even have to put on the One Ring!). Jackson's inveterate tinkering sunk to new lows.

So, I am an idiot to expect Jackson learned a thing or two since the LotR trilogy? That he had perhaps became more subtle and less over-the-top? That he actually had the ability to grow as a director? Who knew he would become more inane, regressing to the days when he made silly horror movies?

Well, you can bloody well bet I won't make that mistake again. Jackson has sold his soul to the Hollywood machine, dragging his amusement park ride to torturous lengths in a three-film barrage of chases and made-for-3D spear-chucking, when he could have actually made a tight, endearing and emotionally satisfying adaptation in two movies without the wretched excess, the uninterrupted and exploitative violence (Bilbo killed how many goblins in the movie? Aside from throwing stones at some spiders, did he even wound anyone in the book?), and the completely nonsensical plot-points he pulled out of his barm-pot. Three 3 hour movies? Nine hours could be whittled to five or six without the lunacy.

I find it more troubling that you went to a Peter Jackson movie not just fully expecting Peter Jackson farcical flummery, but enjoying the sophomoric blather and then defending it like it was the Second Coming. I may be an idiot, as you say, but that idiocy can be altered in future. Conversely, a lobotomy is forever.

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Originally Posted by Lalwendë
Yes, I thought it was very unfair, especially when the thread was opened as a flame one. to round on someone for offering robust argument back
Oh yes, I specifically decided to open a flame thread. "Flame", in this case, denoting anything you disagree with: a negative review. Which is the same tack junior member Annatar decided to take. He made his "robust" comments, and I rebutted him in the same "robust" manner. But as Inigo Montoya might say, "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
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Old 12-27-2012, 10:57 PM   #71
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Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lalwendë
Yes, I thought it was very unfair, especially when the thread was opened as a flame one. to round on someone for offering robust argument back
Oh yes, I specifically decided to open a flame thread. "Flame", in this case, denoting anything you disagree with: a negative review. Which is the same tack junior member Annatar decided to take. He made his "robust" comments, and I rebutted him in the same "robust" manner. But as Inigo Montoya might say, "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
One of those irregular verbs, perhaps? "I offer robust arguments; you flame; he is a troll".
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Old 12-27-2012, 11:17 PM   #72
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In all seriousness: Lal, Morth's review is certainly extremely vitriolic. I cannot, however, see how it qualifies as a "flame", in any sense I've ever seen the term used. Who is being "flamed" here? Peter Jackson? Or is it that you believe the sole intent behind the post is to provoke fans of the movie?
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:10 AM   #73
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Originally Posted by Ruscundil View Post
Leaving aside your illiteracy, you're wrong. Jackson must consider his alterations an improvement to the story. Alternatively he must concede that his alterations either made no difference to, or negatively impacted on, this classic. It's really that simple.

One might argue that alterations made were based on the change of medium, which is a fair statement. It does not, however, change the fact that the story itself suffered as a result of alteration. End of story, I'm afraid... literally.
Get back to me when you decide you want to exchange ideas by having a discussion on the topic and not trying to win debate points with ad hominem arguments. I don't debate.
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Old 12-28-2012, 04:09 AM   #74
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Originally Posted by Ruscundil View Post
Jackson must consider his alterations an improvement to the story. Alternatively he must concede that his alterations either made no difference to, or negatively impacted on, this classic. It's really that simple.
Actually it is not that simple. The studios and the financers of the movies lay a lot of restrictions and assert demands when making a multimillion dollar bussiness (which the Hobbit movies are from their POV): they expect to make profit and thence require certain things (like sexy dwarves for teenage-girls, enough funny battle-scenes for boys etc.). There's little PJ or any director can do about those.

Which is by no means meant as an apology to PJ and some of the choices he and his team has made (I dislike them as much as anyone here seems to dislike them), but it is not a simple thing why certain "changes" are being made.
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Old 12-28-2012, 08:43 AM   #75
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So, I am an idiot to expect Jackson learned a thing or two since the LotR trilogy? That he had perhaps became more subtle and less over-the-top? That he actually had the ability to grow as a director? Who knew he would become more inane, regressing to the days when he made silly horror movies?
If you genuinely thought you'd get anything other from a Peter Jackson movie (forget Fellowship, think TT, RotK and King Kong) then I have a really nice bridge going cheap (pm me if you want details). As I've said, I don't think it's great art, or that it couldn't be done better. If you go a Peter Jackson film you're going to get exactly what you got here. AUJ is a perfect example of a Jackson film. Some fantastic bits, some average bits, some moving bits, some boring bits, some bits that make no sense. You go accepting that, and you have a good time. You go expecting a Lawrence of Arabia, or Ran, or Shindler's List or The Godfather (much though Tolkien might deserve that kind of treatment) and you'll be disappointed. Was there genuinely one single point at which you thought 'I can't believe I'm seeing this in a Peter Jackson movie!' I honestly doubt that. You may have hoped for better, but I don't believe you expected it.

So, I chilled out, went in expecting to watch a Peter Jackson movie, and because of that I had a very enjoyable afternoon.
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:07 AM   #76
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If you genuinely thought you'd get anything other from a Peter Jackson movie (forget Fellowship, think TT, RotK and King Kong) then I have a really nice bridge going cheap (pm me if you want details). As I've said, I don't think it's great art, or that it couldn't be done better. If you go a Peter Jackson film you're going to get exactly what you got here. AUJ is a perfect example of a Jackson film. Some fantastic bits, some average bits, some moving bits, some boring bits, some bits that make no sense. You go accepting that, and you have a good time. You go expecting a Lawrence of Arabia, or Ran, or Shindler's List or The Godfather (much though Tolkien might deserve that kind of treatment) and you'll be disappointed. Was there genuinely one single point at which you thought 'I can't believe I'm seeing this in a Peter Jackson movie!' I honestly doubt that. You may have hoped for better, but I don't believe you expected it.

So, I chilled out, went in expecting to watch a Peter Jackson movie, and because of that I had a very enjoyable afternoon.
I had an enjoyable Christmas season afternoon with my 12 year old daughter watching the movie. She has had the book read to her and she in turn read the book. We enjoyed rolling our eyes at the more egregious errors and being delighted at the four or five times in the movie that Jackson actually adhered to the original plot. The movie is, as I said, a blockbuster Hollywood action epic, and as such can be enjoyed if you like such things, and are able to completely turn off your mind and gawk like a sentient cabbage.

Again, if it had been done with the same strengths as Fellowship of the Ring or large parts of Return of the King, it would have been far more enjoyable; unfortunately, Jackson went for The Two Towers, Part Deux.

Have you seen Michael Drout's review? Professor Drout touched on many of the more troubling aspects of the movie (in a more politically correct manner than I, so that Lal may not consider it a flame). He also noticed, as I did, that Radagast was a lift from T.H. White:

The Drout Report

Quote:
That said, I had some issues. These are all more in sorrow than in anger, because I think Jackson had the opportunity to make a great film but missed it—in part because of the lowest-common-denominator needs of global Hollywood, but also in part because he and screenwriter Philippa Boyens didn’t entirely understand their material or trust their audience.
Drout went to the movies because of Tolkien, not because of Jackson (Drout certainly would not have wasted his time doing a movie review unless the topic was Tolkien). I think that is the prime motivator for most of us here: we are drawn to anything "Concerning Hobbits". Unfortunately, most us will not see another version of the events in 3rd Age Middle-earth unless it is filmed by Jackson. We are stuck with him. I would have loved to see Guillermo Del Toro's version, as I am not altogether sure he would have wanted to make a Lord of the Rings sequel. And for all the kind words at Del Toro's departure, I can't help but feel that he had no interest in filming The Hobbit as an adjunct to Jackson's previous films.
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Old 12-28-2012, 09:42 AM   #77
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with an excellent Balrog battle
Gah!

Good sir, I do protest!

That Balrog...it had...WINGS!!!

(Yes, I went there. )
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Old 12-28-2012, 03:33 PM   #78
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Oh yes, I specifically decided to open a flame thread. "Flame", in this case, denoting anything you disagree with: a negative review. Which is the same tack junior member Annatar decided to take. He made his "robust" comments, and I rebutted him in the same "robust" manner. But as Inigo Montoya might say, "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
No. It's a flame thread. There is already a review thread which includes all kinds of review, both considered and hyperbolic, and both positive and negative. Starting a new thread to post your very own hyperbolic review (some very funny Brooker-esque turns of phrase, BTW, though I disagree with the content) on a current live topic is flaming/showboating. Sorry to call you out but there it is. What irked me was the sense of outrage that someone might flame back (as several have, me included), or I'd just have ignored it and thought "What a show off." Being long in the tooth, I'm not certain such threads ever end well on here.

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One of those irregular verbs, perhaps? "I offer robust arguments; you flame; he is a troll".
I know full well what 'trolling' is, and nothing on here is 'trolling'. In fact you may never even know you are arguing with a troll, that's the nature of their modus operandi.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:14 PM   #79
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No. It's a flame thread. There is already a review thread which includes all kinds of review, both considered and hyperbolic, and both positive and negative. Starting a new thread to post your very own hyperbolic review (some very funny Brooker-esque turns of phrase, BTW, though I disagree with the content) on a current live topic is flaming/showboating. Sorry to call you out but there it is. What irked me was the sense of outrage that someone might flame back (as several have, me included), or I'd just have ignored it and thought "What a show off." Being long in the tooth, I'm not certain such threads ever end well on here.
Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't see an "OFFICIAL, AUTHENTIC AND CONSECRATED BARROW DOWNS THREAD WHEREIN ALL REVIEWS OF 'THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY' MUST BE DULY POSTED WITHOUT EXCEPTION, PARTICULARLY NEGATIVE REVIEWS WHICH CERTAIN OTHER POSTERS OF HIGH MORAL FIBER DEEM INAPPROPRIATE FLAMES OR WHICH MAY BE CONSTRUED AS SHOWBOATING, ET CETERA, AD NAUSEAM".

In future, I will certainly request your permission as to where or when or what I should post, thereby saving your tender sensibilities for further on into your geriatric years. In addition, I shall request that all posts pertaining to The Hobbit should henceforth be place in one colossal mega-thread, thus tidying up the joint.

Oh, and when you say "What irked me was the sense of outrage that someone might flame back (as several have, me included)", that "several" seems, by my shoddy arithmetic, to be a total of three, maybe four - and two of those live in the same household. The others may be evil henchmen for all I know. In any case, I replied in kind to the manner in which the poster wrote their hyperbole.

I have yet to see a thoughtful refutation of my post; in fact, several posts from a certain tag-team seem to ignore commentary on the film altogether: one refers to other posters as "idiots" and questions their sanity for merely seeing and disliking a movie, and the other accuses a poster of "flaming" and is more concerned where a review is posted. Ironic isn't it? And it does lead one to question the hypocritical manner of their indignance.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:53 PM   #80
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I have yet to see a thoughtful refutation of my post; in fact, several posts from a certain tag-team seem to ignore commentary on the film altogether: one refers to other posters as "idiots" and questions their sanity for merely seeing and disliking a movie, and the other accuses a poster of "flaming" and is more concerned where a review is posted. Ironic isn't it? And it does lead one to question the hypocritical manner of their indignance.
I possibly went too far in my use of the term 'idiot'. I recall a similar incident many years ago when a friend of mine repeatedly slammed a door on his fingers to see if it would hurt just as much every single time he did it. I recall callously throwing around accusations of a similar nature at the time, and just as you have done here he pointed out that just because it was agonisingly painful the first twenty times he did it there was no reason to believe it would hurt the twenty first time. As he pointed out, it was entirely possible that at some point it would become a pleasurable experience. I tried to get him to see that the universe didn't work that way and that if he kept repeating the same action he'd keep on getting the same unpleasant result. He informed me that he kept hoping the universe would learn from experience and come up with a different outcome.

I shouldn't have called him an idiot though, and if I had my time over I like to think I'd go down the thoughtful refutation route.
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