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Old 06-01-2006, 09:32 PM   #1
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LotR2-TTT-Seq16

And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground. Genesis 4:10


Did anyone else notice that the DVD icon (for the chapters) is no longer the White Hand? That doesn't bode well for Saurman.

Finally, the map is shown. We hear the current news from our Gondorian talking heads. Saruman, once he blows though Théoden's forces, will strike at Gondor from the top. Sauron and his orcs will come at it from the east. The 500 men stationed in Osgiliath will not stop the river crossing. More forces approach from the South. Faramir even admits that Gondor is weak. The stock market is down and it will rain . We are party to yet another desperate situation where all looks black. The lingering close-up shows us where the heavy hand will fall first.

On the map, is the distance between the Black Gate and Barad-dûr a bit overestimated? Or will they be much closer in RotK (continental shift)?

Frodo and Sam are unmasked and ignored as they take in their surroundings in Henneth Annûn. They continually rub their wrists...were they bound as well as blindfolded? The scene looks like bad photoshopping; Frodo and Sam seem to be acting in front of a large movie screen.

Faramir leads off with a lie, as even his men could not confuse these two with even the prettiest of orc kind. Sam gets rowed up, and I think that was what Faramir intended - to put the hobbits off balance.

By the by, the guy in the background off of Frodo's right shoulder. Is he stuffed, stupored, meditating, using some kind of incantation to keep Henneth Annûn hidden? What's up with that?

Frodo identifies himself and Sam, and in the best line of maybe the movie, Sam corrects Faramir as to his job title. Faramir asks of Gollum, and the hobbits are so obviously lying that even the pupil of a lesser wizard could see right through their denials. Did you notice that Faramir perked up a bit at the mention of Imladris?

The interrogation turns to Boromir, and it didn't help Frodo's case that he'd already lied about Gollum. Faramir deals out the crime scene details, and then drops the bomb that Boromir was his brother. David Wenham’s eyes welled up at the words. Did Frodo think that he was going to have to run from another corrupted Man again? I thought that PJ could have shown, like in the books, that Frodo thinks that if Boromir the Strong were dead, then his kinsmen and friends were probably dead as well, but the scene is about Faramir. The flashback/misty dream sequence shows Boromir boating down the Anduin in style - did Sean Bean put on weight? The reflection goes back even further in time, to a happier day when the Steward's firstborn was alive, well and victorious. Boromir touts his and Gondor's victory over the forces of Mordor, and I assume that PJ is showing us when Boromir denied the passage of the bridge (that feint that was just a test and a ruse to cover the crossing of the Nine). The army at his command is more enthusiastic than we will see later when they try to repel Mordor aggression yet again. Oddly I thought that Osgiliath was regulated after the plague (Black Breath?) as an outpost, and no one thought of ever opening up shop there, but here it seems that PJ made it into a city that could be populated once more.

The love between the brothers is seen when they jest and hug. They share a moment over a cup of foam, then the darkness falls again, but this comes not from the East, but from the west. We get our first glimpse of the Steward of Gondor, Denethor II, and he's a poor father – even Boromir finds him overbearing. Faramir is credited for losing Osgiliath, and that makes absolutely no sense, but maybe PJ just uses the words to show the contempt that the father has for his poorer reflection. Boromir stands up for his brother, and yet Denethor's treatment of Faramir in front of Boromir wounds not only the second son of Finduilas.

Denethor, not Boromir, has become the evil man from Gondor. One so wise would not treat his son thus, in public, and say that this son had lost Osgiliath. Boromir, unlike in the book, is more sympathetic here. And here we have Elrond calling the Meeting of the Ring (right after the Bakesale of the Ring). Guess he sent email or posted flyers on the backs of Ents. At least we know what was on the banner that sailed behind Gwaihir. Denethor continues, telling us that he knows what the meeting’s about, and that the Ring must come to Gondor and not be claimed by the Elves, Dwarves or those pesky Wizards. You can see that Boromir does not steal this dream journey from his younger brother but that it is forced upon him by a megalomaniac.

Denethor is one sick man.

We see the brothers part for what we know will be the last time, and it is truly sad.

Frodo is awakened by Faramir and his guards. They go to the falls and see Gollum feasting himself on his favorite food. Gollum sings as he taps the rhythm with the fish on a rock, complete oblivious to his mortal peril. Frodo stretches out the moment, deciding perhaps that he could be easily rid of this gangrel creature once and for all.

But, in the end, he can’t do it and so seeks to help poor Sméagol. But he leads the poor wretch into an ambush, and nothing good will come of that. Not once here did I think that CG was used – that’s a real being that we’re seeing, and so many kudos to WETA. Faramir’s guards tenderize Gollum, and that’s a bit hard to watch. The physical pain/trauma brings the Stinker back.

Faramir stands amazed at the creature – it’s nothing like he’s seen before. Do you get the feeling that Faramir is doing what he thinks will make Daddy happy? Is that why his head is turned away from the torture, thinking it to be what his father would want but finding it distasteful? If he did what he wanted, would Gollum have been treated more humanely?

Sam tries to convince Frodo to sneak off with the Ring. Frodo then apologizes to Sam, for what I’m not exactly sure, then states that if he were to put on the Ring, Sauron would spot him right quick. Looks like Frodo’s starting to crack. The genes of his uncle coming to fore, or is it that band of gold? Before we learn any more Faramir drops by and draws a sword on them. He speaks the words that in the book he says as they gather in the amphitheatre, and turns the quality issue on its head. Frodo begins going into a trance, and I thought, “What a great diversion. Foam at the mouth, and when Faramir calls for help, RUN!”

Sam explains what their real mission is, and what the Ring is doing to his master. Coincidently, Faramir gets a news update that Osgiliath is under attack yet again. Faramir has to decide what to do with the Ring, and he has to do it quickly, as time presses.

The Ring is to go to Gondor.
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Last edited by alatar; 06-01-2006 at 09:32 PM. Reason: Sorry for the delay.
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Old 06-03-2006, 11:50 PM   #2
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The map device seems a bit contrived to me, but since I already memorized all the information on it years ago, I don't guess it would do much for me in any case. So who else noticed that Minas Morgul didn't make the cut on the map? Minor details...

Definitely agree that Frodo and Sam are very obviously green-screening in their opening shots for this scene. Just about the only time you can tell it was used.

The brothers/evil father flashback scene is one of my favorite scenes in the movie; not only is it a great scene and well acted, but it provides crucial background information for all three characters. It is thus shocking that it didn't end up in the theatrical version, but I am definitely grateful for the extended edition.

Obviously everything has been changed quite a bit here. The only thing that remains basically the same is the capture of Gollum. As noted in the "What Happened to Gallant Captain Faramir" thread in the Movies forum, it is Frodo and Sam who have changed as much as or more than Faramir in these scenes. Not to say that Faramir hasn't been changed much, because he certainly has.

On to Osgiliath!
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Old 06-07-2006, 08:16 AM   #3
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I love that scene in Osgiliath.

I mean, it's strange. We're told Osgiliath shall be re-populated and that it was Faramir who lost it (we're not told Osgiliath already was a ruin before, so Faramir's failure is even more grave), Boromir's and Faramir's dream is omitted and we get the first glimpse of what is supposed to be Denethor. We are all supposed to hate this scene!

Yet...

I think it's the atmosphere that more than saves it. There's a certain melancholy, a nostalgic rememberance of a time when life was better in Gondor, which is brilliantly caught. For the only time we see Boromir and Faramir together, and all this inside a flashback of Faramir who was just told that his brother is no more.

By the way, I don't think the dream would have worked on screen, so I'm not mad about its omission at all.


The mauling of Gollum is hard to watch indeed. As we have just been told that looking upon, not to mention fishing within, the pool bears the penalty of death, it appears to me that Faramir lets his men compensate for not being allowed to execute the poor creature. Maybe Jackson thought this would be realistic, to me it is quite un-Tolkien. In the end the only purpose is to switch the simplified Gollum back on stinker.


Concerning the effects. When Frodo, Sam and Gollum look at the Black Gate and at the Oliphaunt, you can see they're really in front a green screen as well.
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Old 06-17-2006, 07:28 PM   #4
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Yeah, I cannot picture Southern Dunedain beating up Gollum, apparently for little more than sport. One change that I think Tolkien would definitely disapprove of.
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Old 06-21-2006, 04:35 PM   #5
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I'm starting to think it's the Window on the West chapter that PJ had problems with since the whole encounter between Faramir and Frodo was changed from the begining. I think the gollum beating was an unfortunate lapse on PJ part. I think everyone else was against it. I heard they were planning on having a scene in which Frodo turns into a gollum like creature. That would have been interesting to see.
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Old 06-21-2006, 06:36 PM   #6
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The beating of Gollum is just plain bad. I cannot misinterpret it; it's not like they treated Gollum sternly and he acted as if it were torture. No, these were bullies beating a smaller and weaker creature. Were they knocking him around a bit to 'soften him up' for Faramir's interrogation? Why then did they not beat Sam or Frodo? Did Gollum bite one or more of them, and so did they treat him in kind?

In the books Aragorn states that the creature would never love him, as he was not gentle, but I do not see book Aragorn striking a prone Gollum as it lay weeping.

You feel sorry for the thing, and so his reconversion (or backsliding, or whatever you want to call Slinker becoming Stinker again) is justified. Frodo, rightly or wrongly, gets what he deserves as he befriends Faramir, the captain of the bullies, in the end.

PJ messed that all up.
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Old 06-21-2006, 09:37 PM   #7
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This is from the Commentary

Peter : The interrogation scene was something that used to be quite violent, and we trimmed it right back for the theatrical release; and the dvd has a little bit more of the violence put back into it,just to sense

Philippa: A little?

Peter : a little, yeah

Philippa: Pft!

Fran: Ooh!

Philippa: God!

Peter: just to sense that Gollum is being , what is the word?

Philippa: Done up!

Peter: softened up. Softened up.

Phillipa:Softened up! Is that how you soften up people,
Pete?

Peter:That

Fran: Oh , it is pretty nasty!I dont think it really represents, The Gondorian Rangers in the best possible light.

PhilippaGollum : Why does it cry, Smeagol?) This is a great scene.

Peter:It even got worse than that,because, remember, they used tread on Gollum fingers at one stage.

Philippa: Oh , that right.

Peter: Theyd crush his fingers, which is why he sometimes has sore fingers later on, towards the end of the film.

Philippa:I quite like the fact that Faramir doesnt use brute force the way that Boromir does, and that is using

Peterinterrupting) There is some really nice animation here.
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Old 09-01-2006, 08:12 AM   #8
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It's Dagorlad not Dagorland!!!!!!!

I also love the line as Alatar does - "No, his Gardener" - brilliant.

I'll skip the Changed faramir discussions as most of us have here as it's been done to death. I've also talked about the beating up of goullum recently in another thread.

but sufice to say, these people are at War, gollum pretty much looks like an Orc to me, he was fighting against these peole tooth and nail, so I don't really mind that much what they're doing - they are softening him up for interrogation.

why do people think that men descendant of numenor have to be so kind and gentle? as Alatar stated, Aragorn himself had to soften up gollum (but we are not told exactly what he did to gollum, and therefore some of us can gloss over this)

PJ is bringing us into the real world here showing the beating of Gollum. What was that saying about "Love and War" again......?

PS everytime I hear the words the Ring mus go to Gondor I still shudder. but maybe less and less each time I watch it - must remember, it's only a diversion!!!!!! Faramir turns out alright in the end LOL!
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Old 09-01-2006, 12:49 PM   #9
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It's Dagorlad not Dagorland!!!!!!!
Dagorland is the Fourth Age Amusement Park outside Mordor.


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but sufice to say, these people are at War, gollum pretty much looks like an Orc to me, he was fighting against these peole tooth and nail, so I don't really mind that much what they're doing - they are softening him up for interrogation.
Even in the real world, softening up an interrogatie is debated. That aside, here's the question: Does not PJ make Gollum's betrayal of Frodo more reasonable, and also make Gollum more pitiable? If Gollum fed Frodo (or better, Faramir) to Shelob, could not one think that, well, Frodo permitted the softening up, and so deserved a bite in the neck in return? Methinks that we made the Frodo/Gollum relationship too muddy.


Quote:
why do people think that men descendant of numenor have to be so kind and gentle? as Alatar stated, Aragorn himself had to soften up gollum (but we are not told exactly what he did to gollum, and therefore some of us can gloss over this)
Quoting without my books in hand, I think that Aragorn states that "he bit me, and I was not gentle" and that Gollum would never love the Ranger. He also states that he tames Gollum using food and water as a rod. I don't read into this much, and I don't see Aragorn pounding on the creature. And, though I may have mentioned this, book Faramir states that he wouldn't even try to trap an orc with a falsehood (or something). My impression, therefore, is that Faramir is more noble (as are his men) in the books than in the movie. Well, you might say, being all nice is fine, but in the real world you have to soften prisoners up a bit. But, with Balrogs amd elves and wizards, we are NOT in the real world, and so I want my heroes to adhere to fantastic rules of engagement. And, as noted here, "Excessively loose rules of engagement can facilitate the escalation of a conflict which, while being tactically effective, negates the political objectives that the use of force was meant to achieve." PJ, attempting to be tactically effective, lost the war as I felt bad for Gollum, who has, at least as far as we know, murdered one person - and a friend at that.


Quote:
PJ is bringing us into the real world here showing the beating of Gollum. What was that saying about "Love and War" again......?
Again, this is fantasy.

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Old 09-01-2006, 06:18 PM   #10
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Again, this is fantasy.
but we want realism as far as we can go in these movies. For example, in another thread you bemoan the fact that we can't see stairs leading up to the top of orthanc. If it's fantasy you want then we don't need them
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Old 09-01-2006, 08:18 PM   #11
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but we want realism as far as we can go in these movies. For example, in another thread you bemoan the fact that we can't see stairs leading up to the top of orthanc. If it's fantasy you want then we don't need them
You're not asking me to be consistent now in my whining..?

How about, then, we ask PJ's world to be internally consistent? Good guys do thus, bad guys do the other. Especially by the time we get to RotK, each character is a caricature of itself. Gimli = buffoon. Legolas = deadshot stoic. Aragorn the head chopper. If I wanted complexity, I would have went and seen "Willow."
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Old 09-06-2006, 03:35 AM   #12
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If there was one thing I could change in these movies (esp rotk) it would be gimli's 'bufoonery' I must admit
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Old 09-10-2011, 12:16 PM   #13
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I acttually feel like crying for smeagol when he is being beat up because I know how it feels to be bullied like that. :...(
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