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Old 01-03-2012, 06:05 PM   #1
TheLostPilgrim
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Elrond in PJ's LotR

How do you feel about the portrayal of Elrond in Peter Jackson's films? Is he as you imagined him to be, both in appearance and personality?

There is one character whom I think was PERFECTLY portrayed, and that is Gandalf. Would anyone disagree with the general portrayal of Gandalf was on the mark? I don't mean so much the incidents (major deviations from Tolkien's characterization of Gandalf in RotK) but Ian McKellen sort of "being" Gandalf.
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Old 01-03-2012, 07:40 PM   #2
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How do you feel about the portrayal of Elrond in Peter Jackson's films? Is he as you imagined him to be, both in appearance and personality?
I'm not a fan. Hugo Weaving comes off as far too grim, and his Elrond seems to harbour contempt for Men and Dwarves lacking in the original.

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There is one character whom I think was PERFECTLY portrayed, and that is Gandalf. Would anyone disagree with the general portrayal of Gandalf was on the mark? I don't mean so much the incidents (major deviations from Tolkien's characterization of Gandalf in RotK) but Ian McKellen sort of "being" Gandalf.
Meh, McKellan's a good actor (he is Magneto), and he had the look down, but I didn't quite see book-Gandalf's blend of irascible dedication, warmth, and humour. Mckellan's version actually reminded me a bit of Michael Gambon's Dumbledore in the Harry Potter movies.
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Old 01-03-2012, 08:30 PM   #3
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I think their appearance was fine, but their personalities were butchered.
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Old 01-04-2012, 07:21 AM   #4
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When I think of the description of Elrond in The Hobbit:
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He was as noble and as fair in face as an elf-lord, as strong as a warrior, as wise as a wizard, as venerable as a king of dwarves, and as kind as summer.
I imagine someone very different from the way Hugo Weaving looked and the role Jackson gave him. In the movie, he comes across as grouchy, not kind - the perpetual scowl does not endear him to me. Fortunately, since the difference between BookElrond and MovieElrond is so great, I can keep him separate in my mind's eye.

It's different with MovieGandalf - he really does look like the book description, but unfortunately, at times his role is changed, so that I remind myself that he was actually too great to cringe before the Witch King and would not use physical violence.

I re-read the books more often than I re-watch the movies, so I can hang on to Tolkien's own depiction of characters rather than having PJ's versions take over my imagination.
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Old 01-04-2012, 07:52 AM   #5
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. Would anyone disagree with the general portrayal of Gandalf was on the mark? I don't mean so much the incidents (major deviations from Tolkien's characterization of Gandalf in RotK) but Ian McKellen sort of "being" Gandalf.
I would. I thought he was possibly the least convincing. McKellen on screen is always McKellen to me. He never seems to disappear into his character. I think he is better on stage. What works in a theatre context looks very mannered to me projected on a giant screen. But then, the Radio adaptation has a hold on my heart in the way that the films no doubt have on others of a younger generation.

Some of the fim actors I prefer to the radio ones .. Sean Bean (despite the accent - seemed weird that he spoke Yorkshire when his father and brother spoke Oxford english), Viggo Mortensen, Cate Blanchett, others as good but Michael Hordern as Gandalf and Holm, Nighy and Woodthorpe as Frodo Sam and gollum are unbeatable for me...
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Old 01-05-2012, 11:04 AM   #6
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I like Hugo Weaving...don't like him as Elrond. Or, I should say, I imagine he could have done the warmer, noble, and wise Elf Lord quite well, but Jackson didn't want that Elrond. My image of BookElrond is a librarian, and movies he came off as a grump and a manipulative father to boot.

I feel kind of the same with John Rhys-Davies. Definitely a talented actor, who could have made a fine Gimli with some good direction. But I feel Jackson embraced the crude and ridiculous humor because he thought it would get laughs. Maybe it did, but Jackson's idea of humor doesn't appeal to me.
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Old 01-05-2012, 01:28 PM   #7
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Yes I adore Hugo and I don't think he was miscast. I think the Elrond part was badly written. He was virtually creepy in TTT ... I keep on thinking of Elrond in Pyjamas when I read this thread title....
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:08 PM   #8
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I would. I thought he was possibly the least convincing. McKellen on screen is always McKellen to me. He never seems to disappear into his character. I think he is better on stage. What works in a theatre context looks very mannered to me projected on a giant screen. But then, the Radio adaptation has a hold on my heart in the way that the films no doubt have on others of a younger generation.

Some of the fim actors I prefer to the radio ones .. Sean Bean (despite the accent - seemed weird that he spoke Yorkshire when his father and brother spoke Oxford english), Viggo Mortensen, Cate Blanchett, others as good but Michael Hordern as Gandalf and Holm, Nighy and Woodthorpe as Frodo Sam and gollum are unbeatable for me...
I got the boxed set of BBC Radio's The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings on CD for Christmas this year. I have never heard them before, and I am about halfway through The Hobbit right now. It's quite good. I am excited to listen to LOTR and see how the voice actors compare to the movie. Dear old Ian Holm I know will be wonderful.

Elrond is one of my favorite characters in all the Midde-Earth canon. Hugo Weaving is an amazing actor and really does look the part. I don't think he was miscast, but I do think the part for him was written badly. Elrond started out grouchy and cranky in LOTR and just got worse. By ROTK he was the typical creepy overprotective dad who chases his daughter's boyfriends away and convinces her to leave. Not very well done in my opinion.
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Old 01-08-2012, 02:37 PM   #9
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There is a thread with an episode by episode discussion somewhere including welcome contributions from Mr Sibley himself. We never quite finished alas... I find it interesting that I love in that adaptation the bits I tend to skim in the book. The handling of Sam, Frodo and Gollum is wonderful IMO Bill Nighy, perhaps suprisingly in the light of the rather louche roles he tends to get now is great as Sam, Woodthorpe is vastly superior to Serkis IMO .. and Radio Faramir..... is all he should be.
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Old 01-28-2012, 02:08 PM   #10
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Michael Hordern as Gandalf and Holm, Nighy and Woodthorpe as Frodo Sam and gollum are unbeatable for me...
Almost entirely agree. Although I found Holm's Frodo a little too old, and a little too aggressive at times, it was a performance that knocked me for six.

I think the only reason McKellan's Gandalf was not more powerful for me was that Horden had already provided, for me, the definitive Gandalf.

And Mithalwen, I'd add John McAndrew's Pippin, Andrew Seear's Faramir, and Douglas Livingstone's Gimli to the list of unbeatables you cite.

But back to the thread title, Elrond was one of the characters of whom I never really had a visual image in my mind. I did not see him as manipulative, though, and his character was certainly twisted and used to drive the plot and the tension. Neither do I think Elrond - or indeed Tolkien - would have considered Isildur in the light that PJ's Elrond appears to. Reminds me of the Parodic Precis of Bakshi's LOTR on the Tolkien Sarcasm Page: "Ha! Some hero: Isildur the backstabbing sneak."
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Old 01-28-2012, 07:04 PM   #11
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I keep on thinking of Elrond in Pyjamas when I read this thread title....
Ok, that got a real laugh out of me. Elrond in pajamas... maybe a tatty bathrobe... bedhead... carrying a coffee cup that says, "My kids visited Lothlórien and all they got me was this coffee cup"...

THAT'S probably why he was always so grumpy looking!
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Old 01-28-2012, 08:12 PM   #12
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Or, I should say, I imagine he could have done the warmer, noble, and wise Elf Lord quite well, but Jackson didn't want that Elrond.
I think that here,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlAeJPk63Ks

in the episode from the extended edition, we have such Elrond and Hugo was perfectly able to create him. The blame is on PJ.
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Old 01-28-2012, 08:24 PM   #13
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Ok, that got a real laugh out of me. Elrond in pajamas... maybe a tatty bathrobe... bedhead... carrying a coffee cup that says, "My kids visited Lothlórien and all they got me was this coffee cup"...

THAT'S probably why he was always so grumpy looking!
Have you seen the Russian parody films, "The Trouble Of The Rings?" He does walk through Rivendell in a bathrobe in that.
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Old 01-28-2012, 09:00 PM   #14
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Have you seen the Russian parody films, "The Trouble Of The Rings?"
Esty linked those films here. Truly wonderfully crazy things.
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:54 AM   #15
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I think he was gr8 it worked really well. I cannot imagine anyone else.
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Old 01-29-2012, 06:21 AM   #16
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Almost entirely agree. Although I found Holm's Frodo a little too old, and a little too aggressive at times, it was a performance that knocked me for six.

I think the only reason McKellan's Gandalf was not more powerful for me was that Horden had already provided, for me, the definitive Gandalf.

And Mithalwen, I'd add John McAndrew's Pippin, Andrew Seear's Faramir, and Douglas Livingstone's Gimli to the list of unbeatables you cite.
I don't disagree.. I could have mentioned many more of the cast..Andrew Seear's Faramir was remarkable and I was thinking of the performance as well as the writing when I said Faramir was all he should be. I am fascinated by your comments on Holm. I just foundhe pitched it brilliantly and put the moments of fierceness due to teh stress of the ring.
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Old 01-29-2012, 09:15 AM   #17
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I am fascinated by your comments on Holm. I just foundhe pitched it brilliantly and put the moments of fierceness due to teh stress of the ring.
Is there a thread where we can discuss this further?

On the topic of Elrond, the twinkly stars around his head in the Rankin-Bass cartoon were quite memorable.

Hugo Weaving's Elrond does not exactly come across as "as kind as summer," but not only was he driving the plot with urgency, Gandalf was being portrayed as the more compassionate of the two: "It is a burden he should never have been asked to bear. We can ask no more of Frodo," versus "Our list of allies grows thin," etc.
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Old 01-29-2012, 11:32 AM   #18
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How do you feel about the portrayal of Elrond in Peter Jackson's films?
I think PJ did a nasty job with the poor Half-elf.

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Is he as you imagined him to be, both in appearance and personality?
About a lightyear away from how I imagined him. He was NOTHING like Elrond in the books. Elrond in the books is a kind, strong, intelligent and (obviously) beautiful person with the weight of thousands of years in his eyes. Elrond in the movies is a bitter, arrogant fool who acts more like a pms-ing Fëanorian than the Lord of Rivendell.

End of rant.
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Old 01-29-2012, 11:44 AM   #19
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I think Elrond looks alright. I mean, the costume and hair and etc are good. But his role and character are in ruins. Although I can't stand the movie Elrond for what was mentioned before (arrogant, frowning, etc) I have to give him credit for a good physical appearance.

Just compare him to Arwen - she looks nothing like I would imagine her to be, and don't get me started on how she acts.
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Old 01-29-2012, 01:31 PM   #20
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Is there a thread where we can discuss this further?

Hugo Weaving's Elrond does not exactly come across as "as kind as summer," but not only was he driving the plot with urgency, Gandalf was being portrayed as the more compassionate of the two: "It is a burden he should never have been asked to bear. We can ask no more of Frodo," versus "Our list of allies grows thin," etc.
AS if a list could grow thin (unless it previoulsy ran to many pages)vtsk grumble grumble. I have bumped up the main radio discussion thread which was started by Davem and features fascinating insights from Brian Sibley. I must re read it. I am long overdue a re listen but RL got in the way for a while there..
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Old 01-29-2012, 01:43 PM   #21
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Actually I agree with you, Mithalwen. I was quite shocked at how manipulative the films made Elrond, but I was shocked at how several of the characters were portrayed. It's why the movies never really worked that well for me - enjoyable to see as films, but not as adaptations of a most beloved book that I could watch again and again. Visually spectacular, and with some very fine moments. But character portrayal tends to be more important to me than landscape and other visuals.

At least the wardrobe department did well. Very well, in fact.

He did come across more human in a much later scene with Arwen - "Do not I also have your love?" But - "Welcome to Rivendell, Frodo Baggins" (cue very-mature-Gorgonzola-strength-cheese expression from Frodo) - oh dear.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not against changes in adaptations. I only object when said changes seriously mangle the characters, and it's perfectly possible to change and adapt without doing this.
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Old 01-29-2012, 02:08 PM   #22
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Lol - I thought that scene was deeply creepy Dad and totally not the Elrond of the books. But I do remember a few examples of a lovely smile. But my issue is with the script not Hugo (who I have adored since I was 13..which is a little while ago now *ahem*. But while I saw the films I have never managed to sit through the later ones again. I loved the costumes, many of the sets and much of the casting. But I too would have preferred more characterisation and was bored to sobs during the endless tedious battle scenes. Especially sinceI knew how they were done. I did enjoy the Science Museum exhibition. I did feel that the costume, prop, set designers really loved Tolkien in a way I suspect PJ does not. Anyway I was not the target demographic. All inall rather peripheral to my love of Tolkien.
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:59 PM   #23
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Elrond in PJ's LotR

I saw this thread before and was thinking about it when I watched the movies last, and I think the way they portrayed Elrond made quite a bit of difference on Aragorn and on the nature of the kingship of Gondor.

This Elrond, it seemed like, has little to no regard for men as a race, and he talks bitterly about Isildur in particular. He almost speaks as if the whole mess was Isildur's fault, which seems slightly unfair. The movies give no reason to believe Isildur was a bad guy or bad king. He screwed up once, an Elrond hasn't forgiven him in however many generations.

So, okay, he's a bitter old grouch. But I think, if you think about the fact that he was raising Isildur's heir, you might attribute the changes in Aragorn's character to Elrond's bad attitude. Movie-Aragorn doubts himself. He doesn't really want the kingdom. He doesn't want to reveal himself as Isildur's heir, or even as anybody except some guy when he first mets Boromir. Book Aragorn was much surer of himself and his claim, and is quick to step up and say, "Sword that was broken? Right here. Check this out!" Couldn't being raised by somebody who hates and doubts your race and your ancestor be just the thing to make that difference?

I also thought it was interesting that Elrond in the movie keeps the shards of Narsil, where in the book it clearly belonged to Aragorn. Later on, when Aragorn goes into the paths of the dead, it's that sword that proves his claim to the throne. So, if Elrond has the sword, doesn't that in some sense give him some power to approve or deny a claim to the throne? It may not be desicive; Gondor may choose to accept a king without the sword as proof of his heritage. Oh - except that they'd have been mostly dead, if the Oath-Breakers hadn't showed up with Aragorn because of the sword. I think it's an interesting, and kind of unpleasant, implication if the crown is not awarded based on the individual's character and claim, but because some guy over in Imladris has decided, "Okay, okay, Arwen! Fine! Your boyfriend can have the sword already!"

Interesting choices.
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Old 04-09-2012, 05:42 PM   #24
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To be fair, the shards of Narsil being at Imladris is pretty low on the list of alterations even for me, though I appreciate what you say about it being his proof. Carrying around a broken sword is a bit impractical however symbolic especially when you do need an actual sword. Film Aragorn does conspicuously wear the ring of Barahir which isn't IIRC explained in the films which might have some clout and in the books other surviving heirlooms are kept for safe keeping (sceptre of Annuminas for example).
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