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Old 01-29-2002, 02:34 AM   #1
Marileangorifurnimaluim
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Sting Second-guessing Peter Jackson

I'll start by saying I loved the movie and have seen it four times. Peter Jackson did something very, very difficult: he made the LotR accessible to non-Tolkienites while still staying to true to Tolkien's vision. And the film is beautiful.<P>That said, if you and I had the training and international standing to be entrusted with $300M budget, and only 3 hours to do the LotR justice, what would you change?<P><UL TYPE=SQUARE><LI>Use more than glowing light and architecture to set apart the elves. The movie shows why we should care about the Shire, but not the artistry and lore of the elves. A brief glimpse, of say an artisan carving a musical instrument, as part of the scene of the Hobbits' reunion for example. You could have had the close up of the curling wood shavings, and Pippin watching, and then Frodo joining them and all interest in the artist forgotten. But the point made.<BR><LI>The scene with Elrond and Gandalf could begin in the great library of Rivendell and continue in his private study. You need to see what the elves are about - besides fighting.<BR><LI>Amp down certain of the action scenes. The trouble with 'Sinbad' type movies is that one action scene competes with another, until they wash out. <BR><LI>The Watcher in the Water needed to be a mere forewarning, to build dread, you should not have seen the monster, and no crashing ceilings. Just a narrow escape with escape from Moria cut off. <BR><LI>The Black Riders could build in glimpses, more like what he did with the scene with the Hobbit "No Bagginses here, they're up in Hobbiton." I think a scene with happy Hobbits, then another half-glimpse of the riders, then back again.. no idea how close the riders are to catching them. <BR><LI>He did need to amp up the scene at the Bucklebury Ferry, but the leap onto the boat.. c'mon. Have you ever lept onto a slippery boat? You end up in the drink. Not to mention badly bruised.<BR><LI>Merry & Pippin's chance meeting at Farmer Maggot's is implausible. Better to have the two guess Frodo was leaving (Sam let it slip) "we figured you'd come this way" - though not why. Then find out they 'reprovisioned' from Farmer Maggot's field. Just a few changes in the lines, and the scene remains just as goofy, more realistic, and show two sides of the twain at once. <BR><LI>After the encounter with the 'sniffing' Black Rider, M&P understand more, and can tell Frodo what they tell him in Crickhollow in the books - that friends don't let friends face trouble alone 'don't think you're going to give us the slip.' An ironic hint to later, when Frodo attempts to go to Mordor alone.<BR><LI>You need to see Frodo has brains, right off, show Gandalf's trust in him is well-placed (not just in Bilbo's high opinion). The scene where Gandalf tells Frodo the DL knows the ring is in the shire, Frodo needs to make the decision to leave, not ask Gandalf "What do I do?"<BR> <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:<HR>Frodo pauses, thinking.. 'I must leave then.' <BR>Gandalf blinks.. 'Yes. Yes, you are quite right.'<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Then Gandalf's next comment "hobbits can still surprise you" makes sense.<BR><LI>These minor changes in dialogue would shift the focus back the hobbits and add depth to their portrayal.. address what Robert Ebert pointed out, correctly, that the focus is shifted from the Hobbits, to the men & elves. </UL><P>These are subtle changes. I'd love to hear your ideas.<p>[ January 29, 2002: Message edited by: Marileangorifurnimaluim ]
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Old 01-29-2002, 08:29 AM   #2
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Wow, M! Obviously some thought in that post.<P>All I can say is that I wish that Moria had been a bit scarier. It seemed a little rushed to me, everything crammed together. Maybe that's because it's a favourite scene that I've spent a lot of time reading and imagining.
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Old 01-29-2002, 10:42 AM   #3
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Well I don't know if it was due to repetedly seeing the movie after a full day of work and at one of the latest showings possible...but twice...I somehow managed to slip into 5 minute power naps (I've seen the movie 5 times...tempted to go back again)...all during the scenes in Moria. So I'll have to agree with you Hama. It was nice and suspensful the first time round (before I read the books) but as I saw it more and more that part became less climatic.
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Old 01-29-2002, 12:02 PM   #4
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If I limit myself to one change that I feel would make the film a whole lot better it would be this simple addition to the costumes department:<P>A gag for Arwen<P>This would not only prevent one of the most embarassing lines in the films being spoken but stop me tormenting everyone on the Downs with endless posts on the subject.
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Old 01-29-2002, 10:25 PM   #5
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not to be nitpicky but 300 million dollars was for all three movies not just the fellowship of the ring
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Old 01-29-2002, 10:43 PM   #6
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Welcome to the Downs, Malinear. Yeah, you're right (sorry it's so long). I've been thinking about how I'd do the LotR since 1978, when Ralph Bakshi's version came out. But Peter Jackson made my life a lot easier by hitting near the mark.<P>Hama, I agree. Moria is fear, wonder and darkness.. the heavy action sequences provoke an adrenaline hit, but not the feeling of a need for stealth. The tension of Moria is that you <I>think</I> they just might slip through unscathed. They did the Hall of the Dwarrowdelf just right though - there's definately wonder.<P>A gag is good idea, if impractical for eating and so forth. At least Arwen should only speak Elvish, if she must speak.<P>Nit-picking, no. I say $300M because I plan to revisit this thought (if not this exact thread) for the next three years.<p>[ January 29, 2002: Message edited by: Marileangorifurnimaluim ]
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Old 02-01-2002, 01:20 AM   #7
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The movie stunk. It ripped the soul out of the books. To those who will criticize me for saying that: I have the right to second guess Peter Jackson because I've been a fan of the books for years, and to see them turned into a generic action/adventure/fantasy is horrible. Indeed, I will ignore the next two movies, watch what you want. It's a free country. As long as I don't insult people who disagree with me, my opinion should be tolerated if not embraced.
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Old 02-01-2002, 03:18 AM   #8
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<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:<HR>Originally posted by lomion:<BR><STRONG>The movie stunk. It ripped the soul out of the books. To those who will criticize me for saying that: I have the right to second guess Peter Jackson because I've been a fan of the books for years, and to see them turned into a generic action/adventure/fantasy is horrible. Indeed, I will ignore the next two movies, watch what you want. It's a free country. As long as I don't insult people who disagree with me, my opinion should be tolerated if not embraced.</STRONG><HR></BLOCKQUOTE><BR>Another "...the movie stunk" post. Amazing. Go watch Battlefield Earth, then come back and let us know if FOTR deserves to be categorized under "stunk".<P>I have laughed at many FOTR detractors simply because I know that, despite their incessant and prolific number of complaints, many of these same people will put their butts in the seats when movies two and three arrive at the theaters. You sound quite determined, but I think we'll find that many FOTR detractors won't be as resolute. It will be interesting to see if you hold out.<P>I too have been a fan of the books for many years and went to the movie dreading the possible fiasco that was about to unfold. Didn't happen. Ripping the soul out of the books? No way.
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Old 02-01-2002, 03:17 PM   #9
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Ah, but the question is, what would <I>you</I> do differently? I'm really interested in what other people envision. As someone who didn't like the movie, I think you would have a long list of creative ideas. This is your chance to create the "perfect" LotR.<P>If you want to bring in Tom Bombadil, how would you do that, what would you cut to make room? Or would you make four movies? Then where would you have the first end? Rivendell, and have the second start before or after Frodo woke? <P>After the universally panned 1978 version I found it was easy to slam a movie, but not so easy to fix it. <P>I decided we definately should keep the black riders as Bakshi envisioned them, for example. (And Peter Jackson did.) But Bakshi's balrog had to go. <P>We can go through the two movies, and even the taped versions, and select what we think should stay and shouldn't. I wish we could keep BBC's Gollum - he was perfect.
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Old 02-01-2002, 04:13 PM   #10
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i wouldn't have sent the horn of gondor over the falls with Boromir. Why? because it's been bugging me ever sense. Will this end up being one of those famous mistakes in a film...or will the horn never be mentioned again. i spend way to much thinking about that.
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Old 02-01-2002, 06:38 PM   #11
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<center>I agree with all your ideas, Marileangorifurnimaluim.<BR>The thing i most want to see is the version of Flight to the Ford from the book, with Frodo resisting the Nazgul...<P>But for the people who needed everything to be exactly the same as the book, the best bet would be 6 movies, one for each book.... but it wouldnt be as good...
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Old 02-01-2002, 08:47 PM   #12
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<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:<HR>Originally posted by bryniana:<BR><STRONG>i wouldn't have sent the horn of gondor over the falls with Boromir. Why? because it's been bugging me ever sense. Will this end up being one of those famous mistakes in a film...or will the horn never be mentioned again. i spend way to much thinking about that.</STRONG><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>I've seen you mention this before, bryniana, but I'm not sure why you're so upset. They sent it over the falls with Boromir in the book, too: <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:<HR>His helm they set beside him, and across his lap they laid the cloven horn and the hilts and shards of his sword... [...] Sorrowfully they cast loose the funeral boat: there Boromir lay, restful, peaceful, gliding upon the bosom of the flowing water. The stream took him while they held their own boat back with their paddles. He floated by them, and slowly his boat departed, waning to a dark spot against the golden light; and then suddenly it vanished. Rauros roared on unchanging.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
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Old 02-01-2002, 09:21 PM   #13
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Don't get me wrong, as I've said before I loved the scenery. Incredible. Blew me away. The C.G.I. was really cool. Hobbiton was great!!! Isengard was good too. As for cutting things out, I realize all the books could never have been included. I expected Bombadil to be cut. What I absolutely despise is the addition of things that were'nt in the book. Super-Arwen? Come on!!! That alone ruined it. As for Bakshi's balrog...well it was lousy. Obviously a man with a large lion head (the balrogs mane I guess) being lifted on a rope. I did'nt mind the balrog in Jackson's version, after all Tolkien did'nt give a real good description. Kind of shadowy, more or less left it to our imagination. Arwen taking on all 9 riders was just stupid. I did'nt expect to see the whole book, but adding things to improve the plot failed miserably. It may surprise you, but I don't consider myself a "purist". I just think Peter Jackson is a far cry from Tolkien. Wizard's battle scene about made me wretch. Beating Gandalf bloody? baaaarf!!
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Old 02-01-2002, 11:30 PM   #14
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Nazgul Queen - yes, that would strengthen Frodo's role. Then it's more believable he'd choose to go it alone. This would tie to having Frodo, not Gandalf, say he must leave the Shire. <BR>Also, the addition of Galadriel <I>telling</I> 'he will try to take the ring' and to go it alone - not a good idea. Better to have them step back and let Frodo decide as they do in the book. It's wimping out to have 'wise people' be direct cause of the unpredictable decisions. Flattens the characterization (so you're left with no part to play). <P>It would make me happy, too, Io, to remove Arwen from her inflated role. Agreed, too, keep every ounce of scenery, sets and costumes. Please don't think I'm dissing your opinions, I'm just sifting a little deeper: how <I>should</I> it be done?<P>Bryn - Mr. U is correct. The confusion may be that Denethor wound up with the horn, but not Boromir's body. Apparently (we don't know for sure) the lighter horn was swept out of the boat in the falls, and floated down the Anduin separately. It was recovered, though Boromir was not.
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Old 02-02-2002, 12:31 PM   #15
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lomion, why did the wizard battle make you so ill? I thought it did a wonderful job illustrating the struggle of good and evil at the time. If the power of Saruman has not shown, then Gandalf took the position of “White,” we would not be able to fathom his power.
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Old 02-02-2002, 03:45 PM   #16
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*scratches head* I'm learning the importance of thread names...<P>Anyways, while it wasn't my intent to bash Peter's good work, I would say yes, the Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon wizard brawl was er.. trendy. Good. Let's rewrite it.<P>I do agree we needed to be shown in a movie the standoff between Saruman and Gandalf.<P>I think what we need is subtle magic, like the scene with the moth (brilliant!): <BR>a physical magic brawl doesn't suit two old men.<P>What we have are two Maia. One - Saruman - is a lore master, and focused on using and recreating the weapons/powers that once were, and he's especially a master of deluding others. The other - Gandalf - tends to coax living creatures and elements into doing what they already are inclined to do.<BR>Gandalf says at one point that he can't burn snow, he has to have something to work with. <P>So now we have two different fighting styles. Ideas?<BR><UL TYPE=SQUARE><LI>In the room of the Palantir, one addition: torches placed on each wall.<BR><LI>When the doors bar, Saruman creates an illusion of himself and the room of the Palantir being peaceful, himself a gentle lord. The walls of the room turn to white alabaster, there's a close-up to his face, then the camara pulls away and his throne is outdoors. There's a blue sky, trees, birds chirp. He attempts to convince Gandalf to join the winning side to help this world. <BR><LI>Gandalf pointly asks then why did you bar the doors?<BR><LI>The camara spins, circling Saruman, and the dark walls return.<BR><LI>Saruman picks up (it can't be his ring, can it? would require too much explaining - say an ebony staff) an artifact of the Second Age. <BR>Gandalf, visibly shocked and afraid: "where did you find that? None has been seen since Sauron..." <BR>Saruman, approaching, "It was not found. I created this."<BR>Gandalf, glancing at the Palantir, puts the pedestal between himself and S. "Whence came such knowledge?"<BR><LI>Saruman raises the rod, and the light dims, like light flees before a coming storm. Gandalf is crushed down for seemingly no reason. <BR><LI>Gandalf speaks some words of power, and the torches in the room blaze up, stream high, then form the spokes of a golden flaming dome that separate him from Saruman.<BR><LI>Saruman then strikes downward with the rod (or whatever), and the dome is shattered in shower of sparks, everything goes dark; dim light returns and Gandalf is crushed to the floor. The torches smoke but have gone out. <BR><LI>Close up Saruman's feet, walking up to Gandalf. He casually picks up Gandalf's staff. "I will give you one last chance."<BR><LI>Two softly spoken words from Gandalf come with his answer, and smoke fills the room; the smoking torches are billowing, and Saruman starts choking, can't see, but raises Gandalf's own staff, he opens the doors, Gandalf struggles towards them to escape (his reason for the smoke) but a gale/tornado wind comes through that spins Gandalf around and up -<BR><LI>and then we're back to what's in the movie, G. flying towards the ceiling while S. cries out "then you've chosen the way of Pain!"<BR></UL><P>-Maril
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Old 02-03-2002, 04:02 AM   #17
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I still think they should include Saruman's speech from the book, Christopher Lee has a wonderful voice and could use it to great effect.
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Old 02-03-2002, 10:57 AM   #18
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"Crouching Tiger" Now that was funny!! You understand what I'm saying. Saruman was very Powerful. Gandalf knew that. By using the more subtle approach similar to your script you wrote, it would have set up the confrontation later when he was Gandalf the White. "Come back, Saruman! I did not give you leave to go, I have not finished. You have become a fool, Saruman. Behold! I am not Gandalf the Grey, whom you betrayed, I am Gandalf the White, who has returned from death. Saruman, your staff is broken!" Being dragged to the rail against his will. Cristopher Lee would have done it so good. But, he will be thrown through the air "Crouching Tiger" style (I love that!) and impaled on a cog or gear or whatever. oh well.
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Old 02-03-2002, 03:01 PM   #19
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I thought the wizard fight scene was fine. Exept for one part. When Saruman had Gandalf spining on the floor. What was that about? It looked really stupid. I do agree that Arwen could have been cut out. Or how about this. <BR>-Arwen comes and helps them out but Glorfindel still comes to help too.<BR>-than both of them take Frodo and protect him from the Black Riders.<BR>-(just to be true to the book)Just before they reach the ford Glorfindel and Arwen send Frodo accross on one of the horses while they try to hold back the riders. This way it will show that Frodo isn't that weak.<BR>-of course holding off the riders dosn't work and they go after Frodo. The flood comes and Frodo faints. <BR>How about that. I like the idea of keeping the Hobbits the head of the story. I'd love to hear Sam talk more. It's just like Frodo says in the Two Towers. You know the part where they're talking about being in stories.
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Old 02-03-2002, 10:37 PM   #20
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Dear lomion-how can a movie rip the soul out of a book? It's not as if Peter Jackson stormed into your house, grabbed your treasured copy of <I>LotR</I> and proceeded to tear out entire pages, crossing out Tolkien's words, and replacing them with his own (while cackling horribly, no less)? The literature is safe and sound. As for the uninitiated moviegoers, if they like the movie, they are likely to pick up the book. And how can that be bad? <BR>As for changes that I would have made, had I the power of persuasion over Peter Jackson...I would have included a tiny scene with Nimrodel. It's a wonderful piece of elven-lore, and would have been entirely filmable (as opposed to Tom Bombadil). And maybe a little bit less close-ups of Frodo's perpetually terrified/perplexed/i'm-about-to-weep face. Of course, they didn't ask me, did they? <BR>Great thread, Maril! If I am not making sense, well if you must know, I am drinking out of another green bottle tonight.!
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Old 02-04-2002, 08:36 AM   #21
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I'm done. I hope you all enjoy the films. It's frustrating to me but I won't slice-n-dice anymore. Again, enjoy!!!
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Old 02-04-2002, 08:06 PM   #22
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Sorry to lose you Iomion, you contributed a great deal to this thread (as opposing voices tend to do) and I appreciate your thoughts, <I>especially targeting particular 'offending scenes' for re-script.</I> Thank you. If you'd like to visit again, you are welcome. I hope others who didn't like the movie offer up a few choice bits for surgery. We who loved the movie tend to sweep the entire movie - faults and all - into one happy package. Love is like that. I may raid the "People who Thought the Movie Stunk" thread for their less vitriolic ideas. If there are any. <P>Fenrir - you're quite right, that over-rehearsed speech of Saruman's would have been very effective, especially from Christopher Lee. <BR>Would you have had that instead of a wizard duel, or before?<P>Rose - You have good instincts. <BR>Yes, it was the spinning more than anything else... I found myself cringing.<P>Good scene to rewrite, by putting Glofindel back we could reduce Arwen to her normal size. <P>But if we <I>had</I> to use Arwen in a 'macho' role, for political correctness, she needed to be just an elven foot soldier at that point, not draw so much attention to herself. It's a mistake not to, because you still end up defining Arwen by her relationship to Aragorn, by putting that first. That's why she's so fake and annoying.<BR>Peter could have surprised us, with good effect, with their relationship later in Rivendell, after establishing her competence.<BR><UL TYPE=SQUARE><LI>Aragorn hears sound of hooves, orders the hobbits to hide.<BR><LI>Arwen rides up (whatever), he greets her, but hurriedly explains there's little time. <LI>(Frodo healing scene)<BR><LI>Arwen takes Frodo on her horse (skip the argument about who takes Frodo - silly waste of time, and undermines the "beefy" Arwen character at the same time it attempts to make her look strong)<BR><LI>Instead of having one long chase scene to the Ford, have her lose the Riders<BR><LI>Or better yet, if we're going to make her cool, let's do it right...<BR> <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:<HR>"Frodo, can you hang on, by yourself? Just get through the water - ! <BR>My horse can't carry two and win this race."<BR>"But, but they will catch you.."<BR>"They are not after me!" (jumps from cantering horse)<P>Hey, if you're going to be macho...<HR></BLOCKQUOTE></UL><P>The romantic meeting in the woods (between Arwen & Aragorn) was just inappropriate for the tone of the moment. Distracting to add a romantic subplot, right when you're supposed to be worried about Frodo. <BR>Absolutely, you're right, it was essential Frodo face the riders alone at the ford. <P>There are three key moments where Frodo's role is weakened, and you nailed the second:<BR><UL TYPE=SQUARE><LI>When Frodo asks (whimpers) "What should I do?" and Gandalf tells him to leave the Shire. <BR><LI>At the Ford, when Arwen is the one who faces the Nazgul. <BR><LI>With Galadriel in Lorien, when she tells him to go it alone. </UL><BR>He's stronger, however, just after Gandalf's fall in Moria. Filming him standing apart from the group and not quite stopping when he was told - very effective. <P>This actually ties into what Lush was saying...<P>Lush - Amen. Fewer close-ups of Elijah, for all his glowing screen presence, the somewhat weakened role left him with mush, one reactive expression after another. He's a good enough actor to let on what Frodo was thinking, if Gandalf and Galadriel'd left him any to do.<P>I suspect sometimes Peter was so concerned non-readers wouldn't understand the books he overcompensated, sacrificing subtlety.<P>Ha! That isn't a green bottle of vitriol from the 'Those who thought the movie stunk' thread is it? Strong stuff! Sprinkle a little over here, we lost Iomion. <P>-Maril<p>[ February 04, 2002: Message edited by: Marileangorifurnimaluim ]
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Old 02-06-2002, 08:06 PM   #23
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Well, looks like much of what I was going to say has been covered--Frodo not dropping into the illness so quickly, the agonizing lack of subtlety, Merry and Pip's falling in with them. I so wanted a conspiracy unmasked. Not hard to slip it in: Frodo tries to give some vague explanation for the black riders, Merry breaks in, "it's about old Bilbo's ring, isn't it?" Frodo gapes, "wha--how --?" "The party was hardly the first time I saw him vanish into thin air..."<P>My big change: more Lothlorien. it was barely even Lorien, more like Lo. We are getting hasty, aren't we. In particular the farewell scene with the giving of the gifts should not have been sacrificed. how are they planning to fit Sam's dirt in later on? Flashback? Second gifts? If they leave it out someone will die slowly and painfully (probably me). I would also have more of the sunshine that Sam noticed, and toned down Galadriel's mental voice.<P>Wizards' duel: like your rewrite, maril. It addresses most of the problems I had with that scene, except one. How does Gandalf get his staff back? Fly-by snatch out of the windows of Orthanc? make another? does he keep extras at Rivendell just in case?
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Old 02-07-2002, 02:33 PM   #24
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I agree with most, dear Lothlorien was not shown well enough, nor how strong Frodo during his flight to Rivendell.<P>But the funniest thing for me was the fight between Saruman and Gandalf. I've seen the movie 4 times already, and the last 3 whenever the above scene was about to occur, I'd always lean over to my friend saying<BR>"<i>Look! They're going to have a wizards duel!"</i> Any recognize that from Disney's "Sword in the Stone?"<BR>The whole scene cracked me up rather than doing what it intended. <BR>I agree a change to it, making it more subtle would have worked for me. <BR>Maril I liked your idea for it. <P>As for Tom Bombadil, I'm glad he was excluded. I don't know how many <i>Hey dol. merry dol. ring a dong dillo's</i> I could stand. Hahahahaha<P> <BR>Mista
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Old 02-07-2002, 05:44 PM   #25
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Rings. <P>1. "why can't we use the one ring?" Shift the focus back to "because it'll twist everything we try to do to evil" rather than "only Sauron can wield the One Ring."<P>2. at the beginning: "three were made by the Elves", not "three were given to the elves". Two little words and the elves get back a bit of their own. And lose the stunned/stoned ring-gazing expressions. Sheesh.<P>As soon as that director's cut comes out, I'm loading it onto my computer and...snip snip...
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Old 02-08-2002, 09:38 PM   #26
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Mista, welcome to the Downs! What other scenes would you like to see changed?<P>KayQy, like your changes! Yes! <P>Definately we need to get rid of "only Sauron can wield..." I hadn't thought of that, (or 'giving the rings' to the elves, that was either an oops or just unnecessary). But that change is very important, because otherwise we lose the tension of Saruman trying to capture the ring for himself, & the entire theme of double treachery: instead we end up with two simple "teams." <P>Plus I missed Gandalf's "do not bother to say 'we'."<P>Very good rewrite ideas to bring in the conspiracy. Do you have a little more detail on when/how this conversation would occur?<P>It runs the risk of going over some heads, but let's not underestimate the audience either. There is a reason to watch movies again.<P>Lo - ha! I'm afraid we may have only 'L' (or maybe l) really.<P>I think shortening the action scenes would leave a lot more room for calm passages in glorious places like Lorien. And it is badly needed, to set off one action scene from another, avoiding the Sinbad syndrome. <BR>As far as the look of Lorien, I give Peter artistic points for uniqueness and a lot of leeway. Lorien looked nothing like what I imagined, but he did make it very different from Rivendell. That was something I wouldn't have considered but in retrospect realize was important.<P>Gosh I'm glad people like my wizard scene. I would welcome changes. I think the tie-in to conversation about the Palantir needs some work, and the first part's not quite there. It works from the moment you see Saruman's feet, casually walking over to give Gandalf a last chance.<P>This is really fun.<P>-Maril<p>[ February 08, 2002: Message edited by: Marileangorifurnimaluim ]
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Old 02-11-2002, 09:50 AM   #27
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Maril, you have lots of good ideas - mine will save some precious seconds so you can add something better. I would cut out the repeated close-ups of Frodo holding the ring in his hand (with or without chain) - why would he take it off so often? And was anyone else bothered when he just slipped it into his vest pocket at the beginning of the journey? And how on earth did the chain just "slip" off going up Caradhras? My suggestion - put it on the chain and keep it there!! His hand moving toward the chain could be shown briefly, if PJ thought the audience could forget what it's all about...
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Old 02-11-2002, 01:27 PM   #28
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Agreed. <I>Cut multiple scenes with Elijah standing there with ring in palm.</I> I keep thinking a blackbird's gonna come along and snatch it out of his hand. Ring stays on chain. Chain can slip outside of shirt if PJ needs the visual cue.<P>On the same subject, how many vote for a change of that scene in Bree where Frodo slips (ok) and the ring flies through the air and just 'happens' to circle about and land on his finger (ugh)? Ideas for improvements, since his song was cut and we have the ring on a chain?<P><I>Agreed: removal of excessive Frodo close-ups.</I> Lush brought this up too. That can make room for KayQy's Lorien upgrade from 'l' to 'L' to 'Lo' to perhaps even, 'Lor.' <P>You need the indication of how long they were in Lorien to show us why they let down their guard so badly before the breaking of the fellowship. <P>It's an issue a non-Tolkien friend brought up (one who's seen Sean Bean in a lot of films and said right off - "oh that Boromir's gonna buy it. Sean Bean dies in every film"). Why were they such idiots to let Frodo go wandering off alone gathering firewood? In the books it's clear, no orc had set foot on Amon Hen, and the west bank of the Anduin was considered likely safe. And Frodo asked to be alone to decide the fate of the Fellowship.<P>Should some dialogue be added to indicate the Fellowship didn't know which way to turn? Does that mean in the longer Lorien this is brought up, too? (Hmm.. that happens. You add one piece, and you have to add something else earlier.) Or perhaps have Aragorn tell Legolas, "no orcs have been seen on this shore, it should be perfectly safe unless much is wrong with Rohan."<P>Ideas?
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Old 03-21-2002, 01:42 AM   #29
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Since we're unearthing old threads...
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Old 03-21-2002, 01:52 AM   #30
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I regretably have only seen the movie twice, but the scene the bothered me the most were the scenes with Arwen. Especially the one at the Ford. I dunno, there was just something about Frodo standing up to the black riders on his own at the Ford that added to his character. Not to mention he was not saved by some elf maiden's tearful wish for life, but by his own strength of will and heart. Just my opinion of course, and I really thought the movie was beautiful other than that. I dunno why but that scene has just irked me from day one. Course that might have something to do with Frodo being one of my all time favorite characters.
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Old 03-21-2002, 02:17 AM   #31
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Kalla, I agree. I think even if we kept Arwen in her expanded role, frankly, horses don't carry double and travel fast. I still would have had Frodo alone on the elf horse at the fords. I think the rewritten scene would show Frodo's sense of slipping half-into the wraith world, and standing up to them despite that. <P>I think it would have been more emotionally impactful to not rely on the viewers echoing Arwen's emotions, but to show the danger, not only of Frodo being captured but of his slipping into the wraith world and his courage in the hopeless battle against such odds. It foreshadows his ability to win through to Mordor.<P>I imagine a shorter chase scene, with blurring and slow motion, the elf horse rearing up in the waters of the Bruinen and Frodo sagging in the saddle but hanging on. The world goes from blur to grey, like he's blacking out for a moment, and in that moment we see the witch king as we did on Weathertop. It would be chilling. To have Frodo hoarsely swear "you will have neither the ring nor me!" as he spurs the horse out of the water and they take chase would be powerful and compelling.
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Old 03-21-2002, 09:32 AM   #32
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I really didn't like the way Pippin and Merry ran into Frodo and Sam. I read the books after seeing the movie, so I had no idea why they would want to tag along or even know who Frodo and Sam were in the first place. Although I enjoyed their little stunt at Bilbo's party, when I saw they were going with Frodo, I thought "Oh, great, two stupid hobbits to mess everything up." Then after I read the book it made a lot more sense.
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Old 03-21-2002, 09:37 AM   #33
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Nothing needs to be changed. Peter Jackson and his crew created a masterpiece that will live on forever!<P>
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Old 03-21-2002, 11:09 AM   #34
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Just one tiny detail:<P>In Moria, instead of Gandalf letting go of the bridge, he should have been holding onto a crack in the stone, then it gets bigger and the end section falls off. <BR>I think it looks a bit odd with him just letting go, and also he should have fallen more with the Balrog not after it, because in the book, it says that thry fought when they were falling.<BR>But apart from that minor point (which wouldn't, admittedly, make that much difference to anyone but me) it was perfect!
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Old 03-21-2002, 11:17 PM   #35
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Wow, very good thoughtful post. I have lots to say, but no time right now...so i'll just say a little. Gandalf did look like he just let go of the bridge and was not dragged off by Balrog's whip. He looked like he commited suicide or something. As for Arwen, he lines were definitly cheesy, espeically the part when she's with Aragorn and says something like "I'd rather spend one life with you than a thousand lives without" or something...ick, sounds like a cheesy love story! And for Frodo leaving the Shire...it made it seem so sudden, that it all happened in one night, when it actually took him months to actually leave. And they made Bilbo a lot darker he seems in the books. Ahhh...but the movie sure is a masterpeice and i love it all.
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Old 03-22-2002, 08:22 PM   #36
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ElenorG, we've been tossing a rewrite of Pippin and Merry's meeting back and forth, and if anyone has more ideas how to do this - bring 'em on. I don't think we've solved it yet. There isn't much time to give background on Merry and Pippin, but this chance meeting in the middle of nowhere is absurd. And there was a previous request to show the conspiracy unmasked as well.<P>I think the hurried departure did build dramatic tension, so maybe it was necessary. However, I like the idea of a clever departure from the Shire "I said depart soon, not Instantly!" Could we have shortened the months long departure to a week? "Oh yes, I'm going to visit my cousin Merry in Bucklebury." Then the conspiracy could have been just Merry leaking the info to Pippin and the two deciding to join them. "We thought you'd come this way Frodo!" Hmm... this just isn't coming together. Ideas?<P>Nav, that is a very good observation, I'd forgotten about Gandalf letting go. I like your rewrite, very believable and you take into account that he needed enough time for the close-up and to say "Run you fools!"
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Old 03-22-2002, 10:19 PM   #37
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I think it would have helped if Merry and Pippin had been introduced as something more than pranksters at Bilbo's party. Even a simple, "Hello, cousin Frodo," from Merry would have cleared up a lot of questions about their relationship. I liked the idea earlier for Merry and Pippin to say that they were expecting Frodo and Sam to pass by the field.
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Old 03-25-2002, 03:12 PM   #38
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Okay, sometime this week I'm going to post everyone's ideas for FotR script changes, in order. Then we can vote what we like/dislike in our version.<P>-Maril
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Old 03-25-2002, 10:30 PM   #39
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Maril and Elanor - sorry, I'm joining the party rather late, but I really like both your suggestions - the Merry and Pippin thing always bugged me as well (though it was fun to watch ). I like the "abbreviated" version of "A Conspiracy Unmasked" where Frodo leaves a week later to stay with Merry, but if you want to be even more conservative with time - considering that realistically we're probably looking at a maximum of eight minutes for all of this to happen - why not just have Frodo and Sam stop the night at Merry's place in Buckland on their way out of the Shire (so he could still leave instantaneously, no need to show shots of him planning the trip)? This would introduce Merry and Pippin in a believable way (why wouldn't Frodo crash at Cousin Merry's?), you could work in a line about "My cousin lives not far from here" thus establishing the relationship, and by showing Frodo *spending the night* somewhere you could also give the viewer a sense of time passing and make them realize that this journey does take quite a few days - I know they tried to do that in the movie as is (showing Frodo and Sam cooking over a fire in the woods, and so forth) but still the impression you were left with was that it took about twelve hours for them to reach Bree, when in fact even Buckland was a good couple of days away from Hobbiton. (For people who like the "farhest away from home I've ever been" line, that could be kept in, since it's unlikely that Sam ever *did* visit Buckland before). And since Black Riders have been shown as being all over the place, it's likely that Merry and Pippin would have heard or seen them before Frodo and Sam arrived, and seeing Sam's protectiveness and Frodo's terror would put two and two together (possibly an oblique reference to Bilbo's travels, and the fact that they were asking for "Baggins") and announce in the morning that they were coming along to help protect him. If nothing else this would give them time to get some luggage together and lock up the hole, instead of literally running off in what they stood up in. Just my 2.5 cents.<P>Also on the Gandalf falling off a bridge issue - that actually seemed OK to me. For one thing, having him scream it as he fell into the depths would be incredibly hard to do without sounding very weird - would his voice echo? Also, you'll notice that he was hanging on the bridge only by his fingertips, with his whole weight hanging off of them and nothing to brace himself against. If you've ever been in a physical position like that - and I have - your hands will simply give out very quickly unless you have tremendous upper body strength in both your arms and your hands. Basically it was just the law of gravity kicking in.<P>OK, enough preaching . Time to take the Country Captain out of the oven. What do you think of the Merry and Pippin scenario, though?<p>[ March 25, 2002: Message edited by: Kalimac ]
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Old 03-26-2002, 12:28 AM   #40
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hi maril! i just noticed this thread and crashing in late too! this is a great thread indeed!<P>your revision "wish list" sounds great, especially that gandalf vs. saruman revision. that fight scene bothered me too; a film friend told me that pj needed to amp the audience's concept of the wizards' power like what they do in anime shows, hence the over the top confrontation. but it was so disturbing to see two old men, however powerful, beat each other up.<P>i liked what you said about putting in some stuff about the elves and about what's important to them . this is a subtle touch that may be lost initially on non-lotr viewers but will enrich the film as an added medium of the story and catch-up with the viewers eventually. <P>some of the things my non-lotr friends got quite confused with and i'd want to rewrite are:<P>(1) galadriel's test: they couldn't understand what the hell she was talking about. her portrayal made her come across as eomer's dangerous "sorceress", rather than this wise, kind and sorrowful elf-queen who broke the company's heart with wonder. pj should have put a kinder expression on cate's face, and included the line where galadriel says "greatly are you avenged for my testing you during our first meeting" and maybe add "that now you test me by tempting me with this ring" or something so that "i pass the test" becomes clear.<P>(2) the council of elrond! i couldn't understand why it had to be abbreviated that way. there are cinematic approaches to show how long and intensive the discussion that decided the fate of middle-earth was; they should have been used. also, i can't understand why pj had to turn that very crucial meeting into a confrontational affair--the message was sort of "the fate of middle-earth was decided in the midst of (a) roaring argument/s". complete antithesis of the events in the book.<P>(3) when did aragorn turn into a shrinking violet? maybe you guys know the reason why the film "recast" him into the unwilling heir instead of the determined, returning king. had aragorn been portrayed as in the original, it would have given the film a different texture, and would have given extra force to compel the storylines in ttt and rotk.<P>(4) yeah arwen. if pj's purpose was to give her greater stature in the lotr framework, there are again other cinematic devices to do this, like flashbacks with aragorn on cerin amroth etc. i completely agree that the scene across the river took away from the audiences appreciation of frodo's strength. anyway, non-lotr friends again did not understand what the heck arwen was talking about anyway!<P>hmmm, i'll get back to you on other stuff i've to mull over first...<P>---------------------------------------------<BR><I>every man's life is a path to the truth -- hesse</I>
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