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January 8, 2002

Movies Suffer Slings and Arrows
Jamie B.

As I was watching FOTR for the third time, It dawned on me. It was during a rather mundane scene in which Ian Holm was Dictating brunch choices with Ian McKellen. I looked away from the screen (only for a bit, mind you) and looked at the faces and heads of everyone in the theatre with me. Expecting to see overweight balding men with tape recorders, notepads, and laptops vigorously writing their internet reviews and twentysomething dorks, you know the type, read star trek books in college and look suspiciously like the guys you used to play D&D with back in high school, but instead I saw men, women (wives, sisters, mothers, and grandmothers), and even children all awestruck by the spectacle before them. I suddenly realized that this movie is something special

Apparently the AFI agrees with me, and I wouldn't be suprised if the academy does to. Does it still bother me that Frodo's character is robbed of much of his bravery, yes a little. Is it still hard for me to watch some scenes that are obvious deviations from the book (e.g. Saruman's causing the mountain pass to be impassible), yes it bothers me a little. But am I going to curse the movie that has revitalized my love for the book and made it something that I can share with my wife and my non-geek friends, hell no!

I have read litte or no intelligent negative reviews, most of the negative garbage is spawned by those who foolishly got their hopes up and were let down, or expect everything to have some overlapping social commentary. for these idio..... I mean people I have two questions:

1)How can any film live up the your own imagination's interpretation of Tolkien's books?

2)Since Tolkien's middle-earth was so well-concieved and completely original in all respects, and even what may have been inspired by society would have been inspired by the society of the 40's and 50's, what if any contemporary social implications can his work possibly be interpreted to reflect?



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