Lord of the Rings Trilogy, revisited


Actually, I have read 'em all (didn’t list all of them though). In fact, I don’t think anyone really knew where the story was going to end. After all, once it was announced that the Scouring of the Shire wasn’t going to be in the movies, all bets were off as to the official ending.

Personally, I think RotK would have been stronger ending it at the Grey Havens. I understand Jackson’s deference towards the books was the reason to end it back in the Shire, but the boat sailing off was a much more powerful image to end the movie on.

I thought The Two Towers was a better film, especially with the extended scenes…though the single worst scene in all the movies is in TT IMO (the Warg fight, which you can tell wasn’t planned very well - something confirmed by the guy who headed that film crew in the additional commentary) AND the deviations from the books (including the silly Ring to Osgiliath bit).

Then again, Theoden and Eowyn are two of my favorite characters in the books and the movies, so that has something to do with it I’m sure. Not to mention the incredible battle at Helm’s Deep (far better than the one at Minas Tirith) and the focus on developing virtually every single major character.


The first film is a masterpiece. The sequels not so much. I don’t like most of the changes, and they more or less ruined my favorite character of the books.


All 3 are a masterpiece, and most of the changes don’t bother me at all. Except for dwarf tossing.
Everyone knows Hobbit tossing is a much better sport.


Then the movie also has one ending.

It’s not that the movies showed the gay bed jumping scene, the wedding, the Shire, the Grey Havens and Sam back at home again…it’s how Jackson transitioned from the gay bed jumping scene to the wedding to the Shire to the Grey Havens and to Sam arriving back at home again. The constant white screen fade outs that typically signify the end of a movie got old quickly and the wrap-up was a fairly consistent source of criticism amongst both movie reviewers and movie goers.

They also signify the passage of time. After the first “wait, this isn’t the ending” fade, which any reader of the book would know wasn’t the ending, anyway, that should have become apparent. After the initial viewing, the complaint makes even less sense. Yeah, the transitions between the scenes is a little long, but after watching 12 hours of movie, 30 seconds isn’t going to kill anyone.


The “Into the West” ending was a very popular choice in my Favorite Ending to LOTR thread (it was the only “fade to white” sequence near the end of the film, by the way). It works and it would end on a more powerful image, but I think it misses just that bit of hope and return to normalcy that having Sam return to Bag End has.


Actually, ‘you bow to noone’ and the spiralling out camera would have been a perfectly good and satisfying ending. Leaving all the others for the extended cut.

But I know that’s heretical thinking.


Not only is it 12 hours runtime but also three years of theatrical releases. The extra time allows the audience to make their own peace with the end of the trilogy and say goodbye, after a fashion. Each segment was a send-off to a different part of the cast and story as well as a homecoming: Aragon and Men to Gondor and Rohan (and Arwyn to Aragorn); The hobbits to the Shire; Bilbo, Frodo, Gandalf, and the Elves to the Undying Lands; Then finally with the end of the story and Sam’s arriving home.

I am just thankful that Aragon wasn’t crowned in the Grey Havens and Gandalf and pals watching from aboard ship as it sailed out of the harbor.


I don’t recall a character named Noone in the film. Why would Aragorn tell them to bow to this person? Was he King of Hobbits or something?

Aw, I checked that blu-ray.com link and there’s no release date for the extended versions. These may be the first (and very few) Blu-ray discs I pick up.


June 28, 2011.


4 5


Noone, son of Somone, High King of Arda.


He rides to battle on an armoured Alot.


Is anyone else worried about this?


Warning: Insane Table Breakage


Blu-Ray Theatrical

Blu-Ray Extended

Gonna have to go with “not worried.”


There’s no doubt there’s been a lot of color retouching and some of the busy effects shots have been, basically, enhanced. Some of the sunny outdoor Shire scenes might be a bit too warm. You don’t see as much in Fellowship, but it’s obviously clear in the battle sequence at the beginning when Sauron goes poof, the human/elf soldiers are so clearly defined as the get blown over it’s amazing.

Having not seen it in awhile, there’s definite oddness to some of the effects shots (usually concerning man-sized people and hobbits) that come a bit more obvious, or at least extremely odd-looking at times. The Balrog is still freakin’ cool. The Argonath still is a great sequence.

— Alan


The extended blurays are gorgeous. They look significantly better than the theatrical cuts did [on bluray]. I can’t remember if the theatrical cuts looked a bit compressed, being all on one disk, but that might be another contributing factor beyond the color touch ups.


That 2nd shot looks fantastic. I need to break down and buy a Blu-ray player one of these days.


Tolkien’s own annotated map newly discovered loose inside copy of LOTR:

For LOTR nerds only


I started watching these again last night. Still amazed at how good they are. Every time I watch Fellowship I feel that Jackson captured the vision I had from reading the books. Even the additions and changes I don’t have much of a problem with.

If only he hadn’t fucked the Hobbit up.


And the soundtrack never gets old. The Galadriel narration at the start, coupled with Howard Shore’s hauntingly sad score sucks me in every time. I make it a habit to watch the trilogy every other holiday season or so.

And yeah, the way he blew up a simple tale like King Kong into a 3-plus hour CG fest should have been a cautionary tale for the folks that gave him the reigns over The Hobbit.