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Do you think Tolkien would have liked the LOTR films?

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by Androxine Vortex, Jul 15, 2012.

Do you think Tolkien would have liked the LOTR films?

  1. Yes

  2. No

  1. Androxine Vortex

    Androxine Vortex Archmage

    Do you believe that he would have liked the films? Even though they had to take a lot of stuff out and they did change some things around, I still believe he would have liked them. I'm sure he would be surprised to see how cherished his books are today. There's films, video games, Games Workshop has their own LOTR models, and you can even buy swords and the clothing from the movie. I'm sure he would be astonished at how many people have come to love his classic stories.

    I vote yes!
  2. Reaver

    Reaver Kwisatz Haderach Moderator

    Yes. I think that Mr. Tolkien would be floored by the CGI, let alone the rest of the film.
  3. Ireth

    Ireth Myth Weaver

    Hard to say, really. He might have had issue with some of the more drastic changes in characterization, aside from the obvious plot differences. But at the same time, I think the many moments that were extremely true to the books would have impressed him, especially the character of Sam Gamgee. And I think he'd be glad that no relationships or anything were added that weren't already in the books (okay, so Arwen had all of one line in ROTK, but she was still THERE, and very important to Aragorn's motivation). I like to think he'd enjoy seeing her in the scene at the Ford, if only because it shows she's a strong character as well as a dignified elven lady.
  4. Shockley

    Shockley Maester

    I think he would have liked it, and furthermore, I don't think he would have been all that bothered by the differences in plot, characterization, etc. for two reasons:

    1. He was always very open about writing his stories from points of view. That's why you get the same stories (such as the origins of the animosity between dwarves and elves) told different ways in different books (ie, the Elven view of that story in the Silmarillion and an abbreviated view of the Dwarven side in the Hobbit). Thinking about the movie, I have little doubt that he would have seen it as the Westron version of the story (as opposed to his book, which was clearly the Hobbit version).

    2. He was always attached to the idea that he was telling myth, and even retelling archetypal myths that exist in our own world. If he criticized the movie for their changes, he would have been criticizing them for something he actively supported and engaged in.
  5. Sheilawisz

    Sheilawisz Queen of Titania Moderator

    I am sure that if Tolkien lived today, he would be delighted to see just how popular and loved his stories are and how many forms they have taken... and that includes the wonderful movies!! They were filmed in beautiful natural scenery with great actors, the best special effects, a soundtrack that really gets to my heart and really the highest quality of film production =)

    The movies are different to the books in some ways, that always happens with movies based on books but they are really a monument to Tolkien's creation and he would love them.

    Now I am feeling an itch to watch the Trilogy again!!
  6. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

    For the two who said 'no,' what do you think he'd dislike?
  7. Mindfire

    Mindfire Istar

    Tolkien never thought his work would even be popular and broadly read, much less become the cornerstone of an entire genre and spawn not only movies about his work, but documentaries about the man himself! I think he'd be thrilled to see the impact of his legacy today. I know I would be if I was in his position.
  8. Butterfly

    Butterfly Auror

    Overall, I love the films, but there were some peeves that I had with them.

    On Tolkien’s take, from what I understand of it, he believed that his books were unfilmable. Wasn’t to do with them being good or bad, but that nothing could do justice to the world he created... but that could be a sign on the limitations of technology in the era that he lived, and maybe if he could see them today, he’d think differently, but I’m not so sure.

    To get from the books to screen they had to leave out so much, and focus on the bare plot, the ring, which left out the side plots. Personally, I was disappointed that the barrow-wights never made an appearance, not so much about the absence of Bombadil, but I think Tolkien would have been disappointed that they left out Tom -- That's just the most notable thing that springs to mind. On a plus, they did a brill job of weaving the six books together.

    In the film, Saruman’s plot line was a disappointment to me, resulting in the absence of the scouring of the Shire. In the end (book) the hobbits found the courage, and were able to solve the issue alone, which to me any way, felt that it was the whole point of everything that had happened before it. I understand that it would have added a couple more hours to an already long, and high budget film. I think that Tolkien would be rather scathing with this particular alteration, and of the third film which didn’t seem to remain that loyal to his vision much. To me it felt more like a summary especially as it neared the end.

    Anyway, I submit... I could be wrong. But truly, we'll never know what he would have thought of them.
    Steerpike likes this.
  9. soulless

    soulless Troubadour

    I read some bits of an interview with Peter Jackson about the forthcoming Hobbit movies and he said that the Tolkien estate doesn't like the movies, not that this means the man himself would have disliked them, there's always the possibility he would have been quite pleased with them.
  10. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

    Thanks, Butterfly. I was also disappointed that the barrow wights were not there, and somewhat surprised given Jackson's background in horror movies.
  11. JCFarnham

    JCFarnham Auror

    Well, if anything we know that Tolkien was a very humble man with regards to his creation. You only have to read his letters.

    I don't think he would have had a great problem with any of it. In all honesty he would probably would have given a big pat on the back for anyone who tried to "film the unfilmable" in any case. However I can't help but wonder something ... if he were around to see it he would have wanted to have been involved in the creation of the films (the mythologic creation side of his reason for penning Middle Earth if anything).

    I don't know. He was very much a product of his time and we can't forget to consider how different he would have wanted to films to be in comparison to Jackson's vision.

    He'd have truly been humbled by the legions of fans though.

    (On the subject of the Tolkien estate we have to remember his decendents's opinions toward the novels. They are of contemporary society. They see his writing as sacred... I mean, I've even heard criticism of the estate being "money grabbing on account of the popularity" but if that has any root in truth I don't know.)

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