Saturday, 6 June 2015

Film Review: The Fellowship of the Ring, Part 2

Last week we started off a viewing of the three Lord of the Rings films, with The Fellowship of the Ring. It's probably my favourite of the trilogy because it's the one which introduced me to the world of Middle-earth.

In the last instalment we got to learn the history of the Ring, met Bilbo Baggins, Gandalf and Bilbo's nephew/cousin Frodo. In this part things start going downhill for a group of four hobbits from the Shire, and it's not looking so good for Gandalf either!

58. On the commentary there's a discussion about how Tookish this Hobbit looks. I'm not sure if it's the nose.

59. "Hey Ho! To the bottle I go!" I have it printed on a mug.

60. I love that Merry and Pippin are singing while Frodo just skips round them, kind of random.

61. Hehe, Sam's so worried about Rosie knowing an idiot when she sees one.

62. Why do people in films never turn lights on when there's something creepy about their house? If my house looked like that, lighting things would be the first thing I'd do!

63. How does the Ring glow like that? You can see the writing shining on Frodo's face.

64. "This is the one Ring". Basically you're screwed.

65. Time for another little lesson in the history of the Ring and Sauron.

66. Ooh, is the Ring whispering. That's creepy.

67. I like how Frodo's answer is to 'put it away' and he strolls through the house looking for somewhere to hide it. Stick it under the bed, Frodo, Sauron will never look there!

68. It won't just lead them there, Frodo, they're already on their way.

69. Gandalf's going to go visit the leader of his order, someone who is wise and powerful, and also completely gone over to the dark side!

70. Ah there's something outside! Is it a black rider?

71. No, it's Sam Gamgee!

72. I love that he pleads not to be turned into anything 'unnatural', Gandalf says he's thought of a better use for him and the next scene is of Gandalf with Frodo and leading a horse. It's like he's turned him into something useful.

73. And now the two little Hobbits are on their own.

74. Time for some more New Zealand scenery porn.

75. I wonder if Sam has been counting his steps up until this point, or if he's never gone any further through that field than that bit of it. How does he know he's not been any further outside Hobbiton than that?

76. You know the Elves are different from the Hobbits because they're glowing as they walk by.

77. Sam complains about having a root sticking in his back and never being able to sleep and Frodo smiles. Why is that something to smile about Frodo Baggins?

78. Isengard certainly looks impressive. Though why has it never occurred to anyone that someone living in a tower like that might be a little bit evil?

79. Saruman seems to know an awful lot about what is going on with Saruman. I think that Gandalf is figuring it out right now.

80. Gandalf putting his hand on the Palantír acts a little bit like hitting redial on a phone. Turns out Saruman's been conversing with the Big Bad of Middle-earth.

81. Uh Saruman, your evil is showing.

82. Old man fight!

83. "Sam we're still in the Shire, what could possibly happen?" Famous last words.

84. I like that Farmer Maggot gets a mention, even if it's just his voice that we hear.

85. The pile of poop they nearly land in magically disappears when they all rush over to the mushrooms.

86. I remember being thrilled when I discovered how to create that effect of the road sort of shortening on my video camera.

87. This bit still sends shivers down my spine, only I think it's less because of the Black Rider and more because of all the beasties and bugs.

88. Oh well, looks like Merry and Pippin are going to have to come along on this little excursion now as well.

89. This is another scene which largely takes place in the dark, but at least the dramatic music and squealing horse noises tell you how scary the action on screen is.

90. Hehe, I love that the Bree gates have a Hobbit-level window as well as a Man-height one.

91. Oh look, it's Peter Jackson playing 'man eating a carrot'.

92. Uh oh, Gandalf's not in Bree. This is a problem.

93. "What's that?" "This, my friend, is a pint!" "It comes in pints? I'm getting one." "But you've had a whole half already!" Hehe.

94. I love how sinister Strider looks, sitting there in the corner smoking his pipe.

95. And there goes Pippin, sticking his Hobbit-sized foot well and truly in his mouth!

96. Ooh, the Hobbit has just disappeared. Everything in Ring-vision looks sort of dark and scary and windy, what's with the wind?

97. Oh, I love Viggo Mortensen. He could not do a better job in this film, he's just perfect!

98. The commentary for this bit is really funny. They make some comment about how the Hobbits are made out of feathers. Poor puzzled Nazgûl.

99. Just in case you were wondering who the Ringwraiths are, Strider fills us in. It's a cheery little tale.

100. Hehe, and Strider's bow bomps the camera as he walks past. It's like the Fellowship of the Ring version of the Stormtrooper banging his head.

101. Pippin is wonderfully baffled by Strider's lack of knowledge of meals. Also, I love the way Pippin looks up when he's hit on the head by an apple, like he's wondering where it could possibly have come from.

102. I'm so pleased that they included some of the songs from the books in these films. I never used to like those bits when I read the books ten or more years ago, but now I really like them.

103. Oh Saruman, you should really be nicer to those trees. I think you might come to regret tearing them down like that.

104. Poor Gandalf up on the top of the tower. It does not look like a comfy place to be.

We'll leave Gandalf up there for now. Next week we'll let him down and get to hang out with some of the other races of Middle-earth at a big old committee meeting.


  1. I love the Lotr films, they are some of my absolute favourites. My favourite of the three is Two Towers; I just love so many scenes in it. Also, Viggo Mortenson as Aragorn was the best decision, by far. Nobody else could have done what he did with that character.

  2. My favorite trilogy of all time (due in no small part to the yummy Strider and the perfect Gandalf).

    1. Oh yes, Strider and Gandalf could not be more perfect in these films.

      One of my biggest fears when I heard that they were making The Hobbit was that they wouldn't get Ian McKellen back to play Gandalf!


Let me know what you think. :-)