Our Sponsor Sideshow Collectibles Send us News
Lord of the Rings Tolkien
Search Tolkien
Lord of The RingsTheOneRing.net - Forged By And For Fans Of JRR Tolkien
Lord of The Rings Serving Middle-Earth Since The First Age

Lord of the Rings Movie News - J.R.R. Tolkien
Do you enjoy the 100% volunteer, not for profit services of TheOneRing.net?
Consider a donation!

  Main Index   Search Posts   Who's Online   Log in
The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Do the Hobbit movies capture the "spirit" of the book?
First page Previous page 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ... 11 Next page Last page  View All

Omnigeek
Lorien


Apr 26 2016, 12:13am

Post #101 of 275 (2746 views)
Shortcut
Smaug wasn't as big as portrayed in the movie either [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't recall anything about Smaug's body poisoning the water but you wouldn't want to take your water near a decaying corpse. Smaug wasn't anywhere near as big in the books as the movie made him out. I think WETA had Smaug being bigger than a jumbo jet whereas Tolkien's pictures had him more like 20-25 meters in length. I didn't think they should have had that much of Dale left -- there was a reason the people were pitching camp down by by the lake. Again, I was so annoyed by other, much larger and substantive changes that this bit just wasn't high on my list of annoyances.


wizzardly
Rohan


Apr 26 2016, 1:48am

Post #102 of 275 (2733 views)
Shortcut
that's it [In reply to] Can't Post

PJ had way too much time to do this relatively small book. I'm sure if they made him do it in a single movie (2 max) things would have turned out much better. Now that all is said and done, its obvious there is enough junk that could be removed and that it could have been done in no more than 6 hours. But honestly, I don't think PJs heart was really in it this time around. He said before he agreed to do it that he was done with Middle-earth, and I'm not sure he ever changed his mind.


No One in Particular
Rivendell


Apr 26 2016, 3:54am

Post #103 of 275 (2726 views)
Shortcut
Is that an army I see before me? [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
No, no one had advance word in the book about any approaching armies of Orcs. Keep in mind that the situation in the book is very different from how it is presented in the movie. The Master of Lake-town is still alive and the Elves have come to the lake to aid the survivors.


In talking of the army of Orcs...in the movie they went with the were-worms as a way to keep the orcish armies out of sight. But, in the book, there were no worms, and they must have traveled overland, even of they traveled by night.

My thought is-unless they came from Gundabad through the Withered Heath, and thence attacked from the north...pretty much any other way they would have come from the Misty Mountains to Erebor would move the army right over the corpse of Lake Town. Staying behind might not have been the safest option after all. :)

(Obviously something else did happen though, since the Master lived long enough to get hold of some dragon gold and thus come under it's influence.)

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph

(This post was edited by No One in Particular on Apr 26 2016, 3:55am)


Sarahbor
Lorien


Apr 26 2016, 4:18am

Post #104 of 275 (2720 views)
Shortcut
Orc armies [In reply to] Can't Post

In the book it said they traveled by tunnel and also by night (the worms were the movie's way of making the tunnels). They gathered at Gundabad under Bolg's command, and marched on Erebor from there.

Hobbit/LOTR cartoons & humor: http://www.sarahbor.com/


No One in Particular
Rivendell


Apr 26 2016, 4:37am

Post #105 of 275 (2710 views)
Shortcut
Well, now I feel silly. [In reply to] Can't Post

Obviously need to do a reading-I had forgotten that.

While you live, shine
Have no grief at all
Life exists only for a short while
And time demands an end.
Seikilos Epitaph


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Apr 26 2016, 1:34pm

Post #106 of 275 (2671 views)
Shortcut
Thanks! [In reply to] Can't Post

I was going to mention myself the secret tunnels that riddled the Grey Mountains, but you beat me to it!

"Things need not to have happened to be true.
Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure
when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."


- Dream of the Endless


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Apr 26 2016, 1:47pm

Post #107 of 275 (2668 views)
Shortcut
You're right [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I don't recall anything about Smaug's body poisoning the water but you wouldn't want to take your water near a decaying corpse. Smaug wasn't anywhere near as big in the books as the movie made him out. I think WETA had Smaug being bigger than a jumbo jet whereas Tolkien's pictures had him more like 20-25 meters in length. I didn't think they should have had that much of Dale left -- there was a reason the people were pitching camp down by by the lake. Again, I was so annoyed by other, much larger and substantive changes that this bit just wasn't high on my list of annoyances.


My own best estimate is that the films' Smaug is about five times larger than the dragon of the book. Weta also ended up greatly exaggerating the size of Esgaroth for the films as well. The supplement for the rebuilt Lake-town for The One Ring RPG estimates the new town to be almost three times the size of the original and it is still probably less than half as large as the Lake-town of the films.




"Things need not to have happened to be true.
Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure
when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."


- Dream of the Endless


(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Apr 26 2016, 1:52pm)


Kilidoescartwheels
Valinor


Apr 26 2016, 1:55pm

Post #108 of 275 (2668 views)
Shortcut
Hear, here! [In reply to] Can't Post

"AnywayCool I would hardly say that Bilbo is underused; Martin Freeman is marvelous in his solo scenes but Bilbo needed to be interacting with Gandalf, the dwarves, Bard, Smaug..."


Martin Freeman WAS marvelous as Bilbo - and who else could have pulled off that ending scene with Ian McKellan with no dialog, and it just worked SO WELL!!! It was still the Hobbit's story after all, actually something the movies made me realize more than the book ever did. As much as I complain about the nephew's deaths (and Thorin's, if I'm honest), I realize that ultimately this is Bilbo's story, Bilbo's version of those events. Yeah, the POV, that's a good point I'd never thought about (and the reason I started this thread). Of course in the book the POV is limited to what Bilbo actually SAW, but what he saw was the destructive power of greed (even felt a little bit of it himself, with the Arkenstone), and the horrible loss that occurs in war. Whether war is for a good cause or not, the loss is always horrible. And that scene with Ian, where he's still reeling from all that horror and loss, well, if I keep typing I'm gonna get teary-eyed all over again, and I am at work, so....

Proud member of the BOFA Denial Association


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 7:06pm

Post #109 of 275 (2638 views)
Shortcut
"I would have said 'thinly stretched' or a more 'fairy tale' tone" [In reply to] Can't Post

And I would reply: that tone is very much part of the book's spirit, and that's why the movies often fail to catch that spirit.

Otaku-sempai has correctly interpreted my comment about how Jackson, but not Tolkien, sticks civilians in the middle of a battle. I would only add to that by emphasizing the point you went on to make: a seemingly minor change from book to film, like making the ruins of Dale more habitable (and a lot closer to Lake-town than they are in the book) can have unexpected ramifications not only on fidelity to other aspects of the plot but also the faithfulness of the spirit.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 7:11pm

Post #110 of 275 (2636 views)
Shortcut
"Admiral, if we go 'by the book', like Lt. Saavik, hours could seem like days." [In reply to] Can't Post

Whereas for Peter Jackson, days can seem like hours.


Quote
In the book it said they traveled by tunnel and also by night (the worms were the movie's way of making the tunnels). They gathered at Gundabad under Bolg's command, and marched on Erebor from there.

It may be worth repeating that Gundabad is a lot farther from Erebor in the book than it seems to be in the films.

One of my repeated frustrations with Jackson & Co. is that they seem to have a limited understanding of or appreciation for time and distances. While Tolkien's book, for instance, gives us the search for Thror's secret entrance and the repeated failed attempts to get through that door as a slow grind, Jackson's film makes it a race against the clock. Maybe the latter is necessary for a film, or maybe not, but obviously it makes one version feel very different from the other.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 7:16pm

Post #111 of 275 (2627 views)
Shortcut
And you succeeded. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 7:39pm

Post #112 of 275 (2619 views)
Shortcut
Have you ever seen "Big Night", with Ian Holm? [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
Martin Freeman WAS marvelous as Bilbo - and who else could have pulled off that ending scene with Ian McKellan with no dialog

The last scene of that 1996 film, between Tony Shalhoub and Stanley Tucci, is a dialogue-free delight (possibly influenced, I would guess, by the last scene, featuring Chishu Ryu alone, in the 1949 film Late Spring).

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 7:40pm

Post #113 of 275 (2617 views)
Shortcut
Have you seen the 1948 film version of "The Red Shoes". [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
And the image of the fairy tale of the "red shoes" just popped into my head--terrifying, really, forced to dance until you die, which also happens to folks who stray into the "otherworld"; i.e., lots of DARKNESS in folk tales.

I'd be curious how anyone who knows both the fairy tale and that movie version feels about the spirit being faithfully presented, or not, by the Archers.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 7:41pm

Post #114 of 275 (2623 views)
Shortcut
"a huge battle and 3 major deaths" [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, Tolkien doesn't even show Fili and Kili dying, which makes a big difference to the feeling of the book as opposed to the film.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 7:53pm

Post #115 of 275 (2620 views)
Shortcut
"Tolkien was speaking to children--his children--but the films need to speak to people of all ages" [In reply to] Can't Post

Tolkien's book was highly successful with not just his children or with children generally, but with a good number of adults, as well.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


N.E. Brigand
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 7:53pm

Post #116 of 275 (2618 views)
Shortcut
Exactly. Jackson's "Hobbit" is to Tolkien's "Hobbit" as Tolkien's "Hobbit" is to "Beowulf". [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, more or less.

That's a superb post. Thanks very much for chiming in with those thoughts. I am reminded how I was a little disappointed by the Merchant-Ivory film of The Remains of the Day, no matter how excellent the performances of Anthony Hopkins, Emma Thompson, and the rest of the cast, for making more explicit what was mostly just implied in Kazuo Ishiguro's book.

-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-
<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
Discuss Tolkien's life and works in the Reading Room!
+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=
How to find old Reading Room discussions.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Apr 26 2016, 8:00pm

Post #117 of 275 (2615 views)
Shortcut
Agreed [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
It may be worth repeating that Gundabad is a lot farther from Erebor in the book than it seems to be in the films.

One of my repeated frustrations with Jackson & Co. is that they seem to have a limited understanding of or appreciation for time and distances. While Tolkien's book, for instance, gives us the search for Thror's secret entrance and the repeated failed attempts to get through that door as a slow grind, Jackson's film makes it a race against the clock. Maybe the latter is necessary for a film, or maybe not, but obviously it makes one version feel very different from the other.


Theoretically, the distances are the same; the places involved mostly seem to be at the same locations as on Tolkien's maps. But we rarely, if ever, get a sense of those distances or the time required to cover them. It should be about 400 miles from Lake-town to Gundabad; and another 400 miles to return from Mount Gundabad to reach Erebor and Dale. Yet Legolas and Tauriel seem to get there and back in a handful of days (at most). Likewise, in the book it took Gandalf something like a month (or close to it) from the time he finished his business with the Necromancer in southern Mirkwood to reach the encampment of Bard and the Elvenking in Dale (a journey of around 600 miles if he circled around the southern end of the Forest to the eastern eaves; maybe 100 miles less if he used the Elf-path). And we know that in PJ's BotFA that Gandalf arrived by horse, not (for example) by eagle.

"Things need not to have happened to be true.
Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure
when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."


- Dream of the Endless


Smaug the iron
Gondor


Apr 26 2016, 8:26pm

Post #118 of 275 (2595 views)
Shortcut
That is why... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Well, Tolkien doesn't even show Fili and Kili dying, which makes a big difference to the feeling of the book as opposed to the film.


I like PJ version better, he does actually show there death scene witch means that I can really feel sorry for them and for Bilbo and the rest of the Company, when I am reading the book I don't feel sad about Fili and Kili because Tolken did not do a good job killing them, it could have been great if he had shown it for us then just telling us that they are dead. Plus in the film we are seeing that the dwarves and Bilbo are sad that Fili and Kili are dead but in the book no one is mourning them and is only mentioned once after they are dead and that is when Bilbo is saying goodbye, and only Thorin got a funeral in the book ( Fili and Kili probably did got one but not mentioned).

In my opinion PJ did a better job with the 13 dwarves then Tolken did.


ange1e4e5
Rohan

Apr 26 2016, 8:29pm

Post #119 of 275 (2593 views)
Shortcut
I agree. [In reply to] Can't Post

 

I always follow my job through.


Avandel
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 8:49pm

Post #120 of 275 (2583 views)
Shortcut
But [In reply to] Can't Post

Is not the concept of maintaining "faithfulness of spirit" somewhat subjective?

I will happily concede that roughly by Laketown and the fish and the adorable DOS EE marketplace scene, the films become darker. And yet. IMO there are traces of whimsy which remain in the films - the inimitable Bilbo picking his way through the gold, the way the dwarves pile into each other at the first sight of Smaug, the BOFA EE chariot race. An apparently the source material takes a far darker turn as well - Thorin & co. bring down a wall, Fili and Kili fall defending their uncle and king, Beorn wreaks havoc....

So there are things many miss (myself, very wistful about Thranduil's changesFrown, so for me that is one of the harder things). But for me, if I think of one of the core themes of the book is that a fussy little Hobbit went there and back again, and did come home changed, but still, at the core, remained a hobbit (as would Frodo) then absolutely IMO the spirit of the book is maintained (as I see/feel it). Bilbo is still Bilbo, and I think we see that re his response to the auctioning of his possessions. Bilbo doesn't pull Sting out and start taking heads, and so forth.

I still am impressed, for me, that PJ & co. managed to keep the "fairy tale tone" e.g., for me the whimsy - and segue so nicely to a more mature treatment by BOFA - and think that what PJ accomplished was very, very difficult. One very nice thing, of course, being his treatment of the dwarves IMO and having them be far more than lawn ornaments, which I personally didn't need them to be.


Sarahbor
Lorien


Apr 26 2016, 9:00pm

Post #121 of 275 (2581 views)
Shortcut
I know that [In reply to] Can't Post

But as I said earlier, however scary the material is in the book is completely up to your imagination. In a film it's not subjective; the image is right there before you. Hearing about a dragon torching a city is far different than actually seeing it.

I know that Gundabad is way farther away than what was shown in the movie, and this did bug me a little. But distances and traveling times are usually shortened in films, and I'd rather just enjoy the movie than obsess over the correct number of miles between one location and another.

It doesn't matter that we don't "see" Fili and Kili die in the book--they still die, despite being major(ish) characters and next in line for the throne, and this has an impact on the reader (and in the film you do need to see them die if you are to really care; it would disappointing if their deaths happened off-screen in a sort of "oh, by the way, they died too" fashion). My overall point was that if you are to accurately depict certain events mentioned in the book, you are going to come out with a PG-13 rating (in a live-action film; cartoons are a different story). Showing your lead dwarf becoming mortally wounded, bleeding, and dying, showing a dragon frying people alive in a firestorm, and showing goblin devices for "killing large numbers of people at once" (to quote the book) rather than simply reading about them ups the scariness factor considerably. For instance, in a book you can simply say that Thorin was mortally wounded without going into the details of blood and gore, but in a film you need to see the blood if you are to believe his really is dying.

Hobbit/LOTR cartoons & humor: http://www.sarahbor.com/

(This post was edited by Sarahbor on Apr 26 2016, 9:11pm)


Avandel
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 9:10pm

Post #122 of 275 (2572 views)
Shortcut
Agreed [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
In my opinion PJ did a better job with the 13 dwarves then Tolken did.


Re the Appendices, PJ & co. knew well - the dwarves at Bag End being a case in point, visually - I mean if you are filming a movie, unless it is a crowd scene or something, if there is a group sitting around a table, I am going to want to know who they are, how they fit in, and see them interact. These dwarves are a COMPANY, after all. Thorin's rag-tag band of dwarves taking on a dragon, which is awesomeCool, and I WANT to know them.Heart

Otherwise it's gonna be strange, that only Thorin and occasionally Fili and Kili - maybe Dori? ever venture any kind of comment, across many miles. Or be just dumb - it's like PJ stated "they're up on screen, they have to do something..."



Quote

Plus in the film we are seeing that the dwarves and Bilbo are sad that Fili and Kili are dead but in the book no one is mourning them and is only mentioned once after they are dead and that is when Bilbo is saying goodbye, and only Thorin got a funeral in the book ( Fili and Kili probably did got one but not mentioned).



I assume this was re being a children's tale in the book; re Thorin there possibly might have been some softening of things in a child's eyesUnsure as Thorin was sorry and there's lot of stories about kings dying but sort of being almost a protective spirit that will? might? come again when needed the most (e.g. King Arthur) - I mean among other things I always thought there was a hint of that theme/archetype with Thorin laid to rest with Orcrist and the Arkenstone:


Quote
They buried Thorin deep beneath the Mountain, and Bard laid the Arkenstone upon his breast.
“There let it lie till the Mountain falls!” he said. “May it bring good fortune to all his folk that dwell here after!” Upon his tomb the Elvenking then laid Orcrist, the elvish sword that had been taken from Thorin in captivity. It is said in songs that it gleamed ever in the dark if foes approached, and the fortress of the dwarves could not be taken by surprise.


I suppose Tolkien wouldn't have wanted to dwell on the lost princes in a child's tale.Frown


Sarahbor
Lorien


Apr 26 2016, 9:32pm

Post #123 of 275 (2565 views)
Shortcut
Distances [In reply to] Can't Post

If it's 400 miles to Gundabad from Laketown, and if you rode for 12 hours straight going 33 mph (the upper end of the average speed of a galloping horse), you could get there in 12 hours. Likewise you could get back in 12 hours going at the same speed. However, expecting a horse to gallop that fast for 12 hours in entirely unrealistic. So yeah, that was a stretch.

Hobbit/LOTR cartoons & humor: http://www.sarahbor.com/


Avandel
Half-elven


Apr 26 2016, 9:48pm

Post #124 of 275 (2556 views)
Shortcut
The short answer would be no, re the Red Shoes... [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
I'd be curious how anyone who knows both the fairy tale and that movie version feels about the spirit being faithfully presented, or not, by the Archers.


E.g. the 1948 movie version of the Red Shoes, it's IMO a completely "adult" rather tragic and frightening tale, with only the thread of the original running through the film. Barely recognizable, really - a bit like Tim Burton's more adult versions of Alice and apparently Looking Glass, tho I think Burton keeps a lot of the quirky whimsy of the source material.

But the 1948 film is far removed IMO from the story of a little girl enraptured with her red shoes and the religious overtones.Shocked So I suppose in that case, I wouldn't call it "faithful" as IMO the film has an "adult complexity" to it, which I don't think the original story does.

OK, I can see why some may have issues with the Hobbit filmsSmile, from that perspective - I guess the question for me would then be - does it bother me, that the talking purse isn't there? For me, no, because when I found out about this project I was thinking I wasn't interested, as this was going to be a "kiddie film."Shocked If I interpret the Hobbit as a "simple story" about the pitfalls of greed, say, I wouldn't be interested in a film version of that.

For one thing, with the Hobbit, even way back I thought the dwarves were treated unfairlyFrown and was firmly on their side. And you get older and ask more questions. Finally, very simply, I really, really, don't need to see another film about "greed, ain't it awful".
Not that I ever viewed the dwarves that way anyway. So I am really pleased with PJ's I think more sensitive treatment.Heart

But IMO the Hobbit is also about Bilbo's arc, and Bilbo and Thorin, and I think PJ stays quite true to thatHeart, as well as showing the loyalty of the dwarves to their king (e.g., keeping apparently Tolkien's Nordic/Viking influences "We are Sons of Durin...and Durin folk do not flee from a fight")


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Apr 26 2016, 10:16pm

Post #125 of 275 (2552 views)
Shortcut
Travel in Wilderland [In reply to] Can't Post

You would also have to account for the terrain and lack of roads. Travel, even on horseback, would be measured in days or even weeks, rather than hours.

"Things need not to have happened to be true.
Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure
when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."


- Dream of the Endless

First page Previous page 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ... 11 Next page Last page  View All
 
 

Search for (options) Powered by Gossamer Forum v.1.2.3

home | advertising | contact us | back to top | search news | join list | Content Rating

This site is maintained and updated by fans of The Lord of the Rings, and is in no way affiliated with Tolkien Enterprises or the Tolkien Estate. We in no way claim the artwork displayed to be our own. Copyrights and trademarks for the books, films, articles, and other promotional materials are held by their respective owners and their use is allowed under the fair use clause of the Copyright Law. Design and original photography however are copyright © 1999-2012 TheOneRing.net. Binary hosting provided by Nexcess.net

Do not follow this link, or your host will be blocked from this site. This is a spider trap.