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Special Newsweek Edition: J.R.R. Tolkien: The Mind of a Genius on sale now!

Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 2 2017, 3:01pm

Post #1 of 65 (2435 views)
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Special Newsweek Edition: J.R.R. Tolkien: The Mind of a Genius on sale now! Can't Post

I was in our local Wegmans supermarket this morning when, on a whim, I checked out the magazine section. Guess what I found?



The price is $10.99 (US). The corner box reads: Display until April 22, 2017.

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes


OldestDaughter
Rohan


Mar 2 2017, 3:44pm

Post #2 of 65 (2289 views)
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I found that one at our local Food Lion! [In reply to] Can't Post

Its awesome! Another cool item to my Tolkien collection. Wink


It has some beautiful images in it as well.




"Keen, heart-piercing was her song as the song of the lark that rises from the gates of night and pours its voice among the dying stars, seeing the sun behind the walls of the world; and the song of Lúthien released the bonds of winter, and the frozen waters spoke, and flowers sprang from the cold earth where her feet had passed."


squire
Half-elven


Mar 2 2017, 7:06pm

Post #3 of 65 (2281 views)
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What? [In reply to] Can't Post

I would love to know more about the marketing decisions behind this. Who is supposed to buy it?
1. Movie fans - but the movies are as remarkable for veering away from Professor Tolkien's early 20th century ideals and art as they are for portraying his worlds and stories in modern-day imagery.
2. People who will buy anything that is "100 years" oriented - but 1917 is a somewhat arbitrary year for the 'beginning' of the Middle-earth that most of his readers associate with that term.
3. Pipe smokers - a vanishingly small percentage of people.
4. Geniuses and their fans - ditto.
5. Those who still prefer their pop media fixes to focus on the Lord of the Rings films and ignore The Hobbit films - not sure that's a group a marketing executive would identify ahead of time.
6. People who will buy anything with Alan Lee's name on the cover - Of course!



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


Darkstone
Immortal


Mar 2 2017, 8:15pm

Post #4 of 65 (2269 views)
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To produce buzz for new book and video game? [In reply to] Can't Post

Beren and Luthien is due for publication on May 4th, 2017.

https://www.tolkiensociety.org/...k-beren-and-luthien/

Middle-earth: Shadow of War has a release date of August 2017.

http://www.ign.com/...officially-announced


Coincidence? I think not!!!

******************************************
“Begone, foul dwimmerlaik, lord of carrion! Leave the dead in peace!"
"Come not between the Nazgul and his prey! Or he will not slay thee in thy turn. He will bear thee away to the houses of lamentation, beyond all darkness, where thy flesh shall be devoured, and thy shrivelled mind be left naked to the Lidless Eye."
"Do what you will; but I will hinder it, if I may."
"Hinder me? Thou fool. No living man may hinder me!"
"But no living man am I! I am Eowyn, daughter of Theodwyn!”
"Er, really? My mother's name was Theodwyn, too!"
"No way!"
"Way!"
"Wow! Let's stop fighting and be best friends!"
"Cool!!"

-Zack Snyder's The Return of the King


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 2 2017, 8:58pm

Post #5 of 65 (2265 views)
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Focus on Tolkien's Middle-earth [In reply to] Can't Post

This is a relatively slim magazine, coming in at 100 pages (including covers and ads). It is broken down into three parts:

- Creating Middle-earth. The story of how J.R.R. Tolkien transformed a love of languages into a fantastic world.
- Exploring MIddle-earth. Breaking down Tolkien's universe to reveal its most compelling mysteries.
- Celebrating Middle-earth. A century later, Tolkien's writing continues to define how we imagine.

The first part includes a brief biography of Tolkien and looks at the experiences and influences that shaped him and Middle-earth. It also takes a look at the friendship between Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.

The second section starts with a timeline of Middle-earth. "The Peoples of Middle-earth" includes short descriptions of the races of Arda, from the Ainur to the Orcs (though Trolls and Giants get left out). Another article examines the Hobbits in more detail. A map traces the journeys of the members of the Fellowship (though not those of Thorin and Company). Alan Lee discusses his experiences illustrating Middle-earth; some of his book covers are showcased, including the cover for the upcoming Beren and Lúthien. There is also a look at Tolkien's use of names and a table that traces the history of the Rings of Power.

"Celebrating Middle-earth" examines Tolkien's impact on literature and pop culture, discusses the insights to be gained from The Silmarillion, and looks at some of the adaptations of Tolkien's works for radio, television and film (the Rankin/Bass specials don't rate a mention while the 1981 BBC adaptation of LotR is conflated with the Mind's Eye adaptation for radio that aired on NPR), with an emphasis on the Peter Jackson films. Dungeons & Dragons gets a single name-check, but there is no coverage of actual Middle-earth games, video or otherwise.

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Mar 2 2017, 8:59pm)


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 2 2017, 11:33pm

Post #6 of 65 (2249 views)
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Based upon this cover, you'd think he directed the movies... [In reply to] Can't Post

Doesn't look like much of a tribute to me. Should have at least have some images of his own original art and book covers.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 3 2017, 12:37am

Post #7 of 65 (2243 views)
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Oh, give it a rest, Grumpy! [In reply to] Can't Post

You don't like the movies. We know. But do you have to harp on it every chance you get?

I respectfully suggest that you go dip your beard in the foam, father.

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Mar 3 2017, 12:38am)


Silmaril
Rohan


Mar 3 2017, 7:43am

Post #8 of 65 (2205 views)
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Interestingly there are only LOTR pics... [In reply to] Can't Post

and as far as I know wizzardly likes the LOTR movies to a certain extent.
And there is some truth in what he said about the cover design.


FarFromHome
Valinor


Mar 3 2017, 8:56am

Post #9 of 65 (2204 views)
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I have to agree [In reply to] Can't Post

that using photos from the LotR movie posters, rather than some Alan Lee artwork, is an odd decision for this cover. I have to think some ad exec had a hand in it - those are very familiar images because of the huge publicity around the movies, and might draw the eye of people who know JRRT mostly through the movies.

Darkstone's idea that this is to create buzz for upcoming releases makes a lot of sense, especially as Otaku-sempai mentions that this publication features Alan Lee artwork for the new Beren and Lúthien book.

So I'd guess that this little publication is meant to draw in people who enjoyed the movies, and then provide them with a little more background that might make them interested in a "new" Tolkien story that - just by coincidence - will soon be available in bookstores everywhere!

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



grammaboodawg
Immortal


Mar 3 2017, 1:46pm

Post #10 of 65 (2181 views)
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*gasp* Thank You! :D [In reply to] Can't Post

*scribbles on shopping list* FINALLY! A QUEST! :D




sample

We have been there and back again.


TIME Google Calendar


6th draft of TH:AUJ Geeky Observations List - November 28, 2013
4th draft of TH:DOS Geeky Observations List - May 15, 2014

5th draft of TH:BotFA Geeky Observations List - January 30, 2015


TORn's Geeky Observations Lists for LotR and The Hobbit


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 3 2017, 4:38pm

Post #11 of 65 (2168 views)
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This isn't really about how I personally feel about PJ's movies... [In reply to] Can't Post

I enjoyed PJ's LotR for what it is...his Hobbit, not so much. But all of that aside, this magazine looks like something that should have come out in 2001 to promote the movie, not as a tribute to 100 years of Middle-earth, let alone the man who created it. Tolkien had nothing to do with the creation of PJ's movies and in most likelihood, wouldn't have cared much for them if he shared any of his son's sentiments.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 3 2017, 9:55pm

Post #12 of 65 (2136 views)
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Okay... [In reply to] Can't Post

...at least, that doesn't reflect your feelings on all of them. Remember, the films are now the most familiar incarnation of Middle-earth to the general public. Not that an Alan Lee cover wouldn't have been nice too.


In Reply To
Tolkien had nothing to do with the creation of PJ's movies and in most likelihood, wouldn't have cared much for them if he shared any of his son's sentiments.


Since Tolkien passed away in 1973 he obviously had nothing directly to do with the movie adaptations. At the same time, without the books there would be no movies, no animated television specials, no radio dramas, and no The Hobbit graphic novel.

Question: Do you think that the collected graphic novel could have been used as a template (a rough storyboard, if you will) in adapting The Hobbit to the screen?

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Mar 3 2017, 10:04pm)


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 3 2017, 10:13pm

Post #13 of 65 (2117 views)
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yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

Pre-movie artwork from any of the established Tolkien artists such as Alan Lee, John Howe or Ted Nasmith, would have been more appropriate, though I understand why Newsweek went with this cover design, and unfortunately, the reason you give is exactly correct.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 3 2017, 10:25pm

Post #14 of 65 (2108 views)
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Hobbit graphic novel... [In reply to] Can't Post

It's been awhile since I read the graphic novel, but I remember it being pretty close to Tolkien's original story, and the scenes as I recall were pretty well adapted to the comic book medium, so I don't see why that couldn't be adapted to live action. But as to Tolkien not being around for PJ's movies, I would say the fact that his son felt so strongly against them, and felt that they didn't do his father's creation justice, surrounding his photograph with images from said movies is a bit unfitting for a tribute.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 3 2017, 10:33pm

Post #15 of 65 (2106 views)
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As a side note... [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm glad at least they decided not to include anything from PJ's Hobbit on the cover, because that would just be insulting.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


Eowyn of Penns Woods
Valinor


Mar 4 2017, 12:52am

Post #16 of 65 (2098 views)
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For what it's worth, I agree with you. [In reply to] Can't Post

I saw it on the magazine rack, grabbed it, flipped through...and promptly put it right back. I figured everybody else had already seen it, and hadn't bothered to mention it here, so I didn't. It was nice to see a dedicated issue again, but it would have been a lot nicer if it didn't so closely resemble all the special issues from the LotR movie release period which I already own.

But I'm a curmudgeon. It says so right in my footer.

**********************************

NABOUF
Not a TORns*b!
Certified Curmudgeon
Knitting Knerd
NARF: NWtS Chapter Member since June 17,2011


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 4 2017, 1:48am

Post #17 of 65 (2087 views)
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indeed... [In reply to] Can't Post

It is as I feared. After the extraordinary success of PJ's LotR movies, nearly all Tolkien memorabilia has become movie-centric, and generally tackier.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


squire
Half-elven


Mar 4 2017, 2:47am

Post #18 of 65 (2090 views)
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Tackier than what? [In reply to] Can't Post

One of my first impressions of 'Tolkien memorabilia', long before the New Line films, was the Tolkien Calendars. Tim Kirk - a class act. The Brothers Hildebrandt - well, 'tacky' is not too far off the mark.

I understand and agree with your remark that the films have had a lasting impact on the popular imagery associated with Tolkien. I'm not so sure that anything is "generally tackier" since the films. Did you read Lin Carter's book? Listen to Led Zeppelin's less inspired lyrics? See the costume designs in Bakshi's animated epic LotR?

Tolkien has always been pursued by the tacky end of popular taste, and I doubt it really changed for the worse after 2001.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 4 2017, 2:51pm

Post #19 of 65 (2050 views)
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I'll gladly take everything you've mentioned... [In reply to] Can't Post

and trade you a lovely set of Light-up Goblets from Burger King, and a "Nobody Tosses a Dwarf" t-shirt.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien

(This post was edited by wizzardly on Mar 4 2017, 2:52pm)


dormouse
Half-elven


Mar 4 2017, 5:20pm

Post #20 of 65 (2032 views)
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More appropriate....... I'm not sure [In reply to] Can't Post

Setting aside what you or I or anyone else feels about the films - or, for that matter, the illustrators you've mentioned - is there really any right or wrong choice here? Both films and artwork are visual representations of Tolkien's work by people other than Tolkien, done after his lifetime.

I would guess at some quite different reasons why the Newsweek cover designer chose film stills. First there's the issue of rights. Pre-movie artwork by those three or any other artist would have to be paid for: they're all still living so their work is well within copyright. That would have meant dealing with their various publishers - the more artists represented, the more separate permissions and fees, whereas the film stills are all Warner: simples!

Then, purely from a design point of view it would be much harder to combine the photo of Tolkien with a montage of illustrations or details of illustrations. There used to be a tradition of painted portraits of authors surrounded by their creations in similar vein to the Newsweek cover but it's a hard thing to pull off well and if the separate elements were not by the same person the end result could look very cluttered. The Newsweek designer has achieved a unity by using photographs.

Me, I'd have loved to see a complete new portrait by Alan Lee or John Howe showing Tolkien surrounded by his creations - something full of details that we'd be mulling over for the next decade or so, but I don't suppose Newsweek wanted that. They wanted something strong and eye-catching that would be noticed on the newsstands - and that's what they got.

For still there are so many things
that I have never seen:
in every wood and every spring
there is a different green. . .


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 4 2017, 5:47pm

Post #21 of 65 (2023 views)
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Yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

As I have already said, I understand why Newsweek would go with the movie-centric cover design. The movies are geared towards a more mainstream audience, as is Newsweek magazine. Most people on average are only familiar with Tolkien's characters and stories only through PJ's movies, so movie images will grab the attention of a larger audience. But, for all the reasons I have stated above, it serves as a terrible tribute to 100 years of Tolkien's Middle-earth.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


dormouse
Half-elven


Mar 4 2017, 7:24pm

Post #22 of 65 (2010 views)
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Terrible? I don't know. For myself I'm more inclined to say..... [In reply to] Can't Post

... that having lived through four decades when you didn't mention liking Tolkien's fictional writing because it was dismissed by the literary world as juvenile nonsense, I'm glad to see it celebrated by the world at large. I'm happy to cheer them on even if they don't always do things in a way I might have chosen.

Without that lasting and growing interest I suspect it would be harder in today's publishing climate for so many new books of Tolkien's unpublished work and new critical studies to find a home. They're published because they sell. They sell because so long as Tolkien is known and talked about people will go on discovering the books for themselves.

For still there are so many things
that I have never seen:
in every wood and every spring
there is a different green. . .


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 4 2017, 7:59pm

Post #23 of 65 (1995 views)
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That certainly hasn't been my experience... [In reply to] Can't Post

I was a proud admirer of Tolkien's long before the movies came out and would never think to hide my appreciation.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


squire
Half-elven


Mar 4 2017, 8:47pm

Post #24 of 65 (1983 views)
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It's hard to say how much of the published Tolkien studies material since 2001 is due to the films' popularity. [In reply to] Can't Post

The Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales, and the History of Middle-earth series - books that very few people have read, especially the last - all were published long before the films, simply because The Lord of the Rings has been a reasonably popular book over several generations.

The Children of Hurin might seem to be a creature of the films - I suspect that Christopher Tolkien pushed it along because he resented the attention the films were getting! - but given Mr. Tolkien's prodigious work on his father's archives going all the way back to 1977, and his excellent relationship with his publishers, I wouldn't bet that CoH and now Beren and Luthien, not to mention the books on Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Sigurd, and King Arthur among other lesser non-blockbusters, wouldn't in fact have been published no matter what Hollywood was doing. But take the contrary position: CoH, probably like the B&L book, are more readable but are still just abbreviated extensions of the earlier published works. Even had they not been published in a world of no blockbuster films, they would not be that greatly missed, I think, compared to the vast number of pages of Tolkien's words that were put in print long before Peter Jackson began his great adventure.

As for the critical studies, who can say whether professors are publishing more because the Tolkien name is hot due to the films. I think it's quite possible. But I also know I've read numerous critical essays in the last few years where the writers were unable to distinguish between episodes from the books, and episodes from the films, attributing both to "Tolkien". It's quite a double-edged sword, the impact of the films on 'Tolkien Studies'.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


dormouse
Half-elven


Mar 4 2017, 10:31pm

Post #25 of 65 (1968 views)
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I couldn't - and wouldn't - say how much difference it has made.... [In reply to] Can't Post

... but I sense and see that it has made a real difference - and there is good in that difference as well as things any one of us might regret. I know that from my own experience, which may well be different from yours or wizzardly's, but it's real, nonetheless.

As far as publication goes, I was thinking of the publishing climate now, which is very different from what it was when The Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales and HoMe came out.

For still there are so many things
that I have never seen:
in every wood and every spring
there is a different green. . .


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 4 2017, 10:38pm

Post #26 of 65 (1159 views)
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Why terrible? [In reply to] Can't Post

You admit that you do actually like Jackson's LotR films; and whether or not you care for some individual performances, the casting and costuming--purely in visual terms--works great (the occasional bit of plate armor aside).

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Mar 4 2017, 10:39pm)


FarFromHome
Valinor


Mar 4 2017, 10:44pm

Post #27 of 65 (1153 views)
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Well if Tolkien critics [In reply to] Can't Post

aren't able to distinguish between the books and the movies, then surely you have to blame the standard of Tolkien criticism, not the films.

It's an unfortunate fact of life in our hypercommercialized world that book publishers will always want to profit as much as they can from tie-ins for works that have been made into movies or serialized on TV. It was hard for years to buy a copy of Pride and Prejudice without Colin Firth smouldering from the cover, and the scene where Elizabeth comes across him dripping wet after his swim is still a lot of people's iconic image of the novel, despite the fact that it's not actually in the novel.

It's true that for a lot of people, films and TV are far more vivid and accessible than books, but what's so surprising about that? Most people throughout history have consumed their stories visually and orally, through plays, songs and storytelling. It's the written book that is the anomaly.

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



squire
Half-elven


Mar 4 2017, 10:44pm

Post #28 of 65 (1155 views)
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'Terrible' is a bit much, but we're not talking about the movies [In reply to] Can't Post

If I understand Wizzardly's point, the magazine says it's about "100 years of Tolkien's Middle-earth" but the imagery offered is about the last 15 of those 100 years, and the previous 85 years, if illustrated for a magazine cover, would look quite different from what was produced.

But, as he's admitted several times, from a sales point of view the decision is obviously defensible. The objection is to the "100 years" nonsense, not the movies.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 4 2017, 10:51pm

Post #29 of 65 (1149 views)
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Mainly because... [In reply to] Can't Post

Christopher Tolkien hated PJ's adaptation, and I feel that he, second only to Tolkien himself , has the most intimate relationship to the writings, and of his father's idea of what would constitute a satisfactory film adaptation. Being that this magazine was supposed to be about the author and the 100 years of his creations existence, it would have made more sense to include images that were either done by Tolkien himself, or that he had personally approved of.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


squire
Half-elven


Mar 4 2017, 10:52pm

Post #30 of 65 (1154 views)
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Yes, indeed. My suggestion was that the films lowered the standard of Tolkien criticism. [In reply to] Can't Post

If only in a new way.

In fact, Tolkien criticism, at the academic level, has always been plagued by fannish writing. You will remember we talked about that phenomenon during the Reading Room's Brian Rosebury discussion.

See in particular points 3A to 4A in my linked opening post of that week - near the bottom.



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 4 2017, 11:54pm

Post #31 of 65 (1139 views)
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Cover Dress [In reply to] Can't Post

The cover does not just have to attract the attention of the devoted Tolkien reader but also the casual fan of the books, movies, and other related media. This cover does that. At least Tolkien is pictured.

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Mar 4 2017, 11:55pm)


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 5 2017, 3:25am

Post #32 of 65 (1121 views)
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And a beautiul image of Tolkien it is... [In reply to] Can't Post

however, I would be happier with it if it at least included representations of some of the other adaptations, and not just from the one filmmaker. In the 100 years of Middle-earth, there have been many worthwhile efforts in visualizing Tolkien's world, why all the focus on just PJ's?

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


dormouse
Half-elven


Mar 5 2017, 9:24am

Post #33 of 65 (1112 views)
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Because the designer had to produce something.... [In reply to] Can't Post

...eye-catching. A composite of Tolkien's photo with images pulled from illustrations by various artists, cartoon films, Jackson films, stage plays, et al would look a mess and cost a fortune in repro fees. The film stills are much easier to blend into one design.

It's the content of the magazine which celebrates 100 years of Middle-earth and as I haven't seen it, I can't judge how well it does the job. The cover is simply intended to alert potential readers to its existence. Photo of Tolkien for the 'book' people, film stills that will be instantly recognisable to anyone walking past the newsstand..... And I'd say it's doing that job extremely well; for starters, we have a whole thread here discussing it - and I wouldn't mind betting that a lot of people here will at least look out for it now and most likely buy it. Job done. Designer and magazine very satisfied.

For still there are so many things
that I have never seen:
in every wood and every spring
there is a different green. . .


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 5 2017, 1:48pm

Post #34 of 65 (1099 views)
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Wasted Space [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
It's the content of the magazine which celebrates 100 years of Middle-earth and as I haven't seen it, I can't judge how well it does the job.


I think I provided a pretty fair summary of the issue a few posts back. However, there is perhaps too much wasted space, not just ads, but in the form of two-page spreads at the start of the three sections and blown-up bits of random map-art that could have been filled with more meaningful content. At least some of the photos and movie stills are captioned.

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 5 2017, 3:06pm

Post #35 of 65 (1089 views)
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It is eye catching, I will say that... [In reply to] Can't Post

and I will likely take a look next time I'm in the grocery store, but I don't think I will be purchasing it. First of all, $11 is way too much for information that I already have in my possession and in far worthier publications, and secondly, it clearly isn't targeted to admirers of Tolkien such as myself. However, I will say that I am glad to see they at least printed "Middle-earth" correctly, and the movie stills they chose are all from the decent PJ adaptation, and doesn't include any of his most egregious deviations, such as Arwen at the Ford.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


Dunadan of North Arnor
The Shire

Mar 8 2017, 12:45am

Post #36 of 65 (1013 views)
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I was rather impressed! [In reply to] Can't Post

Don't always judge a magazine by its cover!

You can easily scissor the cover off, and be left with a wonderful frontispiece of Ronald & Edith in their garden, and the rest of the magazine is truly a tribute to the man and his work, with next to zero ads.

The commentary is not always 100% accurate, but pretty close, and I'm not particularly fond of a minor contributor in the midst of the magazine, but its generally worthy of respect IMO.

I bought 2 copies, costing me over $30 Canadian dollars, but since I have all of David Day in my collection, this is I think a relatively worthwile acquisition.

The 2nd copy will be a gift to my brother, a Tolkien fan, but not before being passed thru my mother. Not a Tolkien fan, but an avid reader of topical, historical, stuff, which is exactly who this magazine is marketed to after all, and I'm sure she'll enjoy it. The photographs provided are an excellent montage, and I think it relays the life of Tolkien rather well.

I've seen worse!


FarFromHome
Valinor


Mar 8 2017, 8:26am

Post #37 of 65 (982 views)
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Ian McKellen tweeted a link [In reply to] Can't Post

to one of the stories: http://www.rawstory.com/2017/03/how-j-r-r-tolkien-redefined-fantasy-stories/

They went in, and Sam shut the door.
But even as he did so, he heard suddenly,
deep and unstilled,
the sigh and murmur of the Sea upon the shores of Middle-earth.
From the unpublished Epilogue to the Lord of the Rings



Kilidoescartwheels
Tol Eressea


Mar 10 2017, 5:00pm

Post #38 of 65 (925 views)
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Yes, I bought it! Learned some things, too. [In reply to] Can't Post

Nice to find this thread - though too bad it got derailed by complainers. I haven't read all of it, just kind of skimmed through it. I found the photo of Tolkien's gravestone inscribed with Beren and Luthien really touching! But I'm a little boggled as to why they're saying "100 years of Tolkien," when the books aren't that old yet? I assume Tolkien would be 100 years old if he were still alive? Even so, he didn't start writing until later.


Another thing I remember reading is that, when Peter Jackson was talking to the Weinstein brothers about producing LoTR, they were insisting that one of the hobbits had to be killed off!!!Shocked Now how on earth would THAT have worked? And which one? Maybe Frodo dying with Gollum? Kill off Sam - no, who would carry the ring for Frodo if that happened? Have Merry die saving Eowyn? Um, I haven't read RoTK in a long time, but doesn't he help save the Shire upon his return (something PJ's movies skipped entirely)? That leaves Pippin, em, no, don't kill him off either! I can only IMAGINE how some of the Hobbit haters would have reacted to such a thing, LOL!

I'd say I've entered my second childhood, but I never left the first!


dormouse
Half-elven


Mar 10 2017, 7:03pm

Post #39 of 65 (920 views)
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I think the 100 years.... [In reply to] Can't Post

..relates to the writing of the early stories that would develop into The Silmarillion, when Tolkien was still in the army but unfit for service at the front, and was posted to various camps in England. The published books were much later but the ideas that became the background to them were taking shape around 100 years ago. It's not his personal centenary - if Tolkien were still alive he'd be about 125.

For still there are so many things
that I have never seen:
in every wood and every spring
there is a different green. . .


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 10 2017, 7:55pm

Post #40 of 65 (914 views)
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100 Years of Middle-earth [In reply to] Can't Post

It has been 100 years since J.R.R. Tolkien wrote the first story/poem that began his development of Middle-earth. The magazine is as much a celebration of Middle-earth itself as it is a remembrance of Tolkien.

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Mar 10 2017, 7:55pm)


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 11 2017, 8:36pm

Post #41 of 65 (892 views)
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Lee cover and Jacksonian images [In reply to] Can't Post

I almost bought it just for the reproduction of Lee's cover, which "might" [?] be larger here than it will be reproduced on the actual book [maybe?].

And while I understand why the Jacksonian images are being employed there... well let me put it this way: I think [?] I disagree with wizzardly about the first three films, as I find all six fairly...

... well, yucky. To get technical Wink


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 11 2017, 10:40pm

Post #42 of 65 (879 views)
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PJ's LotR is certainly not without its faults... [In reply to] Can't Post

don't get me wrong, but if they had to go the mainstream pop-culture route, it is by far the lesser of two evils. I would have preferred Lee art with possibly an artists reproduction of the Tolkien photo (done by Lee himself ideally) so as to blend in with the rest of the images.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 12 2017, 1:28pm

Post #43 of 65 (865 views)
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lesser evils [In reply to] Can't Post

Blech... same cooks, same soup. Certain side dishes may be more obviously un-Tolkienian in films 4,5,6...

... but sometimes evil is more evil when it's less obvious Wink


(This post was edited by Elthir on Mar 12 2017, 1:30pm)


priell3
Lorien


Mar 12 2017, 8:24pm

Post #44 of 65 (840 views)
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I just bought a copy... [In reply to] Can't Post

...looking forward to reading it this evening.

MikeP


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 12 2017, 8:37pm

Post #45 of 65 (834 views)
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Yes... [In reply to] Can't Post

I agree, subtle evil is often the most heinous of all, and as this was supposed to be a sort of commemorative publication in recognition of Tolkien and 100 years of Middle-earth; showcasing his photograph with images from a film which his own son, editor and literary executor had this to say about:

"The chasm between the beauty and seriousness of the work, and what it has become, has overwhelmed me. The commercialization has reduced the aesthetic and philosophical impact of the creation to nothing. There is only one solution for me: to turn my head away."

...somehow seems a bit disrespectful and not at all an appropriate tribute.

Now, that being said, I had a chance today to take a look at this publication and I will say, that it does include some beautiful photographs of Tolkien, some of which I have never seen before, and some very nice ones of important locations in and around Oxford that were of importance in his life. As to be expected from the cover, it is very PJcentric, but didn't include much from the Hobbit at all which I was happy to see.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


Silmaril
Rohan


Mar 13 2017, 7:44am

Post #46 of 65 (805 views)
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Beauty and seriousness... [In reply to] Can't Post

I see a lot of that in the LOTR movie.


dormouse
Half-elven


Mar 13 2017, 1:56pm

Post #47 of 65 (779 views)
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Yes, so did I.... // [In reply to] Can't Post

 

For still there are so many things
that I have never seen:
in every wood and every spring
there is a different green. . .


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 15 2017, 2:42pm

Post #48 of 65 (748 views)
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great expectations [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, respect for Christopher Tolkien's opinion of the films would have been nice, but I wouldn't expect Newsweek to bend over backwards here [even if they were aware of CJRT's opinion]. Newsweek wants to sell paper here, after all.

That said, I can imagine a cover that utilizes various images from various sources and time periods, and yet is not a mess (or at least, it seems a possible thing to me)... which I agree, would at least seem to speak better to the 100 years idea in my opinion. Unfortunately Newsweek didn't hire me for the cover here, probably in part because they don't know I exist...

... although I do exist! At least in my reality.

You can see me, can't you?


(This post was edited by Elthir on Mar 15 2017, 2:50pm)


Meneldor
Valinor


Mar 15 2017, 6:10pm

Post #49 of 65 (720 views)
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Did you guys hear something? [In reply to] Can't Post

I thought I heard something. I'm probably just imagining things.


They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters, these see the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep. -Psalm 107


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Mar 15 2017, 7:16pm

Post #50 of 65 (709 views)
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Nothing to see here. [In reply to] Can't Post

Move along! Move along!

"He who lies artistically, treads closer to the truth than ever he knows." -- Favorite proverb of the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes


squire
Half-elven


Mar 15 2017, 7:33pm

Post #51 of 65 (775 views)
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I see you, Rrringriil. // [In reply to] Can't Post

 



squire online:
RR Discussions: The Valaquenta, A Shortcut to Mushrooms, and Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit
Lights! Action! Discuss on the Movie board!: 'A Journey in the Dark'. and 'Designing The Two Towers'.
Archive: All the TORn Reading Room Book Discussions (including the 1st BotR Discussion!) and Footerama: "Tolkien would have LOVED it!"
Dr. Squire introduces the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: A Reader's Diary


= Forum has no new posts. Forum needs no new posts.


ange1e4e5
Rohan

Mar 15 2017, 7:34pm

Post #52 of 65 (782 views)
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Unfortunately, he doesn't have respect for them. [In reply to] Can't Post

Just managing to make the trilogy is an achievement.

I always follow my job through.


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 15 2017, 9:05pm

Post #53 of 65 (768 views)
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Don't a lot of filmmakers... [In reply to] Can't Post

... manage to make films Wink


(This post was edited by Elthir on Mar 15 2017, 9:08pm)


ange1e4e5
Rohan

Mar 15 2017, 9:12pm

Post #54 of 65 (753 views)
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He's the only one who tried and succeeded in making the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy. Just ask Ralph Bakshi. [In reply to] Can't Post

 

I always follow my job through.


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 15 2017, 9:17pm

Post #55 of 65 (750 views)
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I'll take Bakshi's "Flight to the Ford" over PJ's any day... [In reply to] Can't Post

and of course it was 1978 and he didn't have the budget nor the technology PJ had. I for one would have liked to see what he could have done if given the opportunity to finish it.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


ange1e4e5
Rohan

Mar 15 2017, 9:19pm

Post #56 of 65 (748 views)
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Could have done a better job with a Balrog. [In reply to] Can't Post

At least Peter Jackson knew how to make something scary.

In regards to the Flight to the Ford, I liked Arwen getting introduced early.

I always follow my job through.

(This post was edited by ange1e4e5 on Mar 15 2017, 9:21pm)


wizzardly
Rohan


Mar 15 2017, 9:24pm

Post #57 of 65 (746 views)
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Yeah, I don't have a problem with PJ's Balrog... [In reply to] Can't Post

but his "Flight to the Ford" was awful. At least Bakshi recognized the importance of that scene for the development of Frodo's character.

"Tolkien has become a monster, devoured by his own popularity and absorbed into the absurdity of our time." -Christopher Tolkien


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 15 2017, 10:12pm

Post #58 of 65 (739 views)
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success in making the film seems a lowish bar for criticism [In reply to] Can't Post

Plus it's not like we have heaps of filmmakers here who failed to finish. According to Tolkien Gateway, Bakshi's film grossed $30,471,420 at the box office...

... and the budget was $8 million. I believe Peter Jackson was given 8 million just for toothpicks at the craft service table. But yes, it seems United Artists decided to pull the plug on Ralph B. anyway.

Shrug.

In any event, Christopher Tolkien gave his opinion with respect to the final product, just like other critics, and not [that I'm aware of] based on a question narrowed to elicit comments merely about the difficulty of being able to finish all three films (not that you said he had)...

... if he had been asked something like that, I'm guessing he might have had little problem saying something like: "While the project was an admirable undertaking as far as logistics (and so on) are concerned, the films themselves nonetheless turned out to be yucky adaptations in far too much measure...

... just like Elthir says."


Well... maybe not in those exact words Smile

CJRT probably doesn't know I exist either.


(This post was edited by Elthir on Mar 15 2017, 10:16pm)


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 15 2017, 10:27pm

Post #59 of 65 (731 views)
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consulting mediums [In reply to] Can't Post

"... but his [Jackson's "Flight to the Ford" was awful."

Amen. And here's another good example: Jackson noted his reason for this change, a reason based on the differences in mediums...

... but even if his concerns are all or mostly agreed upon (that's if), the specific way he chose to solve his problem is by no means the only way (obviously), nor even the best "filmic" way, in someone's opinion.

I can think of a "much better" way (subjective as that gets, or at least an arguably more book based way) to introduce Arwen even earlier than Jackson did, to introduce this part of the tale.

But... too late now Wink


ange1e4e5
Rohan

Mar 20 2017, 1:32am

Post #60 of 65 (679 views)
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Strange. [In reply to] Can't Post

If you just looked at Wizzardly's quote, Christopher doesn't have respect for the films.

I always follow my job through.


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 20 2017, 1:59am

Post #61 of 65 (676 views)
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you will be assimilated [the Borg, but not Bjorn] [In reply to] Can't Post

To my mind there's nothing strange about giving an honest criticism that speaks to the heart of what Christopher Tolkien cares about here...

... a faithful adaptation, and media-colonization.

CJRT's comments are relatively brief and to the point. Do you honestly expect him to simply say he "respects" these films on the whole, due to the arguable difficulty of making and finishing them...

... when compared to the Hollywood-gutting product that Christopher Tolkien thinks Peter Jackson produced?


ange1e4e5
Rohan

Mar 20 2017, 2:12am

Post #62 of 65 (672 views)
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He could have done a better way of doing a faithful adaptation with keeping the rights. [In reply to] Can't Post

J.K. Rowling had a good strategy when the Harry Potter films were made: she keeps the rights and she approves whatever changes the filmmakers make.

But I guess Christopher doesn't like Harry Potter for the same reason he doesn't like the Middle Earth films.

I always follow my job through.

(This post was edited by ange1e4e5 on Mar 20 2017, 2:13am)


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 20 2017, 2:24am

Post #63 of 65 (668 views)
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the film rights were out of Christopher Tolkien's hands... [In reply to] Can't Post

... long before Peter Jackson came along.

In any case.


ange1e4e5
Rohan

Mar 20 2017, 2:27am

Post #64 of 65 (665 views)
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I'm talking about when someone wants to do The Silmarillion in whole or in part as a film or tv series; Christopher still has the rights to that. [In reply to] Can't Post

 

I always follow my job through.


Elthir
Grey Havens

Mar 20 2017, 2:33am

Post #65 of 65 (664 views)
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Well, you wrote... [In reply to] Can't Post

... he "could have done..." suggesting to me that you meant The Lord of the Rings films, which is also what we were discussing...

... Christopher Tolkien's public reaction to the films that were made.

 
 

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