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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Lord of the Rings:
Depends on what you mean by subtle

Shelob'sAppetite
Valinor

Nov 15 2012, 6:51pm


Views: 224
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Depends on what you mean by subtle [In reply to] Can't Post

I think Tolkien's LOTR is very subtle in terms both how layered his sub-creation is, and how nuanced the thematic threads of the story are. People who claim that LOTR is simply about good and evil have essentially missed the point. The themes of death, the unhealthy yearning for deathlessness, the wraithifying consequences of a lust for temporal power, and despair, seem to pass them by. He also sketches the structure of the story in a subtle manner - not being a slave to the idea that everything, and everyone, must be neatly connected in terms of both narrative or characterization.

However, there is certainly some clarity from Tolkien on who some of the bad guys are. Wormtongue is obviously not a name for an angel, I will admit that. There is nothing too subtle in this character, not even in the books.

However, for some reason, PJ feels that he needs to take these cues, and then amplify them beyond necessity. Wormtongue is called Wormtongue in the book, but he is not described as being hideously pale with open wounds, wearing Goth black clothes with lace trim, having no eyebrows, and feeding lines to an almost dead, zombified Theoden. Add the foreboding music to that, and you have Tolkien's text pumped full of steroids.

So no, this was not one of Tolkien's most subtly drawn characters. But that doesn't excuse PJ from amping that aspect up to the 11th degree. If anything, he should have toned it down a bit. A visual medium, like film, requires careful choices in terms of visual and aural cues, and PJ doesn't seem too interested in that.


(This post was edited by Shelob'sAppetite on Nov 15 2012, 6:53pm)

Subject User Time
SCOD - The words of a snake FlyingSerkis Send a private message to FlyingSerkis Nov 14 2012, 5:56pm
    Brad Dourif is amazing in this scene. I love his delivery of "I told you to take the Wizard's staff!" thomasofrohan Send a private message to thomasofrohan Nov 14 2012, 6:00pm
    Music starlesswinter Send a private message to starlesswinter Nov 14 2012, 6:15pm
        IMO, that's the problem with it Shelob'sAppetite Send a private message to Shelob'sAppetite Nov 14 2012, 8:20pm
            "More subtle" is not necessarily "better" thomasofrohan Send a private message to thomasofrohan Nov 14 2012, 10:18pm
                Its a matter of taste Shelob'sAppetite Send a private message to Shelob'sAppetite Nov 14 2012, 11:19pm
            But how many people actually notice something like that? starlesswinter Send a private message to starlesswinter Nov 14 2012, 11:53pm
                Most people I have spoken with Shelob'sAppetite Send a private message to Shelob'sAppetite Nov 15 2012, 4:43am
                    That's not the point I was trying to make starlesswinter Send a private message to starlesswinter Nov 15 2012, 6:32am
                        Got it Shelob'sAppetite Send a private message to Shelob'sAppetite Nov 15 2012, 6:46am
                    But was Tolkien really subtle himself? // macfalk Send a private message to macfalk Nov 15 2012, 2:02pm
                        Depends on what you mean by subtle Shelob'sAppetite Send a private message to Shelob'sAppetite Nov 15 2012, 6:51pm
                            I love a good bad guy design! starlesswinter Send a private message to starlesswinter Nov 15 2012, 7:59pm
                                What do I expect from PJ? Shelob'sAppetite Send a private message to Shelob'sAppetite Nov 15 2012, 8:22pm
                                    Well hope that the dim witted audience members ForestPark Nov 22 2012, 2:22am
                    As you see, GoodGuyA Send a private message to GoodGuyA Nov 15 2012, 5:05pm
            What's subtlety got to do with it? FarFromHome Send a private message to FarFromHome Nov 15 2012, 9:39am
        The bit of music I'm talking about, which plays over this, is not in 5/4 FlyingSerkis Send a private message to FlyingSerkis Nov 15 2012, 1:06pm
    Great choice, thanks! Radagast-Aiwendil Send a private message to Radagast-Aiwendil Nov 14 2012, 6:15pm
    Do I dare to put in my two cents? :P zarabia Send a private message to zarabia Nov 16 2012, 7:00am
        Movie Demographics like LOTR need to appeal to a Bombadil Send a private message to Bombadil Nov 16 2012, 2:16pm
    Meant to say this earlier, One Ringer Send a private message to One Ringer Nov 21 2012, 1:14pm

 
 
 

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